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Serving the Special Needs Child and Regular Education Students facing expulsion

Law Offices of
Thomas S. Nelson

16466 Bernardo Center Dr., Suite 106
San Diego, Ca 92128

(858) 945-6621 Tel
(858) 521-0678 FAX
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Thomas Nelson, Esq.

          Thomas Nelson is the founder of The Law Offices of Thomas Nelson, an education law firm that emphasizes Special Education Advocacy & Law. Mr. Nelson has over 26 years of legal experience, and has prosecuted over 145 cases in State, Federal, and Administrative Proceedings.

          Mr. Nelson is a two-time recipient of a California State Bar Award for his Pro Bono Legal Services on behalf of Special Needs Children. Mr. Nelson has also presented Special Education Training Seminars to Disability Organizations such as the Learning Disabilities Association, CHAAD, San Diego Volunteer Lawyer's Association, San Diego Foster Family Program, Walden Family Services, International Dyslexia Association and the Center for Parent Involvement in Education.

Services: Now you have a Choice!

          Whether you want advice on how to self-advocate for your child, you need representation at IEP, 504 plan, Regional Center IPP, Expulsion, or Manifestation Determination meetings, or you have reached an impasse with the school district and you need to file a claim, we can handle it all.

          Education Law & Advocacy services include:


  • Consultation: Services include obtaining/reviewing school records, evaluating your child's current program, and preparing a parent for IEP/504/IPP meetings.

  • Direct Advocacy: Services include appearance/advocacy at IEP, 504 plan, Regional Center IPP, Expulsion, and Manifestation Determination meetings.

Legal Representation through Dispute Process:

          When an impasse has been reached, we can file a claim through the appropriate dispute resolution process, including:

  • Mediation/due process for IDEA, Regional Center, and 504 claims

  • Representation at expulsion hearings

  • Court action for ADA claims for post-secondary students

Fee Structure:

  • In some cases, Parents of a disabled child may be able to recover Attorneys Fees from the school district if they are determined to be the "Prevailing Party" in a due process proceeding under the IDEA/504.

  • Although the Fee Structure in each case is determined by Agreement, your Child's due process proceeding under the IDEA/504 may be appropriate for a Full or Partial Contingency Fee Agreement, whereby the attorney fees (not costs) are paid fully or partially through federal IDEA funding through the local school district, not by you.

  • Affordable Advocacy Plans are also available.

Mr. Nelson's Professional Associations/Awards:

  • California Parent Attorneys and Advocates (CAPCA)

  • Learning Disabilities Association

  • Two-time recipient of the Wiley W. Manuel California State Bar Award for pro bono legal services

  • Special Education Law & Advocacy Training Seminars provided to the Learning Disabilities Association; San Diego Volunteer Lawyers Association; CHADD; Walden Foster Family Association; International Dyslexia Association; and Center for Parent Involvement in Education

Phone Consultations Are Free of Charge
Your claim may be eligible for complete or partial contingency fee agreement.
Call 858-945-6621