Charlene K. Quade


Charlene K. Quade founded C.K. Quade Law, PLLC in 2006. With now greater than forty years of personal and professional experience in the area of helping persons with disabilities, Char’s knowledge in the area of special needs remains unique to her and “why” she embarked upon a degree in law at age 42.  Initially studying special education, Char excelled in her legal studies of Tort Law, Wealth Preservation, Wills and Trusts, and Tax Law. Coupling her knowledge and professional experience in Administrative service delivery systems with her legal education and training, Char designed the firm to embrace full spectrum Estate Planning with an emphasis in Guardianship, Conservatorship, Elder Law, Social Security Disability, Special Education Law, Special Needs Trusts, Supplemental Needs Trusts, and Affirmative Life Planning.  In addition, she practices in adoptions and terminations, and probate. In 2016 she was accepted as a member of the Special Needs Alliance, making her one of the only two qualifying members within the state of Idaho. 

A founding board member, she continues as a member of the Idaho Guardianship and Fiduciary Association, in addition to currently serving as a board member of the Trust Estate Professionals of Idaho.   A lifelong advocate for and mother of an adult with Williams Syndrome, Char holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Social Work and has authored numerous articles on childhood disability issues and delivered lectures all over the state regarding estate planning and disability matters.  Char is a member of the Washington State Bar and the Tax, Probate and Trust Law Section, and Real Property Section of the Idaho State Bar. She is admitted to practice in the state and federal courts and in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

In Idaho she served on the board for the Adaptive Wilderness Sports of McCall (AWeSOMe!) and Idaho Parents Unlimited.  Prior to law school, she served as chair of the Interagency Early Childhood Intervention Committee (Mankato, MN), co-chair of the Parent Special Education Advisory Council (Wayzata, MN), and Regional Director (MN, WI, ND, SD) for the Williams Syndrome Association of Detroit, MI.  In law school she wrote and was published in the Hamline University School of Law Journal of Public Law and Policy, and participated in the National Native American Law Student Association’s Moot Court in New York.

Areas of Practice
  • Conservatorship and Guardianship
  • Disability and Elder Law
  • Estate Planning
  • Medicaid Eligibility
  • Miller Trusts
  • Probate
  • Social Security Disability
  • Special Education
  • Special Needs Trusts
  • Supplemental Needs Trusts
Bar Admissions

Idaho State Bar
Minnesota State Bar—voluntary inactive
Washington State Bar
U.S. District Courts, District of Idaho
Supreme Court of the State of Idaho


Hamline University School of Law
St. Paul, MN, 2003
J.D., Doctor of Jurisprudence

Mankato State University
Mankato MN, 1991
Bachelors of Science, Social Work

Arrowhead Community College
Hibbing, MN, 1983
Associate of Arts, Business Administration

Published Works

A Crystal Clear IDEA: The Court Confounds the Clarity of Rowley and Confronts Congressional Intent, 23 Hamline J. Pub. L & Pol’y 37 (Fall 2001).

Cited in

CRS Report RL33444, The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA0: Supreme Court Decisions, by Nancy Lee Jones

Articles, Notes and Commentary, 32 J.L. & Educ. 281 (April 2003).

Stepping Back Through The Looking Glass: Real Conversations With Real Disputants About Institutionalized Mediation And Its Value, 19 Ohio St.J. on Disp. Resol. 573 (2004).

Bargaining and Distribution in Special Education, 14 Cornell J.L. & Pub. Pol’y 171 (Summer 2005).

Rowley Comes Home To Roost: Judicial Review of Autism Special Education Disputes, 9 U.C. Davis J. Juv. L. & Pol’y 217 (Summer 2005).

Making Sense Of The Inclusion Debate Under IDEA, 2006 B.Y.U. Educ. & L.J. 189.

The Individuals With Disabilities Education Improvement Act: Changing What Constitutes An “Appropriate” Education, 20 J.L. & Health 139 (2007).

Affirmative Life and Planning for the Future of a Loved One with a Disability, Fifty-Plus Living (April 2005).

Classes/Seminars Taught
  • Affirmative Life Planning
  • Estate Planning Basics
  • Legal Advocacy and Planning For Life After 18!
  • Special Needs Trusts and Ensuring Quality of Life!
  • The Art of Collaboration in Education of Children with Special Needs: Multiple Perspectives, Parent, Lawyer, and Professional
Professional Associations and Memberships

Idaho State Bar Association

Taxation, Probate and Trust Law Section
Idaho State Bar Association

Trust Estate Professionals of Idaho (TEPI)
Board Member

Idaho Guardian and Fiduciary Association (IGFA)
Member & Past Board Member

Idaho Families of Adults with disAbilities (IFAD)

Kiwanis Club of Capital City

Special Needs Alliance