About Tal Rappleyea
As a municipal lawyer, Tal Rappleyea gets asked this question all the time: What is a municipality?
A municipality is actually just a technical term for a county or city. Although municipalities are mainly responsible for creating their laws, they hire municipal lawyers that are responsible for enforcing those laws. Tal Rappleyea covers the following municipal law issues to reflect the needs of area residents:
- Education policies, which governs the safety and standards of education in public schools, accommodating students with disabilities, and job security for teachers.
- Property taxes, which outlines how taxed income from residents can be used to benefit the community.
- Police power, which oversees how police officers monitor resident behavior.
- Zoning, which determines how land in the municipality is used.
Some municipal lawyers work internally for one municipality, while others practice law individually for multiple municipalities. Tal practices law individually in his own private practice and serves several counties in the Albany metro area in New York state.
Tal Rappleyea was admitted to the New York State Bar Association in January 1989. This chapter of the bar association is actually the largest voluntary state bar organization in the nation with a membership of more than 74,000 lawyers. Tal is proud to be a member, considering former presidents Grover Cleveland and Chester A. Arthur were members of the New York State chapter as well.
With nearly three decades of experience and a Juris Doctorate from Hamline State University, Tal Rappleyea has explored municipal law in several roles as an attorney, ranging from positions as Attorney for the Town and Attorney for the Village of several municipalities. Currently, Tal is a solo practitioner in his own Law Offices of Tal G. Rappleyea in Valatie, New York and lists municipal law as one of his main concentrations.
Tal is a supporter the New York State Conference of Mayors and Municipal Officials (NYCOM), which is an organization that trains municipal officials and operates as a general support group for municipal officials in each state. He is also very active in his community, as he is a member of the Capital District Trial Lawyers Association and holds a position in the County Bar Association of New York State.
Although Tal Rappleyea maintains an active lifestyle by volunteering in his community and maintaining memberships in his field of practice, he still makes time for one of his pastimes, golf, by on the range.
- “Deal of the Year” Award from the Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY)
- Named one of the three new inductees to the Ethics Committee of REBNY
- Named to the Executive Board of New York Residential Specialists (NYRS).
It’s important to find a cause in your community and work to make a difference. Helping your fellow man is a great start to making the world a better place. For lawyers and attorneys, there are many philanthropic opportunities to get involved in and offer your services and skills pro bono:
One of the biggest issues in our country that needs more attention is the child immigration difficulties. Many immigrant children struggle to stay in the United States and have no one to fight for them. The ABA’s Immigrant Child Advocacy Network (ICAN) can connect you with over tens of thousands of unaccompanied immigrant minor children in America so you can offer your services. Through this program, attorneys can help these children through their legal proceedings.
Hurricanes and Other Natural Disasters
When disaster strikes, people are left in need and struggle in times of uncertainty. In times like this, people need lawyers to help them through. However, most of them cannot afford one and are at risk of losing everything to their name. In order to make sure everyone has a fair fight, lawyers and attorneys can offer assistance to lend a helping hand. National Disaster Legal Aid Resource Center is the best place for lawyers to volunteer and help those affected by natural disasters.
Lawyers Without Borders
For lawyers who are willing to cross the border to make a difference, then Lawyers Without Borders is the perfect opportunity. This incredible program gives attorneys, lawyers, and judges the opportunity to work pro bono for the world. Those who join the program are donating their services to rule of law projects, capacity building, and access to justice initiatives. Many of the projects led by Lawyers Without Borders focus on initiatives in the human rights and global capacity building sectors. This is a wonderful opportunity to change the world.