David J. Dietrich graduated from Whitman College with a BA degree with honors in 1979. He served in the Peace Corps in Abidjan, Ivory Coast 1979 to 1980. He attended the University of Montana College of Law and graduated with a Juris Doctor (JD) in 1984.
David J. Dietrich is a fellow of the American College of Trusts and Estates counsel and a past Chair (2016 to 2017) of the Real Property, Probate and Trusts Law section of the American Bar Association. In the early 2000’s he co-chaired RPTE’s Property Preservation Task Force, which contributed to the Uniform Law Commission’s adoption of the Uniform Partition of Heirs Property Act, now law in 18 states. David is currently on the University of Montana Tax Institute Advisory Board and is Vice Chair of Humanities Montana. In the early 2000’s, he served for six years on the Board of Directors of the Montana Land Reliance, a private land trust in Montana, protecting over 1,000,000 acres.
David has a diverse real estate (ranching and agricultural) and estate planning background, living in south central Montana, Billings, the largest and most diverse city in the Northern Great Plains, west of Minnesota. His firm, Dietrich & Associates, P.C., has provided real estate tax and estate planning services to the region for over 30 years involving both complex and simple wills, trusts and real estate transactions including conservation easements, individual business organizations, real estate litigation, will contests and probate litigation.
David’s publications include his 2021 book chapter titled: “Probate and Business Organization Strategies to Minimize Land Loss of Heirs' Property” for inclusion in an upcoming ABA Book on Heirs Property, co-edited by Thomas W. Mitchell and Erica Levin Powers. He also authored the 2011 ABA Book “Conservation Easements: Tax and Real Estate Planning for Landowners and Advisors”; “Selected Post-Mortem Estate Tax Elections for the Small Business Owner”, “Pleasing Mother Earth and the IRS: Using Conservation Easements to Save Open Space, Income and Estate Taxes” for the Heckerling Institute for Estate Planning for the University of Miami in January 2003 and other tax and real estate related programs for the ABA and State Bar of Montana. He was the principal lobbyist in the 2021 Montana legislature for the ULC’s Uniform Directed Trust Act and has lobbied, in past legislative sessions, for the ULC and the State Bar of MT, for the Uniform Partition of Heirs Property Act, the Uniform Power of Appointment Act, and the Uniform Access to Digital Assets Act.
David and his family enjoy living in the Big Sky Country; he is an avid skier, outdoorsman, hunter, fly fisherman, and photographer.