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Mark S. Allard Partner

Mark Allard Insurance Claims Litigation
Grand Rapids
V-Card, Resume
Sue Nawara, 616/336-6540

Insurance Claims/ERISA Litigation Experience

Mark sues insurance companies when they fail to pay claims.  Varnum represents only insureds in these matters. Mark has helped shape the landscape of Michigan Insurance Law since 1985. He is regularly asked to speak on insurance issues for continuing legal education programs, and at other bar related activities.

Mark is also Varnum's lead attorney in litigation matters dealing with employee benefit issues under ERISA. He has handled all facets of employee benefit litigation, from benefit claims to multi-employer plan contribution issues. Mark has acted as benefit counsel for litigation matters on a national basis for a Big Three Auto Maker and a national food processor.

Mark's practice has also allowed him to develop an extensive appellate practice.  He has appeared at every level of state and federal court in the country, including the United States Supreme Court.  His representation of the County of Kent in Northwest Airlines v The County of Kent, et al, 510 U.S. 355 (1994), culminated in a decision from the United States Supreme Court.  Mark has also argued, en banc, before the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, in Nixon v County of Kent, 76 F3d 1381 (6th Cir. 1996), en banc.

Mark serves on the Policy Committee at Varnum, is the chairperson of the Contributions Committee and coordinates Varnum's Pro Bono Services Program, which he has handled for over ten years.

Bar Admissions

  • United States Supreme Court
  • United States Courts of Appeals for the Third, Sixth, Ninth, and Tenth Circuits
  • United States District Court for the Western District of Michigan
  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan
  • United States District Court for the Western District of Washington
  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of Washington
  • United States District Court, District of Oregon


  • University of Detroit School of Law
    Detroit, Michigan
    J.D., cum laude, 1985
  • University of Washington
    Seattle, Washington
    B.A., cum laude, Communications, 1980
    Phi Beta Kappa

Professional Affiliations

  • Grand Rapids Bar Association (Pro Bono Committee, Chairperson)
  • American Bar Association
  • State Bar of Michigan
  • Washington State Bar Association
  • Oregon State Bar Association, House of Delegates


  • Best Lawyers in America®, Lawyer of the Year, Litigation - ERISA, 2018
  • Best Lawyers in America® Litigation – ERISA since 2013
  • Martindale-Hubbell® AV Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated
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