Attorneys

attorneys

ATTORNEYS

Distinguished Michigan Law Firm

The law firm of Smith Bovill, P.C., is a full-service, general practice law firm committed to providing quality legal services with the highest standards of ethical and professional conduct. We proudly represent individual clients, businesses, and families throughout Mid-Michigan, The Thumb, and the Tri-City Area.

Our lawyers stress honesty, integrity, and results in every case we handle. Since our firm’s beginnings in 1939, we have grown and developed a reputation as one of the pre-eminent law firms in Michigan. There are presently 10 attorneys in our firm with individual expertise in various areas of the law.

Partner

I am at heart a trial attorney.  I also specialize in health care law, including licensing actions and I do corporate work, principally for physicians.

My trial work specializes in civil injury cases, both in matters of plaintiff’s personal injury and the defense of injury cases.  Much of my trial practice over the years has been in the area of medical malpractice. I regularly handle matters dealing with automobile negligence, insurance rights, premises liability, and first party insurance benefits. My practice is a regional practice serving the Tri-City areas of Saginaw, Bay City and Midland, however, I handle cases in a 15 county area stretching from Genesee County in the South to Ogemaw County and Iosco County to the North and the Thumb.

I have developed a practice subspecialty in the handling of matters related to medical office practice, including attacks upon medical staff privileges, attacks by arms of the state against medical licenses, mergers of medical practices, employment contracts and litigation surrounding the severing of professional relationships. Our office offers a rather complete range of practice areas for medical providers.

As an adoptive parent I have long enjoyed working in the field of adoption in the probate courts. This is a small portion of my practice, but one close to my heart and one that receives special attention from me. I am well acquainted with and have handled matters of agency adoption, foreign adoption, step-parent adoption and the growing area of direct placement adoption.

I have three grown children and seven grandchildren. I served as a trustee on the Board of Education for the Saginaw Township Community Schools from 1996 – 2004, serving one term as President.  I have served as a board member of a local Christian counseling center, the Samaritan Counseling Center, serving as the president of that board for three terms. I have served on an advisory board for another local relief organization, the Rescue Mission, which provides shelter for homeless men, women and families.  I have performed in a variety of musical groups around the area singing music in the style from sacred to silly and all in between.  From 2009 to 2015 it was my pleasure to join with Tim Grefe and others in doing benefit concerts for the Saginaw Choral Society.

I truly enjoy the practice of law and especially this somewhat diverse practice that lets me serve my clients in many ways. When not working, I enjoy most forms of music, traveling and golf.

Areas of Practice

  • Adoption
  • Personal Injury
  • Contracts
  • Health Care Law
  • Insurance Law
  • Employment Law — Employer
  • Employment Law — Employee
  • Labor Law
  • Medical Malpractice

Litigation Percentage

  • 60% of Practice Devoted to Litigation

Bar Admissions

  • Michigan, 1978
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Michigan, 1978
  • U.S. District Court Western District of Michigan, 1978

Education

  • University of Illinois College of Law, Champaign, Illinois
    • J.D. – 1978
  • Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Michigan
    • B.S. Honors College magna cum laude – 1975
    • Honors: With Honors
    • Major: Social Psychology

Published Works

  • Reporting Child Abuse, Michigan Medicine, Chapter 87, April, 1988

Representative Clients

  • J. Miles McClure, M.D.
  • Mid-Michigan Heart and Vascular Center
  • Mark Kuligowski, D.O.
  • Scott McClintock (adoption)
  • William Vandenbelt, M.D.
  • Thomas Beird, M.D.

References

  • J. Miles McClure, M.D.
  • Gretchen Grenell, McLaren Risk
  • Mark Kuligowski, D.O.
  • Thomas Beird, M.D.

Classes/Seminars

  • Criminal Justice, Saginaw Valley State University, 1988 – 90
  • Nursing Negligence, Saginaw Valley State University, 1988 – 2000

Honors and Awards

  • Robert E. Dice Award

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Saginaw Township Schools, Trustee, 1996 – 2004
  • Saginaw County Bar Association, Treasurer, 1984 – 1985
  • Michigan Bar Association, Member

Past Employment Positions

  • Smith & Brooker, P.C., Partner, 1986 – 1991
  • McGraw & Borchard, P.C., Associate, 1978 – 1986

Pro Bono Activities

  • Legal Services of Eastern Michigan, 1980 – Present
Partner

Areas of Practice

  • Insurance Defense – Premises/Auto Negligence
  • Commercial Litigation
  • Real Estate Transactions
  • Real Estate Litigation
  • Construction Disputes
  • Zoning Matters

Bar Admissions

  • Michigan, 1980
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Michigan, 1980
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 6th Circuit, 2008

Education

  • Wayne State University Law School, Detroit, Michigan
    • J.D. – 1980
  • Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan
    • B.A. – 1977
    • Honors: With High Honors
    • Major: Finance

Published Works

  • Baseline Environmental Assessments, Editor/Co-Author with David B. Meyer, Michigan Constructor, Winter, 1997
  • Default Remedies – Commercial Real Estate Leasing, NBI, Inc., 1991

Representative Clients

  • Frankenmuth Insurance
  • Secura Insurance
  • State Farm Mutual Insurance
  • Lake Huron Credit Union
  • Diocese of Saginaw
  • Prudential Anderson Lemmer Wilson, Inc. Realtors

Classes/Seminars

  • Land Divisions, Smith, Bovill, Fisher, Meyer & Borchard, P.C., 1997
  • Construction Liens, Association of General Contractors, 1998
  • Legal Aspects of Real Estate and Remedies, 2004
  • Business Law, Adjunct Professor for Saginaw Valley State University, 2011 – 2012

Honors and Awards

  • Voted as “Best Attorney” by the Saginaw News Readers Choice Awards for 2005

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • State of Michigan, Board of Ethics (Former Chair), 1997 – 2002
  • Saginaw Comm. Foundation, Board Member, 1997 – 2005
  • Saginaw Bar Association, Board Member, 2002 – 2003
Partner

Andy is member and former President of the Northeastern Michigan Estate Planning Council (1996-1997). He also served as the charter president of the Mid-Michigan Planned Giving Council (1995-1996). Andy is a member of the Probate and Estate Planning and Business Law Sections of the Michigan Bar Association. He also serves on the Board of Directors for the Saginaw Valley State University Foundation and the St. Mary’s Medical Center Foundation, and as an Instructor for the Saginaw Valley State University Certified Financial Planner Education Program. He is an Adjunct Professor in the Business Law Department at Saginaw Valley State University.

Bar Admissions

  • Michigan, 1984

Education

  • Catholic University of America, Columbus School of Law, Washington, District of Columbia
    • J.D. – 1984
  • Walsh College, Troy, Michigan
    • Masters in Taxation – 1991
  • Hillsdale College, Hillsdale, Michigan
    • A.B., Economics & Business Administration/U.S. History – 1981

References

  • Richard J. Pomeroy, Frankenmuth Insurance Company
  • John Kunitzer, CEO, Yeo & Yeo, Certified Public Accountants
  • Andrew J. Bethune, CEO, Saginaw Valley State University Foundation
  • Alan P. Nuechterlein, Oppenheimer & Co.
  • David M. Shooltz, V.P., Fifth Third Bank

Classes/Seminars

  • Adjunct Professor, Business Law Department, Saginaw Valley State University

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Northeastern Estate Planning Council, President, 1996 – 1997
  • Mid-Michigan Planned Giving Council, President, 1995 – 1996
  • Saginaw Valley State University Foundation, Present Board Member
  • St. Mary’s Medical Center Foundation, Present Board Member
  • Saginaw Area JayCees, President, 1988 – 1989
  • Michigan Bar Association, Probate and Estate Planning and Business Law Sections, Member
  • Saginaw Valley State University Foundation, Board of Directors

Past Employment Positions

  • United States Senate, U.S. Senator Dan Quayle, Indiana, Staff Assistant, 1981 – 1982
  • United States Department of Agriculture, Office of General Counsel, Law Clerk, 1982 – 1983
  • United States Department of Transportation, The Federal Railroad Administration, Office of Chief Counsel, Law Clerk, 1983 – 1984
  • Smith & Brooker, P.C., Associate Attorney, 1984 – 1990
Partner

Andy has been a partner at Smith, Bovill, P.C. since 2001.  His primary focus is litigation with emphasis in medical liability and commercial litigation matters.  Over the last several years, Andy has also developed a municipal law practice consisting of litigation and counseling in all matters pertaining to municipal governance including municipal finance.  In addition to handling litigation matters of all types, Andy also practices extensively in the areas of commercial law surrounding counseling and advice with respect to business formations, trade secrets, shareholder disputes and the like.

Andy resides in Saginaw with his wife Tracy and two children, William and Ethan.

Areas of Practice

  • 45% Medical Malpractice Defense
  • 30% Commercial Litigation/Commercial Law
  • 15% Municipal Law
  • 10% Creditor /Bankruptcy Law

Litigation Percentage

  • 90% of Practice Devoted to Litigation

Bar Admissions

  • Michigan, 1994
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Michigan, 1994
  • U.S. District Court Western District of Michigan, 2001

Education

  • University of Detroit Mercy School of Law, Detroit, Michigan
    • J.D. – 1993
  • Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan
    • B.A. – 1990
    • Honors: Dean’s List
    • Major: History

Representative Clients

  • APA Physicians
  • Frankenmuth Mutual Insurance Company
  • Chubb & Sons Insurance
  • Covenant Healthcare
  • Farmers State Bank
  • Merrill Lynch
  • Township of Vassar
  • Township of Millington
  • Township of Maplegrove

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • American Bar Association, Member, 1994 – Present
  • State Bar of Michigan, Member, 1994 – Present
  • American Judicature Society, Member, 1997 – Present
  • Michigan Defense Trial Counsel, 1999 – Present
  • Defense Research Institute, 2000 – Present
  • American Bankruptcy Institute, 2001 – Present

Past Employment Positions

  • Kitch, Drutchas, Wagner, Kenney, P.C., Senior Associate
  • Dickinson Wright, PLLC, Of Counsel
Partner

I reside in Frankenmuth, Michigan, and practice in the firm’s Frankenmuth and Saginaw offices. I specialize in Elder Law, Estate Planning, Probate and Estate Administration, Business Organizations, Real Estate Law, and I am VA certified. I am a frequent speaker and seminar presenter on estate planning and elder law. My practice in the field of elder law covers medicaid qualification, estate planning, Guardianship, Conservatorships, and Veterans benefits.

I am on the Board of Directors of the Frankenmnuth Morning Rotary.  I am an active member and have served on the Board of Directors for the Northeastern Michigan Estate Planning Council and the Covenant Health Care Foundation. I am also an active member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys. I am a member of the Probate and Estate Planning Section and the Elder Law Section of the Michigan Bar Association. I completed the Institute of Continuing Legal Education’s Probate and Estate Planning Certificate program and received a Certificate of Completion. I received my Veterans Certification in May of 2010.

I have been married to my husband, David, since 1979, and we have two children, Michelle and Melissa and three grandchildren.

Bar Admissions

  • Michigan, 2001

Education

  • Thomas M. Cooley Law School, Lansing, Michigan
    • LL.M. Masters in Taxation
  • Thomas M. Cooley Law School, Lansing, Michigan
    • J.D. cum laude
  • Davenport University, Flint, Michigan
    • B.B.A. summa cum laude

Classes/Seminars

  • Presenter, Estate Planning and Elder Law

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Northeastern Michigan Estate Planning Council, Member, 2001 – Present
  • Michigan Bar Association, Member, 2001 – Present
  • Michigan Bar Association, Elder Law Section, Member, 2001 – Present
  • Michigan Bar Association, Probate and Estate Planning Section, Member, 2001 – Present
  • National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Member, 2003 – Present
  • Michigan Municipal League Association, Member, 2002 – Present
  • Michigan Bar Association, Real Property Law Section, Member, 2001 – Present

Past Employment Positions

  • Chaklos, Jungerheld & Hahn, Legal Assistant, 1980 – 1995
Partner

Elian (Cavendish) Fichtner focuses her law practice in the areas of Probate and Estate Planning with an emphasis on Elder Law and Elder Care issues. She began her career with Smith Bovill, P.C. as a law clerk in 2005 and became a shareholder in 2013. Her experience extends to all aspects of Estate Planning, Elder Law and Disability, Long Term Care Planning/Medicaid qualification, Trust and Estate Administration, Probate Litigation as well as Guardianships and Conservatorships. Elian is also VA certified.

Elian, a Saginaw native, is a 1997 graduate of Arthur Hill High School.  In 2001, she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Michigan and received her Juris Doctor degree from Valparaiso University School of Law (Indiana) in 2005.

Elian serves on the Board of Directors for the Saginaw Community Foundation and Junior Achievement of Northeast Michigan. She is the Treasurer for the Saginaw County Bar Association and is a member of the Probate/Estate Planning and Elder Law/Disability Rights sections of the State Bar of Michigan. She is also a regular pro bono volunteer at the Legal Services of Eastern Michigan (LSEM) monthly advice clinic as well as a former board member. She is also an active member of the Northeastern Michigan Estate Planning Council and the Junior League of Saginaw Valley.

Elian lives in the Freeland with her husband, Joseph, and their two children.

 

CERTIFICATIONS, ACCREDITATION & OTHER RECOGNITION

State Bar of Michigan certification in Probate and Estate Planning – 2013

  • VA Certification – 2013
  • Gold Award recipient for exceeding State Bar of Michigan Voluntary Standard for Pro Bono Participation
  • Great Lakes Bay Region – RUBY Award recipient -2014

    Bar Admissions

  • Michigan, 2006
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Michigan, 2006
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 6th Circuit, 2008
  • United States Supreme Court, 2014

    Education

  • Valparaiso University School of Law, Valparaiso, Indiana, 2005
    J.D.
  • University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 2001
    B.A.
  • Honors: Class Honors & University Honors
    Major: English
    Minor: Spanish

    PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS AND MEMBERSHIPS

  • Michigan Bar Association, 2006 – Present
  • Saginaw County Bar Association, 2006 – Present
  • Board of Directors 2012 – 2013
  • Treasurer 2013 – present
  • Probate and Estate Planning Section of the State Bar of Michigan
  • Elder Law and Disability Rights Section of the State Bar of Michigan
  • Young Lawyers Section of the State Bar of Michigan
  • Legal Services of Eastern Michigan Board of Directors 2010-2013
  • Northeastern Michigan Estate Planning Council 2012 – present
  • Saginaw Community Foundation Board of Directors 2015 – present
  • Junior Achievement of Northeast Michigan Board of Directors 2013 – present
  • Junior League of Saginaw Valley 2006 – present
Associate

Errick is an Associate Attorney with Smith Bovill, P.C.  Errick began employment with Smith Bovill, P.C. as a law clerk, on June 25, 2014, after his graduation from Thomas M. Cooley Law School in May of 2014.  Upon graduating law school, and passing the Michigan Bar Exam on his first attempt, Errick was hired as a full-time Associate Attorney.  With his primary focus on civil litigation, Errick’s practice consists primarily of personal injury, medical malpractice, professional negligence and ordinary negligence.

Areas of Practice

  • 80% Civil Litigation – Including medical malpractice, professional negligence, ordinary negligence and personal injury.
  • 10% Family Law
  • 10% Criminal Defense

Bar Admissions

  • Michigan, 2014
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Michigan, 2015

Education

  • Thomas M. Cooley Law School, Auburn Hills, Michigan
    Degree Received- Juris Doctor, 2014, Magna Cum Laude
    Cumulative GPA: 3.6/4.0
  • Honors and Activities
    Dean’s List: All Terms
    Honor Roll: All Terms
    Certificate of Merit: Advanced Criminal Procedure
    Member, Mock Trial
  • Saginaw Valley State University, University Center, Michigan
    Degree Received – B. A. Criminal Justice, Cum Laude
    Cumulative GPA: 3.629/4.0
  • Honors and Activities
    Dean’s List: Summer 2011, Spring 2011, Winter 2011, Fall 2010, Winter 2010, Fall 2009, Fall 2008, Winter 2008, Fall 2007

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • American Bar Association, Member, 2014-Present
    State Bar of Michigan, Member, 2014-Present
Associate

Danelle Harrington is an associate at Smith Bovill, P.C. She joined the firm in 2014 and was admitted to the State Bar of Michigan in November 2014. Danelle practices in the areas of estate planning, business formation and succession planning, and real estate transactions.
Prior to joining Smith Bovill, P.C., Danelle served as a law clerk at the Michigan Tax Tribunal, and was an extern with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Northern District of Indiana. She was also a law clerk with Daniel G. Suber & Associates, in Valparaiso, Indiana, and with Blommer Peterman, S.C., in Merrillville, Indiana. Prior to attending law school Danelle prepared income tax returns at McDonald’s & Associates, CPA’s, in Saginaw, Michigan, and also interned as a student financial representative at Northwestern Mutual Insurance Company, in Saginaw, Michigan.
Danelle earned her Juris Doctorate in 2014 from Valparaiso University School of Law. Danelle served as an associate editor of the Valparaiso University Law Review and worked in the law school’s Tax Clinic to provide legal assistance to low income individuals.
Danelle is a 2008 graduate of Chesaning Union High School and currently resides in Saginaw Township.

Areas of Practice

  • Estate Planning & Probate
  • Business Law
  • Real Estate

Bar Admissions

  • Michigan, 2014

Education

  • Valparaiso University School of Law, Valparaiso, Indiana
    • J.D., cum laude, 2014
  • Central Michigan University, Mount Pleasant, Michigan
    • B.S.B.A., Personal Financial Planning, magna cum laude, 2011

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Michigan Bar Association, Member 2014 – Present
  • Saginaw County Bar Association, Member, 2014 – Present
  • Northeastern Michigan Estate Planning Council, Member, 2015 – Present
  • Saginaw Chamber of Commerce, Young Professionals Network, 2015 – Present
Of Counsel

The majority of my work is in the field of commercial litigation. It is litigation dealing with business interests, investments and real estate. Litigation may take place in the Bankruptcy Court, Circuit Court or Probate Court. The litigation can cover such areas as rights of secured creditors in the bankruptcy court and workouts. Other areas of litigation include real estate related land use litigation covering nuisance law, Right to Farm Act, construction liens, and breach of warranty claims.  My practice continues to grow in the field of elder law.  This covers estate planning and Medicaid qualification for residents of nursing homes, guardianships and conservatorships, litigation in probate court involving such issues as will contests, fiduciaries breach of duties, representing nursing homes, setting up social need trusts and irrevocable trusts.

I have also handled cases dealing with minority stockholder disputes, investment disputes, and coverage issues under insurance policies dealing with environmental contamination.  I have also arbitrated claims for Michigan Applegrowers Association.

For approximately four years, I was involved in the Dow Corning Chapter 11 proceedings. I represented Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing (3M) who was one of the co-defendants in a number of breast implant litigation lawsuits.

Areas of Practice

  • 20% Bankruptcy Law
  • 10% Real Estate Law
  • 10% Business Organizations
  • 20% Contracts
  • 25% Elder Law
  • 5% Agriculture Law
  • 10% Collection of Debts and Foreclosure of Mortgages

Litigation Percentage

  • 40% of Practice Devoted to Litigation

Bar Admissions

  • Michigan, 1973
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Michigan, 1975
  • U.S. District Court Western District of Michigan, 1975

Education

  • Wayne State University Law School, Detroit, Michigan
    • J.D. – 1973
  • Michigan State College, East Lansing, Michigan
    • B.A. – 1969
    • Honors: With Honors
    • Major: Finance

Representative Clients

  • Minnesota Mining & Manufacturing
  • Community State Bank
  • Farmers State Bank
  • Stoneman Farms
  • HCR Manor Care-Heartland New Holland Credit

References

  • Jim Delemeister, Community State Bank, President

Classes/Seminars

  • Presenter in the areas of guarantees, secured transactions and bankruptcy to various banking groups

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • State Bar of Michigan, Member
  • Saginaw County Bar Association, Member
  • American Bankruptcy Institute,Corporation, Finance, Taxation, Real Estate and Elder Law Sections, Member, Tri-County Bankruptcy Committee