About MSBA

Minnesota State Bar Association

Championing Justice, Equality, and Professionalism

Our Diversity Enriches Us, Our Inclusion Empowers Us

Founded in 1883, the Minnesota State Bar Association is the oldest professional association for attorneys in Minnesota. For licensed attorneys in Minnesota, membership is voluntary. Membership is open to any attorney licensed to practice law in any state. Membership is also available to law students, paralegals, and law management associates.

Accommodations: The MSBA is committed to creating an inclusive environment in which all members can participate fully. Please contact us if there are reasonable accommodations that would allow you to participate more fully within the Minnesota State Bar Association.

What We're Doing

  • MN Judicial Branch Public Notices Update

    On December 19, former Justice Eric Magnuson and attorney Dan Cragg, along with MSBA President Sonia Miller Van-Oort, will speak at the Court’s public hearing regarding proposed changes to the Minnesota Rules of Civil Procedure. Justice Magnuson will present the case for adoption of a rule providing half of unclaimed cy pres funds from state class action settlements be awarded to legal services. Mr. Cragg will argue that the Court should amend some additional Minnesota Rules of Civil Procedure to conform with the Federal Rules.

    Also on December 19, three MSBA Sections will present their concerns at the Court’s public hearing regarding proposed changes to Rule 114 of the General Rules of Practice, which governs alternative dispute resolution. The Sections scheduled to speak are ADR, Family Law, and Construction Law.

  • Proposed professional conduct rule changes deferred to April

    On November 20, the Judiciary Committee reviewed the two proposals from the Rules of Professional Conduct (RPC) Committee regarding 5.5 and 1.6. (Read about those proposed changes in this earlier post.) The Judiciary Committee passed a recommendation that the Assembly defer action on these proposals until after the January meeting of the Lawyers Professional Responsibility Board. The RPC Committee subsequently requested that the two proposals be pulled from the December Assembly meeting agenda and placed on April’s agenda instead.

Our Leaders

SoniaMiller-Van Oort


Sonia Miller-Van Oort
Sapientia Law Group PLLC

Paul Godfrey


Paul Godfrey
Law Office of Paul Godfrey

What I do: I work for Farmers Insurance as the managing attorney for the Law Offices of Paul W. Godfrey. I manage 12 lawyers in our office who provide representation for Farmers and its insureds throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin.    

My Volunteer Work:
Ramsey County Bar Association Committees
MSBA Civil Litigation Section
MSBA Secretary
MSBA Treasurer
MSBA President-Elect

Advice to New Members: If you want to become a leader, get involved in Bar activities. You will need to collaborate with people over whom you have no authority, find solutions to new and different problems, and adapt to a multitude of perspectives.



Tom Nelson
Stinson Leonard Street LLP



Dyan Ebert
Quinlivan & Hughes PA

What I do: I practice in the area of employment law, with an emphasis on public employment litigation. My clients are located throughout Minnesota and the matters I handle range from administrative actions to state and federal district court cases. 

My Volunteer Work: 
Local bar associations
Regional bar associations
Practice specific associations
MSBA Secretary

Advice to New Members: Join a Section to utilize resources relating to the substantive area of law you practice, give back to your community by volunteering as an attorney coach or judge through the Mock Trial program, or take on a pro bono case in conjunction with the Legal Assistance to the Disadvantaged Committee.