Practice Areas

Located in Tulsa, the law firm of James R. Gotwals and Associates, Inc. assists clients in a variety of civil matters, including family law mediation and litigation, personal injury claims, business formation, corporate transactions and litigation, real estate matters, and estate planning.  If you, your family, or your business needs legal counsel, contact our offices for results-oriented, cost-effective representation.

Family Law

Our attorneys assist clients in sensitive family law matters, including divorce, custody, adoption, relocation, and spousal and child support.  We also handle complex property distribution cases involving substantial assets, as well as debt division.  Our in-depth knowledge of family law has led to our being invited to speak at various seminars and actively contributing to the family law sections of multiple bar associations.  We have even helped lawmakers rewrite legislation.

In some cases, family disputes may be resolved through mediation, which often minimizes contention and anger among family members.  We are experienced mediators, and have achieved fair and effective agreements on behalf of clients, privately and outside of the adversarial system.  Firm founder James R. Gotwals is the recipient of a mediation certificate from the Strauss Institute for Dispute Resolution, and typically conducts several mediations per week. 

If trial becomes necessary in order to protect your interests, we are aggressive litigators with extensive courtroom experience.  We will thoroughly prepare you for court and work diligently to obtain the best possible results for you and your family.

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Personal Injury

On the road, the potential for accidents and injury is constant, and often driver negligence, such as speeding, drunk driving, or cell phone use, is the cause of both minor fender benders and fatal crashes alike.  We represent clients who have suffered personal injuries due to another's negligence or wrongful act, including cases involving car and truck accidents.  If another driver's irresponsible behavior led your injury, our attorneys will help you receive compensation for the harm you have suffered.

If you have lost a loved one due to another's negligence or wrongful conduct, our attorneys will fight to obtain recovery on your behalf.  Surviving family members may be entitled to significant compensation for their losses, both financial and emotional, through wrongful death claims.

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Business and Corporate Law

Our attorneys assist entrepreneurs with choosing and establishing the right type of business entity for their commercial endeavor.  We have extensive experience setting up corporations, limited liability companies (LLCs), and partnerships on behalf of our business clients.

Once your business is established, we can help you during times of growth or if you encounter obstacles along the way.  We counsel clients regarding various types of business transactions, including buy-sell agreements, mergers and acquisitions, and conversions.  If your business becomes involved in a legal dispute, our attorneys are seasoned litigators with experience navigating such complex issues as contract disputes and commercial collections.  We also handle banking litigation, which may involve allegations of lender misconduct, assertions of borrower fraud, and other claims stemming from federal banking regulations.

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Real Estate

Our attorneys handle both residential and commercial real estate transactions and litigation.  We understand that successful real estate ventures require dedication and time, along with a substantial financial investment.  We work hard to protect all of your interests, whether you are purchasing, selling, leasing, or disputing ownership of property.

  • Transactions - The transfer of real property from one individual or business to another is potentially a very complex process, involving numerous documents and contractual agreements.  In order to protect your interests and come away from the transaction in the most gainful position possible, it is imperative to have your sales and purchase agreements thoroughly evaluated.  We draft title opinions and review and negotiate the various types of contracts that accompany the legal transfer of real property.  If you are taking out a mortgage, we also review promissory notes and mortgage documents.
  • Litigation - Due to the complexity of real estate transactions and the value of even a small amount of real property, disputes often arise between buyers and sellers and owners of neighboring property.  We represent individuals and businesses in a full range of real estate litigation matters, including boundary disputes and adverse possession.  We also handle construction issues, and represent builders against individuals and vice versa.

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Alternative Dispute Resolution and Mediation

Although litigation is sometimes unavoidable, it can be costly and time-consuming.  We explore and utilize various methods of alternative dispute resolution to resolve clients' disputes without going to trial.  Firm President James R. Gotwals is a certified mediator with decades of experience guiding clients through difficult issues.  If you choose to resolve your conflict through mediation, our attorneys will prepare you for the mediation process so that you enter negotiations with confidence.  Whether forming or dissolving personal or business relationships, disputing property ownership, or struggling with sensitive estate administration issues, mediation provides a cost-effective, and often beneficial, solution.

We also represent clients in arbitration, which is more formal than mediation, but generally still faster and more flexible than trial.  In an arbitration, the parties present their case to an arbitrator rather than working directly with each other to achieve a resolution as in mediation proceedings.

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Estate Planning

We help our clients create estate plans that transfer assets in the most cost-effective and efficient manner possible, while also accounting for family dynamics, the nature and amount of property, and the relevant tax implications.  Our attorneys have extensive experience drafting both will and trust documents, and can help you determine whether your estate is best transferred by will, trust, or a combination of both. 

If a will is in force at the time of death and there is a substantial estate and/or real estate, the will may require probate administration, which involves approval by the court and management and distribution of the estate by the executor under court supervision.  If the decedent died intestate, meaning without a will, probate administration may also be required.  Our attorneys have many years of experience with the probate process and frequently assist clients in handling the administration of their deceased loved one's estates once it enters probate.

If a dispute arises during the planning or administration of an estate, our attorneys have the experience and sensitivity to handle litigation among relatives or other parties, while also protecting our clients' interests.  In situations involving will contests, guardianship appointments, and administration challenges, we can help you protect your rights in probate court.

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