Heltzer and Houghtaling, P.A. Attorneys at Law

413 Wacouta Street, Suite 430, St. Paul, Minnesota 55101 · Phone 651-330-8508 · Fax 651-340-9138

Melissa Houghtaling

Melissa J. Houghtaling, j.d.

Shareholder, Attorney

Melissa has developed a family law practice that is focused on cost-effective and creative solutions for traditional and non-traditional families of Minnesota.

From the exciting time when relationships and families are just beginning to the difficult time when relationships are changing and/or ending, Melissa believes that individuals and families are best served when expectations are clear, honest, and based in realistic outcomes.

Melissa is a MN Rule 114 Qualified Family Law and Civil Mediator for the Minnesota State Court System's Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) program, which is designed to help people resolve legal problems without resorting to litigation.

To supplement her legal practice, Melissa volunteers with a number of organizations, writes, and teaches as an adjunct professor of Legal Research and Writing at Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Practice Areas

Bar Admission and Affiliations

  • Hamline University, B.A. Sociology and Women's Studies, May 2002
  • William Mitchell College of Law, Juris Doctorate, May 2007
  • Minnesota State Bar, Admitted October 2007
  • United Stated District Court, District of Minnesota, Admitted March 2008
  • Minnesota Qualified Neutral – Family Law Mediation (2010), Civil Mediation and Arbitration (2006)
  • Member, Minnesota State Bar Association
  • Member, Minnesota State Bar Association Legislative Committee
  • Member, Minnesota State Bar Association Minority Bar Summit
  • Assembly Representative, Minnesota State Bar Association
  • Member, Ramsey County Bar Association
  • Member and treasurer, Minnesota Lavender Bar Association
  • Past Chair, Minnesota Lavender Bar Association
  • Volunteer Attorney, Chrysalis/ Tubman Family Services
  • Judge, Minnesota State High School Mock Trial Program
  • Judge, National College Mock Trial Program

Publications

  • Estate Planning For Non-Traditional Families Deskbook, 2nd Ed. Editor, Author. Update to be published December 2012.
  • Estate Planning For Non-Traditional Families Deskbook, 2nd Ed. Editor, Author. December 2010.

Presentations

  • Ramsey County Bar Association CLE, October 26, 2012
    Presentation: Minnesota's Marriage Amendment: History, Process, and Effect
  • Hennepin County Bar Association CLE, September 27, 2012
    Presentation: Justice for All? GLBT Perspectives on the Judicial System
  • Minnesota State Bar Association Children and the Law Section CLE, May 2012
    Presentation: The Marriage Amendment – Exploring the Potential Impact on Law and Life
  • Minnesota CLE, February 2012 Webcast
    Presentation: GLBT Family Estate Planning
  • Ramsey County Bar Association Family Law Section, February 2012
    Presentation: From Cradle to Grave and All the Drama In Between: Family Planning for GLBT Couples
  • Minnesota Probate and Trust Section Conference, June 2011
    Presentation: Relationship and Estate Planning for GLBT Families
  • Ramsey County Bar Association, April 8, 2011
    Presentation: Wills and Trusts for the Non-Traditional Family
  • Minnesota Lavender Bar Association Annual Conference, January 29, 2011
    Presentation: Estate Planning for the LGBT Family
  • Minnesota Continuing Legal Education, December 8, 2010
    Presentation: Estate Planning For Non-Traditional Families
  • Ramsey County Bar Association, October 22, 2010
    Presentation: Homophobia/Heterosexism/Sexual Stigma: An Exploration Through Experience, Listening and Talking
  • The Flowers Project, September 30, 2010
    Presentation: Legal Rights in Minnesota for GLBT citizens
  • Inver Hills Community College, July 12, 2010
    Presentation: Family Law Practice and Procedure
  • Inver Hills Community College, March 1, 2010
    Presentation: Family Law Practice and Procedure
  • Inver Hills Community College, October 2009
    Presentation: Family Law Practice and Procedure
  • William Mitchell Going Solo Presentation, September 29, 2009
    Presentation: Solo-Small Firm Practice Tips and Tricks
  • 2009 Rainbow Families Conference, April 2009
    Presentation: Protecting Unmarried Families when Marriage is Not an Option
  • 30th Annual Family Law Institute, March 2009
    CLE Written Material and Presentation on Same Sex Family Dissolutions
  • William Mitchell College of Law, February 2009
    Presentation: Elder Law and Estate Planning for LGBT Families

Honors and Awards

  • 2012 Recipient of The National LGBT Bar Association's 40 Best LGBT Attorneys Under the Age of 40 Award
  • Dean's List 2006; CALI Award in Feminist Jurisprudence; Elder Law Excellence Scholarship - William Mitchell College of Law, St. Paul, Minnesota
  • Presidential Scholar (4 years); Outstanding Student Leader Award - Hamline University, St. Paul, Minnesota