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CH& Senior Land Use Attorney

Senior Land Use Attorney

Cairncross & Hempelmann (“CH&”) is a full-service law firm in Seattle that advises our diverse client base in multiple practice areas, including land use, real estate, construction, business, corporate finance, litigation, bankruptcy and creditors’ rights. Our hallmark culture hinges upon respect, collegiality, and genuine care which extends to all CH& employees, as well as to our clients and their teams.

We are currently seeking a Senior Land Use Attorney to step in and work with existing sophisticated clients who have long-standing relationships with senior partners at the firm who are ready to transition those relationships.  The ideal candidate would join the firm with their own partial book of business to round out their workload.

This position entails the following:

Essential Functions & Responsibilities:

  • Appearances before hearing examiners, planning commissions, city and county councils, administrative hearing boards, and superior and appellate courts
  • Drafting and/or supervising the drafting of briefs
  • Land use due diligence and permitting, including assessment of options and opportunities to build new projects and redevelop sites, and setting strategy to achieve client developer goals, as well as assisting clients throughout the permitting process
  • Writing due diligence memos and client advice memos
  • Strategic communication with local government planners, department directors and elected officials
  • Drafting new code provisions and shepherding them through the amendment process at cities and counties
  • Ability to maintain attention to detail and produce accurate work
  • Ability to work in a high-demand, fast-paced environment and meet short deadlines
  • Professional interaction with others in-person, in virtual meetings and through email and phone, using critical thinking and listening skills
  • Must be able to spend long periods of time in a stationary position working at a computer workstation (sit/stand desk is available)

Secondary Functions:

  • Attend Land Use Group and other meetings and firm events, as required
  • Participate in business development activities and initiatives
  • Initiate and respond to phone calls, emails, etc.
  • Other duties as assigned

Supervisory Responsibilities: 

  • Supervise the work of more junior attorneys, legal assistant, and possibly paralegals


The ideal Senior Land Use Attorney would have the following:

Education and/or Experience:

  • Undergraduate and JD degrees from accredited academic institutions
  • Current WSBA membership
  • At least 8 years of practice as a Pacific Northwest land use attorney

 Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  • Excellent legal writing and oral communication skills
  • Solid understanding of legal and land use specific concepts
  • Proven ability to develop business
  • Effective delegation and training skills
  • Able to collaborate as part of a team, but also work independently

Our firm is committed to racial equality and social justice and our Racial Equality & Social Justice Plan invites all attorneys and staff to engage, take action, and continue to broaden diversity and awareness in our communities. The CH& Diversity Team was started in 2004 and drives the firm’s initiatives and action. For more information, go to  Diversity | Cairncross & Hempelmann.

Compensation range: $175,000 – $250,000 annually.  This range could expand, depending on book of business. Benefits include but not limited to: Medical and Vision insurance, Voluntary Dental insurance, Health Reimbursement Account Plan, Cafeteria Plan, Life / AD&D insurance, Long-term Disability insurance, Whole life with Long-term care rider, Retirement Plan 401(k), Vacation, Sick/Safe Leave, and Orca Pass/parking subsidy.

To apply, email cover letter and resume to