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Jill A. Adkins

  • Attorney at Law







Jill has 30 years of legal experience in assisting clients with their estate planning goals or helping clients face a health crisis or a death in the family. Jill makes the legal system as understandable and efficient as possible for her clients.

Jill works with clients of all ages to create an estate plan that is tailored to each client's situation. Clients with young children need Wills that name guardians and include a mechanism for managing the children's inheritance. Older clients may wish to transfer a cabin or family farm to the next generation. Clients of all ages need advice to reduce or avoid estate taxes upon death. Proper estate planning can reduce the need for expensive court proceedings and help avoid family disputes after a death. Jill appreciates working with a client's financial planner or insurance agent to ensure all aspects of the client's estate plan, including beneficiary designations, are properly coordinated.

Estate planning includes planning for the possibility of incapacity. A car accident, head injury or serious illness can render a person of any age unable to make medical or financial decisions. If an incapacitated person had not previously signed a health care directive or financial power of attorney, the family may be forced to seek court appointment of a guardian and/or conservator. Jill has represented many families in both contested and uncontested guardianship and proceedings.

Jill is especially concerned about protecting the rights of older persons and much of her law practice has been focused on Elder Law. The phenomenon of elder abuse is gaining increased attention around the world. Jill helps older persons and their families to prevent abuse, especially financial exploitation, and to explore remedies when it happens. Jill has worked with local and international organizations, including the United Nations, to ensure that the law is used to improve the lives of older persons.


Areas Of Practice

  • Estate Planning
  • Wills and Trusts
  • Elder Law
  • Guardianships and Conservatorships
  • Probates
  • Trust Administration
  • Planning for Incapacity and Special Needs Trusts
  • Nursing Home Planning, including Medical Assistance Eligibility

Bar Admissions

  • Minnesota, 1988
  • Mille Lacs Tribal Court


  • University of Minnesota Law School, Minneapolis, Minnesota
    • J.D. - 1988
  • University of Cape Town Faculty of Law, Cape Town
    • LL.M., Master of Laws - 2010
    • Honors: With Highest Distinction
    • Major: Human Rights Law
  • South Dakota State University
    • B.A., Bachelor of Arts - 1985
    • Honors: magna cum laude
    • Honors: With Highest Honors

Published Works

  • "Dementia", Global Ageing, the journal of the International Federation on Ageing, 2011
  • "The Globalization of Dementia: Issues and Responses", Global Ageing, the journal of the International Federation on Ageing, 2011
  • "Advancing the Socio-Economic Rights of Older Persons in South Africa: Leaping the Implementation Barriers of the Older Persons Act", ESR Review - Economic and Social Rights in South Africa, 2011
  • "Income Inequality and Executive Remuneration: Assessing the Role of Law and Policy in the Pursuit of Equality", South African Journal of Labour Relations, 2010

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Minnesota State Bar Association, Elder Law Section (past Governing Council member) and Probate and Trust Law Section
  • National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA)
  • Governing Council of the Elder Law Section of the Minnesota State Bar Association, MAGiC

Pro Bono Activities

  • United Nations NGO Committee on Ageing
  • Vulnerable Adult Justice Project (now the Minnesota Elder Justice Center)
  • International Federation on Ageing (IFA)
  • Central Minnesota Taskforce on Battered Women
  • Girl Scouts