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200 SW Market Street, Suite 1950
Portland, Oregon 97201

Heather J. Van Meter CONTACT       Direct: 503.721.2669 Main: 503.248.1134 VCard PDF Profile

Practice Areas


Bar Admissions

A Pacific Northwest native, Ms. Van Meter grew up working at her family’s natural resources and retail businesses, as a receptionist and sales clerk then bookkeeper. After earning her M.B.A. and J.D. degrees at Willamette University in 1998, Ms. Van Meter spent over 20 years in major law firms, teaching, and serving the Oregon Department of Justice. She brings her decades of education and legal experience, an inquisitive mind, and friendly nature to serve our clients in Oregon and Washington..

Ms. Van Meter began her legal career as a big firm associate, becoming a partner at Williams Kastner. She then took advantage of an opportunity to teach in Vietnam, teaching commercial law and company law at RMIT-Saigon. Returning from Vietnam, Ms. Van Meter taught constitutional law and evidence at Lewis & Clark Law School, then spent nearly nine years in the Oregon Department of Justice’s Civil Litigation Section, defending the state and its employees in employment, contracts, torts, civil rights, administrative law, and other legal disputes. As a trusted lawyer and trial attorney with over 25 years’ experience and dozens of trials and appeals, she has the knowledge to handle all her clients’ needs and a lifetime of wisdom to give practical advice to her clients.

While working as a trial attorney, Ms. Van Meter obtained a Master’s degree in human rights law at the University of Oxford, and a Ph.D. in international law at the University of Birmingham (England). She continues teaching to this day, including graduate school classes in ethics, sustainability, and social responsibility as well as law, history, and finance classes to middle and high school students. As a professor and teacher, Ms. Van Meter has gained the ability to explain complex legal matters in understandable ways.

Ms. Van Meter has been admitted to practice in Oregon and Washington, including Oregon and Washington state and federal courts and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. She represents private, public, and not-for-profit entities through out the Pacific Northwest. She has a superb rating with Avvo and is recognized by her peers as a leading trial attorney.

In addition to serving her clients, Ms. Van Meter serves her community extensively and is a past member of the Oregon Government Ethics Commission (governor’s appointment), past elected Oregon Bar House of Delegates member, past president of the Marion County Bar Association, past President of Oregon Women Lawyers, past President of the U.S. District Court of Oregon Historical Society, and a former volunteer criminal prosecuting attorney in Hood River County. She is currently on the Oregon State Bar Nonprofit Law Executive Committee and is a member of the Nonprofit Association of Oregon. In her spare time, Ms. Van Meter enjoys spending time with her children and large family, hiking in the great outdoors, and volunteering in her community.






  • Revising The DIKW Pyramid And The Real Relationship Between Data, Information, Knowledge and Wisdom – Law, Technology and Humans Journal, November 2020


  • Various articles on county bar events – Marion County Bar Bulletin, Summer 2017 to present
  • Judge Anna J. Brown Takes Senior Status – Oregon Benchmarks and Oregon Women Lawyers Newsletter, Summer 2017
  • Judge Brown to be Honored with American Inns of Court’s Esteemed Professionalism Award – Oregon Benchmarks and Oregon Women Lawyers Newsletter, Summer 2017
  • “Self-Defined Success,” in Her Story: Lessons in Success from Lawyers Who Live It – American Bar Association Litigation Section, 2017


  • The Difference a Decade Makes: Lifting Oregon’s Ban on Same-Sex Marriage – Oregon Benchmarks, Winter 2015
  • Jerry Harris, Court Reporter Extraordinaire – Oregon Benchmarks, Winter 2015


  • Profile: Noreen Kelly Saltveit McGraw – Oregon Benchmarks, Summer 2014


  • The Human Right to Water: Proposal For A Human Rights-Based Prioritization Approach – Willamette University College of Law Human Right to Water Symposium, Spring 2011
  • Improving State Party Reporting on Use of Available Resources for ICESCR – University of Oxford, April 2011


  • Co-Presidents’ Messages – Oregon Women Lawyers Advance Sheet, 2009-10
  • Kulongoski Increases Diversity on Courts – Oregon Women Lawyers Advance Sheet, Winter 2010
  • Candidates for Judicial Openings in the District Court of Oregon – Oregon Benchmarks, Fall 2009
  • Toxic Plastics? – Oregon State Bar Products Liability Section newsletter, Fall 2008
  • Medical Bill Write-Offs – OADC Journal, 2007
  • Judge Robert Belloni: Entranced by the Complexities of the Law – Oregon Benchmarks, 2007
  • Does FDA Regulation of Drug Labeling Preempt State Law Failure to Warn Claims? – Oregon State Bar Products Liability Section newsletter, Spring 2007
  • Food Allergies Litigation – Oregon State Bar Products Liability Section newsletter, Summer 2007
  • The Historic Portland Archdiocese Bankruptcy – Oregon Benchmarks, 2007
  • It’s Critical to Create a Sense of Privacy in Health Care Settings – Portland Business Journal, 2007
  • Judicial Profile: Hon. Anna J. Brown – The Federal Lawyer, 2007
  • Judge Anna Brown: First Generation American Success – Oregon Benchmarks, 2006
  • Reinvigorating Federal Preemption for Prescription Drug Labeling – OADC Journal, 2006
  • Defending Negligent Referral Claims – DRI Medical Liability and Health Care Law Update, Fall 2005
  • Negligent Referral Claims: The Problem Is… – OADC Journal, 2005
  • Judges Helen Frye, Owen Panner and James Redden: Three Oregon Judges and a 25th Anniversary – Oregon Benchmarks, 2005
  • Good Records Can Minimize Worker Claims – Portland Business Journal, 2005
  • Judicial Profile: Judge Owen Panner – The Federal Lawyer, 2004
  • President’s Messages – Oregon Benchmarks, 2003-04
  • Attorney Fees Lien Attaches to the Parties’ Litigation Rather Than to the Settlement Proceeds – OADC Journal, 2003
  • Economic Loss Only Does Not Render the Product Unreasonably Dangerous – OADC Journal, 2003
  • Barrie Herbold’s Path: Peter Pan to Learned Hand – Oregon Benchmarks, 2003
  • Judge Owen Panner: From Whizbang to the Bench – Oregon Benchmarks, 2003
  • Federal Service by E-Mail – OADC Journal, 2002
  • Qualified, Not Absolute, Privilege for Statements Made to Police – OADC Journal, 2002
  • Oral History Notes: Hon. Alfred T. Goodwin – Oregon Benchmarks, 2001
  • How Explicit Do You Need to Be? – Commercial Law Journal, Winter 2000
  • NSMIA and Oregon’s Securities Registration Laws – Willamette Law Review, Winter 1998
  • Irrigation Districts Manual – Oregon Farm Bureau Federation, Summer 1998
  • Employment Law for Nonprofits – Bullard Webinar, November 2022
  • 2022 Bullard Law Annual Briefing – Bullard Event, October 2022
  • 2021 Bullard Law Annual Briefing – Bullard Webinar, October 2021
  • 2021 Public Sector Symposium – Bullard Webinar, June 2021
  • Workplace Re-Opening and COVID-19 – Oregon State Bar, April 2021
  • COVID and Employers: OSHA Guidance for Maintaining "Safe Workplaces" Oregon State Bar, April 2021
  • Law Technology & Humans Conference – Queensland University of Technology, December 2019
  • Elder Abuse CLE – Willamette Valley Estate Planning Professionals, November 2018
  • Ethics and Elder Abuse CLE – Marion County Bar Association, November 2018
  • Ethics CLE – Oregon Department of Justice, November 2018
  • ABA Public Practice Panel – Willamette College of Law, October 2018
  • Let Me Call You Sweetheart: Implicit Bias in Practice of Law – Willamette Valley Inns of Court, March 2018
  • Salary Negotiation – Willamette University/National Association of Women MBAs, November 2017
  • Hard to Get CLE Credits – Marion County Bar Association, November 2017
  • Using State Consumer Protection Statutes to Address Corporate Greenwashing – Santa Clara University, September 2017
  • Regular speaker at Roberts High School Street Law Program, 2014 – 2018
  • Liquor and Ethics – Marion County Bar Association, April 2017
  • Enforcing Human Rights Through the Private Sector – University of Washington Business and Human Rights Workshop, September 2016
  • Stories from the Conference Room – Willamette Valley Inns of Court, November 2015
  • Government Litigation in the Age of E-Discovery – Oregon Department of Justice, October 2015
  • ABA Public Practice Panel – Willamette Law School, September 2015
  • Trial Preparation – Willamette Moot Court Board, September 2015
  • Environmental Struggles, Justice Struggles – Harvard Law School Institute for Global Law and Policy Conference, June 2015
  • Employment Law Training for ODOT Managers – October 2014
  • Pro Bono Litigation – FBA Oregon, October 2014
  • Road to the Bench – Oregon Women Lawyers, 2006-present
  • Evidence Privileges – Willamette College of Law, June 2013
  • Governmental Immunities – Oregon DOJ presentation to DAS-Risk, June 2013
  • Attorney Fee Petitions – Oregon DOJ, May 2013
  • Complaint & Answer – Oregon DOJ CLE, April 2013
  • Oregon Trial Practice: Emerging Trends and Multi-Jurisdictional Disputes – Oregon State Bar, October 2012
  • Student Free Speech: Tinker to Present Day – Lewis & Clark Law School Federalist Society Debate, March 2012
  • Health Care Reform Constitutionality – Lewis & Clark Law School Federalist Society Debate, November 2011
  • State Reporting under ICESCR – University of Oxford Master’s in International Human Rights Law, August 2011
  • Current Topics in Mass Torts Litigation – Oregon State Bar, April 2010
  • Breaking Barriers: How Far We Have Come, How Far We Have To Go – Oregon Women Lawyers, 2019
  • Diversifying the Judiciary: Perspectives on Sonia Sotomayor, U.S. Supreme Court Nominee – Mary Leonard Law Society, August 2009
  • Daubert Challenges in Recreational Products Cases -- DRI Products Liability Conference, 2007
  • Food Allergies and Litigation – DRI Products Liability Conference, 2007
  • What’s New in Product Liability Law in Oregon – Oregon State Bar, 2007
  • Product Warnings: I’m Warning You! – But is Anybody Listening? – U.S. Law Network National Conference, March 2007
  • Time Management and Effective Delegation – Oregon Women Lawyers, 2007
As Arbitrator
  • Royal Islands LLC v. Johnson, Multnomah Co. Case No. 0907-09563 (2010)
  • Capital One Bank v. Wolny, Multnomah Co. Case No. 0907-09476 (2010)
  • Citibank v. Bostwick, Multnomah Co. Case No. 0904-05306 (2009)

As Trial Attorney
  • Neves v. Oregon Youth Authority, Marion County Circuit Court Cas No. 18CV05915 (2020)
  • Cervantes v. Oregon DHS, Marion County Circuit Court Case No. 17CV26961 (2019)
  • Richardson v. Oregon DHS, Clackamas County Circuit Court Case No. 16CV14397 (2019)
  • Fagg v. Oregon DHS, Marion County Circuit Court Case No. 18CV30616 (2019)
  • Kaser v. Oregon PERS, Marion County Circuit Court Case No. 18CV07592 (2019)
  • Dalbey v. Oregon Dep’t of Human Services, Multnomah County Circuit Court Case No. 17CV55641 (2018)
  • Younger v. Oregon Office of Adult Abuse Prevention and Investigations (OAAPI), Lane County Circuit Court Case No. 18CV02024 (2018)
  • Miller v. Oregon Dep’t of Human Services, Lane County Circuit Court Case No. 17CV19615 (2018)
  • Thomas Creek Lumber Co. v. Oregon Dep’t of Forestry, Marion County Circuit Court Case No. 15CV32928 (2017)
  • Ford v. Oregon Dep’t of Human Services, Wasco County Circuit Court Case No. 16CV10804 (2017)
  • VanValkenburg v. Oregon Dep’t of Corrections, U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 3:14-cv-00916-BR (2016)
  • Springer v. State of Oregon (DHS), Multnomah County Circuit Court Case No. 16CV02848 (2016)
  • Wilkens v. Edwards, Oregon State Police, U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 6:14-cv-00907-MC (2016)
  • Kerby v. State of Oregon (DHS), Hansen et al., U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 2:12-cv-00544 (2015)
  • Thomas v. Vaughn, Burke, Oregon State Police, U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 6:12-cv-01167 (2014)
  • Summerfield v. OLCC, Clackamas Co. Case No. CV12100185 (2013)
  • Cooper v. Bennett, U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 6:11-cv-06028, aff’d 2015 WL 2168346 (2013)
  • Heilman v. Branstetter and Dahl, U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 3:11-cv-00594 (2013)
  • JAL Construction, Inc. v. ODOT, TK Construction US LLC, Marion Co. Case No. 12C23893 (2013)
  • McClellan et al. v. I-Flow Corp., et al., U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 6:07-cv-1309 (2010)
  • Woods v. QA Enterprises dba Reed Opera House et al., Marion Co. Case No. 06C18811 (2010)
  • Chambers v. United Salad Co., Multnomah Co. Case No. 0508-08537 (2007)
  • Axford v. Scott, Clackamas Co. Case No. CV0501-0818 (2006)
  • State v. Barajas, Hood River Co. Case No. 050027 (2006)
  • State v. Lane, Hood River Co. Case No. 040102 (2005)
  • Abney v. Fox, Josephine Co. Case No. 01CV0414 (2005)
  • State v. Sanchez-Narranjo, Hood River Co. Case No. 040043 (2004)
  • State v. Cartier, Hood River Co. Case No. 030211 (2004)
  • Munday v. Roseburg Livestock Auction Inc., Douglas Co. Case No. 03CV1289CC (2004)
  • State v. Bales, Hood River Co. Case No. 030085 (2003)
  • 900 Support, Inc. v. Trusted.Net Media Holdings LLC, Multnomah Co. Case No. 0004-03371 (2001)
  • Wahid v. Portland Center Apartments, Multnomah Co. Case No. 00F014069 (2000)
Other Significant and Exemplary Cases (reported and unreported)
  • L.L. v. Oregon Department of Human Services, Multnomah Co. Case No. 16CV30046 (2018)
  • Updike v. City of Gresham et al., U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 3:13-cv-01619, 99 F.Supp.3d 1279 (2017)
  • Koch v. Jester et al., U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 6:12-cv-00613
  • DeBiaso v. Spitz, U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 3:12-cv-00967, 957 F.Supp.2d 1213 (2013)
  • State of Oregon (ODOT) v. Arrowhead Land & Cattle Co., Jackson Co. Case No. 13CV-05175
  • Casler v. City of Portland et al., Multnomah Co. Case No. 1204-04221, aff’d without opinion (2015)
  • Dahl v. State of Oregon (Oregon State Hospital), Marion Co. Case Nos. 12C15994, 14C20110
  • Sharp v. Stringer et al., U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 6:12-cv-00140, aff’d 592 Fed. Appx. 581 (2015)
  • In Re Archdiocese of Portland, Bankr. D. Or. Case No. 04-37154-elp11
  • Englert v. MacDonell, U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 6:05-cv-01863, 9th Cir. Case No. 06-35531
  • Kidwiler v. Kay et al., Multnomah Co. Case No. 0505-05040, aff’d without opinion 216 Or. App. 192 (2007)
  • Linn v. City of Silverton, U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 6:05-cv-06189
  • Morrisette v. DeMinimis et al., Washington Co. Case No. C043718CV
  • Guske v. Rotary Project Amigo, U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 3:01-cv-0173
  • Valencia v. Crane Co. et al., U.S.D.C. Oregon Case No. 3:02-cv-01290, 132 Fed. App’x 171 (9th Cir. 2005)
  • Rothweiler v. Clark County, 108 Wn. App. 91, 29 P.3d 758 (2001)
  • Frederick v. City of Portland, 178 Or. App. 571, 38 P.3d 288 (2001)