Michael J. Asher

Michael J. Asher: Attorney with Sullivan, Ward, Asher & Patton, P.C.


Michael J. Asher has practiced law for 26 years. Formerly an experienced litigator, he now focuses his practice on the representation of fringe benefit funds. He is also a member of the firm’s Executive Committee and Board of Directors.

Michael serves as general counsel to numerous employee benefit plans and has distinguished himself in the areas of complex ERISA disputes and DOL investigations. He represents individuals, businesses, fringe benefit funds, trade associations and pension and health plans.

A prolific author and speaker, Michael has presented before numerous trade and industry groups including the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans (IFEBP) and the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning National Association (SMACNA), among others. He has published dozens of articles related to ERISA, employee benefits law and additional topics.

Michael has been awarded the ranking of Michigan “Super Lawyer,” by Thomson Reuters.

News & Insights

July 2017
June 2014
•Securities Lending Victimized by Credit Crunch
MAPERS, Winter 2009
•Alternative Investments
MAPERS, Winter 2008
•Newsletter - Summer 2008
•Recent Collection Issues, IFEBS Advanced Trustees Institute, Lake Tahoe, Nevada
June 24, 2008
•Sexual Harassment in the Workplace
Bay Area SMACNA Contractors, 2008
•The Dol Interview: How Trustees Should Prepare and Present
Hollywood, Florida-NCCMP Conference, 2008
•A Trustee’s Role in Dol Audits
May 24, 2008
•The Trustees Role in DOL Audits
IFEBP, April 2008
•Alternative Investments: A New Staple for Public Retirement Systems
•The Trustee’s Role in Department of Labor Audits
April 2008
•Alternative Investments A Discussion of Their Central Characteristics and a Due Diligence Checklist
Winter 2008
•Monitoring The Professionals
IFEBP Annual Meeting, Las Vegas, NV, 2006
•Establishing a Cost Effective Collection Program
IFEBP Annual Meeting, Hawaii, 2005
•Fiduciary Responsibilities - Overview & Update
•Prohibited Transactions
IFEBP Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA, October 5, 2001 - October 10, 2001
•Collections - Creating A Culture of Respect
IFEBS Annual Meeting, Naples, Florida, November 1, 1999 - November 3, 1999
•Collections - Alter-Ego Problem
IFEBS/Trustees & Administrators Institute, Lake Tahoe, Nevada, May 24, 1999
•ADA/NLRA Accommodation Issues
ICLE - 24th Annual Labor Seminar, MSU Management Center, April 23, 1999
•ADA: Overview and Update, Michigan Municipal League
Grand Traverse Resort, Traverse City, MI, September 10, 1998
•Recent Collection Issues
IFEBS Advanced Trustees Institute, Orlando, Florida, February 23, 1998

Areas of Practice (6)

  • Employee Benefits, Labor & Employment Law
  • Employment Law & Litigation
  • ERISA Litigation & Compliance
  • Labor, Pension & Benefits
  • Multiemployer Funds
  • Public Funds

Education & Credentials

Contact Information:
248.746.2728  Phone
248.746.2807  Fax
Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 222, Grand Rapids, MI 49504-4463
University Attended:
Kalamazoo College, Kalamazoo, Michigan, B.A., 1983
Law School Attended:
University of Detroit Mercy School of Law, Detroit, Michigan, J.D., 1986
Year of First Admission:
1987, U.S. Court of Appeals 6th Circuit; 1986, U.S. District Court Eastern District of Michigan; 2000, Ohio; 2000, New York; 1986, Michigan; 2010, U.S. Supreme Court

Peer Reviews

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Grand Rapids, Michigan

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