Michael P. Erhard has practiced law in Wisconsin for 41 years, over 35 of them in Madison; and he has represented hundreds of businesses and individuals in complex litigation, including patent infringement, trade secret misappropriation, business and professional fraud, contract disputes, employment termination cases, and constitutional law cases.
Born in Dayton, Ohio, Mike graduated from Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. He graduated with High Honors and lettered in Varsity Football and Track.
Awarded a full scholarship to attend the College of Law at the University of Cincinnati, Mike was elected editor of the Cincinnati Law Review, authored two published articles, was elected to the Order of the Coif, and graduated with High Honors in 1973.
As a Judicial Clerk to the Honorable Myron L. Gordon, United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin for two years, from 1973-1975, Mike helped author hundreds of decisions.
Having served with distinction as an associate in the Milwaukee office of Foley & Lardner from 1975-1979, Mike was selected by the management committee to become the first resident trial attorney in the Madison office of Foley & Lardner.
Elected a partner in 1981, Mike remained at that firm until 1995. In that time, Mike tried cases in several states, winning the longest civil trial in Wisconsin history (14 weeks), and securing the largest plaintiff’s verdict in the history of the firm following a six week trial in Florida. His accomplishments also include having been the first attorney in the United States ever to use at trial the live testimony of foreign witnesses, whose testimony was broadcast by satellite television from London directly into an American courtroom.
In 1995, Mike was selected from over 200 applicants by then Attorney General James E. Doyle to serve as Wisconsin’s first Assistant Attorney General & Telecommunications Advocate, responsible for dealing with competition and consumer protection issues associated with the deregulation of telecommunications.
He returned to private practice in 1996, joining Reinhart, Boerner, Van Deuren, S.C., as a shareholder, and developed the litigation department for that firm’s Madison office. He did the same thing at Neider & Boucher, S.C., where he was a shareholder from 2001 through 2005.
Mike is admitted to practice in all Wisconsin State Courts, the Federal District Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Wisconsin, the Eastern District of Michigan, and the District of Minnesota, the Third and Seventh Circuit United States Courts of Appeal, and the United States Supreme Court. In addition, he has been admitted pro hac vice to try cases in Michigan, Ohio, California, Illinois and Florida.
Married for forty-four years to Chris, when he is not in the office, Mike enjoys reading, outdoor activities, travel, and spending time with his wife, their three adult daughters, sons-in-law and two grandchildren.