Laurie HansonPartner & Attorney
Laurie Hanson has practiced law since 1984, with a special focus on individuals who are aging or living with disabilities – and their families. She now concentrates her practice exclusively in the areas of Elder Care Law - Government benefits eligibility; including Medical Assistance, SSI, and various veterans benefits; trusts - supplemental needs, special needs and pooled trusts, trust and public benefit litigation; estate planning, planning for incapacity; probate, and surrogate decision-making. She most recently won a significant case involving special needs pooled trusts before the Minnesota Supreme Court, Pfoser v. Harpstead.
Laurie regularly serves as faculty and makes presentations on elder law topics at continuing legal education courses for attorneys nationally and in Minnesota through the Minnesota State Bar Association. In addition, she gives presentations to nursing home family councils, church groups, community groups, and at law schools in the Twin Cities.Professional Background
Laurie is a 1977 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a 1984 Graduate of Golden Gate University School of Law in San Francisco, California where she was a member of the law review and Editor-in-Chief of the Women’s Law Forum. For the past 39 years, she has practiced law in Minnesota and Arkansas, with a focus on those who are aging and living with disabilities. Most recently she was a shareholder with the law firm of Long, Reher, Hanson, & Price, PA for 18 years in St. Louis Park, Minnesota. Prior to that, she was with the Senior Law Project of the Legal Aid Society of Minneapolis for 15 years.
Before moving back to Minnesota in 1989, Laurie had a private general practice in Fayetteville, Arkansas where she specialized in health law and family law. She was a Reginald Heber Smith fellow her first two years following law school and worked with Ozark Legal Services in Fayetteville.Professional Associations
Laurie is a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, the Minnesota State Bar Association, and the Hennepin County Bar Association. She is a past Chair of the Elder Law Section of the Minnesota State Bar Association (MSBA), and an emerita member of the Board of Trustees of the Upper Midwest chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. She is a member and past board member of the Special Needs Alliance, a national invitation-only non-profit organization committed to helping individuals with disabilities, their families, and the professionals who represent them.Professional Awards
Laurie received the 2023 NAELA Theresa Award for outstanding community service and advocacy on behalf of people with special needs. She was also inducted into the MSBA Elder Law Section Hall of Fame on October 6, 2023 and received a special recognition award for her work on the Pfoser case. In 2008, she received the prestigious Mary Alice Gooderl Award from the Elder Law Section of the MSBA for her contribution to the practice of Elder Law in Minnesota and has been named a Super Lawyer by her peers consistently since 2001.Personal
Laurie and her spouse Kim Dayton split their time between their home at the end of the Gunflint Trail in northern Minnesota and an apartment in Uptown Minneapolis – enjoying truly the best of urban life and the serenity and peacefulness of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. She loves to knit, is learning to play the harmonica, and enjoys all types of music.
J.D., Golden Gate University School of Law, 1984
University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1977
National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys
Minnesota State Bar Association
Hennepin County Bar Association
Special Needs Alliance