Carl counsels professionals, executives, business owners, corporate fiduciaries, charitable institutions, families, and individuals. His practice includes estate planning and drafting, probate and trust administration, taxation, mediation, and litigation. He frequently works with high-net-worth clients, to help them plan for, negotiate and resolve complex tax and succession issues. He also represents bank trust companies and other corporate fiduciaries in administering trusts and estates, and in disputed or litigated matters. But his practice is not limited to representation of the wealthy. Carl works with clients, rich and poor, who confront the challenges of diminished capacity and at the end of life. He also works with our litigation team in will, trust and tax litigation.

Carl has developed a practice in church law, including ministerial licensure, insurance, property, and administrative issues, and occasionally first amendment issues.

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Admitted to Practice

  • Wisconsin State Courts
  • United States District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin

Professional Memberships

  • American Bar Foundation, Fellow
  • American College of Trust and Estate Counsel, Fellow
  • State Bar of Wisconsin Real Property, Trust and Estate Section, Former Chair

Presentations, Publications, & Contributions

Carl has authored or co-authored the following publications:

  • Co-author with Christine Rew Barden et al., Marital Property Law & Practice in Wisconsin (5th ed. 2019)
  • Co-author with Patrick V. Anderl et al., Eckhardt’s Workbook for Wisconsin Estate Planners (7th ed. 2019).
  • Author, “Divorce Provisions in Opt-In Marital Property Agreements.” 67 Wisconsin Lawyer. 15, April, 1994
  • Co-author with Susan L. Collins, “Wisconsin Constitutional Amendment to Define Marriage: The Legal Context,” 78 Wisconsin Lawyer 16, March 2005
  • Co-author with Susan J. Erickson and Paul M. Schmidt, “Federal Estate Tax Apportionment in Wisconsin,” 69 Wisconsin Lawyer 18, June 1996
  • Co-author with Susan J. Erickson, “Marital Agreements May Result in Unanticipated Tax Consequences,” Estate Planning, May/June 1991, 160-165
  • Co-author with Joanne Brown, “Probate Filing Deadlines for Surviving Spouses Under a Marital Property Regime.” 61 Wisconsin Bar Bulletin 8, June, 1988
  • Author, “The Sexual Politics of Estate Planning in Wisconsin: An Introduction to the Marital Property Act,” 21 Journal of Real Property Trust & Probate 485, American Bar Association, 1986

Carl recently published Monstrous Fictions: Reflections on John Calvin in a Time of Culture War, Lexington Press, 2016

Community Involvement & Board Memberships

  • Wisconsin Council of Churches – Unity and Relations Commission, Former Member
  • Wisconsin Council on Children and Families Foundation, Former Board Chair
  • The United Way of Dane County Foundation, Former Board Member
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison – English Department, Former Board of Visitors Member

Honors & Recognition

  • Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America®
    • Trusts and Estates, 1999-Present
  • Selected to The Wisconsin Super Lawyers® list, 2005-Present
  • AV® Rating by Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™
  • Leaders in the Law, Wisconsin Law Journal, 2008

See our disclaimer regarding third-party awards.


  • J.D., cum laude, University of Wisconsin Law School, 1982
  • Ph.D., Sixteenth Century English Literature, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1978
  • M.A., English Literature, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1973
  • B.A., with honors, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1970