January 2016

Mark Oettinger Becomes A Partner

As of January 1, 2016, Mark Oettinger is a partner of the firm. Congratulations, Mark! Our firm name reflects this change, and we are now Montroll, Backus, & Oettinger, P.C. Mark served as Of-Counsel at the firm since July 2014, and prior to that he served for eight years as General Counsel for the Vermont Agency of Education.


We Welcome A New Intern

On January 18, 2016, we welcomed our new intern, Puspa Luitel. As a third-year student at Vermont Law School, Puspa is participating full-time in the school’s Semester in Practice Program, a field-based external clinic in which he apprentices with our lawyers. Puspa was an intern at the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services this past summer. Originally from Bhutan, Puspa is ultimately interested in providing legal services to new Americans in Vermont. Puspa’s internship is under the supervision of Mark Oettinger who serves as the chair of the Vermont Bar Association’s International Committee.


Andy Montroll

Our attorney Andy Montroll also serves as Chairperson of Burlington’s Joint City Council Planning Commission. The Form-Based Code Committee has been tasked with drafting a Burlington form-based zoning code. He will be involved with this project. For this spring, Andy was asked to be a presenter at a seminar for the National Business Institute on May 24 and 25, 2016. He will speak on “Everything You Need to Know about a Civil Trial.”


Rob Backus

Rob Backus has been increasingly kept as counsel for criminal, family, and juvenile matters. Rob has been successfully helping clients receive good resolutions, including some dismissals for traffic tickets, specifically for those obtained in the northern half of the state by drivers with commercial licenses. Rob attended a continuing legal education training in December 2015 that focused on plea bargaining, including negotiation skills and ethics.


Mark Oettinger

Mark Oettinger attended the Vermont Bar Association’s Mid-Winter Thaw in Montreal from January 15 to 17. The conference topics included the interaction between lawyers and judges; complexities associated with unrepresented parties in court; and reliance of advising clients on marijuana-related matters where state law has either legalized, decriminalized or made marijuana available for medical purposes while federal law continues to make all possession of marijuana illegal.

Mark will be reaching out to Vermont refugees and the entire resettlement population through the Vermont Refugee Resettlement Project. Mark will be traveling to New York City January 29 to 30 to meet with India’s former Secretary of State regarding his World Court Project. Mark is the co-founder of a start-up company called Protean. This company offers an online proficiency-based, personalized learning platform. It has now began its BETA testing phase in Vermont middle schools. You can check it out further by visiting www.protean.me.

Mark Oettinger will be running a free legal clinic at First United Congregational Church in Burlington on Sunday, January 31, 2016. Learn more at http://ow.ly/XGg4A