Emily A. Donaldson — Lawyer in Lawrence, KS

Emily A. Donaldson

Areas of Practice

  • Elder Law, including long-term care and Medicaid planning
  • Estate Planning (Wills & Trust)
  • Estate and Trust Administration
  • Guardianship and Conservatorship


Kansas Bar, 2003


University of Missouri – Columbia; B.A., 1997

City University of New York School of Law (J.D., 2000)

University of Missouri – Kansas City; LL.M. in Estate Planning, 2003


Emily A. Donaldson has been practicing in the areas of elder law and estate planning for over twenty years, is a Certified Elder Law Attorney (CELA) by the National Elder Law Foundation , and holds an advanced degree in Estate Planning (LL.M.).  Her practice consists of advising clients on the complex issues encountered in aging, including pre-planning for the admission and access to Medicaid benefits to assist with long-term care expenses.  In addition, Emily assists clients with designing and structuring their estate plans to meet their needs and goals, whether it be preserving the family farm/business or planning for special needs.  She has counseled numerous individuals and families with special needs children through the complex legal and financial issues raised by the impairment.  These issues often require the appointment of a guardian and conservator, as well as special needs trust creation and administration.  Emily was selected as a member of the Special Needs Alliance, an invitation-only, national non-profit collective of leading disability and public benefits attorneys.  She is an adjunct professor at Washburn University School of Law, for the Elder Law course, and at the University of Kansas School of Law, for Estate Planning Principles and Practice.  Emily is also a member of the Probate Law Advisory Committee, as well as the Guardianship Committee, of the Kansas Judicial Council; and a frequent author and speaker on issues affecting the aged and individuals with disabilities.

Emily is a current member of the Board of Directors for ARCare, Inc. (https://arcare.org), a not-for-profit organization designed to provide service to disabled individuals and their families, including administration of a pooled trust for the benefit of disabled individuals with special needs.  Most importantly, it has been her greatest honor to serve as caregiver and long-term care planner for four dogs adopted during their golden years – each of which has tried to teach her the true meaning of life.


Listed in:
Recognized annually in The Best Lawyers in America® since 2014

Recognized annually in Super Lawyers, Missouri & Kansas, since 2015

Outstanding Service Award, Kansas Bar Association, 2017

Special Needs Alliance

Kansas Bar Association

    • Member of KBA Professional Ethics Panel from 2006-2017
    • President of the Elder Law Section from 2010-2017

Kansas Women’s Attorney Association

National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA)

    • President of the Kansas Chapter from 2011-2014

Womens’ Attorneys Association of Topeka

Topeka Bar Association

    • Chairperson, Service to the Bar Committee