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Robert Shaver

"A verbal contract isn't worth the paper it's written on."

Samuel Goldwyn

Key Service Areas

  • Business Planning and Corporate Law
  • Mergers and Acquisitions
  • Tax Law

616.233.5143

legal assistant - Annette Burleson

About Robert

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

I serve as general counsel to high net worth families and their businesses (corporations, partnerships and limited liability companies). While being responsible for the successful delivery of all of our firm's legal services, I personally handle matters that require attention to corporate compliance, corporate governance, business sales and combinations, shareholder disputes, contracts, real estate, credit facilities and estate and tax planning. When counseling clients, family or friends, I make every effort to fully understand their present situation and their ultimate goals and objectives. By placing myself in their shoes I am able to treat the situation as though it was my own. This approach enables me to fully appreciate the importance of the legal needs of the client and execute on the critical details necessary for a successful resolution.

What sets you apart from other lawyers in your practice field?

What sets me apart from others is my rare dual certification as a CPA and a lawyer. Having passed the CPA exam on my first sitting after studying accounting at Michigan State University, I worked for a national accounting firm for 4 years where I gained valuable insight and practical application of important tax and accounting rules. I am able to evaluate each business issue with a broad "end-game" perspective and deliver a concentrated focus on key components to the situation in order to successfully deliver our legal services.

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

Shortly after I was hired, I met with a (potential) new client of the firm concerning a small tax problem. I took care of the problem that day, without charge, and provided some advice on how best to prevent similar tax problems in the future. While our paths never crossed again, I received a phone call the following day from someone that had been referred to me by that individual. After 25 years, that referral is still my client today. Being a lawyer at Rhoades McKee allows me to always treat people well, with respect and as a friend. It works for me.

Education

Thomas M. Cooley Law School, J.D., 1987

Michigan State University, B.A., 1983

Q: What do you enjoy most about being a lawyer?

A:

I have the privilege of working with some of the smartest people in West Michigan – my law partners. Our clients are in the trenches daily and when things go wrong or opportunities knock, it’s exciting to experience the skill and legal talent that my law partners can deliver on a moment’s notice.

Bob is a shareholder of the firm and the immediate past president, having served as the firm’s president and chairman of the board for 6 years through year 2013. Bob is now a vice-president of the law firm, chair of the law firm’s retirement plan committee and member of the firm’s finance and compensation committees.

Associations

Grand Rapids Bar Association, Member

State Bar of Michigan, Business Law Section

Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants

Bar Admission

Michigan

U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit

Awards and Recognition

Leading LawyersSM