Brent's clients include financial institutions, insurance companies, real estate brokers, developers, hospitals, manufacturers, farmers, municipalities and colleges. Brent's practice focuses primarily in real estate with an emphasis on:
- Commercial Real Estate Transactions: Commercial purchase and sales agreements and transactions for manufacturing facilities, colleges, hospitals, communication towers, restaurants, shopping centers and apartment complexes.
- Landlord-Tenant: Commercial lease negotiations, disputes and evictions.
- Real Estate Development: Land Division Act, Condominium Act, zoning, construction contracts, construction liens, subdivision restrictions and easements.
- Real Estate Finance: Loan documentation, modifications, workouts, deeds-in-lieu of foreclosure, collections, mezzanine loans and bankruptcy remote entities.
- Real Estate Brokerage: Listing agreements, agency disclosures, buyer/broker agreements, Commercial Broker Lien Act and property management agreements.
- Environmental Law: Environmental audits, baseline environmental assessments and due care documentation.
His knowledge of real estate law is well recognized by his peers. Brent was named the 2009 Lansing Lawyer of the Year for Real Estate by Best Lawyers®, has been included in Best Lawyers® of America since 1999 and has an AV Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell.
Holding memberships in the American Bar Association, the State Bar of Michigan and its Real Property Law Section, and the Ingham County Bar Association, Brent is also admitted to practice in the U.S. District Court’s Western and Eastern Districts of Michigan. He is a member of the American Bar Association’s Forum on the Construction Industry and is an associate member of the American Institute of Architects. He has also been a member of various charitable and bank boards in the local community. Brent currently serves on the firm's Executive Committee as the vice president of the firm's Lansing office.
Honors & Recognitions
AV® Preeminent™ Martindale-Hubbell
Best Lawyers® 2015 Litigation - Real Estate "Lawyer of the Year" in Lansing
Best Lawyers® 2018 Litigation - Real Estate "Lawyer of the Year" in Lansing
Best Lawyers in America® 2001-2020 (Real Estate Law; Litigation - Real Estate)
Best Lawyers® 2009 Real Estate Law "Lawyer of the Year" in Lansing
Member of Foster Swift Executive Committee
Memberships & Affiliations
- American Bar Association
- Forum on the Construction Industry
- State Bar of Michigan
- Real Estate Law Section
- Environmental Law Section
- Ingham County Bar Association
Industry & Professional Associations:
- American Institute of Architects, Associate Member
- Michigan Association of Municipal Attorneys, Member
- Assisted trust clients with complex sale of their land contract vendor’s interest in nearly 2000 acres of Michigan farmland to investment firm for $8 million+, where vendee was in default and subject to numerous liens.
- Assisted institutional client with acquisition of out-of-state office building for in excess of $40 million.
- Assisted client with multiple multi-million dollar out-of-state office sublease transactions, requiring landlord and lender consents.
- Assisted client with multiple large out-of-state office lease assignment and assumptions transactions, requiring landlord and lender consents.
- Assisted client with a large office lease buy-out and termination transaction.
- Assisted institutional client with multi-million dollar out-of-state land acquisition for regional branch office development.
- Assisted investors with complex purchase of multi-million dollar loans upon borrower's default.
- Assisted hospital and college with multi-parcel acquisitions for future development.
- Assisted insurance company with significant loan modifications, deeds-in-lieu of foreclosure, and workouts of defaulted loans in commercial loan portfolio.
- Assisted borrower of commercial development in legal action against lender to stop foreclosure due to lenders breach of loan documents and commitment.
- Assisted client with expansion of cosmetology school's operation to new cities in Michigan, Illinois, and Tennessee.
- Assisted client with multi-million dollar acquisition of out-of-state cosmetology school.
- Assisted landowners with sale of thousands of acres of prime agricultural land.
- Assisted clients with appeals of residential and commercial property tax assessments.
- Assisted family farm clients with succession planning to next generation.
- Contracts 101 - Top 10 Items to Consider Before Signing on the Dotted Line, Michigan Restaurant Association's Michigan Restaurateur, December 2008
News & Events
- Remedies and Lender Liability, In-house educational seminar for commercial real estate lender, June 2010
- Land Division and Related Development Issues, In-house educational seminar for commercial real estate brokerage firm, February 2007
- 42 Foster Swift Attorneys Listed as Best Lawyers® 2020, August 15, 2019
- Firm Elects Executive Committee Members for 2019, Michigan Lawyers Weekly, March 7, 2019
- 45 Foster Swift Attorneys Listed in Best Lawyers in America© 2019, August 15, 2018
- Foster Swift Elects Executive Committee Members for 2018, February 13, 2018
- 46 Foster Swift Attorneys Named to 2018 Best Lawyers in America®, August 21, 2017
- 44 Foster Swift Attorneys Named to 2016 Best Lawyers in America® Roster, August 21, 2015
- Best Lawyers® Names Eight Foster Swift Attorneys "Lawyer of the Year", August 25, 2014
Ohio State University College of Law, J.D., 1984
University of Michigan-Flint, B.B.A., 1981, with high distinction (minor in economics)
Bar and Court Admissions
U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan
U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan
Michigan Supreme Court