AttorneyS at Law

Special Education, Adult Advocacy, Planning for Individuals with Special Needs


Special Education Advocacy

Emerson Dickman is a special education attorney and child advocate located in Bergen County, New Jersey specializing in the representation of children and adults with disabilities for over 40 years.  He has often credited his wife, Georgette, and his children for the passion with which he pursues his life’s work.  His own experience as an individual with dyslexia has deepened his understanding and sensitivity to the special needs of individuals with disabilities and the concerns of their families.

He is past-President of the International Dyslexia Association and was a founding member of the consensus committee gathered in 1992 to create the legal definition for dyslexia. He speaks about dyslexia on the national and international stage, promoting awareness and advocacy. He, along with his wife Georgette Dickman, won the Margaret Byrd Rawson Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Dyslexia Association in 2012. 

His four decades of experience in the education sphere gives him the depth of knowledge to support families to ensure their child's needs are being appropriately met by the programs and services provided in school. When in consult, he'll work with all stakeholders to gain an understanding of the child’s profile to identify what constitutes appropriate educational programming and placement. The process begins with an initial consultation that usually includes the following steps:

Step 1. An initial conference to:

  • gather anecdotal information,

  • review records,

  • arrive at consensus as to the child’s educational needs,

  • arrive at consensus as to the character of an appropriate educational program, and

  • develop an action plan.

Step 2. Assignment of responsibility for implementation of the action plan.

Step 3. Preparation of a detailed memorandum reflecting the information gathered and consensus reached during the initial conference.

Call Kim Ventresco, LCSW, Non-Attorney and Education Intake Worker, at 201-909-0404 to learn more about our education advocacy services or to set up a consultation.   You may also use the contact form at the bottom of this page to enquire whether our services are right for you.




25 E. Spring Valley Avenue,

Suite 300

Maywood, NJ 07607


(201) 909-0404

Areas of Practice

Special Education Advocacy

For 40 years the law office of Emerson Dickman has been representing families to identify the special needs of their children and to ensure that they receive timely and appropriate educational interventions through Early Intervention, Pre-School, and Special Education Planning.  These plans are intended to enable such children to acquire the skills necessary to transition to a post secondary college, work, or supported home/community environment.  We provide legal, scientific, and research based information and work closely with clinicians, evaluators, various consultants, and educators to promote effective partnerships and improve outcomes for children.


The law office of Emerson Dickman provides a continuum of services that addresses the special needs of individuals and their families throughout their lifetimes.  As adulthood approaches, additional legal, advocacy, and support services are often necessary to protect the interests of individuals with disabilities while also preserving their quality of life.  We help individuals and families respond to the unique challenges encountered in the home, school, office, or community settings.  The am is to provide families with confidence that their relative with special needs has a future that is not dependent on them and is, nevertheless, safe, comfortable, and happy.  Such services may include Guardianships, Transition Planning, and assistance with applications for Supplemental Security Income, Social Security, Medicaid, or the NJ Division of Developmental Disabilities.  We also provide social work, case management, and home monitoring services and consult regularly with guardians, Support Coordinators, and service providers to develop effective networks of support. 


Our Special Needs Estate Planning program addresses those unique considerations that must be incorporated into your Will, Trust, and Health Care Directive to provide comfort and confidence that your family member with special needs will have a quality of life consistent with your wishes and desires; even after you are gone. As practitioners and consultants we can help ensure that your Will and Trust supports the survival of your values as well as protecting your assets and providing a foundation for future decision making.  Our office provides guidance regarding Probate, Special Needs Trusts, Protective Arrangement Trusts, and Medicaid Qualifying Trusts.   

Our Person Centered Planning concepts include features that are personal to your situation and are tailored to reflect a deep understanding of the abilities as well as the challenges of the individual with special needs.


Believe you can and you’re halfway there.
— Theodore Roosevelt


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