In 1966, two of the pre-eminent attorneys in Elkhart, Philip E. Byron, Jr. and Robert C. Daniels, joined forces to engage in an associative practice that permitted each to benefit from the unique abilities and experience of the other. In 1973, Robert T. Sanders III joined the firm after graduating from Indiana University Law School. As the practice continued to grow, the partners hired Michael A. Pianowski when he returned to Elkhart after graduating from Valparaiso Law School. Soon after, James L. Todd, a Naval Academy and Valparaiso Law School graduate, joined the firm.
The firm enjoyed a long and steady progression of success throughout the 1980s and 1990s, acquiring special expertise in areas of estate planning and merger and acquisition, while continuing a very active litigation and employment practice. During that time, Matthew A. Yeakey and Jason G. Ward, current partners, were hired after graduation from law school. In 2003, the 11 attorneys and an equal number of staff employees settled into their beautiful new accommodations at the confluence of the Elkhart and St. Joseph Rivers. Since then, the firm has continued its commitment to excellence in providing a wide variety of legal services to the community and region.
Professional service to our clients is our first and compelling priority. We have the ability, experience and resources to successfully counsel clients in an extensive variety of transactional and situational legal matters. We have a long and accomplished history of service to companies with locations throughout North America. As a complement to our business practice, we have extensive experience in labor and employment law. If litigation is necessary, we have the tools to aggressively represent our clients in all agencies and courts in an efficient, expeditious and economical way. Our attorneys have represented clients in litigation matters ranging from collection and foreclosure to complicated liability and insurance coverage actions involving dozens of parties. We have appeared in state and federal courts throughout Indiana and Michigan and we have more appellate experience than any other firm of our size in the area.
Estate planning and administration are other mainstays of our practice. We have developed a reputation throughout Northern Indiana and Southern Michigan for a high level of sophistication in working with financial experts and trust companies to assist clients in realizing their objectives of wealth transfer in the most efficient manner, while minimizing probate involvement and tax liability. When probate is necessary to administer estates of decedents, we have the resources and experience to efficiently shepherd the process through the courts for the purpose of preserving estate assets and minimizing client involvement.