About Ronan Law Group PLLC

Ronan Law Group PLLC was established in 2016 as a professional limited liability company in Vermont. Its, principal, Joseph Ronan, has practiced law here in Norwich, Vermont on a full time basis since the establishment of the practice.

Joseph has 40 years' of legal experience, and has worked predominantly in the areas of Federal income taxation, employee and executive compensation and business law during that period.

Legal Experience

  • Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, LLP: 1999-2016
  • Bell Atlantic: 1987-1999
  • Blank Rome, LLP: 1983-1987

  • New York University School of Law (LL.M., Taxation 1983; J.D., 1979)
    • Research editor, Review of Law & Social Change
  • Haverford College (B.A. in Philosophy with Honors, 1976).
  • Rutgers University-Camden (M.A. English, 2017, Thesis with Distinction)


  • Adjunct Professor, Villanova Law School, 1999-present

    • Executive Compensation,Tax II, Compensation Planning, Qualified Retirement Plans, Business Planning

  • Best Lawyers in America (Taxation)
  • Martindale-Hubble Pre-Eminent (AV) Status
  • Super Lawyers (Employee Benefits)

Haverford College
  • Charles Perry Award (Fundraising)
  • William E. Sheppard Award (Alumni Service)

Friends Select School
  • Meritorious Service
  • Bar Admissions

    • Vermont
    • Pennsylvania
    • New York
    • District of Columbia

    Bar Associations
    • American Bar Association
      • Section on Taxation
    • Vermont Bar Association
      • Section on Taxation

    Community Activities
    Town of Sharon, Vermont
    • Selectboard Member
    • Planning Commission Member

    Philadelphia Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts
    • Board President

    Friends Select School
    Board Chair
    Board Member

    Haverford College
    • Annual Fund Executive Committee
    • Admissions Volunteer

    • Board Member

    Our Mission-- Why

    Our Mission-- Why "Craftsman"?

    RLG's goal is to provide excellent legal services in the areas in which we work, and to deliver those services with an emphasis on pragmatic advice, value to the client and respect for the client's goals. After all, this isn't about our goals but about yours: what do you want to accomplish? what are the impediments to accomplishing your goals, from a legal or practical standpoint? is the particular issue really important to those goals and is it a fight worth fighting? are there other ways to accomplish what you want to accomplish?

    You might ask why the use of "craftsman" in our material--- does it sound a little precious or "twee"? The OED defines "craftsmanship" as "skilled workmanship" and defines a "craftsman" as someone "who practices a handicraft, an artificer, an artisan," which almost takes us to the much overused term "artisinal."

    A couple of less highfalutin comparisons come to mind. The first is the beautiful and practical American Craftsman
    architectural style:

    These Craftsman modular homes were sold by Sears during the period 1908-1940, and were modern, efficient and represented good value.

    Another perhaps more familiar example is the Craftsman tool line itself.

    The fact that this line of tools survived the Sears bankruptcy and exists as a stand-alone crafts business demonstrates the lasting value of the Craftsman tools.

    We strive to attain those qualities--- usefulness, value, effective and (at times) elegant solutions.

    Another related (though now old-fashioned) term is "yeoman service," which the OED defines as "good, efficient or useful service." According to the OED, "yeomanly" work is done is an "efficient" or "handsome" manner--- here, "handsome" means something like well-done and pleasing.

    One of the great poets of the 20th Century, Wallace Stevens, who was also a lawyer and an expert on suretyship law, described himself as a yeoman in one of his poems:

    I am a yeoman, as such fellows go.
    I know no magic trees, no balmy boughs,
    No silver-ruddy, gold-vermilion fruits.
    But, after all, I know a tree that bears
    A semblance to the thing I have in mind.
    It stands gigantic, with a certain tip
    To which all birds come sometime in their time.

    RLG represents executives and entrepreneurs, in capacities as employees or independent contractors, in matters relating to their compensation, benefits, and terms and conditions of their service. We also represent businesses in similar matters. As discussed under the Nonprofit header, we do similar work for nonprofits.

    We also handle certain types of tax controversy work, typically individual Federal tax controversies.