Patrick L. O'Neil

Land Use and Zoning Attorney

Principal

ploneil@lerchearly.com
7600 Wisconsin AvenueSuite 700Bethesda, MD 20814

Education

  • Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law (J.D., 1999)
  • Boston College (B.A. in Political Science, 1990)

Admissions

  • Maryland
  • District of Columbia
  • Virginia
Overview

Patrick is a land use and zoning attorney who works with real estate developers and property owners to secure approvals throughout Montgomery County. He also serves as outside general counsel for independent schools throughout Maryland and the District of Columbia.

Having grown up in the area, Patrick’s roots run deep in Montgomery County. An unabashed people person, he quickly finds common ground with people he meets, whether it is through a board he serves on, the school his children went to, or the newest, hottest restaurant to open.

Because Patrick is adept at seeing other points of view, he’s able to nip conflict in the bud before it happens. Patrick’s approaches leaves neighboring communities or parents, teachers, or students with a grievance feeling heard and ready to accept reasonable outcomes. He also understands his client’s mindset so their true – and often unstated – objectives can be met.

As a technical matter, Patrick helps shepherd projects through the planning process, including preparing, filing, and seeking approval for site plans, rezonings, special exceptions, and variances. He also advocates for property owners whose land has been condemned by the government under eminent domain in order to obtain just compensation for their property, and he is currently working with many clients impacted by the Purple Line project. He takes an active role in the Montgomery County master plan approval processes.

As an independent school lawyer, Patrick directs the resources of the firm to assist heads of schools and boards with board operations and bylaws, employment law, property acquisition and zoning, contracts, litigation, risk management, and tax issues for nonprofits. Health care facilities, nursing homes, senior care, and assisted living centers also turn to Patrick for counsel.

A Washington, DC, native, Patrick taught at his alma mater, Gonzaga High School, prior to practicing law. He enjoys time with his family and relaxing on Sundays, when he can sit back with his Dunkin’ Donuts coffee, read his favorite newspapers and watch CBS’ Sunday Morning on television.

Education

  • Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law (J.D., 1999)
  • Boston College (B.A. in Political Science, 1990)

Admissions

  • Maryland
  • District of Columbia
  • Virginia
Representative Matters

Bethesda-Chevy Chase Rescue Squad: Saved client $2.3 million in development costs through successful representation in the Bethesda Downtown Plan before the Montgomery County Council.

Howard Hughes Medical Institute: Assisted in successful rezoning of the property to provide much greater future expansion opportunities. Negotiated a condemnation settlement with the Maryland State Highway Association that preserved a valued forced conservation easement on the property.

Cornerstone Montgomery: Negotiated a multi-jurisdictional resolution to locate a women’s shelter in centrally located facility.

Trammell Crow Company: Represented client in obtaining development approvals for 2.5 million SF of mixed-use development in Germantown, MD.

Stone Ridge School of the Sacred Heart: Orchestrated advantageous post-condemnation design that coordinated with the long-term campus master plan.

Adventist Healthcare: Obtained approvals for a holistic cancer treatment center at Shady Grove-Adventist Hospital and assisted in the relocation of Washington Adventist Hospital to White Oak, MD.

Provided counsel to an educational institution on how to navigate a high-profile criminal investigation of one of its teachers while preserving the reputation of the institution to the school community and the public.

Education & Admissions

Education

  • Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law (J.D., 1999)
  • Boston College (B.A. in Political Science, 1990)

Admissions

  • Maryland
  • District of Columbia
  • Virginia
Community Involvement
  • Imagination Stage (Vice President 2014-present; Executive Committee 2014-present; Board of Directors 2013-present)
  • Junior Achievement Montgomery County Advisory Committee (2011-2014)
  • Leadership Montgomery (Class of 2008)
Professional Memberships
  • Bethesda Downtown Sector Plan Implementation Advisory Committee (2017-present)
  • Greater Bethesda-Chevy Chase Chamber of Commerce (Chair 2010-2011, Board of Directors 2006-2010)
  • Bethesda Urban Partnership (Chair 2015; Secretary 2014-2015; Board of Directors 2012-present)
  • Montgomery County Committee for the Implementation of Base Realignment & Closure
  • Maryland State Bar Association
  • District of Columbia Bar Association
  • Virginia State Bar Association
  • Bar Foundation of Montgomery County, Maryland
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