James A. Houle James A. Houle

James A. Houle

Of Counsel

Meet Jim, an attorney with an intricate understanding of estate planning, an abundance of tax knowledge, and an entrepreneurial spirit.

James A. Houle

207 228-7268 direct
207 774-1200 main
207 774-1127 facsimile

100 Middle Street
PO Box 9729
Portland, ME 04104-5029

  • Recognized by Best Lawyers in America for his work in trusts and estates and employee benefits law
  • Rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Easter Seals Service Leadership Award (2006)
  • Sumner T. Bernstein Pro Bono Award (2004)
  • Creative Work Systems Volunteer Recognition Award (2004)
  • Recognition Award as founder of the Maine Employee Benefits Council (1992)
  • City of Biddeford Recognition Award for Service on the Planning Board (1988)

Here’s why you’ll enjoy working with him.

Jim’s practice focuses on retirement and estate planning for high net worth individuals. Using a combination of advanced income tax, estate planning, and gifting techniques, he assists clients in developing robust and sophisticated wealth management plans.

Prior to practicing law, Jim owned and sold several businesses; experiences that gave him firsthand knowledge of the complex practical and legal issues his clients face. Today, he uses his skills and experience to help his clients save money, achieve their charitable goals, and ensure a financially secure future for themselves and their families.

But that’s not all. Jim is also very experienced in:

  • Intra-family gifts and sales
  • Family-owned private trust companies
  • Charitable trusts
  • Life insurance arrangements
  • Private annuities
  • Split-interest gifts
  • Private foundations
  • Gifts of art collections
  • The investment of retirement funds in real estate and other nontraditional assets

In his former life, Jim was:

  • Overseeing the legal aspects of proprietary investment funds at Metropolitan Life Insurance Company
  • A real estate developer
  • The owner of a printing business, which he purchased in London and moved to the US
  • Studying in England to become a certified mechanic in printing machinery
  • Working as a graphic and book designer
  • Earning his MFA from the University of Massachusetts

When Jim isn’t working, he is…

Teaching estate planning and tax courses at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute of the University of Southern Maine. He also serves on several boards, including the Portland Museum of Art, the Museum Trustee Association, the University of Maine School of Law Foundation, Creative Work Systems, and the Maine Trust for People with Disabilities, which he founded in 2005. He loves to travel, speaks French, and appreciates great art, food, and wine.


LLM, Taxation, Boston University Law School
JD, University of Maine School of Law
MFA, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth
BA, Boston College, Honors
Certificate as Mechanic, Monotype Corporation

Admitted to practice
States of Maine, New York and New Hampshire


Maine State Bar Association
American Bar Association
Maine Estate Planning Council
Maine Employee Benefits Council (Founder)
Portland Museum of Art (Director)
Museum Trustee Association
University of Maine School of Law Foundation (Director)
York-Cumberland Association for the Handicapped (aka Creative Work Systems) (Director)
Maine Trust for People with Disabilities (Director and Incorporator
Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (Senior College) (Volunteer Instructor)