Caffry Law, PLLC is the law firm of James A. Caffry. Jim opened his own office in Waterbury after more than a decade with the firm of Darby Stearns Thorndike Kolter and Ware, LLP.
Jim graduated from law school in 1994 and began working for the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources in Waterbury. For the next twelve years, Jim’s law practice was focused on environmental permitting and litigation. During that time, he got married and started a family in the Mad River Valley. Whatever direction his life may have been going, it changed in the spring of 2002 when his son was diagnosed with Autism and other special needs.
Over the next few years as early intervention and special education service plans were developed, Jim began thinking about what the future for him and his family would look like. Although he had no idea of what to expect, he soon realized it would be nothing like he had been thinking it would be. What also became clear was the “system” of disability services is an incredibly complex mix of federal and state laws, formal rules and regulations, and a multitude of state policies and procedures.
After several years of trying to figure out the system as a parent (who happened to be an attorney), Jim decided in 2006 to take the “fork in the road” and become a special needs planning attorney (who is a parent of a child with special needs). Jim’s goal was to provide complete special needs planning for individuals and families throughout Vermont whose lives are affected by disabilities to one degree or another. Jim set out to focus his law practice on providing legal services to families like his.
Jim has developed a comprehensive understanding of the federal and state public benefits available to Vermonters with significant disabilities, as well as the services and supports that are disability specific. The Vermont Agency of Human Services (AHS) that regulates and administers the services and programs for Vermonters with disabilities. Within AHS there are different departments and divisions administering programs for people whose lives are affected by developmental disabilities, physical disabilities, mental illness, traumatic brain injury, deafness and blindness.
By 2010, Jim’s transformation from an environmental litigation attorney to a special needs planning attorney was more or less complete. Jim decided it was time to take the final step in establishing a state-wide special needs planning law practice. Caffry Law ~ Special Needs Planning & Advocacy opened its doors on January 1, 2011.