Main Menu


For more than 130 years, clients have trusted Varnum for excellence, innovation and superior results in the delivery of legal services. Over the years, as the needs of our clients have become more complex, we have kept pace by constantly expanding our areas of practice, our understanding of evolving trends and issues, and our ability to harness technology effectively.

Today, Varnum is firmly established as one of Michigan's premier law firms. A full-service provider of legal counsel, Varnum has a strong core of experience.

Varnum clients represent a diverse range of business and legal interests: manufacturers, financial institutions, health care providers, professional groups, municipalities, colleges and universities, school districts, developers, publishers, retailers, governmental units, transportation, trade associations and charitable organizations.

Our team approach to client service provides an outstanding model for maintaining the close personal relationship that traditionally exists between lawyer and client, while ensuring the client also has available to them the full resources of the firm. One of our lawyers will assume primary responsibility for the client relationship, and he or she will be assisted as needed by other lawyers within the firm who can offer their experience on a particular matter.


A guiding principle at Varnum is our commitment to excellence. We are pleased to occasionally be recognized for this commitment. Recent recognitions of the firm include the following:


About the Art

Varnum has been a supporter of the arts for many years, and our offices are virtual galleries of fine art by local and regional artists. Throughout the site, you will see portions of works by the following artists:

John Baughman

Born in Grand Rapids, Baughman immersed himself in the rich traditions of the outdoors where his work is a reflection of nature. Landscape imagery combined with abstractions of natural forms define his paintings, with veils of color reminiscent of flowing water. His mixed media oil and encaustic works are composed of elegantly complex layers. Baughman and his wife Janet own Marshwood Studios in Lowell, and their art has found its place in many private and public commissions including Ford Motor Company, Herman Miller, Van Andel Institute and Dominoes Corporation.

Linda LaFontsee

Using a variety of media, LaFontsee conveys the dance of life with an organic freedom, independent of representation. LaFontsee is inspired by color, movement and line, all of which she is continually constructing and deconstructing through tones, varnishes, burns, molds, melts and scratches into the surface of her paintings. "My part in the process is simple – to listen, to keep on with it. I listen, react and keep painting until I feel settled and know that it is done." LaFontsee and her husband Scott own LaFontsee Galleries in Grand Rapids and Douglas.

Gretchen Minnhaar

A native of Argentina, Minnhaar (1935-2018) lived and worked in Grand Rapids after her art education involved training on three continents and visiting more than 80 countries. Her painting subjects reflect her architectural training which included work on the design of the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel in 1980. "It's the images of cities, roads, people and buildings that form my everyday vocabulary. This is what I paint." Minnhaar's work is featured in private collections worldwide and locally at Steelcase, Grand Valley State University and Grand Rapids City Hall. A proponent of cultural activities, Minnhaar was also a founder of the film series, Chiaroscuro, featuring diverse, international films.

Michael Schaeffer

"When I paint, I have a compelling desire to convey order, balance and an element of tension." Schaeffer says the biggest challenge is finding a problem to solve within the painting, where it is addressed on a conscious or unconscious level. After attending the Royal College of Art in London and Kendall College of Art and Design, his work has been included in the collections of several prestigious museums and corporations, as well as hundreds of personal collections through the United States and Europe.

Varnum Sign White

Trusted legal advisors, local community partners and In Your Corner.

U.S. News Best Law Firms, Chamber USA Ranking, Best Lawyers Recognition

Back to Page
{ footer Image }