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What Do You Know about the Takacs McGinnis Partners?

Updated: Jan 8

How well do you know the attorneys who lead Takacs McGinnis Elder Care Law? Now is your chance to get to know them a little better.



Barbara McGinnis

Barbara joined the firm in 2011 after earning her Juris Doctor degree from Nashville School of Law and being admitted to the Tennessee Bar in 2010. She became a 50 percent partner in 2016 and the firm rebranded to Takacs McGinnis Elder Care Law in 2017.


Law is Barbara's second career, but it was the logical next step given her education and professional experience. She had a successful career in nursing and healthcare administration before making the decision to go to law school. She spent more than two decades as a Registered Nurse and Gerontological Nurse Practitioner working in a variety of settings, including hospitals, long-term care centers, outpatient clinics, and home health. During this time, Barbara honed her skills in executive management, sales, consulting, and business development.


Today, Barbara is a national leader in the elder care law field. She has been recognized by The Best Lawyers in America® for her work in the field of elder law. She has contributed her leadership skills to professional and civic organizations on the local and national level. She has been a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) since 2011 and has served on the NAELA board of directors since 2022. She is a former president of the NAELA Tennessee Chapter and former chair of the Elder Law Section of the Tennessee Bar Association. Barbara spent six years on the board of the Life Care Planning Law Firms Association. She has served as a board member of Vista Points, a nonprofit Special Needs Trust resource center, and Community Life Bridge, a Tennessee-based nonprofit dedicated to improving quality of life for older adults. Barbara is also one of the principals of Life Care Consulting LLC, a consulting firm that helps attorneys launch successful Life Care Planning practices.


Dedicated to increasing awareness about elder care law, Barbara gives dozens of presentations each year to professional associations and community groups. She is co-host of Aging Starts Now, a weekly podcast on issues related to elder care law; a frequent guest on MorningLine and OpenLine on Nashville’s CBS affiliate; and a frequent contributor to print and online media outlets in the Nashville area. 

Barbara’s passion for helping people deal with age-related changes extends beyond her clinical experience. She has traveled the elder care continuum with both parents as well as other family members. These experiences have given her tremendous empathy for families facing the prospect of a long-term illness of an aging loved one.


Barbara holds a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing from Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, Tennessee; a master’s degree as a Gerontological Nurse Practitioner from Vanderbilt University in Nashville; and a Juris Doctor degree from Nashville School of Law. She holds the coveted Certified Elder Law Attorney credential from the National Elder Law Foundation, and is a VA-accredited attorney. 


To help you get to know Barbara a bit better, we asked her ten random questions. Here are her answers:


Where were you born?

My father served in the U.S. Airforce and was stationed at Scott Airforce Base in Illinois, where I was born.


What is your favorite food?

Deep dish pizza, but I don’t eat it often


Where is your favorite vacation spot?

Anywhere as long as it is the beach


If you were stranded on a desert island, what three items would you want to have with you?

1) cellphone with solar charger, 2) internet, 3) fresh water, and 4) sunscreen


What is your idea of a great way to spend a weekend during the winter?

Invite friends over for homemade dinner


What was the best gift you ever received?

My daughter


What is one thing that few people know about you?

I’m really an introvert.


What’s the best movie you’ve ever seen?

It’s a Wonderful Life


What is your favorite hobby?

Golf when it's warm


What do you enjoy the most about being an estate planning and elder law attorney?

Helping people solve worries they didn’t imagine there was an answer for


Chris Johnson

Chris arrived at Takacs McGinnis Elder Care Law with 19 years of legal and military experience. Commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps after graduation from the U.S. Naval Academy, Chris’ career included multiple deployments to Japan and Afghanistan and he served in a number of roles as an Infantry Officer and Judge Advocate, including Platoon Commander, Company Commander, Chief Legal Assistance Officer, Senior Defense Counsel, Military Justice Officer, 3rd Recruit Training Battalion Executive Officer, Commanding General’s Deputy Staff Judge Advocate, and Deputy Chief Legal Advisor to the Afghanistan National Army. Prior to his retirement from military service in 2014, Chris had achieved the rank of Major and was heading the Legal Services Support Team serving Marine Corps Air Station, Cherry Point, North Carolina. After relocating to the Nashville area, Chris worked at a law firm where his practice included elder law, estate planning and administration, probate law, and VA benefits planning. He joined Takacs McGinnis as an associate attorney in 2018 and was named partner in 2019. He has been recognized by Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch® in America for his work in elder law, trusts, and estates.


Chris Johnson writes for and gives presentations regularly to attorneys and other professionals about elder care law, estate planning, and matters relating to VA benefits. He is co-host of Aging Starts Now, a weekly podcast on issues related to elder care law, and a frequent guest on MorningLine and OpenLine on Nashville’s CBS affiliate. 


Chris holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy and a Juris Doctor degree from the College of William and Mary School of Law. He is a member of the Tennessee Bar Association, serves on the Board of Directors of Vista Points and the Life Care Planning Law Firms Association (LCPLFA), and previously served on the Board of Directors for the VFW Post 9851 in Hendersonville, and is a member of Rotary International Gallatin Noon Club and Our Lady of the Lake Catholic Church. 


We asked Chris the same ten random questions. Here are his answers:


Where were you born? 

Detroit, Michigan


What is your favorite food? 

Shrimp and grits


Where is your favorite vacation spot? 

Glen Arbor, Michigan


If you were stranded on a desert island, what three items would you want to have with you? 

Fishing gear, snorkeling gear, and a really good book


What is your idea of a great way to spend a weekend during the winter? 

With my family in the mountains


What was the best gift you ever received? 

My wife and kids


What is one thing that few people know about you? 

A long time ago, I could play the piano


What’s the best movie you’ve ever seen? 

The Shawshank Redemption


What is your favorite hobby? 

Hunting


What do you enjoy the most about being an estate planning and elder law attorney? 

Helping people, and having a life that has purpose and makes a difference for others

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