Stephen McKenney

Top rated Business Litigation attorney in Birmingham, Michigan

Altior Law, P.C.
Stephen McKenney
Altior Law, P.C.

Practice Areas: Business Litigation, Appellate, Professional Liability view more

Licensed in Michigan since: 2003

Education: Michigan State University College of Law

Selected to Super Lawyers: 2016 - 2024 Selected to Rising Stars: 2013

Altior Law, P.C.

401 South Old Woodward Avenue
Suite 460
Birmingham, MI 48009 Phone: 248-594-5252 Email: Stephen McKenney Visit website


Stephen McKenney is a shareholder at Altior Law.  He specializes in complex commercial litigation. He has over 15 years of extensive experience—including representing clients in breach of contract cases, partnership and shareholder disputes, and other business torts (including interference with contract, fraud and shareholder and member oppression), as well as creditors’ rights litigation, banking litigation, legal malpractice, real estate litigation (including title disputes), probate litigation and constitutional litigation. Mr. McKenney has represented dozens of clients in appeals in both state and federal appellate courts. He has represented clients in all phases of property tax appeals. Mr. McKenney has experience in all facets of receivership disputes having represented receivers, banks seeking receiverships, and borrowers over whom receivers have been appointed.

Mr. McKenney has obtained multiple verdicts and arbitration awards—including a $4.9 million judgment in a breach of contract dispute. He has served as lead trial counsel in numerous cases, with substantial trial experience in state and federal courts, as well as in private arbitrations.

Mr. McKenney is licensed to practice in the state courts in Michigan, the United States District Court for the Eastern and Western Districts of Michigan, the United States Bankruptcy Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Michigan, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and the United States Tax Court.

Mr. McKenney is a 1999 summa cum laude graduate of John Carroll University and a 2002 magnum cum laude graduate of Michigan State University College of Law. Upon his graduation from law school, he served as a law clerk for the Honorable James C. Cacheris—Senior United States District Judge for the Eastern District of Virginia.

Mr. McKenney serves as chairperson of the State Bar of Michigan’s Character and Fitness District Committee (District I).  He is a member of the State Bar of Michigan Litigation, Business Law, and Negligence Sections. He is a member of the Oakland County Bar Association, and is an Oakland County Bar Foundation Fellow.

Mr. McKenney is a Master with the American Inns of Court – Oakland County Bar Association Inn.  He serves on the Oakland County Bar Association’s Circuit Court Committee and Business Court Committee. 

Mr. McKenney has served as a case evaluator in Oakland County; and as a discovery mediator for the Oakland County Circuit Court and Business Court.

Mr. McKenney has been recognized as a Super Lawyer every year since 2014.  In 2013, he was recognized by Super Lawyers magazine as one of the publication’s “Rising Stars” in the area of business litigation, identifying up-and-coming attorneys who are 40 years old or younger or who have been in practice for 10 years or less.

Practice areas

Business Litigation, Appellate, Professional Liability: Plaintiff, Real Estate: Business

First Admitted: 2003, Michigan

Professional Webpage:

Pro bono/Community Service:
  • President - Christ, Our Light Catholic Church Parish Council (2010-2014)
  • Obtained judgment for elderly woman who paid contractor $2,500 and contractor never performed work., 2013
Other Outstanding Achievements:
  • Trial counsel for plaitniffs in five-day bench trial on $10-million fraud claim, 2013
  • Represented Receiver in reorganization and sale of fast food franchise as going concern, 2012
  • Revised existing standard contract for Remodeler's Council of the Home Builders Association of Southeast Michigan for use by members to reflect changes in law and business concerns of members, 2014
  • Lead trial counsel for respondent in probate bench trial to specifically enforce codicil to will, 2012
  • Trial counsel for petitioners in probate bench trial to reform deed given by trustee, 2014
  • Obtained reversal on appeal of $100,000 judgment entered against client in trial court., 2015
  • Negotiated $1.9-million refinance for commercial office building, 2015
  • Negotiated $2.55-million refinance for commercial office building, 2015
  • Negotiated $2.9-million refinance of commercial office property loan., 2016
  • Negotiated lease extension on behalf of commercial landlord, including resolution of past dispute over property maintenance and improvement issues, 2014
  • Negotiated $3-million refinance for commercial office building, 2015
  • Negotiated on behalf of lender assignment of $4-million loan agreement to third party buyer, 2013
  • Negotiated lease extension on behalf of landlord-client for major chain retaurant-tenant, which resolved existing disputes between landlord and tenant, 2013
  • Negotiated sale of residential rental property on behalf of owner, 2015
Scholarly Lectures/Writings:
  • May 2017, Issue Number 598, Pages 9-13., Co-Author, Mediation in Lieu of Case Evaluation, Oakland County Bar Association, 2017
  • Discussion of Trial Preparation Issues, Author, How to Prepare for Trial, Laches (Oakland County Bar Association), Legal, 2023
Bar/Professional Activity:
  • Chairperson - State Bar of Michigan Character and Fitness District Committee (District I) (2021-2022), 2022
  • Vice-Chair OCBA Circuit Court Committee (2022-23), 2022
  • Member State Bar of Michigan Character and Fitness District Committee (District I) (2017-2022), 2022
  • OCBA - Business Court Committee Member (2018-2023), 2023
  • OCBA Circuit Court Committee Member (2018-2023), 2023
  • Oakland County Circuit Court and Business Court Discovery Master (2018-2023), 2023
  • District Court Case Evaluator (Oakland County) (2015-2022), 2022
  • Master - American Inns of Court (2015-2022); Member Emeritus (2023), 2023
  • Member - Oakland County Bar Association (2003-2023), 2023
  • Member - Litigation Section, State Bar of Michigan (2003-2023), 2023
  • Member - Business Law Section, State Bar of Michigan (2003-2023), 2023
  • Member - State Bar of Michigan Negligence Section (2015-2023), 2023
Verdicts/Settlements (Case Results):
  • Represented plaintiff commercial landowner in claims for breach of deed restrictions for not allowing construction on his property., 2023
  • Represented disabled individuals in claims against City of Birmingham regarding reconstruction of South Old Woodward Avenue and whether the changes in the design violated the Americans with Disabilities Act, 2023
  • Obtained dismissal of all claims against defendants on summary disposition on breach of real estate purchase agreement and fraud claims.  Obtained award of attorney fees as offer of judgment sanctions., 2022
  • Lead trial counsel for bench trial representing plaintiff landlord on issue of piercing the corporate veil and voidable transfer against defendant tenant's sole shareholder.  Verdict for $119,915., 2022
  • Represented individual shareholder defendant in an action to pierce the corporate veil and hold shareholder liable for multi-million dollar judgment against the defendant company., 2022
  • Represented Fortune 500 company in post-trial appeal brief., 2023
  • Obtained post-judgment relief (affirmed on appeal) for client in property line dispute, 2022
  • Obtained jury verdict of $687,244 (tortious interference with contract) and declaratory judgment in favor of client following five-day jury trial., 2021
  • $450,000 settlement on behalf of plaitniff in minority shareholder oppression claim, 2014
  • Obtained preliminary and permanent injunctive relief, under 42 U.S.C. Section 1983 against the City of Detroit holding that a city ordinance was facially invalid because it violated protections granted by the 4th Amendment.  Obtained statutory attorney fees based on success of injunctive relief., 2016
  • Settled tax appeal on behalf of commercial property owner, which reduced true cash value assessment of parcels by over $2-million and netted over $100,000 in tax refunds for client, 2015
  • Obtained $870,000 judgment in favor of leder against commercial borrower, 2012
  • Obtained judgment on behalf of independent contractor against former contractual partner invalidating non-compelte based on contractual partner's first material breach of contract, 2013
  • Obtained partial reversal from the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit of dismissal of plaintiffs' claims on motion for summary judgment.  Following partial reversal, the claims settled.  Part of the claim (which was affirmed on appeal) included an award of statutory attorney fees., 2017
  • Obtained summary judgment in favor of borrower on lender's claim of default under loan agreement; obtained summary judgment in favor of borrower on counter-claim for release of escrow money from lender, 2014
  • Obtained summary judgment for landlord in commercial tenant matter awarding landlord all back rent sought, contractual interest and contractual attorney fees, 2017
  • Obtained receiever on behalf of lender to liquidate collateral on $600,000 defaulted loan, 2013
  • Co-lead trial counsel on 2.5-day jury trial in Oakland County Circuit Court , 2018
  • $4-million judgment in favor of lender in breach of loan agreement claim, 2011
  • Obtained summary judgment in favor of client who was plaintiff-landlord in action for unpaid rent on a commercial lease.  In the bench trial of the damages issues, client obtained back rent, damages for repairs made, and contractual attorney fees., 2018
  • Settled claim on behalf of accounting firm client for past due audit fees, 2014
  • Settled lawsuit obtaining specific performance of land contract on behalf of plaintiff, 2014
  • Defended company in dispute with subcontractor that resulted in one-day arbitration.  Award was favorable to client, included recovery on counterclaim, and minimal recovery on claimant's claim against respondent., 2017

Office location for Stephen McKenney

401 South Old Woodward Avenue
Suite 460
Birmingham, MI 48009


9 Years Super Lawyers
1 Year Rising Stars
  • Super Lawyers: 2016 - 2024
  • Rising Stars: 2013

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