Hanson Law Office PA

Hanson Law Office PA

Respected St. Cloud Attorney Tailors Legal Services to Meet Clients' Real Estate, Estate Planning and Business Goals

Firm Overview

Practical advice for individuals, families and businesses in Minnesota:
The Hanson Law Office, PA delivers reliable results for clients with real estate, estate planning and business transaction needs throughout the St. Cloud and Twin Cities area. I'm Craig Hanson, and as the firm's founder, I help individuals and businesses accomplish their short-term objectives and long-term goals. My primary areas of practice are real estate transactions, including purchases, leases, foreclosures and short sales; business formations, transactions and advice; and estate planning for families. My team offers flexible terms, weekend availability and sound counsel for your legal challenges.

Track record of success in law and business:
I supply practical, business-savvy advice - and I'm able to do that because I grew and managed successful businesses. I draw from that experience to help families develop solid estate plans to secure the future of their loved ones. My office is welcoming, my staff is compassionate and my primary goal is to remove legal obstacles and enable clients to move forward and succeed. What sets my practice apart from other law firms? I am able to offer the following:
-Impressive credentials - In addition to my law degree, I have an MBA, an accounting degree and a background advising clients in tax matters.
-Practical experience - I'm involved in business operations outside of my practice and draw from that experience to offer sound legal advice to business owners. And as a real estate developer, I am equipped with the knowledge developers need when they seek my legal counsel.
-Flexible service - For clients' convenience, I offer flexible payment terms, free phone consultations and convenient weekend and evening appointments.
-Welcoming atmosphere - Our down-to-earth staff combines professionalism with compassion in serving our clients. We strive to ensure your comfort and minimize anxiety when you entrust us with your legal matters.

Comprehensive real estate services:
Our firm offers legal services for both residential and commercial real estate transactions. I represent individuals and businesses in all stages of real estate acquisition and disposition, including purchase, sale and lease agreements. I offer sound legal advice and careful supervision in negotiating contracts and executing real estate transactions and disputes, including:

-Drafting sales contracts
-Drafting lease agreements
-Eviction issues
-Short sales
-Boundary line disputes

Full-service estate planning for families:
Planning for the future is one of the best gifts people can give their families. I guide clients through each step of the estate planning process, from identifying assets to document drafting and trust funding, if needed. As your advocate, I advise you, as I do all clients, on various estate planning and trust options and help you choose the right components to fit your wishes. I'm dedicated to delivering practical advice for families in all estate planning areas, including:

-Establishing trusts, including:
-Living trusts
-Crummey trusts
-Irrevocable trusts
-Revocable trusts
-Special needs trusts
-Drafting wills
-Administering wills
-Protecting assets
-Administering trusts
-Administering other probate matters
-Minimizing estate and inheritance taxes

Sound advice for businesses:
My own extensive experience starting and operating businesses allows me to anticipate and answer the questions you may have as a prospective business owner. I listen carefully to your goals and recommend the best course to achieve them. My firm provides legal advice and transaction services for start-ups, established businesses and charitable organizations. Whether a client needs to form a legal business entity or facilitate a merger or acquisition, I consider all relevant factors to minimize risk and maximize profitability. Some of the business services I provide include:

-General business advice
-Buying a business
-Selling a business
-Operating a business
-Managing employee issues
-Strategic planning
-Expanding a business
-Minimizing taxes
-Business liability advice
-Financial analysis
-Risk assessment
-Contract preparation and review
-Service contracts
-Employment agreements
-Purchase agreements
-Business entity formation
-Outside management
Main Office
Main Office
921 First St N
Suite 209
Saint Cloud  MN  56303
  • 320-257-3388
St. Cloud, MN Lawyer Delivers Sound Advice and Legal Services to Businesses of All Sizes
Comprehensive service in the Twin Cities area:
At the Hanson Law Office, PA, I have more than 10 years' experience providing legal advice to small and large businesses in and around Wright, Sherburne, Stearns, Benton and Hennepin counties. In addition to being an attorney, I am a successful entrepreneur and I draw from my practical business experience to advise clients on commercial matters including:

-Selling a business
-Tax liabilities
-General liabilities

Business entities in Minnesota:
Whether you are just getting started or are considering converting an established limited liability company (LLC) to another type of legal entity, you should be fully informed and consider the advantages and disadvantages of all your options before you send the forms to the state. In Minnesota, we recognize a number of legal business entities, including:

-Assumed names/sole proprietorships
-Minnesota business corporations
-Minnesota nonprofit corporations
-Foreign corporations
-Limited liability companies
-Limited liability partnerships
-Limited partnerships

There are pros and cons to each entity, so choosing the right one requires a close look at your individual circumstances and planned (or existing) business activities.

At the Hanson Law Office, PA, I carefully weigh the advantages against the disadvantages to be certain you are making an informed decision. In addition to being an attorney, I have an MBA, an accounting degree and a background in advising clients in tax matters, so I can educate and guide you to align your business entity type with your long-term goals.

The enthusiasm of new business owners is contagious, which is why I enjoy helping clients launch start-ups as well as advising clients as their companies grow. My goal, however, is to make sure you keep both feet on the ground through strategies designed to help your business start off on the right foot. No matter which kind of business you're starting, it's important to:

-Do your homework - Either do the research yourself or consult a successful business lawyer for advice regarding licensing and permits, financing, protecting your intellectual property rights and drafting necessary commercial agreements before you do anything else.
-Choose a business structure - Select a business entity type available in Minnesota. Consult with an attorney and possibly an accountant before deciding which type of entity to form.
-Determine next steps - After you form a legal entity, your next steps depend on the location and type of business you operate. At a minimum, most businesses need a tax identification number from the Internal Revenue Service, a city, county or state business license before commencing operations and appropriate insurance.

Contract drafting and review:
At the Hanson Law Office, PA, I review existing contracts and draft contracts from the ground up with an eye toward managing uncertainty and minimizing risk. I also assist clients in all stages of tactical business planning and provide small business advisory services for clients who are ready to get started. Some of the contracts you might need for your business are:

-Sales agreements
-Professional service agreements
-Lease agreements
-Agency agreements
-Employment agreements
-Confidentiality agreements
-Noncompete agreements
Estate Planning
St. Cloud, MN Estate Planning Attorney Helps Ensure Your Family's Future
Things to consider when creating an estate plan:
Estate planning requires thoughtful consideration of several factors, including providing care for minor children. A simple will does not effectively protect your assets from tax liability or the expensive probate process. Homeowners have options, such as trusts, that can accomplish both of those purposes. While a trust does not replace your will, it can supplement your will and enhance efficiency.

A comprehensive estate plan may include a number of components in addition to your will, depending on your needs, such as an advance directive for healthcare, a durable power of attorney and one or more trust vehicles. As your estate planning attorney, I help you develop a comprehensive plan for the future by directing your attention to such relevant factors as:

-Trust options
-Tax implications
-Medical planning
-Business succession planning
-Family impact
-Friends you may want to include in your planning
-Charitable organizations you may want to include
-Your assets
-Your future financial needs in the event you become incapacitated
-Your future medical needs

Business succession is an area of estate planning that is often overlooked. Depending on your business entity, your business may expire when you die, or your heirs may disagree on your intentions for your business if they're not specified in writing. Planning for your business to go on without you requires careful preparation, including drafting and reviewing contracts and other business succession documents. Even if you are in your prime, it's important to make these decisions now, to safeguard your business's future.
St. Cloud, MN Estate Planning Attorney Helps Ensure Your Family's Future
What is the probate process?
If your loved one left a valid will, the will can be submitted to probate with the executor serving as the personal representative of the estate. If there was no will, any interested family member or other person can petition the court to open an estate. In such an event, the court names an administrator to act as the personal representative of the estate.

A typical probate proceeding usually includes the following steps:
-A proposed personal representative files a petition in probate court, along with the will, after a person dies.
-The court sets the matter for a hearing.
-After the hearing, the court issues letters testamentary (a document that's issued by a court clerk) to allow the personal representative, or executor, to perform the duties indicated in the will.
-The personal representative gathers and inventories assets and pays properly filed claims against the estate, including negotiating short sales for distressed property if necessary.
-Any disputes are resolved through probate litigation.
-Real estate or other assets remaining in the decedent's estate upon death may be liquidated and distributed to the beneficiaries upon proper petition.

If you are facing the probate process, the Hanson Law Office, PA helps protect your interests and honor the intentions of the deceased.

What if I die without a will?
Contrary to common belief, a person's property does not simply pass to the state if he or she dies without a will. If there is no valid will, a person's property is distributed according to Minnesota's intestate succession laws. As your advocate I can help you understand your rights and guide you through the probate administration process, with or without a will.

Since the laws of intestate succession follow familial relationships, the first step is identifying the decedent's family members. If the decedent was married, the decedent's spouse receives all of his or her estate after payment of debts and taxes, unless the decedent had children who are not the children of the spouse.

If the decedent has children who are not the children of the surviving spouse, the spouse receives the first $150,000 of the estate and the balance is divided: half to the spouse and half to any of the deceased's children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

If the decedent had no spouse, his or her children receive the entire estate. If there is no spouse or children, the estate goes to his or her parents and, if they are not living, then their descendants.

If your loved one has passed and you have no idea where to start, I can help. I advise you and protect your interests, guiding you through the probate process and honoring the intentions of the deceased.
Real Estate
St. Cloud, MN Commercial and Residential Real Estate Attorney Provides Comprehensive Legal Services
At the Hanson Law Office, PA, I have more than 10 years' experience advising businesses and individuals on what are often complex and time-consuming real estate matters, including investments and management. With extensive experience in the local market, I handle your transactions from drafting agreements to closing sales, guiding you through every step to help you accomplish your goals.

Commercial and residential purchases, sales and leases:
I handle both commercial and residential real estate transactions, including purchases, sales and leases. I guide you in your real estate investments and provide legal advice on property venture ideas and options, including rehabs. In my vast experience, I've advised on the design, development and marketing of an upscale residential housing project that included the formation of and regulatory approval for a private, self-contained utility company for the neighborhood's water, sewage disposal and treatment services. Whether you are buying, selling or renting farmland, single-family residences, multifamily developments or commercial properties, I have the knowledge and capability to guide you through the financial and deal-structuring process.

Short Sales:
I am also experienced in dealing with banks and advising clients of the potential pitfalls and tax liabilities of a residential or commercial short sale. Realtors call on my firm frequently to coordinate short sales for clients who have few other options. I help guide you in making decisions and offer advice tailored to your specific circumstances.

Foreclosures and Evictions:
My firm, the Hanson Law Office, PA, provides counsel to individuals and large and small businesses in foreclosure and eviction situations. If you're a landlord whose tenant stopped paying rent some time ago, it may be time to seek a writ of unlawful detainer to reclaim your property, and I can help you obtain that. I also handle estate planning litigation related to a deceased loved one's investment property.

Informed Advice:
With a real estate and business background, I'm well suited to provide legal advice for businesses and individuals in real estate matters. My qualifications include:

-Real estate investment experience - I am not just a real estate lawyer - I'm also a successful real estate investor and businessperson. That knowledge and success guide me in helping you make smart decisions for your business.
-Residential transactions experience - At the Hanson Law Office, PA, it's my passion to assist families in achieving their dreams by overcoming obstacles and successfully closing real estate transactions.
-Tax and accounting experience - My accounting background serves clients well in real estate transactions, since those transactions often have complex tax implications. I help you make financial decisions that minimize your tax liability.

Craig Hanson

Real estate and estate planning attorney serving your legal needs:
I am an experienced legal professional who focuses on advising individuals and business to help them accomplish their short-term objectives and meet their long-term goals.

Professional Experience:
-A 160-attorney full-service law firm with offices in Minnesota and Washington, D.C.
-A local management consulting firm

Representative Matters:
-Negotiated many residential short sales and advised homeowners on their rights and responsibilities under state law and the loan documents
-Assisted client in the design, development and marketing of an upscale residential housing project which included the formation and regulatory approval for its own private self-contained utility company to provide water and sewage disposal and treatment services
-Advised companies in the areas of corporate formation, mergers and acquisitions, governance, joint ventures and other strategic business arrangements and drafted and negotiated commercial agreements
-Drafted and negotiated software and technology agreements including development, licensing, service and reseller agreements
-Assisted client in the negotiation of the sale of a business to a Canadian corporation through a two-staged sale process, which included earn-outs performance bonuses and stock options, which resulted in the client receiving its asking price plus the potential of increasing it by 50 percent based upon future performance
-Advised technology company as its general counsel, from formation to growth through strategic acquisitions and consulted on all major business or legal matters
-Assisted private equity portfolio company in the redemption of membership units from the company's original owner
-Assisted technology company in a series of strategic acquisitions to further its goal of becoming the leader it its niche market
-Assisted technology company in the sale of non-core division
-Served as outside counsel to board of governors for private equity portfolio company
-Advised client and drafted documents for merger of multiple, separately owned equipment dealerships into one operating unit
-Advised residential home builder on structuring a financing package which included lines of credit, individual construction loans and real estate development loans
-Advised clients on personal estate planning and business planning matters to protect the assets and business they built and ensure the family relationship remains strong after they pass

William Mitchell School of Law, adjunct instructor, Business Practicum Course, 2008 - 2010

Professional Associations:
-Stearns/Benton Bar Association
-Minnesota State Bar Association
-American Bar Association

Community Involvement:
-Provides pro bono legal advice to several non-profits, 2006-present
-Legal Corp Attorney Volunteer, 2006-present
-Small Business Clinic Volunteer, 2007-2010
-Central Minnesota Habitat For Humanity Board of Directors, 2004-2010
-St. Cloud Chamber of Commerce Leadership Program Graduate

-J.D., Hamline University School of Law, St. Paul, MN, 1998-2001
--Licensed in Minnesota in 2001
-MBA, University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN, 1999-2001
-B.A., Concordia College, Moorhead, MN, 1992-1998
--Healthcare Financial Management
  • Hamline University School of Law
    Juris Doctorate , 2001