Twenty years ago or more, when you needed an attorney in rural Kansas, most firms would try to accommodate any legal concern you might bring to them. Today, times have changed. Just as we have seen with the specialization of medical professions, the practice of law has followed a similar path. Many, if not most, law firms now focus their scope of practice to a limited number of areas so they can offer top of the line legal advice. For matters in which they are not well-versed, firms rely on a referral network of other local and regional law firms. In this way, rural residents receive legal advice and services comparable to what they might expect from a large metropolitan firm.
Davis & McCann, P. A. is no exception. We focus our practice around estate planning, long-term care planning, Medicaid planning, probate and trust administration, corporate, business succession planning, and real estate. Specifically, we regularly work with clients on the following:
· Powers of Attorney
· HIPAA authorization forms
· Living Wills
· Planning for distributions to children, both minors and adults
· Asset protection for professionals or successive generations
· Guardianships and Conservatorships
· Beneficiary designations
· Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreement preparation and review
· Entities to hold and control family assets and family business interests
· Farm, ranch, and business succession planning
· Living Trusts and ancillary documents (Certification of Trust, Declaration of Trust)
· Trust funding
· Special Needs Trusts
· Charitable Remainder Trusts
· Charitable Lead Trusts
· Other types of Irrevocable Trusts
Attorney Megan L. McCann has lived most of her life in Southwest Kansas. As a youth, Megan excelled in academia and music and was heavily involved in multiple school activities. Her summers were spent earning money for college by working as an aide in the community nursing home, mowing lawns, keeping cattle records for a local farmer and helping behind the counter at the neighborhood soda shop. Because academics came easily to Megan, and as the eldest daughter of a banker and a school librarian, the idea of obtaining a degree in higher education was always part of her plan.
A graduate of Kansas State University with a major in accounting, Megan finished her degree in three years while working two part-time jobs. Subsequently, she obtained her law degree from Washburn Law School. While attending KSU, Megan met her husband, Tyler, a civil engineering technician, and they were married after Megan’s first year of law school. Her legal career began as an estate planning associate for Steven W. Graber, P.A., in Manhattan, KS. It was during this time that Megan and Tyler’s first child, Mara, was born.
In 2010, Megan was invited to return to Southwest Kansas to join attorney Tamara L. Davis at Tamara L. Davis, P. A. Megan and Tyler were thrilled to be able to be closer to family and thus, with a little one in tow, made the move back to Megan’s childhood hometown. Four years later, Megan was made a partner of the firm and the firm name officially changed to Davis & McCann, P. A.
Megan and Tyler have three young children: Mara (10), Tristan (8), and Bethany (2). You can frequently see the McCann vehicle on the roads of Southwest Kansas as they keep busy traveling to school and youth sporting events. Due to her husband’s desire to return to country living, the couple purchased an old farmhouse in rural Gray County in 2015. Their house has a unique history, having been built near Windthorst, KS, southeast of Spearville, KS in the early 1900s and moved to its current location north of Ensign, KS, in 2003. It also was the childhood home of a fellow Davis & McCann staff member for many years. Megan and her husband have finished a complete remodel of the second and third stories of the home and are currently tackling the main floor, doing most of the construction themselves.
Megan is an avid reader and you can often find her sitting in the swing on her wrap-around porch with a book in hand. During her spare time, she enjoys playing with her kids, fishing with her family at 99 Springs lake, helping out at her church, particularly with special music, and visiting Tyler’s family in Western Colorado.
You may contact Megan at Davis & McCann, P. A., Dodge City, KS, 620-225-1674. They are members of Wealth Counsel, a national consortium of Estate Planning Attorneys and the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA). We focus our practice on providing clients with the best legal advice on Estate Planning, Medicaid and Long-term Care Planning, Special Needs Planning, Family Business/Small Business Succession Planning, Probate, Trust Administration, Real Estate Transactions, and related matters.
Tamara was born in Anthony, Harper County, KS and spent her first five years Cimarron, KS where her father was the band instructor, before the family moved back to the farm in Harper County. She loves to reminisce about cooking with her grandmother for the cutting crew and then later, driving the grain cart during wheat harvest. Growing up, in addition to farming, her family operated a large poultry operation. She enjoyed her years on the farm and spending time with grandparents, cousins and her brother. She attended undergraduate school at Wichita State University, majoring in Business Administration and Finance and obtained her law degree from the University of Tennessee.
Tamara is the founding partner of Davis & McCann, P. A., having opened her own solo practice in 2003 after working as an associate for Pain Swiney and Tarwater in Knoxville, TN and then Hershberger, Patterson, Jones and Roth and Foulston Siefkin, both in Wichita, KS.
Tamara and her husband Lloyd, a financial adviser, have lived in Western Kansas since 1998. They met in Kansas in 1982, when Tamara was in college and Lloyd was in graduate school in Virginia. After dating long distance for three years, they were married in 1985. They have three grown children: Austin, AlexMarie, and Parker. Austin owns and operates businesses in Lawrence, Kansas and Enid, Oklahoma. His wife, Kristen, works for State Farm Insurance and they are expecting the first grandchild this July. AlexMarie is pursuing her B.S. in Dental Hygiene at the University of Missouri in Kansas City, and her fiancé, Adrian Gomez (also a Dodge City native) is a dentist in Olathe, KS. They are to be married this fall. Parker and his wife, Katrina, met as students at the United States Air Force Academy, and both are currently active duty Air Force Officers. Parker is a pilot and Katrina is a logistics officer.
Tamara and Lloyd love to travel, and have many stamps in their passports. During her spare time, she enjoys gardening, cooking (her current interest is plant-based cooking), reading, playing the piano and spending time with Lloyd, their children, and her parents, brother and his family at their family home at Lake of the Ozarks.
You may contact Tamara at Davis & McCann, P. A., Dodge City, KS, 620-225-1674. They are members of Wealth Counsel, a national consortium of Estate Planning Attorneys and the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA). They focus their practice on providing clients with the best legal advice on Estate Planning, Medicaid and Long-term Care Planning, Special Needs Planning, Family Business/Small Business Succession Planning, Probate, Trust Administration, Real Estate Transactions, and related matters.
The Coronavirus pandemic has forced families to think about topics they might generally avoid; serious illness and death. Because the virus doesn’t always present symptoms in the early stages, those who are struck with a severe form often do not have time to prepare their business and legal affairs before requiring medical intervention. What can you do now to ensure that your legal and financial matters are in order? Below are some recommendations on what you or your loved one can do to keep your home and business running smoothly in case you are hospitalized or otherwise unable to act on your own:
1. Review your Health Care Power of Attorney (HCPOA). This document allows someone to make your health care decisions in the event you are unable to. You may name one or more individuals whom you trust to act as your agent(s). We recommend that you name at least one alternate agent, should your first agent be unable or unavailable to make decisions on your behalf. If you become mentally competent and able to communicate with your doctor, the authority of your HCPOA agent ceases.
2. Review your General Durable Power of Attorney (GDPOA). This document is often referred to as a business or financial power of attorney. Your agent can pay your bills, file your taxes, and conduct your ordinary business affairs. Similar to the HCPOA, you may name one or more individuals whom you trust to act as your agent(s). Again, we recommend that you name at least one alternate agent, should your first agent be unable or unavailable to make decisions on your behalf.
It is easy to become fearful and focused on the unknowns surrounding the Coronavirus 19 pandemic. Rather than dwell on the negatives, we suggest you look for ways you can help your community during this time. Here are 10 ways you can have a positive impact locally:
1. Practice social distancing and sanitation measures as recommended by the CDC and insist all members of your family do the same.
2. Call your elderly neighbors weekly and ask how they are feeling. Have a real conversation with them; ask about their family, their hobbies, etc. Do they need any groceries or medicine that you could pick up and deliver to their doorstep for them? Make sure they jot down your telephone number to use if they are concerned or just need to hear a friendly voice.
3. Turn off the television and phones and take your family outdoors. Write encouraging messages and pictures on your driveway and sidewalks with sidewalk chalk for passing neighbors to see.
4. If your community has been ordered to shelter in place, send a generous tip to the professional who does your hair, nails, lashes, massage, etc. The majority of these individuals are self-employed and will be out of income during a quarantine, with no unemployment benefits available. A gesture of good will on your part could help them weather this storm.
5. Purchase gift cards from your favorite restaurant, bar, movie theater, etc. to use after social distancing recommendations have been rescinded. Consider sending gift cards for grocery stores to individuals you know who are no longer employed due to this pandemic. Most of these gift cards can be purchased online or by calling the business, using your credit card for payment, and having the cards mailed to you.
Davis & McCann P. A. has named Mary Beth Helfrich, as their new marketing director. Helfrich brings over 20 years of legal experience to the position as well as multiple years in advertising, marketing and education.
Helfrich will be responsible for all forms of traditional and digital communication for the firm, as well as coordinating educational conferences and speaking engagements. Helfrich is a graduate of St. Mary of the Plains College with a B.A. in journalism (minor in Business Administration), as well as Ft. Hays State University with a B. A. in elementary education.
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