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I understand and wish to proceed

Jim Schipper

"Invoke God, but row away from the rocks."

Hunter S. Thompson

Key Service Areas

  • Will, Trust and Probate Litigation
  • Business and Commercial Litigation
  • Real Estate Law and Related Litigation


legal assistant - Vickie Dawe

About Jim

What types of legal issues do you help individuals and businesses resolve?

Although my legal practice is broad, much of my work involves conflict resolution. I often represent businesses and individuals who find themselves in crisis – they may have been named as a defendant in a lawsuit, have a disagreement over a contract, or a dispute with a tenant. My role is to learn as much as possible about the legal problem and the individuals involved, help my client understand the potential consequences, weigh potential solutions, and assist the client in making informed, strategic, proactive decisions going forward.

What skills help you advise the client and achieve the best results or outcomes?

I have successfully litigated cases ranging from complex business and real estate disputes to emotionally charged family and probate matters. However, I am adept at understanding both the relative merits of opposing legal arguments and the needs and motivations of litigants, and have been able to use this knowledge to creatively negotiate settlements of complex disputes for the benefit of my clients. I also have a business background, and understand that economic considerations are critical in making good legal decisions.

What did you learn in your first year of practice that you still utilize today?

I had the benefit of great mentoring as a young lawyer, and learned that effective advocacy and class were not mutually exclusive. Lawyers like Ed Goodrich, Bruce Neckers and Bob Dugan were outstanding advocates, while always treating our staff, our clients, judges and even opposing counsel and adverse parties with civility and respect. Ultimately, I believe that this approach engenders trust and confidence, which ultimately benefits my clients.


Wayne State University, J.D., cum laude, 1984

Hope College, B.A., cum laude, 1981

Q: If you weren't a lawyer, what would you be?


It would be tough to decide among architectural historian, art museum curator, chef, wine maker, humor writer or pool shark.


Grand Rapids Bar Association, Member

State Bar of Michigan, Member

Community Circle Theatre, Past President of Board of Directors

Bar Admission


Awards and Recognition

Martindale Hubbell Highest AV® Preeminent Rating, Judicial and Peer Edition

Leading LawyersSM

Best Lawyers of America®, Commercial Litigation, Trust and Estate Litigation

Grand Rapids Magazine, Top Lawyer in Real Estate Litigation

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