Attorneys

The breadth and depth of McCandlish Lillard’s experience provides real value to our clients. Learn more about our attorneys by clicking on their profiles below.

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Hannane "Hannah" Amanpour

Law Clerk

Fairfax
Hannah is a Juris Doctor candidate at The George Washington University Law School, expected in Spring of 2022. As of Fall 2020, she was designated a George Washington Scholar, ranking in the top 15% of her class. Hannah is currently serving as the Senior Articles Editor for Volume 13 of the George Washington Journal of Energy and Environmental Law. She is also a volunteer with the Family Law Pro Bono Project, assisting pro se litigants from underserved communities with family court matters in DC Superior Court. Hannah received her B.A. in Government and International Affairs, with a concentration in International and Comparative Politics, graduating magna cum laude, from George Mason University. Before attending law school, Hannah owned and operated a residential and commercial moving company located in Northern Virginia. She also spent many years working in the auto industry. Hannah is a DC native and is currently living in Reston, Virginia. In her free time, she loves to spend time with her children and read.

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Peter A. Arntson

Retired

Fairfax
Peter A. Arntson has over 53 years of legal experience. His practice is devoted primarily to estate planning and administration with a particular emphasis on the taxation of trusts and estates. His practice also includes forming and advising partnerships, corporations, limited liability companies, closely held businesses, private foundations and public charitable organizations. Peter graduated from the University of Virginia with a B.A. in history. After two years in the Army, one year of which was in France, he attended the University of Virginia School of Law where he obtained his L.L.B. (now J.D.). He later obtained an L.L.M. in taxation from Georgetown University Law Center. He began his practice in Arlington with Philips, Kendrick, Gearhardt & Aylor in 1965, becoming a partner in 1970. In 1975 he became a partner in this firm.

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Sarah C. Aviles

Senior Associate

Fairfax

Sarah Caitlyn Aviles concentrates her practice in the areas of estate planning, trust and estate administration, fiduciary representations, guardianships and conservatorships, and civil litigation.

As an estate planning attorney, Sarah advises clients on planning for family financial needs, probate avoidance, and incapacity. She has prepared hundreds of estate plans, including revocable and irrevocable trusts, wills, financial powers of attorney, advance medical directives, living wills, appointments of standby guardian, and deeds. Sarah utilizes estate tax planning, small business planning, and special needs planning, as necessary, to craft an estate plan for each client’s unique financial and personal circumstances. 

Sarah has also represented many fiduciaries through the complex post-death trust and estate administration process, from insolvent estates to multi-million dollar estates and trusts. Upon an individual’s death, she advises trustees and executors on various issues including Federal and state estate and inheritance tax laws and post-death personal and fiduciary income tax requirements. She has guided many trustees and executors through the process of properly settling a trust or estate and distributing diverse assets, such as business interests, real property, and retirement accounts.

Sarah has represented executors from the initial steps of probating a will with the Court through the complicated probate process, handling correspondence and filings with the Commissioner of Accounts, beneficiaries and financial institutions.

She also represents prospective guardians and conservators of incapacitated adults and minors through the Court appointment and qualification process.

Sarah concentrates part of her practice in civil litigation in the Federal and Circuit Courts. She has represented many fiduciaries before the Virginia Circuit Courts in matters such as probate-related proceedings, beneficiary disputes, augmented estate claim disputes, and will and trust contests.

She has also litigated civil cases in various areas of the law, such as business, employment, real estate, construction, adverse possession, and contract law. Sarah has experience arguing cases in arbitration, mediation, and court proceedings.

Sarah received her J.D. from the William & Mary School of Law in May 2013, and her B.A. from the College of William & Mary in May 2009. While at the William & Mary School of Law, She was a published member of the William & Mary Journal of Women and the Law, Editor-in-Chief of one of the law school newspapers, and worked in the William & Mary Elder Law Clinic.

Sarah is a member of the Fairfax Bar Association and former member of the Virginia Academy of Elder Law Attorneys. She is also a member of her church choir and a volunteer leader of her church high school youth group.

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Eric J. Berghold

Principal

Fairfax
Eric J. Berghold is a principal in the Litigation Group of McCandlish & Lillard. He has extensive trial experience in the courts of Northern Virginia, including the federal court, and appears frequently before the Workers’ Compensation Commission. Mr. Berghold’s appellate experience includes arguments before both the Supreme Court of Virginia and the Court of Appeals of Virginia. Eric’s practice focuses primarily on commercial litigation and workers’ compensation, and includes tort liability and landlord/tenant.

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Alan B. Croft

Senior Counsel

Leesburg
For over 30 years Alan Croft has practiced exclusively as a litigator with a reputation as an aggressive and thorough trial attorney. Early in his career he served as a criminal prosecutor for the Commonwealth of Virginia and since that time, he has been involved in virtually all areas of civil and criminal litigation. More recently, his practice has focused on complex commercial matters, insurance coverage disputes and other insurance matters for both U.S. and foreign clients, complex construction litigation, and personal injury claims. With this background, he is able to arrive at a strategy that will result in a successful resolution of clients’ legal matters. Alan has served as lead counsel in more than 100 trials in state and federal courts throughout the United States as well as hearings before arbitral tribunals. One such notable matter was an environmental coverage dispute against a major international corporation which was tried before a California jury for three months and resulted in a defense verdict that saved the firm’s insurer clients over $100 million. Another significant case involved the representation of London Market Insurers in a complex coverage dispute against a Fortune 100 company. The matter was tried for over two months in Missouri and resulted in a favorable judgment avoiding $70 million of potential liabilities. In addition to his years as a trial attorney, Alan also draws upon his experiences as a patent attorney and as the president of a real estate development firm, which have benefited him in his handling of complex technical and commercial issues.

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John W. Farrell

Principal

Fairfax
John W. Farrell has over 40 years of experience before county supervisors, planning commissions and boards of zoning appeals in matters of real estate development, land use and environmental regulation, including rezoning, site plan and wetlands approvals. He has represented landowners and developers in innumerable land use and environmental cases and controversies including comprehensive planning, infrastructure financing and bonding and microbial, asbestos and lead contamination issues. Among those John has represented are the applicant in the largest rezoning ever filed in Northern Virginia which included 26 million square feet of nonresidential space and 2,266 dwelling units. He also represented dozens of plaintiff/landowners in the Fairfax County C & I and both Loudoun County down-zoning litigations. John’s experience on behalf of lenders and borrowers in transactions involving real estate acquisition, construction and development loans is extensive. This representation has included the acquisition, development, leasing and sale of mixed-use communities, condominium and residential projects, commercial and retail properties, the sale of REO, negotiation of workouts, and foreclosure of non-performing loans. As the former General Counsel for the Fairfax County Democrats (“FCDC”), John has extensive expertise in Virginia election law, having represented FCDC during the 2013 Attorney General’s recount and in litigation versus the local and State Electoral Boards. During 2017 he represented one of the candidates in the House recounts and served as General Counsel to the successful Lieutenant Governor’s campaign. John’s environmental law and regulatory background is considerable and includes matters involving lender liability, CERCLA, RCRA, Clean Air, asbestos, lead, underground storage tanks, wetlands regulation and the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act.

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Elizabeth L. Gray

Principal

Fairfax
Certified as an Elder Law Attorney by the National Elder Law Foundation (NELF), Elizabeth has demonstrated her expertise in elder law and special needs law for over 20 years. Elizabeth focuses her practice in the areas of estate planning, elder law, special needs planning, guardianships, and the administration of estates. She provides experience, compassion and a meticulous attention to details in all of her work. This includes the drafting of trusts (including special needs trusts, pet trusts, trusts to minimize income taxes and capital gains), wills, powers of attorney, medical powers of attorney (also known as advance medical directives), and other succession planning documents. Elizabeth has the experience to find solutions to each client’s individual needs rather than simply using forms or other “boiler plate” materials. She has developed a reputation among her peers in the legal community as the “go to” person in the areas of elder law and special needs planning. In addition, Elizabeth is a member of the Special Needs Alliance – an invitation-only nationwide attorney organization. She is a Past-President and the 2011 recipient of the “Outstanding Member” award of the Virginia chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA); a member of NAELA’s invitation-only Council of Advanced Practitioners; and former co-chair of three different sections of the Fairfax County Bar Association. She is a current member of the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association and sits on the Board of Directors of The Arc of Northern Virginia. Her other accolades include: AV® Preeminent™ ranking by Martindale-Hubbell and a “Superb” rating on AVVO. Elizabeth has been listed in Best Lawyers of America each year since 2012, an honor given to only 5% of attorneys; a recipient of the Influential Women of Virginia class of 2012; a SuperLawyer in Elder Law for Virginia and Washington, D.C. each year since 2009. Named in Washingtonian Magazine among the top elder law attorneys in the Washington, D.C. area since 2009; and listed in Northern Virginia Magazine among the top elder law attorneys in the Northern Virginia area since 2011. Additionally, in 2015 Elizabeth was recognized by her legal peers as “Lawyer of the Year” in Elder Law for Metropolitan DC in U.S. News and World Report’s “Best Lawyers – 2015” guide. The award she is most proud of is the “Legal Assistance Distinguished Service Award” from the American Bar Association for helping victims of the September 11 attacks. Quoted in such publications as MSN Money and The Washington Post, Elizabeth provides frequent educational seminars for the public and helps fellow attorneys hone their skills by teaching Continuing Legal Education classes (CLE). Elizabeth Gray has been practicing law since 1996. She is a member of the bar of the Commonwealth of Virginia. Rather than going to a typical law school, Liz is a Virginia “law reader.” Under the law reader program, the student apprentices with an attorney under the guidelines issued by the Virginia Supreme Court and at the end of the program the student is eligible to take the Virginia Bar Examination. This unique way of obtaining her legal education has given her a down to earth attitude and an approachable style. When she is not working, you can find Elizabeth reading, jogging, or just spending time with her family – her son, husband, and their beloved Weimaraner, Casper. A little-known fact: Elizabeth is a former professional violinist, having played with the Binghamton Symphony Orchestra and the Binghamton Pops.

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Virginia C. Haizlip

Principal

Fairfax
Virginia C. Haizlip joined the firm as a new principal in 2017. Virginia’s practice focuses on divorce and separation, child custody and child support, guardianships and conservatorships, estate planning, and estate administration. Virginia has been in the practice of law since 2005, after she graduated from The George Washington University School of Law, and initially focused her practice on family law. Virginia was drawn to the practice of family law because of its dynamic nature and the opportunity to work one-on-one with clients to solve their problems. Likewise, through her work in guardianships/conservatorships, estate planning, and estate administration, she is able to interact with people and assist them in solving their legal problems. She enjoys working with clients from all walks of life. She has represented federal employees and their spouses, employees of international NGOs and their spouses, business owners, immigrants, and stay at home parents. In addition to working with clients as their attorney, Virginia also offers mediation services as part of her practice. Virginia is pragmatic, solution-oriented, and loves to work with her clients to select a process and guide them to an outcome that works for them and their unique families. Virginia is experienced in a variety of complex family situations. She works with clients across a variety of processes, ranging from litigation to mediation and Collaborative Divorce. She notes, “Having experience and knowledge about many different options allows me to help clients evaluate what approach is best for them.” Virginia served as the President of the Northern Virginia Chapter of the Virginia Women Attorneys Association for 2019-2020 and is a member of the Collaborative Professionals of Northern Virginia, the Virginia Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, and VTLA. Virginia was named as a Rising Star by Super Lawyers for Virginia every year 2010-2018 and for the District of Columbia every year 2013-2018. Virginia was named an Influential Woman in the Law in 2019 and has been designated as a Top Attorney by Arlington Magazine, Northern Virginia Magazine, and has been named to the Legal Elite by Virginia Business magazine.

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Robert H. J. Loftus

Principal

Fairfax
Robert H. J. Loftus is a principal of McCandlish & Lillard. His practice has focused on business litigation, and he has successfully litigated numerous complex business and liability issues for nationally recognized companies. Recently, he successfully defended a government contracting company from raiding claims, defended a bank from a multimillion dollar mechanics lien claims against a loan asset, won a defense verdict in a conspiracy claim against a software company’s general counsel, prevailed in a dispute over founders’ shares in a European telecommunications company, defended a medical practice from fraudulent billings claims, and pierced a series of corporations and obtained a multimillion dollar verdict against its owners. His practice includes all aspects of real estate disputes, including partnership and corporate matters, finance, leasing, and construction, telecommunications, defense of liability matters, and extensive experience with trust and estate disputes involving business interests.

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Ryan A. Logan

Associate

Fairfax
Ryan Logan is an associate attorney whose practice focuses on business and real estate transactional law. Ryan works in the firm’s Fairfax office representing clients in Northern Virginia and throughout the DC metropolitan area. Prior to joining McCandlish, Ryan practiced tax law and trust and estate administration in Maryland. Ryan received his undergraduate degree from American University with a specialization in political science and American government. Ryan earned his law degree from Rutgers University School of Law – Newark, where he participated extensively and served as a senior member of the law school’s Community and Transactional Lawyering Clinic, which assists local community members with establishing tax-exempt, non-profit business entities. Ryan also spent time working for various judges in the family division of the Superior Court of New Jersey, Essex Vicinage. Ryan is a native of New Jersey who enjoys playing golf and watching sports in his free time. He is also a music enthusiast who has played drums in various bands for many years.

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Daniel P. Lyon

Counsel

Fairfax
Daniel P. Lyon is an accomplished attorney and executive with more than 30 years of progressive experience with repeated success across a broad range of industries and business segments. His strong business acumen (including his background as a CPA and business executive) enables him to quickly understand the fundamental elements of each business transaction and develop creative solutions to obtain consensus, while gracefully managing the dynamics of a rapidly changing environment. Daniel provides legal services as an Of Counsel member of the firm’s Business and Intellectual Property groups and works out of the firm’s Fairfax and Leesburg offices. Daniel provides legal counsel for clients on a variety of business issues, including business sales, mergers and acquisitions, government contracting and related statutory and regulatory compliance, business organizations (including SDB joint ventures), teaming agreements, stockholder, partner and operating agreements, software and data licensing and development, SaaS, data mining and distribution agreements, leasing, loan documents, executive compensation and employment/labor law (including Service Contract Act compliance). His prior experience as a trial attorney involved in complex business litigation for over 16 years also gives him a unique perspective and knowledge base when negotiating business transactions. Daniel also successfully created, operated and exited a government consulting company during the period of 2008-2018, where he served as the company’s General Counsel, Chief Financial Officer and a member of its Board of Directors. He has extensive knowledge related to the legal and financial needs of government contractors, and is an experienced advisor to entrepreneurs and business owners related to the formation, operation, sale/purchase and transition of their businesses. Daniel began his legal career in Fairfax, Virginia, as an associate in the law firm of Miles & Stockbridge, before becoming an associate and then partner in the law firm of McCandlish & Lillard, P.C., where he served as a member of its Board of Directors (2000-2008), chairman of the Marketing Committee, leader of the firm’s Strategic Planning (2000-2007) and Treasurer and member of its Executive Committee (2006-2008). Daniel co-authored legal articles entitled “When is Raiding a Competitor’s Employees Illegal?” (Virginia Business Law Journal, 1996) and “Seller Beware- The Impact of Prospect Development Co. v. Bershader on the Sale of Real Estate in Virginia” (The Fee Simple, Virginia State Bar Assn. – Real Property Section, Volume XX, Number 1 (1999)). He has also lectured on a variety of business and employment law issues for the Fairfax Bar Association, Virginia Bar Association and other Continuing Legal Education programs, including seminars on “Covenants Not to Compete” and “LLC’s: Advising Small Business Start-Ups and Larger Companies in Virginia” (2004 and 2005) and for various business group seminars entitled “Evaluating and Negotiating Employment Terminations”, “Understanding the Employment Relationship”, “Protecting Your Legitimate Business Interests” and “Taking Your Business Through the Growth Cycle”. Daniel served the Central Fairfax Chamber of Commerce as Chairman of the Board of Directors (both 2005 and 2001), Legal Counsel (2003-2007), Director (1993-2007), Vice President of Member Services (1996-98) and Vice President of Master Planning (1999). He also served as a business representative on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Steering Committee for Adopt-A-Cause (1993-1995), the Fairfax County Welfare Reform Community Planning Task Force (1995), and the Northern Virginia Workforce Investment Board and its Finance Committee (2000-2001). Daniel also served as a member and Chairman of the Board of Directors (2011-2013) of the Belmont Men’s Golf Association. Daniel graduated from James Madison University (1982-1986) (Cum Laude), where he was a member of the accounting honor society Beta Alpha Psi, and from the George Mason University School of Law (1989-1992) (With Distinction), where he was a member of the GMUSL Law Review and the Business Law Society.

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R. Peyton Mahaffey

Principal

Fairfax
Peyton Mahaffey is the President and Managing Partner of McCandlish Lillard, and has actively litigated business, corporate, commercial, and fiduciary matters on a continuing basis since 1980. He has extensive experience as a trial lawyer and lead counsel in state and federal cases, as well as arbitration and mediation. He has tried many jury and non-jury cases, written and argued many appellate briefs to the Virginia Supreme Court and Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, and been the principal attorney on many reported state and federal decisions. Peyton has significant experience representing clients in shareholder, partner, and related business disputes. His clients have included business leaders, builders, contractors, electrical and mechanical engineering firms, architects, property managers and brokers, investments advisors, banks and medical practitioners, technology entrepreneurs, software developers, computer consultants, and real estate developers. Peyton has successfully represented local, regional and national businesses in major corporate and contract litigation; individuals, and other professionals and their practice groups in partnership disputes; and federal and state chartered banking institutions in lender liability, commercial, and other contract litigation. Peyton has litigated numerous substantial guardianship, conservatorship, and related fiduciary and estate cases. Many of Peyton’s cases have involved declaratory, injunctive or other emergency relief. Peyton has successfully brought and defended fraud, defamation, business conspiracy, will contest, fiduciary duty, limited liability company disputes, partnership dissolutions, and tortious interference with contract claims, minority shareholder oppression actions, trademark, intellectual property and trade secret issues, will and estate litigation, and suits involving non-solicitation/non-competition agreements and employer/employee rights and liabilities. Peyton’s many professional recognitions include selection in 2019 to The Virginia Lawyers Hall of Fame by Virginia Lawyers Media (publisher of Virginia Lawyers Weekly), honoring attorneys on the basis of their career accomplishments, contributions to the development of law in Virginia, contributions to the bar and the Commonwealth, and efforts to improve the quality of justice in Virginia,  and selection in 2016 as a “Leader in the Law by Virginia Lawyer’s Media.  Peyton has been named to Virginia Business magazine’s “Legal Elite every year since its inception in 2000, and enjoys an AV-Preeminent review rating in Martindale-Hubbell (recognition for earning the highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards).  Other recognitions include “Top Lawyers” and “Washington’s Best Legal Minds” in Washingtonian magazine;  “Super Lawyers” in the Commonwealth of Virginia and the Washington, D.C. area and “Top Attorneys in Business Litigation” – Super Lawyers corporate counsel editions; “Top Attorneys” in the Washington, D.C. area, “Best Lawyers in America, and “America’s Most Honored Professionals – Top 1%” by American Registry;  “Top Attorneys” by Richmond magazine;  and being a member of the Nation’s Top One Percent (1%) by the National Association of Distinguished Counsel, an organization dedicated to promoting the highest standards of legal excellence. Order of Justitia, 100 or more jury and/or bench trials and/or arbitrations to verdict and/or decision. Peyton has also been named Life Fellow of the American Bar Foundation; Senior Fellow (2007-21) of the Litigation Counsel of America, a trial lawyer honorary society comprised of less than one-half of one percent (0.5%) of the lawyers in the United States; Fellow of the Fairfax Bar Foundation; and Fellow of the Virginia Law Foundation, an honor conferred on Virginia lawyers of integrity and character who are outstanding in their profession and in their communities. In January 2016, Peyton was elected to and served a 3-year term on The Virginia Bar Association’s Board of Governors.

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Lawrence J. McClafferty

Principal

Fairfax, Leesburg
Lawrence J. McClafferty is a principal with McCandlish Lillard, its Treasurer, and a member of its Executive Committee.  He works out of the firm’s Fairfax and Loudoun offices.  Lawrence is a trial and appellate lawyer who, in recent years, has devoted much of his practice to litigation involving business torts, community associations, and fiduciary litigation, which includes will contests, breach of fiduciary duty claims, and guardianship/conservatorship actions.  He lectured on fiduciary litigation at the 2016 Virginia Bar Association winter meeting. Lawrence was part of the litigation team that obtained the largest jury verdict in the Commonwealth of Virginia for 2016, as reported by Virginia Lawyers Weekly.  He is AV-rated by Martindale Hubbell and is a nine-time selection by Virginia Business magazine as one of its “Legal Elite.” He serves as Commissioner in Chancery for the Loudoun County Circuit Court and is in the midst of a six-year term as a Substitute Judge for the 20th Judicial District.  He is a past president of the Loudoun County Bar Association and a member of the bars of the United States Supreme Court and Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, as well as the Virginia State Bar, Virginia Bar Association, Fairfax Bar Association and the Loudoun County Bar Association. Lawrence earned his B.A. degree from Boston College and his law degree from Washington and Lee University.  He was born and raised in Washington, D.C., and lives in Loudoun County with his wife and daughters.

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Melinda Merk

Principal

Fairfax
Melinda focuses on providing holistic multi-generational income and wealth transfer tax planning advice and estate and trust services to high net worth individuals, families, and business owners.  She brings a unique and diverse perspective from her work in private law practice, Big Four accounting firms, and private banking/trust services. Melinda has over two decades of experience advising clients with regard to domestic and foreign trusts, family limited partnerships and LLCs, grantor retained annuity trusts, dynasty trusts and other wealth transfer strategies, charitable trusts, asset protection planning, business formation, succession and pre-sale planning, estate and trust administration, and tax controversy matters. As a seasoned tax and estates and trusts attorney, Melinda enjoys working with a wide range of clients to successfully protect and preserve their wealth. She has represented business owners, real estate developers, private equity partners, physicians, executives, young couples, retirees, international/expat clients and their families. Melinda started her career at a boutique trusts and estates firm in Montgomery County, Maryland, where she developed a strong foundation in estate planning and estate and trust administration. After completing her LL.M. in Taxation at the Georgetown University Law Center, Melinda joined the National Tax Department (Personal Financial Services group) for a Big Four accounting firm in Washington, DC, where she consulted with clients on a nationwide and global basis as a Subject Matter Specialist in the areas of income and wealth transfer tax planning. Melinda then returned to the practice of law as a Senior Counsel in the Private Wealth Services group at a national law firm in its Northern Virginia office, with a primary focus on pre-sale planning for business owners, income and estate tax planning for international clients, and asset protection planning. She later joined another Big Four accounting firm as a Tax Director in the Personal Financial Services group, working closely with business owners and private equity firm partners on their individual income tax and estate planning. Prior to returning to private practice, Melinda was a Senior Vice President and Regional Trust Advisor at a large bank’s Private Wealth Management group for the Greater Washington Region, where she served as a resource to clients on trust and estate planning, and handled the administration and risk management of trust accounts over $5 million. Given her diverse background, Melinda is distinctively collaborative when working with her clients and their other advisors, and highly respected among her peers through her involvement in various professional and community organizations. She was recently awarded the Accredited Estate Planner® (AEP®) designation by the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils, which distinguishes designees for their dedication to being a collaborative advisor, and is awarded only to estate planning professionals who meet special requirements of education, experience, knowledge, professional reputation, and character. Melinda often views her role as a “translator” by carefully listening to her clients, analyzing their situation and helping them to understand their planning options and solutions in “plain English” big picture terms. Melinda notes, “I enjoy helping clients to navigate the process and design a customized solution that is flexible, practical and understandable.” Melinda is listed among the Washingtonian’s and Northern Virginia Magazine’s Top Trusts/Estates/Tax Lawyers, as well as Virginia Business Magazine’s “Legal Elite.”  She is active in the estate planning community on a local and national level, and has served on the Board of the Northern Virginia Estate Planning Council and the Washington DC Estate Planning Council. Melinda is also a member of the Wills, Trusts & Estates Legislative Committee for the Virginia Bar Association, and is a frequent speaker and writer on estate and trust planning. On a personal level, Melinda is a strong supporter of local philanthropy and the arts in Northern Virginia, and is a current Board member of the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia and a long-time supporter and serial adopter of Lab Rescue and other animal welfare organizations. Melinda is originally from Pittsburgh, and is an avid Steelers fan. She currently resides in Reston, Virginia.

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Stephen C. Price

Principal

Leesburg
Steve Price’s business practice is focused on:
  • Real estate matters
  • Litigation involving adverse possession, easement and covenant disputes, partition and quieting of title
  • Condemnation
  • Land conservation easements
  • Litigation involving estates and trusts
  • Representation of not-for profits
Steve has:
  • Handled over 40 jury trials in state and federal courts
  • Lead counsel in over 20 reported state and federal decisions
  • Argued cases in the Virginia Supreme Court and the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit
In addition, Steve has served in the following capacities:
  • Local Right-of-way counsel for the Virginia Department of Transportation (1981-1990), handling over 75 property acquisitions through condemnation for the Commonwealth
  • Commissioner in Chancery and Judge pro tempore for the Circuit Court of Loudoun County
  • Substitute Judge for the General District Courts of Loudoun, Fauquier and Rappahannock Counties 1982-94
  • General Counsel: Land Trust of VirginiaHealthworks for Northern VirginiaMuseum of the Shenandoah Valley,  and Oatlands (a property of the National Trust for Historic Preservation)

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Thank you for your interest in McCandlish Lillard!

Before you proceed, we must advise, as a matter of professional responsibility to our current clients, that we cannot accept any information from you or represent you until we know that doing so will not be a conflict of interest with an existing client.

As a matter of our professional responsibility, please do not leave any confidential information until we have confirmed in writing that we have no conflict and are able to represent you. A lawyer-client relationship will arise only via an express agreement between you and McCandlish Lillard.

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Douglas J. Sanderson

Principal

Fairfax, Leesburg
Douglas J. Sanderson enjoys using his several decades of experience as a solutions-focused attorney to provide legal services in the multiple practice areas of family law/domestic relations, commercial real estate, and business organizations and transactions. Although initially Doug began his practice primarily focused on real estate litigation and transactions, he soon added the practice of family law because it provided him the opportunity to work one-on-one with clients dealing with significant, personal and life-changing events, where he could help make a personal difference for them. With the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic Doug has updated his practice to emphasize and provide accessibility to clients using not only phones and e-mails but also video apps such as Zoom. In his family law/domestic relations practice, Doug counsels and represents people who need legal assistance with issues of or relating to divorces, separation agreements, child custody and visitation, equitable distribution, and support (spousal and child, as needed), as well as, on a happier note, pre-nuptial agreements.  Doug’s practice includes litigation, but he strives to employ other methods of problem-solving for his clients that avoid or minimize litigation and thus save the clients on stress and attorneys’ fees. To further that effort he also has been trained in, and uses where possible, the process of Collaborative Divorce. In Doug’s business and commercial real estate practices, he represents people who are owners or operators of businesses, including real estate asset advisors, business investors, developers, commercial and retail landlords and tenants, and real estate foundations.  In these areas, his practice includes providing legal counsel for the acquisition, development, construction, leasing and sale of properties such as office buildings, communications towers, mixed-use developments and condominiums; the negotiation, amendment and documentation of commercial, retail and telecommunications/celltower leases and of real estate-secured loans; the organization and financing of business entities; the organization of property owners’ associations; and the foreclosure of real estate-secured loans.

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Thank you for your interest in McCandlish Lillard!

Before you proceed, we must advise, as a matter of professional responsibility to our current clients, that we cannot accept any information from you or represent you until we know that doing so will not be a conflict of interest with an existing client.

As a matter of our professional responsibility, please do not leave any confidential information until we have confirmed in writing that we have no conflict and are able to represent you. A lawyer-client relationship will arise only via an express agreement between you and McCandlish Lillard.

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Kathryn C. Swain

Associate

Fairfax
Kathryn is an associate attorney practicing in the areas of civil litigation, family law, and estate planning. Kathryn works primarily in the firm’s Fairfax office and represents clients across Northern Virginia. Prior to joining McCandlish, Kathryn clerked for the Honorable Daniel E. Ortiz in the Fairfax County Circuit Court. Kathryn is a DC native who received her undergraduate degree from James Madison University, where she began developing oral advocacy skills through the university’s Moot Court Association. She went on to earn her law degree from George Mason University School of Law, where she served as an Articles Editor of the George Mason Law Review and the Vice Justice of the Moot Court Board. While at George Mason, Kathryn also furthered her passion for legal writing through teaching classes to first-year students as a legal writing fellow. Kathryn has been horseback riding for twenty years and enjoys riding her two horses in her free time. She also likes to spend time watching sports, cooking new dishes, and reading through the classics.

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Thank you for your interest in McCandlish Lillard!

Before you proceed, we must advise, as a matter of professional responsibility to our current clients, that we cannot accept any information from you or represent you until we know that doing so will not be a conflict of interest with an existing client.

As a matter of our professional responsibility, please do not leave any confidential information until we have confirmed in writing that we have no conflict and are able to represent you. A lawyer-client relationship will arise only via an express agreement between you and McCandlish Lillard.

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Ralph M. Tener

Senior Counsel

Fairfax
Ralph M. Tener heads McCandlish Lillard’s Information Technology Group. He has practiced computer and intellectual property law for more than twenty-five years, working with software and Internet companies from start-up through venture capital investment to sale or merger. He works with information technology and other companies on trademark, copyright, and trade secret protection; software and technology licensing; start-up and venture capital financing; agreements and relationships with developers, resellers, and strategic partners; stock option and other incentive compensation plans; employment and non-competition agreements; online policies, agreements, and terms of service; and corporate matters. Ralph has represented clients in numerous venture capital investments and sales and acquisitions of businesses, business lines, and information technology products, ranging in dollar value from the tens of thousands to more than one hundred million dollars. Ralph also maintains an active trademark and copyright registration practice and has represented clients in resolving a large number of Internet domain name and trademark disputes. Representative clients include software vendors in fields such as document imaging and management, multi-level secure systems, flight simulation, Internet-based vehicle sales and dealership management, system performance management, and three dimensional visualization; e-commerce businesses; government contractors, particularly in the fields of information technology, intelligence, and homeland security; computer consultants and service providers; an on-line on-demand book publisher; an on-line medical and preventive health consultation service; and an Internet domain name registrar.

Email Disclaimer

Thank you for your interest in McCandlish Lillard!

Before you proceed, we must advise, as a matter of professional responsibility to our current clients, that we cannot accept any information from you or represent you until we know that doing so will not be a conflict of interest with an existing client.

As a matter of our professional responsibility, please do not leave any confidential information until we have confirmed in writing that we have no conflict and are able to represent you. A lawyer-client relationship will arise only via an express agreement between you and McCandlish Lillard.

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Benjamin J. Trichilo

Counsel

Fairfax
Ben Trichilo joined McCandlish Lillard in 2011, bringing with him more than 35 years of trial and appellate experience, including personal injury, workers’ compensation, professional malpractice, premises liability, business litigation, and Defense Base Act cases.  Ben has handled auto accidents, slip and fall injuries, sports injuries, closed head injuries, brain injuries, eye injuries, neck and back injuries, career ending injuries, sexual assaults, bike trail accidents, truck accidents, accidents involving deficient truck mirrors, dram shop cases, shareholder disputes, and non-compete agreements.  If you have a personal injury, workers compensation, or litigation issue, then Ben has the knowledge and experience acquired over more than 40 years of litigation practice to help resolve your case favorably, and will welcome the opportunity to assist you. Successful litigation requires the ability to solve problems: through negotiation where possible, and through litigation when necessary. But there is one simple guiding principle: handle each case as if it is your own. Ben is a frequent seminar speaker, and continues more than two decades of service as a litigation mediator for the Fairfax County Circuit Court. TIPS FOR INJURED WORKERS IN VIRGINIA
  • Report your injury promptly.
  • The mere fact that your injury occurred at work does not mean that it will be covered.
  • Do not give a recorded statement until you obtain legal advice. The employer/insurer knows the rules. You do not.
TIPS FOR EMPLOYERS IN VIRGINIA
  • Consider  insurance coverage for yourself and other owners. In most cases it is very affordable.
  • Even if you do not regularly employ three of more employees, consider obtaining WC coverage. That policy will pay the cost of defending claims.
  • If you have safety rules, then they should be known and enforced.
There is no substitute for knowledge, and irreparable harm can occur when we assume to know what we do not. You can reach him either by email, btrichilo@mccandlaw.com, or at his direct dial telephone number, (703) 934-1198.

Email Disclaimer

Thank you for your interest in McCandlish Lillard!

Before you proceed, we must advise, as a matter of professional responsibility to our current clients, that we cannot accept any information from you or represent you until we know that doing so will not be a conflict of interest with an existing client.

As a matter of our professional responsibility, please do not leave any confidential information until we have confirmed in writing that we have no conflict and are able to represent you. A lawyer-client relationship will arise only via an express agreement between you and McCandlish Lillard.

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William J. Walsh

Principal

Fairfax
William J. Walsh is a principal at McCandlish & Lillard. He practices in the areas of business law, information technology, real estate, and health care. Will has significant experience representing clients in the hospitality industry. Will’s business practice includes advising clients on a broad range of corporate matters, including entity formation, shareholder and buy-sell agreements, corporate governance, and mergers and acquisitions. He also counsels clients with regard to employment matters, government contracts, entity and transactional financing, and real estate transactions. In the areas of information technology and intellectual property, Will has acquired substantial experience counseling businesses with regard to software licenses, online contracts and terms of service, copyright and trademark registration, and protection of trade secrets through non-disclosure and non-competition provisions. A significant portion of Will’s practice is dedicated to representing clients in the hospitality industry, including owners of restaurants, bars, hotels, and catering companies. In addition to advising on general business and transactional matters, Will has counseled such clients with regard to franchise agreements, trademark registration, Alcoholic Beverage Control licensing, alcohol production and distribution, and the acquisition, sale, and leasing of commercial property.

Email Disclaimer

Thank you for your interest in McCandlish Lillard!

Before you proceed, we must advise, as a matter of professional responsibility to our current clients, that we cannot accept any information from you or represent you until we know that doing so will not be a conflict of interest with an existing client.

As a matter of our professional responsibility, please do not leave any confidential information until we have confirmed in writing that we have no conflict and are able to represent you. A lawyer-client relationship will arise only via an express agreement between you and McCandlish Lillard.

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