Mark K. Harder

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Estate Planning & Probate Attorney in Holland, MI

Warner Norcross + Judd LLP
 | 99 East Eigth St, Suite 200
Holland, MI 49423
Phone: 616-426-8174
Fax: 616-494-3525
Selected to Super Lawyers: 2006 - 2018
Licensed Since: 1991
Practice Areas:
  • Estate Planning & Probate (90%),
  • Closely Held Business (10%)
Attorney Profile

The chairman of the Private Client and Family Office Group at Warner Norcross + Judd LLP, Mark K. Harder is a highly regarded estate planning and administration attorney. Located in Holland, Michigan, he represents high net worth individuals and closely held businesses throughout the western portion of the state. He provides advice on family business succession planning, helping to ensure that there is a successful transition of ownership to future generations. Some of the tools that Mr. Harder utilizes include grantor retained annuity trusts, irrevocable life insurance trusts, family gift trusts and limited liability companies. He also provides general representation to small businesses in the areas of acquisitions, buy-sell agreements and contracts. Mr. Harder has had several articles published on topics relating to his practice area, and he is frequently asked to deliver presentations at workshops and continuing legal education seminars.

Mr. Harder has received numerous awards and accolades during his distinguished career. A holder of an AV Preeminent* peer review rating through Martindale-Hubbell and a 10.0 "Superb" peer review rating through Avvo, he has been selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America each year since 2005. Mr. Harder has also received a high ranking in the Chambers and Partners High Net Worth Guide.

Mr. Harder is a 1983 graduate of the University of Iowa Tippie College of Business, where he received a Bachelor of Business Administration in economics. He then obtained his Juris Doctor from The University of Iowa College of Law in 1986, where he was editor in chief of the Journal of Corporation Law and was selected to the Order of the Coif upon graduation. Mr. Harder is admitted to practice in Michigan and Iowa.

*AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished and Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell® is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Rating™ fall into two categories – legal ability and general ethical standards.

 
Practice Areas
Lawyer Practice Area Pie Chart

Estate Planning & Probate (90%): Estate Planning, Living Wills, Power of Attorney, Probate & Estate Administration, Trusts, Wills

Closely Held Business (10%)

Focus Areas

Estate Planning, Living Wills, Power of Attorney, Probate & Estate Administration, Trusts, Wills

Selections

Selected to Super Lawyers for 13 yearsbottom-image

Super Lawyers: 2006 - 2018

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About Mark Harder

Admitted: 1991, Michigan

Professional Webpage: http://www.wnj.com/Professionals/Attorneys/Mark-K-Harder

Honors/Awards:

  • Trusts and Estates Lawyer of the Year, Grand Rapids, Michigan, Best Lawyers in America, 2010
  • Named a “2010 Thought Leader in the Law” by Business Review West Michigan
  • Charter Member, Leading Lawyers Advisor Board, 2013-Present
  • Leading Lawyers Michigan, 2014-Present
  • Selected by Michigan Super Lawyers to the Top 50 Consumer lists, 2013-16
  • Named to Michigan Super Lawyers, 2006-Present
  • Best Lawyers in America, Trusts and Estates, 2005-Present
  • Fellow of the American College of Trusts and Estates Counsel, 2006-Present
  • Named 2017 and 2010 Lawyer of the Year for Trusts and Estates in the Grand Rapids area by Best Lawyers in America
  • Named as one of the Top 100 Michigan Super Lawyers, 2017
  • Ranked in Private Wealth Law – Michigan, Chambers High Net Worth Guide, 2016-17

Bar/Professional Activity:

  • Michigan, 1991
  • Wisconsin, 1986
  • State Bar of Michigan, Probate & Estate Planning Section, Member, Nominating Committee, 2013-16
  • Attorneys for Family Held Enterprises, 2007 and 2008 Annual Conference Planning Chair
  • Attorneys for Family Held Enterprises, Past Member, Board of Directors, 2005-10
  • Attorneys for Family Held Enterprises, Treasurer, 2010-11
  • Attorneys for Family Held Enterprises, Member, 1995-Present
  • Family Firm Institute
  • Institute of Continuing Legal Education, Member, Advisory Board, 2007-Present
  • American College of Trust and Estate Counsel, State Laws Committee, 2007-14
  • American College of Trust and Estate Counsel, Fellow, 2006-Present
  • State Bar of Michigan, Tax Section
  • State Bar of Michigan, Business Law Section
  • State Bar of Michigan, Probate & Estate Planning Section, Member, Long Range Planning Task Force, 2011-12
  • State Bar of Michigan, Probate & Estate Planning Section, Member, Decanting Committee, 2010-12
  • State Bar of Michigan, Probate & Estate Planning Section, Chair, Amicus Curiae Committee, 2002-09
  • State Bar of Michigan, Probate & Estate Planning Section, Chair, Uniform Principal and Income Act Amendments Task Force, 2009-12
  • State Bar of Michigan, Probate & Estate Planning Section, Michigan Trust Code Committee Chair and Reporter, 2003-10
  • State Bar of Michigan, Probate & Estate Planning Section, Council Member, 2002-09
  • State Bar of Michigan, Probate & Estate Planning Section, Treasurer, 2008-09
  • State Bar of Michigan, Probate & Estate Planning Section, Secretary, 2009-10
  • State Bar of Michigan, Probate & Estate Planning Section, Vice Chair, 2010-11
  • State Bar of Michigan, Probate & Estate Planning Section, Chair-Elect, 2011-12
  • State Bar of Michigan, Probate & Estate Planning Section, Chair, 2012-13
  • State Bar of Michigan, Probate & Estate Planning Section, Ex Officio Member of the Council, 2013-Present
  • State Bar of Wisconsin
  • Michigan State Bar Foundation
  • American Bar Foundation
  • American Bar Association, Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Section; Business Law Section; Taxation Section; Law Practice Management Section
  • Fellow of the American Bar Foundation

Pro bono/Community Service:

  • Community Foundation of the Holland/Zeeland Area, Board Chair, 2017
  • Holland Area Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Holland Executive Committee, 1998
  • Children's Talent Center, Regional Advisory Board, 1995-98
  • Center for Women in Transition, Finance Committee, 1998-03
  • Center for Women in Transition, Treasurer, Executive Committee, 1997-01
  • Center for Women in Transition, Board Member, 1996-00
  • Holland Area Chamber of Commerce, Past Chairman, Leadership Holland Selection Committee, 1996-98
  • Hospice of Holland Center, Member, Professional Advisory Committee, 1998-06
  • Community Foundation of the Holland/Zeeland Area, Board of Trustees, 2014-Present
  • Community Foundation of the Holland/Zeeland Area, Development Committee, 2013-Present

Scholarly Lectures/Writings:

  • Presenter, "Tax Sensitive Trustee Powers," “Planning Techniques for the Taxable Estate," ICLE December 2003
  • Presenter, "Selecting and Working with Valuation Firms," Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce Family Owned Business Service Providers Group, April 2004
  • Presenter, "Selecting and Working with Valuation Firms," Attorneys for Family Held Enterprises 2004 Annual Conference, May 2004
  • Co-Presenter, "What’s It Worth? – Valuing the Family Held Business," Family Business Quarterly Forum, February 2005
  • Presenter, "Introduction to the Uniform Trust Code – A Preview of Things to Come," 45th Annual Probate and Estate Planning Institute, ICLE May/June 2005
  • Presenter, "The Michigan Trust Code: A Status Report and Overview," Annual Meeting of the Probate & Estate Planning Section of the State Bar of Michigan, September 2005
  • Presenter, "The Michigan Trust Code: September 2006 Status Report and Overview," Annual Meeting of the Probate & Estate Planning Section of the State Bar of Michigan, September 2006
  • Presenter, "The Michigan Trust Code: An Overview," Jackson Area Estate Planning Council, January 2007
  • Presenter, "Drafting in Anticipation of the UTC," 47th Annual Probate and Estate Planning Institute, ICLE May/June 2007
  • Presenter, "The Succession Planning Process," Family Business Alliance, June 2007
  • Presenter, "Succession Planning for the Large and Small Family Business: An Overview with Illustrated Case Studies," Northern Michigan Estate Planning Council, November 2007
  • Presenter, "Governance for the Family Business: Best Practices that Recognize the Uniqueness of the Family Business," Grand Rapids Bar Association, November 2007
  • Presenter, "Family Constitutions: A Framework for Family and Business Success," Family Business Alliance, February 2008
  • Presenter, "The Michigan Trust Code: Some Things Old, Some Things New, Some Things Borrowed, Some Things Blue To Do," 49th Annual Probate & Estate Planning Institute, ICLE May/June 2009
  • Presenter, "The Michigan Trust Code: An Introduction for Attorneys, Accountants, Financial Planners and Trust Officers," Lakeshore Estate Planning Council, October 2009
  • Presenter, "The Michigan Trust Code: An Introduction for Attorneys, Accountants, Financial Planners and Trust Officers," West Michigan Estate Planning Council, October 2009
  • Presenter, "What Every Trust Officer Needs to Know About the Michigan Trust Code," Midwest Trust and Wealth Management Conference, October 2009
  • Presenter, "Legislative Developments Affecting Succession of the Family Business," Family Business Alliance Annual Forum (October 2009)
  • Presenter, "The Michigan Trust Code: An Introduction for Attorneys, Accountants, Financial Planners and Trust Officers," Calhoun County Estate Planning Council, November 2009
  • Presenter, "Introducing the Michigan Trust Code: A Primer for Lawyers and Judges," Livingston County Bar Association, November 2009
  • Co-Presenter and Moderator, "Michigan Trust Code: Conversations with the Commentator," Eight installment video series, ICLE 2009-2010
  • Co-Presenter, "Ongoing Administration of Trusts," The New Michigan Trust Code, ICLE January/February 2010
  • Presenter, "An Introduction to the New Michigan Trust Code," The New Michigan Trust Code, ICLE January/February 2010
  • Presenter, "Introducing the Michigan Trust Code," The Michigan Trust Code:  A New Era Seminar, Michigan Bankers Association, February 2010
  • Presenter, "It’s Official: The New Michigan Trust Code and Its Key Provisions," 50th Annual Probate and Estate Planning Institute, ICLE May/June 2010
  • Presenter, "The New Michigan Trust Code:  What Lawyers, Accountants, and the Financial Community Need to Know Now!," Jewish Community Endowment Fund Professional Advisors Committee, May 2010
  • Presenter, "The Michigan Trust Code: Lessons From the First Six Months," Midwest Trust and Wealth Management Conference, October 2010
  • Presenter, "Estate Planning in 2011 and Beyond," YPO Forum, January 2011
  • Presenter, "The New Michigan Trust Code: What Lawyers, Accountants, and the Financial Community Need to Know Now!," Berrien County Bar Association and Southwest Michigan Estate Planning Council, January 2011
  • Presenter, "The Michigan Trust Code:  Lessons From the First Nine Months," Calhoun County Estate Planning Council, January 2011
  • Presenter, "MTC Lessons Learned and One-Year Update," The Michigan Trust Code’s First Year:  A Look Back & Forward, ICLE, April 2011
  • Presenter, "One Year Later: Michigan Trust Code Lessons Learned (or Not)," 51st Annual Probate and Estate Planning Institute, ICLE, May/June 2011
  • Presenter, "Uniform Principal and Income Act: Best Practices for Process and Substance," Institute for Continuing Legal Education and the Probate and Estate Planning Section of the State Bar of Michigan, June 15, 2012
  • Presenter, "Ownership Transition & Estate Planning in 2012: Key Considerations," West Michigan WPO Forum, September 2012
  • Presenter, “Drafting for Uncertain Times: Dealing with the New Certainty in the Tax Laws (As Well As Life’s Unknowns),” Institute for Continuing Legal Education, January 24, 2013, Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Presenter, “Drafting for Uncertain Times: Dealing with the New Certainty in the Tax Laws (As Well As Life’s Unknowns),” 22nd Annual Drafting Estate Planning Documents seminar, February 14, 2013, Plymouth, Michigan
  • Presenter, Case Studies in Portability, 54th Annual Probate and Estate Planning Institute, ICLE, May/June 2014
  • Presenter, Drafting for Portability, 24th Annual Drafting Estate Planning Documents, ICLE, January/February 2015
  • Co-Presenter, "Achieve Income Tax Advantages and Protect Your Client's Desires," 55th Annual Probate & Estate Planning Institute (ICLE), June 20, 2015, Plymouth, Michigan
  • Co-Presenter, "Tax and Estate Update," Family Office Exchange Financial Executives Forum, July 21-22, 2015, Chicago, Illinois
  • Presenter, "Selecting the Right Trustee – Know Your Options," 2015 Family Office Exchange Trustees and Beneficiaries Workshop, November 17, 2015, New York, New York
  • Presenter, “Selecting the Right Trustee – Know Your Options,” 2016 Family Office Exchange Trustees and Beneficiaries Workshop, June 22-23, 2016, New York, New York
  • Presenter, “Estate Settlement Readiness,” 2016 Family Office Exchange Financial Executives Form, July 19-20, 2016, Chicago, Illinois
  • Presenter, “Drafting Client Letters,” 26th Annual Drafting Estate Planning Documents, ICLE, February 2017
  • Presenter, “Drafting Client Letters,” 26th Annual Drafting Estate Planning Documents, ICLE, February 2017
  • Presenter, “Selecting the Right Trustee – Know Your Options,” 2017 Family Office Exchange Trustees and Beneficiaries Workshop, June 20-21, 2017, Atlanta, Georgia 
  • Estate Planning Focus - Winter 2001, 2/1/2001
  • Estate Planning Focus - Spring 2001, 4/1/2001
  • Getting Started on Your Succession Plan, 5/1/2001
  • Getting Started on Your Succession Plan, 5/1/2001
  • Estate Planning Alert, 6/1/2001
  • Estate Planning Alert, 9/1/2001
  • Making Management Succession A Part of Your Business' Succession Plan, 10/1/2001
  • Estate Planning Focus - Spring 2003, 4/1/2003
  • Using Outside Directors in Family Businesses, 5/19/2003
  • Using Family Meetings In Your Family Business Succession Plan, 3/5/2004
  • Estate Planning Focus - Spring 2004, 4/1/2004
  • Internal Barriers Threaten Succession, 10/25/2004
  • "A Report from the Probate and Estate Planning Section’s Uniform Trust Code Committee," Michigan Probate & Estate Planning Journal, Spring 2005
  • Estate Planning Focus - Spring 2005, 4/4/2005
  • Buy and Sell Agreements: An Important Part of Your Family's Estate and Business Succession Plan, 6/1/2005
  • Estate Planning Focus - Summer 2007, 6/19/2007
  • Writing a Succession Plan to Describe the Succession Plan, 9/1/2007
  • Management and the Family Business Succession Plan, 9/1/2007
  • Estate Planning Focus - Fall 2007, 12/1/2007
  • The Michigan Trust Code: Some Things Old and Some Things New, 12/1/2008
  • "The Michigan Trust Code:  Some Things Old and Some Things New," Michigan Probate & Estate Planning Journal, Winter 2008
  • "The Michigan Trust Code:  Its Organization and Structure," Michigan Probate & Estate Planning Journal, Spring 2009
  • The Michigan Trust Code: Its Organization and Structure, 4/1/2009
  • Governor Signs New Michigan Trust Code, 6/19/2009
  • The Michigan Trust Code: An Overview, 8/1/2009
  • What Every Trust Officer Needs To Know About the Michigan Trust Code, 10/1/2009
  • Estate Planning Focus - Fall 2009, 11/16/2009
  • Michigan Trust Code: A Major Change in the Legal Landscape, 11/16/2009
  • "A Closer Look at the Michigan Trust Code:  What’s New – What’s In – What’s Next?," Michigan Probate & Estate Planning Journal, Winter 2009
  • "Introducing the Michigan Trust Code," Michigan Bar Journal, May 2010
  • Lawmakers Strengthen Michigan’s Trust Code to Ensure That Death Benefits Can Be Paid to Insurance Trusts, 2/12/2014
  • "Trust Code Gains More Certainty," Grand Rapids Business Journal, 2/28/2014
  • “New Insurable Interest Statute Provides Certainty to Trustees of Insurance Trusts,” Michigan Banker, April 2014
  • Final Portability Regulations Released, 6/17/2015
  • Proposed IRS Valuation Regulations Create Narrow Window to Transfer Business Interests on Favorable Basis , 8/4/2016
  • Michigan continues to modernize trust laws, authorizes Domestic Asset Protection Trusts, 12/12/2016
  • Author, ICLE Commentary to the Michigan Uniform Principal and Income Act, Michigan Probate Sourcebook, 2015, 2016, 2017
  • Contributing Author, Chapter 15:  Planning for a Surviving Spouse, Michigan Estate Planning Handbook, ICLE, 2016, 2017
  • Co-Author, with John H. Martin, Estates and Protected Individuals Code (2010, 2011, 2012,  Institute of Continuing Legal Education (ICLE), 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017)
  • Co-Author of Estate and Protected Individuals Code With Reporters' Commentary (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017), Institute of Continuing Legal Education

Other Outstanding Achievements:

  • Fellow, American College of Trust and Estate Counsel

Educational Background:

  • University of Iowa B.B.A. with high distinction, 1983

Industry Groups

  • Family Businesses
Find Me Online
Website - www.wnj.com
Office Location for Mark K. Harder

99 East Eigth St
Suite 200
Holland, MI 49423

Phone: 616-426-8174

Fax: 616-494-3525

Mark K. Harder:

Last Updated: 1/17/2019

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