Shelley A. Goff

Shelley A. Goff


For 30 years Shelley has helped people who find themselves transitioning from being married to being unmarried.  Having walked that path herself, she found herself called to help guide people through the nerve-racking, daunting and emotionally charged process of divorce.  Her mission is to help people who feel overwhelmed, confused and feeling out of control find their way to confidence with a plan and feeling back in control of their life so they can move forward. 


Getting an amicable resolution is generally financially and emotionally better for the parties.  Unfortunately, there are times when only the courtroom can end the matter when the other party is acting unreasonably.   That’s why she has spent her career in the courtroom, standing alongside those are forced to go to trial because the other party has unreasonable or unfair demands that are not favorable to Shelley’s clients.  

She has also won custody rights for dads, fought untrue claims of abuse- including unfounded accusations of sexual abuse of children, litigated valuation of businesses, settled and litigated complex property divisions including cases involved aircraft, boats, large collections, antiques, farms and closely held family businesses.  She has dealt with alimony concerning elderly or disabled spouses, and division of large retirement accounts.  As a business owner herself for the last 25 years who fought to preserve that business during a divorce, Shelley is equipped to handle divorce and property divisions that include family businesses and complex financial assets. 

Shelley’s other practice areas include federal criminal defense and civil and criminal appeals.

A graduate of the South Dakota School of Law where she enjoyed her property, contracts and tax classes, she also holds a bachelor’s degree in Business and enjoyed accounting classes. A graduate of the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyer’s College and its intensive three-week course as well as several post graduate courses, she does not fear the courtroom, but embraces it as a necessary step when cases can’t be resolved. She has tried hundreds of cases to conclusion before judges and juries, and argued many appeals. 

Shelley is involved in Lincoln Rotary, Goodwill Lunching, and active in her church, serving on committees in leadership.  She enjoys cooking, gardening and raising chickens.  She is passionate about her adopted home, Louisiana, and its coastline. She loves saltwater fishing with her husband Add.  Both are life members of Louisiana’s Coastal Conservation Association.

More about Shelley’s career:

Admitted to Practice Law

State of Louisiana

United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit
United States Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit
United States District Court, Western District of Louisiana
United States District CourtNorthern District of Iowa (inactive)
United States District of Nebraska (inactive)

State of Iowa (inactive)

State of Nebraska (inactive



University of South Dakota School of Law, Juris Doctorate Degree, May, 1990.

Morningside College, Sioux City, Iowa., Bachelor of Science, May 1987; Business Administration

Published Cases:

Tarbutton v. Tarbutton, 251 So. 3d 590 (La.Ct.App 2018)

West v. West, 245 So.3d 269 (La.Ct.App 2017)

United States v. Iraheta, 764 F.3d 455 (5th Cir. 2014)

Sherman v. Kasotakis, 314 F.Supp2d 843 (N.D.Iowa 2004)

State v. Ortiz, No. 07-1707 (Iowa 5/29/2009)

In re Marriage of Strong, No. 8-127/07-1085 (Iowa App. 2/27/2008)

Murray v. City of Onawa, 323 F.3d 616 (8th Cir. 2003)

Wever v. Lincoln County, NE, 388 F.3d 601 (8th Cir. 2004)

Sophapmysay v. City of Sergeant Bluff, 126 F.Supp 2d, 1180 (N.D. Iowa 2000)

Engelhaupt v. Village of Butte, 248 Neb. 827, 539 NW2d 430 (Neb. 1995)

Welsch v. Graves, 582 NW2d 312 (Neb 1998)

Warren County Bd of Health v. Warren County Bd of Supervisors, 2002 IA 1323 (IA 2002)

Stephens v. Pillen, 12 Neb. App. 600 (NE 2004)

Bargmann v. Soll Oil Co, 574 NW2d 478 (Neb 1998)

Honors and Activities

Past President, Lincoln Parish Bar Association

Member, National Trial Lawyers: Top 100 Trial Lawyers

Recipient, Blackstone Order 10:1, from La. Assoc. Criminal Defense Lawyers (awarded after Shelley obtained a “not guilty” verdict on behalf of her client in a federal criminal jury trial).

Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College, Dubois, Wyoming , Graduate, Class of 2004

Louisiana Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers

National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers

Magistrate-Judge Nomination Committees

United States District Court, Northern District of Iowa Twice appointed by Hon. Mark W. Bennett, Chief Judge, Northern District of Iowa. (Committee to Nominate Federal Magistrate Judges for the District) Appointment of Magistrate Judge Paul A. Zoss and Appointment of Magistrate Judge John S. Scoles

Federal Practice Committee 2007 United States District Court, Northern District of Iowa Appointed by Hon. Linda R. Reade, Chief Judge, Northern District of Iowa. (Committee to determine the necessity of changes to the local rules of court.)

Blue Ribbon Committee 2007  United States District Court, Northern District of Iowa. Appointed by Hon. Linda R. Reade, Chief Judge, Northern District of Iowa. (Committee formed by the court to explore how the court and attorneys can improve the delivery of justice in criminal cases and improve the efficiency of the process and reduce the costs to taxpayers while still preserving the highest quality of legal services.)

Federal Public Defender Reappointment Committee, United States District Court, Northern District of Iowa 2005 Appointed by Hon. Michael J. Melloy, Circuit Judge, United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit (Committee to review reappointment of Chief Federal Public Defender)

Woodbury County Bar Association Fee Arbitration Committee 2002 to 2007 (Committee members serve as arbitrators for fee disputes between lawyers and their clients.)




Contact Us


Physical Address
612 North Vienna Street
Ruston, Louisana 71270

Mailing Address
PO Box 2050
Ruston, Lousisana 71273

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Copyright 2021 Goff & Goff Attorneys P.C. | Disclaimer and Required Disclosures | A Website Design by Ahrens Technologies