Carl W. Dufendach - Warner Norcross & Judd LLP

Carl W. Dufendach

Listed in Best Lawyers since 2007
Phone: 616-752-2136

Carl Dufendach concentrates his practice in the areas of estate and trust planning and administration, tax and general corporate work, including working with closely held businesses. Carl has helped clients reach their objectives in everything from basic estate planning and guardianships to tax-saving trust arrangements, charitable gifts, trusts, foundations and supporting organizations, and sophisticated transfer and succession strategies.

Representative Experience
  • Works with the owners of all types of closely held businesses to provide for continuation of business into the next generation
  • Assists fiduciaries of large estates in resolving complex disputes in a tax-wise manner
  • Provides trust and estate administration services
Honors and Awards
  • Named to Michigan Super Lawyers 2006-2014 
  • Best Lawyers in America, Trusts and Estates, 2007-2014
  • Fellow of the American College of Trusts and Estates Counsel
  • Order of the Coif
Bar Associations
  • American Bar Association
  • State Bar of Michigan
Teaching and Lecturing
  • Instructor, Institute of Continuing Legal Education
  • "Highlights of the 2009 Heckerling Institute," Lake Michigan Estate Planning Council, Grand Haven, Michigan, February 19, 2009
  • Contributing author of Michigan Estate Planning Handbook, Michigan Institute for Continuing Legal Education – "Clarity in Writing Award,"  1999
Professional Affiliations
  • Christian Legal Society
  • Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce
    Small Business Council
  • West Michigan Estate Planning Council
Community Affiliations
  • Beacon Hill at Eastgate
    Chair of Board of Trustees
  • Rockford Public Schools
    Board of Education, President (2000-01), Vice President (1999-00), Treasurer (1998-99), Secretary (2002-04); Trustee (1997-04)

Wheaton College, IllinoisBA 1975Duke University School of LawJ.D. 1979
West Michigan Estate Planning CouncilAmerican College of Trust and Estate CounselBeacon Hill at Eastgate

Client Comments

"Carl Dufendach is a highly regarded trusts and estates law partner at Warner Norcross & Judd."

"Carl Dufendach is in the top rank of Trust and Estate attorneys in his community"

"I have worked with attorney Carl Defendach at Warner Norcross & Judd LLP on several estate and trust matters and I find him to have a very in-depth knowledge of this and related areas of practice."

-David Jensen
Pew, Robert C.

"Carl Duffendach has served as both our corporate and personal attorney for over 25 years. He ranks as one of the most ethical, principled, congenial, astute, and efficient people I know. His legal and practical advice has greatly benefited both our business and family."

-Ken Muraski
Kent Manufacturing Company

Office Location

Fifth Third Center, Suite 900
111 Lyon Street, NW
Grand Rapids, MI 49503-2487
United States

Lawyer of the Year Awards

2015 Lawyer of the Year in Trusts and Estates of the Grand Rapids Metro Area
Carl W. Dufendach has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2015!

Practice Areas

Closely Held Companies and Family Businesses Law
Trusts and Estates (Estate Planning, Gift Planning, Nonprofit Organizations and Charitable Giving, Planning for Closely Held Businesses, Probate, Succession Planning, Tax, Trust Administration)

Other Information

Gender: Male