Karen L. Karr

Member

Office: 515-242-2424

Fax: 515-323-8524

Email: karen.karr@brownwinick.com

  

As a real estate attorney, I can advise you on all real estate matters, but specialize in commercial real estate development projects and real estate matters unique to large, complex business transactions.   I represent a wide-range of clients, including, buyers, sellers, landlords, tenants, owner’s representatives, developers, and contractors.  In doing so, I can offer an “insider’s view” of the other side to the transaction and workable solutions.   With my corporate background, I recognize and appreciate the interplay of business and real estate risks, and use this to develop a holistic strategy that coordinates those risks for you.   I am a member of your team, who you can trust to support and protect you and your business.

My Approach

It’s not about me, it’s about you.   My approach is different based on each client and deal.  Ultimately, my job is to help you achieve a result that works for you.  I listen to what is important to you and, as I learn more, tailor the process to fit your needs and risk tolerance.  My legal training, industry experience, and attention to detail fill the gaps and allow me to identify and explain the risks to you.  This provides you with the tools necessary to make an informed business decision.  Your decisions give me the information necessary to mold the transaction to fit your needs.  I respect the investment you have made in your business, and want to help you find the best way to protect it.

More About Me

While I said this is about you . . .

I graduated, with distinction, from the University of Iowa, with a B.A. in Journalism and Mass Communications and Communications Studies, and a Certificate of Entrepreneurship in 2003.   In 2008, I received my J.D. from Drake University, graduating with honors, and was admitted to the Iowa bar.  Before law school, I worked in the private sector as a real estate agent.  This piqued my interest and started my real estate career.  Since then, my interest has grown.  Real estate development gives me an outlet to see results, make an impact, and be involved in the community.   All things that make me tick.

I am named as a Rising Star in Chambers USA® (2019) and Super Lawyers (2017-2019), and was selected for Best Lawyers (2018-2020), for real estate.  I am Co-Chair of the Firm’s Real Estate Practice Group.

I am on the Board of Directors and Executive Committee for Operation Downtown and serve on the Polo on the Green Planning Committee for Variety Club of Iowa. I am also a member of the County and State Bar Associations.  Additionally, I am a member of the 2014-2015 class of the Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute and a 2017 honoree of the Business Record’s Forty Under 40.     

Outside of work, I like to travel, cook, and support the Iowa Hawkeyes with my family and friends. 

My Specialties

  • Real Estate Law
  • Business and Corporate Law/M&A
  • Banking/Corporate Finance
  • Construction Law

Clarification Provided on Remote Notarizations

March 25, 2020   On March 24, 2020, the Iowa Secretary of State issued guidance for remote notarizations. It clarifies that remote notarization must comply with Section 6 Read…

Remote Notary Now an Option

March 23, 2020   Iowa law requires a notary officer to acknowledge real estate documents that will be recorded, including deeds and mortgages. For years, the acknowledgement required Read…

BrownWinick Attorneys Named to 2020 Best Lawyers List

August 15, 2019 BrownWinick is pleased to announce that 24 lawyers have been included in the 2020 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America. Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers® has become universally regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence. Best Lawyers® has published their list for more than three decades, earning the respect of the profession, the media, Read…

BrownWinick Attorneys Featured in 2019 Great Plains Super Lawyers and Great Plains Rising Stars

July 11, 2019 Eleven BrownWinick attorneys were selected for inclusion in the 2019 Great Plains Super Lawyers online listing: Rebecca Brommel – Business Litigation William Brown – Tax Elizabeth Coonan – Employment and Labor Michael Dee – Business Litigation Alice Helle – Employee Benefits Thomas Johnson – Business/Corporate Ann Holden Kendell – Employment and Labor James Pray – Environmental Brian Rickert – Construction Litigation Christopher Sackett – Mergers and Acquisitions Sheila Tipton – Energy and Resources Thirteen BrownWinick attorneys were Read…

Chambers USA Names BrownWinick Law Firm and 11 of its Attorneys “Leaders in Iowa”

April 30, 2019 BrownWinick, a Des Moines based law firm, has been recognized as a “leading law firm” in Chambers USA 2019 — America’s Leading Lawyers for Business in the areas of Corporate/M&A, Labor & Employment, and Litigation: General Commercial. Additionally, 11 BrownWinick attorneys were selected for inclusion in Chambers USA 2019, being recognized as “leaders in Iowa” in the following areas: Corporate/M&A Labor & Employment Read…

BrownWinick Attorneys Named to 2019 Best Lawyers® List

August 16, 2018 BrownWinick is pleased to announce that 27 lawyers have been included in the 2019 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America. Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers has become universally regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence. Best Lawyers has published their list for over three decades, earning the respect of the profession, the media, and the Read…

BrownWinick Attorneys Featured in 2018 Great Plains Super Lawyers and Great Plains Rising Stars

July 2, 2018 Twelve BrownWinick attorneys were selected for inclusion in the 2018 Great Plains Super Lawyers online listing: Ronni F. Begleiter – Employee Benefits Rebecca Brommel – Business Litigation William C. Brown – Tax Elizabeth A. Coonan – Employment & Labor Michael A. Dee – Business Litigation Alice E. Helle – Employee Benefits Thomas D. Johnson – Business/Corporate Ann Holden Kendell – Employment & Labor James L. Pray – Environmental Brian P. Rickert – Construction Litigation Christopher R. Sackett – Mergers Read…

BrownWinick Attorneys Named to 2018 Best Lawyers List

August 15, 2017 BrownWinick is pleased to announce that 26 lawyers have been included in the 2018 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America. Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers has become universally regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence. Best Lawyers has published their list for over three decades, earning the respect of the profession, the media, and the Read…

BrownWinick Attorneys Featured in 2017 Great Plains Super Lawyers and Great Plains Rising Stars

July 17, 2017 Ten BrownWinick attorneys were selected for inclusion in the 2017 Great Plains Super Lawyers online listing: Ronni F. Begleiter – Employee Benefits/ERISA William C. Brown – Tax Elizabeth A. Coonan – Employment & Labor Michael A. Dee – Business Litigation Alice E. Helle – Employee Benefits Ann Holden Kendell – Employment & Labor James L. Pray – Environmental Brian P. Rickert – Construction Litigation Christopher R. Sackett – Mergers & Acquisitions Sheila K. Read…

BrownWinick Attorney Karen Karr Named as Honoree to the 2017 Class of Forty Under 40

February 2, 2017 BrownWinick attorney Karen Karr was named to the Des Moines Business Record’s 2017 Class of Forty Under 40 honorees. Forty under 40 class selection is based on achievements, leadership and community involvement. Karen and the other honorees will be recognized at the Sheraton West Des Moines, on March 29, 2017. Read…

Pro Bono Project for BrownWinick Attorneys, Karen Karr and Chris Sackett

July 28, 2016 BrownWinick attorneys, Karen Karr and Chris Sackett, represented A Mid-Iowa Organizing Strategy (AMOS) on a pro bono basis, in negotiating a development agreement with the City of Des Moines for a $3.5 million skate park along the west bank of the Des Moines River. AMOS will lead the construction and design of the skate park, and donate it Read…

Matt McKinney and Karen Karr Selected as Members in the 2015 Class of the Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute

July 8, 2014 BrownWinick attorneys, Matt McKinney and Karen Karr, were selected to participate in the 2015 Community Leadership Program Class of the Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute. During the course of this nine-month program it enhances leadership skills, inspires a higher level of community awareness and offers an opportunity for community involvement. Read…

Assistant

Emily Maier

515-242-2486

Undergraduate

University of Iowa

B.A., with distinction, Communication Studies; Journalism & Mass Communication, 2003

Legal

Drake University

J.D., with honors, 2008

Admitted

Iowa, 2008

Memberships & Associations

  • Polk County Bar Association
    Member
  • Iowa State Bar Association
    Member; Sections on: Business Law; Construction Law; Corporate Counsel; Real Estate and Title Law
    Co-Chair of the Professional Development Committee (Young Lawyers Division)
  • Iowa Organization of Women Attorneys
    Member
  • Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute
    Graduate Class of 2014-2015
  • Order of the Barristers, 2008
  • Delta Theta Phi