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Michelle R. Canerday

Chicago Office

Michelle R. Canerday is a partner in the Trusts and Estates practice. She focuses on counseling individuals, high-net-worth families and closely held business owners on sophisticated estate, gift and charitable planning matters, as well as trust and estate litigation.

Michelle understands it is critical for clients to develop a comprehensive estate plan that incorporates tax minimization and asset protection strategies in order to protect their wealth for multiple generations. To that end, her practice includes structuring and drafting wills and trusts, handling estate administrations, representing trustees and beneficiaries in trust disputes, advising businesses on succession planning, working with private equity fund principals on tax minimization strategies, counseling family offices and advising nonprofit organizations.

In the areas of estate and premarital planning, Michelle counsels clients on all phases of estate planning, including preparing wills, trusts, powers of attorney, insurance trusts, qualified personal residence trusts and dynasty trusts. Michelle also provides counsel to trustees and executors through the entire administration process, including opening probate, preparing and filing estate and gift tax returns, handling day-to-day administration matters and working on related audits.

Should the need arise, Michelle also represents clients in trust and estate litigation matters and negotiates family settlement agreements and virtual representation agreements. She works closely with litigation counsel to form case strategy and advise on fiduciary duties throughout the process. Michelle also handles cases that ultimately go to trial. She recently won a three-week jury trial in a trust litigation matter.

Shown below is a selection of Michelle’s engagements.

Michelle R. Canerday


  • JD, University of Denver, with honors
  • LLM (Taxation), University of Denver
  • BBA, Saint Louis University, magna cum laude

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois
  • Colorado


  • Illinois Bar Association, Trusts and Estates Section
  • Chicago Estate Planning Council
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