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Donald Lawless
OVERVIEW

Donald P. Lawless
Partner

Grand Rapids

171 Monroe Avenue N.W.
Suite 1000
Grand Rapids, MI 49503-2694

P 616-742-3994

F 616-742-3999

OVERVIEW

Donald P. Lawless
Partner

Grand Rapids

171 Monroe Avenue N.W.
Suite 1000
Grand Rapids, MI 49503-2694

P 616-742-3994

F 616-742-3999

Labor and employment law veteran, trusted adviser and proven advocate Don Lawless consistently delivers responsive, focused advice, while leveraging each client's workforce potential and business objectives.

Labor and employment law veteran, trusted adviser and proven advocate Don Lawless consistently delivers responsive, focused advice, while leveraging each client's workforce potential and business objectives.

OVERVIEW

Labor and employment law veteran, trusted adviser and proven advocate Don Lawless consistently delivers responsive, focused advice, while leveraging each client's workforce potential and business objectives.

Don focuses his practice in the pharmaceutical and health, food processing, manufacturing, higher education and service industries. His traditional labor experience is extensive and includes contract negotiation, grievance arbitration and defense of unfair labor practice charges, and union avoidance.

Don advises on workforce restructurings and works with clients on a broad range of civil rights compliance and defense, with particular emphasis on ADA compliance, facility and program access under Titles II and III of the ADA, FMLA compliance, and employment-related contracts and policies. He also represents multinational auto parts, major global brands and other manufacturers in OSHA-related compliance and appeals.

As vice chair of the firm’s Higher Education practice group, a significant portion of Don’ practice is devoted to representing college and university clients in labor and employment matters and student affairs, athletic program compliance, internal investigations, tenure denial disputes, and facility and program accessibility issues. Don also successfully defends civil rights matters, including many discreet faculty and student OCR complaints of discrimination typically related to disability accommodation.

Don offers honed abilities in designing and executing a wide variety of workplace investigations. He consistently executes workplace investigations that are comprehensive and complete, ascertaining all the evidence available and rendering sound, balanced conclusions that are ultimately clear and justifiable. 

Don is a frequent speaker to a variety of organizations on legal developments and related strategies, such as the Michigan Chamber of Commerce, the Michigan Public Employer Labor Relations Association, the National Association of College and University Attorneys, and numerous industry-specific organizations.

Professional and Community Involvement

Co-author, Chambers Global Practice Guide - USA Regional Employment (Michigan)

Board member, Michigan Chamber of Commerce, 2016 to present

Former chair, Michigan Chamber of Commerce Health and Human Resource Committee, 2012-2017

Member, American Employment Law Council

Member, National Association of College and University Attorneys 

Member, Lakeshore Advantage

Co-founder, West Michigan Works

Former chair and board member, Interurban Transit Partnership (The Rapid), 2004-2012

Former second ward commissioner, East Grand Rapids, 1997-2005

Former chair, East Grand Rapids Planning Commission, 2007-2014

Honors

The Best Lawyers in America, 2008-2022

Chambers USA, Michigan, 2017-2021

Martindale-Hubbell, AV Preeminent

EXPERIENCE
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