Firm Overview

Firm Overview

Our firm mission statement is “Committed to Satisfying Needs While Maintaining Character.” Our goal is to satisfy the legal needs of our clients by means that recognize the clients’ and our own commitment to fairness and justice. We are proud to serve the many good people who retain us.

DeKoter, Thole, Dawson, Rockman & Krikke, P.L.C., is a professional limited liability company. Members of the firm are Daniel E. DeKoter, Michael E. Thole, Harold D. Dawson, Nathan J. Rockman and Brandon J. Krikke. The present firm originated in 1936, when Louis Corcoran started legal practice in Sibley. The firm’s other founder, Don Skiver, began his legal practice in 1955 in Sibley. In 1977 the Corcoran and Skiver firms merged to form Corcoran, Skiver & Zito, of which Richard D. Zito was the third member. Daniel E. DeKoter joined the firm in 1980; Michael E. Thole in 1985; and Harold D. Dawson in 1986. Corcoran, Skiver and Zito have passed away but we are proud to carry on their tradition of service.

Our firm’s attorneys are all licensed to practice in Iowa. Harold Dawson is also licensed to practice in South Dakota, and Nathan Rockman is also licensed to practice in Minnesota. The firm’s general practice has traditionally serviced clients throughout northwest Iowa, including Sioux, Lyon, O’Brien, Dickinson and Osceola counties. The firm has also represented clients in Nobles and Jackson counties in Minnesota.

Daniel E. DeKoter has received an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale-Hubbell®, which is based on peer reviews. His clients also give him the highest rating on the Martindale web site, He is also a member of America’s Top 100 High Stakes Litigators, an organization which recognizes the top half percent of trial attorneys who have litigated cases where, as it says, the stakes are high for the client. Further, he is a member of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum. The Million Dollar Advocates Forum (which includes the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum) is one of the most prestigious groups of trial lawyers in the United States. Membership is limited to attorneys who have won million and multi-million-dollar verdicts and settlements. There are only 4000 members throughout the country. Fewer than 1% of U.S. lawyers are members.

We recognize that our employees are the front line of service to our clients. For that reason, we strive to retain employees over the long term. We value the experience they bring to bear on behalf of our clients. We are committed to providing you the service of an experienced staff.

The firm has a substantial litigation practice, which includes nationwide representation in product liability defense cases. In those cases, the firm’s attorneys have acted as lead defense counsel for a manufacturing company client in jurisdictions such as Texas, Connecticut, Missouri, Minnesota, Ohio, New Mexico, and other states. These cases generally involve vehicle accidents and often the amounts in dispute are into the millions of dollars. We also represent several insurance carriers in defending litigation on behalf of their insureds in cases involving automobile accidents, premises liability, liquor liability, product liability, and other issues. We also represent a railroad in property damage litigation involving its maritime bridges.

The firm has also represented many injured persons in cases involving automobile accidents, water sports accidents, falls on premises, truck and trailer accidents, and other situations. We welcome inquiries into our experience and record in personal injury litigation.

Throughout its history the firm has also provided estate planning advice for clients—i.e., advice involving wills, revocable trusts, financial powers of attorney, health care powers of attorney, life insurance trusts, and related estate planning documents. The members of the firm have many years of experience in estate planning. The firm employs a legal assistant, Debra Hulstein, who works only in this area of practice and has over forty years of experience.

Our clients also include banks in a five-county area of northwest Iowa, including Sibley State Bank; United Community Bank; Sanborn Savings Bank; First State Bank of Hawarden; Savings Bank in Lake Park and others. The law firm has historically represented several southwest Minnesota banks regarding their Iowa loans.
The firm maintains a substantial practice in municipal law. We serve as city attorneys for the cities of Ashton, George, Harris, Hartley, Little Rock, Ocheyedan, Sanborn, and Sibley. Our attorneys have decades of experience in advising city governments.

The firm has a strong business and employment law practice, serving many local companies with their legal needs. We advise employers on matters ranging from drafting employee handbooks; advice for terminating an employee; and wrongful discharge litigation. We are proud to be the attorneys for companies such as Dethmers Manufacturing Company in Boyden; Maurer Manufacturing in Spencer; Sudenga Industries in George; Den Hartog Industries in Hospers; Keith M. Merrick Co. in Sibley; and others.

We also give advice on agricultural law. Our law firm has represented farmers in northwest Iowa for over seventy years, helping them with legal matters such as leases, severance agreements, tile agreements, real estate contracts, farm corporations, manure agreements, and other matters. Partners, Mike Thole and Nathan Rockman, both grew up on the farm.

Please let us put our breadth and depth of experience to work for you.