I was born and raised in Flat Rock, Michigan. My small town upbringing shaped my conservative values and strong work ethic. Always patriotic and ever thankful for the benefits of living in America, I enlisted in the United States Marine Corps during college and earned a commission as a Second Lieutenant upon graduation in 1985. I served as an officer of Marines from 1985 until 1999, in both active and reserve roles in the United States and overseas. Durng my years in the Marine Corps, I served as a member of various units cited for superior performance, participated in contingency operations in the eastern Mediterranean in 1989 and was awarded the Navy Commendation Medal for leadership in 1992.
I earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Eastern Michigan University in 1985, a Bachelor of Liberal Studies degree from Mary Washington College in 1995, a Juris Doctor degree from the Thomas M. Cooley Law School in 1998, and a Master of Arts in Bioethics from Trinity International University in 2007.
I am admitted to practice law in State of Michigan and the United States District Court for the Western District of Michigan in 1998, in the United States Court of Appealsfor the Sixth Circuit in 1999 and in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan in 2002. I regularly litigate cases in all Michigan trial and appellate courts.
Prior to forming the Phelps Legal Group, I served as an associate attorney with the Traverse City law firms of Smith & Johnson, P.C. (1997-1999) and Smith, Haughey, Rice & Roegge, P.C. (1999 to 2004). I also served as a partner at the Traverse City law firm of Zimmerman, Kuhn, Darling, Boyd, Quandt & Phelps (2004 to 2011).
I am a member of New Hope Community Church, the Christian Legal Society, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine and the State Bar of Michigan. I currently serve on the Michigan Board of Directors for Bethany Christian Services and am the former Vice-Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Traverse City Christian Schools.
In my time outside of the office, I enjoy spending time with my family and exploring our state and national outdoor areas.
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I have known Attorney Phelps for approximately 7 years and in that time have litigated a number of cases against him/his clients, and a few where we were on the same side of the relevant issues. He is a dedicated, honorable and fearless attorney. Combined with his level of competence, he is an excellent advocate who I highly recommend.
Robert Whims Litigation Attorney
Relationship: Opposing Counsel on matter
|MI||Active And In Good Standing||1998||01/08/2016|
|Award name||Grantor||Date granted|
|Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers||Martindale-Hubbell||2016|
|AV Preeminent Rated||Martindale-Hubbell||2016|
|AV Peer Review Rating||Martindale-Hubbell||2015|
|Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers||Martindale-Hubbell||2015|
|AV Peer Review Rating||Martindale-Hubbell||2014|
|Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers||Martindale-Hubbell||2014|
|AV Peer Review Rating||Martindale-Hubbell||2013|
|Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers||Martindale-Hubbell||2013|
|AV Peer Review Rating||Martindale-Hubbell||2012|
|AV Peer Review Rating||Martindale-Hubbell||2011|
|Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers||Martindale-Hubbell||2011|
|Magna Cum Laude||Trinity International University||2007|
|Final Honors in History||Mary Washington College||1995|
|Navy Commendation Medal||United States Marine Corps||1992|
|Owner||Phelps Legal Group, PLC||2011 - 2012|
|Partner||Zimmerman, Kuhn, Darling, Boyd, Quandt & Phelps, PLC||2004 - 2011|
|Associate Attorney||Smith, Haughey, Rice & Roegge, P.C.||1999 - 2004|
|Associate Attorney||Smith & Johnson, P.C.||1997 - 1999|
|Officer||United States Marine Corps||1985 - 1999|
|Association name||Position name||Duration|
|National Fertility Support Center||Board Member||2011 - Present|
|Traverse City Christian Schools||Vice-Chairman, Board of Trustees||2010 - 2012|
|American Society for Reproductive Medicine||Member||2007 - Present|
|Bethany Christian Services||Board Member, Michigan Board||2005 - Present|
|United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan||Member||2002 - Present|
|United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit||Member||1999 - Present|
|United States District Court for the Western District of Michigan||Member||1998 - Present|
|State Bar of Michigan||Member||1998 - Present|
|Grand Traverse-Leelanau-Antrim Bar Association||Member||1998 - Present|
|Christian Legal Society||Member||1995 - Present|
|Patricia Schumacher v Carl Steen, Michigan Court of Appeals Docket No. 294593||Michigan Court of Appeals decision in favor of clients, the paternal grandparents|
|Bethany Lutheran Church v Albert and Marie Porter, et al., Michigan Court of Appeals Docket Nos. 291742 and 291762||Michigan Court of Appeals decision in favor of clients and subsequent Trial Court victory in 9 day jury trial|
|Spectrum Health Hospital v Stephanie Jean Lehr, Michigan Court of Appeals Dicket No. 298688||N/A|
|See all legal cases|
|Michigan Lawyers Weekly||War Chest Method of Fee Allocation Gets Green Light||2015|
|Michigan Lawyers Weekly||Attorneys Fees Properly Allocated from Parties Joint War Chest||2015|
|Traverse City Record Eagle||Newborn Baby's Mother Arraigned||2011|
|Traverse City Record Eagle||Mom's Have Options||2011|
|Toledo Blade||Insurance Claim Denied for Surrogate Carrier||2011|
|Trinity International University||Bioethics||MA - Masters||2007|
|Thomas M. Cooley Law School||Law||JD - Juris Doctor||1998|
|University of Mary Washington||History||Other - Bachelors||1995|
|Eastern Michigan University||Education Studies||BS - Bachelor of Science||1985|
|Michigan Reproductive Nurses Association Annual Conference||Reproductive Law||2012|
|Monthly Webcast||Embryo Adoption & Donation||2011|