Ira J. Kaplan

Attorney Kaplan has been directly involved in more than twenty major projects that included a land conservation component. Typically families with large land holdings may be interested in protecting their land but also have concerns about losing the value of their property for future generations. This is especially true for farmers whose land is often their greatest financial asset. As always, tax implications must be considered.

The goal for a land conservation attorney is to determine a strategy that accomplishes the owner’s objectives.  Strategies for land conservation take many forms.  Although there are many variations, the two major devices for land conservation are:

1.The sale of land to conservation organizations, local land trusts or governmental entities for conservation purposes;

2.The sale of development rights to conservation organizations, local land trusts or governmental entities for conservation purposes;

Just as every piece of land has its own characteristics, each land conservation deal has its own terms. Because many conservation agreements are intended to last forever, it is essential that the terms be carefully considered.

Ira Kaplan’s clients include landowners, local land trusts and land conservation organizations.  In all cases, the goal of land conservation transactions is to achieve a permanent conservation agreement that serves the parties’ interests while assuring the protection of important natural resources. Mr. Kaplan’s litigation background helps him to develop conservation restrictions that are resistant to legal challenge.

 Before starting his own practice in 2004, Mr. Kaplan worked as an associate with Stavisky & Kelly, LLC.  His prior experience includes working as a consultant for The Trustees of Reservations, as an Assistant District Attorney in Berkshire County and as a consultant to the General Electric Company.  Highlights of his practice include:

·      Successful negotiation of $1.6M eminent domain settlement on behalf of property owner against City of Pittsfield. 

·      Represented several farm families in Berkshire County establishing perpetual conservation restrictions on their farmland with significant financial incentives.

·      Represented The Trustees of Reservations establishing a 500-plus acre conservation restriction in Mount Washington and a 70-acre conservation restriction in Salisbury, Connecticut. 

·      Represented the Monterey Land Preservation Trust in the creation of an agricultural preservation restriction on 72 acres. 

·      Represented The Nature Conservancy in a Superior Court boundary dispute case. 

Mr. Kaplan received his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Connecticut School Of Law in 1997 and his Bachelor of Arts degree, with honors, at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, in 1994. 

Contact Ira J. Kaplan

314 Main St.
Suite 9
Great Barrington, Massachusetts  01230
Phone: 413.528.1211
Fax: 413.528.5575


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