Welcome to the Office of General Counsel

The Office of General Counsel serves as legal advisor to the University and its various departments.

Specifically, we provide:

  • Legal advice to university administrators and managers;
  • Assistance in drafting or reviewing contracts and other legal documents;
  • Assistance in drafting or reviewing university policies, guidelines and procedures;
  • Representation of university units in internal administrative proceedings;
  • Representation in matters pending before state and federal agencies;
  • Information about legal rules being considered for adoption by the Board of Regents affecting Iowa State University;
  • Assistance with securing of specialized legal expertise for university departments;
  • Coordination with, and support of, the Iowa Department of Justice or private counsel handling university matters in litigation;
  • Training programs related to legal issues.

In order to assure coordination and conserve resources, it is helpful if a person seeking the advice of the Office of General Counsel lets his/her department chair or unit head know that he/she is seeking our assistance.  On complicated or serious matters, you should expect to set an appointment.  Please consider what other persons should be involved.  For example, a merit employee issue may be best resolved by involving a member of the Human Resource staff.


Because legal practice is not predictable, we request that you provide adequate time for review of documents prior to the time approval is expected. 


The Office of General Counsel does not provide personal legal advice. Students needing personal legal advice should consult with Student Legal Services in Room B11, Memorial Union (515) 294-0978. Employees and members of the general public needing personal legal assistance may contact the Iowa State Bar Association at (515) 280-7429 in Des Moines or 1-800-532-1108 in Iowa (outside of Des Moines).