{ Banner Image }
Photo of Richard C. Kraus

Richard C. Kraus

313 South Washington Square
Lansing, MI 48933-2114
T 517.371.8104
F 517.367.7104


Richard Kraus is a shareholder with Foster, Swift, Collins & Smith, and chair of the firm’s appellate practice group. He has 40 years of experience in appellate matters before state and federal courts, representing an array of clients including Fortune 500, mid-sized, and small corporations, health care systems, facilities and providers, and other businesses and individuals. He is frequently retained to prepare amicus curiae briefs for organizations such as the Michigan Hospital Association, Michigan Chamber of Commerce, Small Business Association of Michigan, Michigan State Medical Society, and University of Michigan. 

Honors & Recognitions

Mr. Kraus was named as 2006 Michigan Lawyer of the Year by Michigan Lawyers Weekly in recognition of his representation of the University of Michigan before the Michigan Supreme Court in Woodard v Custer. He received the Distinguished Brief Award for Exceptional Appellate Advocacy Before the Michigan Supreme Court following his successful representation of a national owner and operator of apartment complexes in a first-impression eminent domain case.

Mr. Kraus has received the highest peer-review AV rating for professional ability and ethics from Martindale-Hubbell and is listed in Best Lawyers in America and Michigan Super Lawyers.


Memberships & Affiliations

Mr. Kraus serves on the executive committee of the ABA Council of Appellate Lawyers and is a contributing author for the ABA Appellate Issues journal. He is a member of the ABA Council’s State Chairs committee and serves as its Michigan state chair.


Representative Matters

  • Woodard v. Custer, 476 Mich 545 (2006) (interpreting statute governing expert witness qualifications and extending matching requirement to subspecialties)
  • Appellate representation of the University of Michigan and individual physician defendant
  • Self-Insurance Institute of America, Inc v Snyder, 827 F3d 549; (CA6, 2016) (on remand from United States Supreme Court following prior decision, 761 F3d 631 (CA 6, 2014) (Michigan Health Insurance Claims Act is not preempted by ERISA)
  • Trial court representation of State of Michigan as special assistant attorney general; appellate representation of associations affected by Michigan’s tax on health care claims, including the Michigan Health and Hospital Association, Michigan State Medical Society, Michigan Osteopathic Association, and Small Business Association of Michigan.
  • Lawrence v Welch, 531 F3d 364 (CA6, 2008), cert den’d, 558 US 876 (2009) & Lawrence v Chabot, 182 Fed Appx 442 (CA6, 2006) (process for evaluating character and fitness of applicants to practice law is constitutional; members of State Bar of Michigan character and fitness committee have absolute immunity and cannot be sued by unsuccessful applicant)
  • Representation of the State Bar of Michigan, executive director, and character and fitness committee members
  • City of Lansing v Edward Rose Realty, Inc, 442 Mich 626 (1993) (city lacks authority to condemn easement in private apartment complexes for use by franchised cable provider); and following remand, 224 Mich App 235 (1997) (obtaining award of $800,000 in attorney fees to client)
  • Representation of a national apartment development company
  • Krusac v Covenant Med Ctr, Inc, 497 Mich 251; 865 NW2d 908 (2015) (Michigan’s peer review statutes apply to objective facts in incident reports)
  • Amicus representation of the University of Michigan Health System
  • Innovative Ventures LLC v Liquid Manufacturing, LLC, 499 Mich 491 (2016) (a non-compete provision in a manufacturing contract does not unenforceable when a party exercised its right to terminate the agreement)
  • Amicus representation of Michigan Chamber of Commerce
  • Ouwinga v Benistar 419 Plan Servs, 694 F3d 783 (CA 6, 2012) (insurance company, law firm, and agents can be sued for fraudulently inducing investors to participate in abusive tax shelter)
  • Scott v Ambani, 577 F3d 642 (CA6 2009) (physician employed by the University of Michigan cannot be sued under 42 USC 1983 based on treatment provided to prisoner at hospital)
  • Manitou North America, Inc v McCormick International, LLC, 2016 Mich App LEXIS 198 (2016) (enforcing Michigan antitrust laws against joint venture between manufacturers; affirming $4 million antitrust award for farm equipment dealer)
  • Ammori v Nafso, 2014 Mich App LEXIS 166 (2014) (obtaining dismissal of $14 million claim against credit card processing company)
  • Thursfield v Thursfield, 2013 Mich App LEXIS 1566 (2013) (reversing multimillion dollar judgment against former auto company executive based on lack of subject matter jurisdiction)
  • Shember v Univ of Michigan Med Ctr, 280 Mich App 309 (2008) (affirming dismissal of medical malpractice complaint against nine physicians), vacated in part on other grds, 485 Mich 1072 (2010)
  • Burke v United Am Acquisitions & Mgmt, 2010 Mich App LEXIS 1502 (2010) (reversing $2.3 million judgment against investment firm)



News & Events

Speaking Engagements


Practice Areas


Northwestern School of Law, Lewis and Clark College, J.D., 1977, cum laude

University of Michigan, B.A., 1974, with distinction

Bar and Court Admissions


U.S. Supreme Court

U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals

U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan

U.S. Claims Court

U.S. District Court for Minnesota

U.S. District Court for Northern District of Indiana