Attorney Marlaine C. Teahan - Fraser Trebilcock...

Marlaine C. Teahan

Shareholder / Lansing


  • State University of New York at Buffalo School of Law (J.D., 1985)
  • State University of New York, Stony Brook (B.A., 1981)

Bar & Court Admissions

  • All State Courts in Michigan
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern and Western Districts of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern and Southern Districts of New York
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 6th Circuit

Marlaine works closely with individuals and families to:

- create estate plans that fit each client's unique situation; and

- effectively handle probate court matters, making the process understandable.

Marlaine C. Teahan is Co-Chair of the firm's Trusts and Estates practice and previously served on the Board of Directors as Secretary and Treasurer at Fraser Trebilcock. She is a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel, and is a past Chair of the Probate and Estate Planning Section of the State Bar of Michigan. Her outstanding legal work continues to be recognized among her peers and leading legal publications, including selection as one of the Top 100 Super Lawyers in Michigan and as the Lawyer of the Year in Trusts and Estates for Lansing, Michigan for Best Lawyers.

It's important to Marlaine to be active in the community. She regularly volunteers her time, having served on the Board of Directors of her Church, and acting as a past member of the Board of Trustees for the Capital Region Community Foundation, an organization that works to enhance the quality of life in the Tri-County area through permanent, charitable endowment funds. She also volunteered with her sons’ Boy Scout Troop (Troop 645 of Grand Ledge, Michigan), serving for many years on the Executive Committee and as the Secretary. Marlaine’s fondest service memory is of a 2011 family mission trip to the Dominican Republic in which she and her family helped build a school and worked each day with the community’s children. She currently attends a small group and is on the Greeting Team at Rivers Edge Community Church.

Professional Associations
  • Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Council (ACTEC) (2013-Present)
    • Michigan Chapter’s Nominating Committee, Member (2019 – present)
  • State Bar of Michigan
    • Alternate Dispute Resolution Section, Member
    • Probate and Estate Planning Section
      • Chair (2017-2018)
      • Chair-Elect (2016-2017)
      • Vice-Chair (2015-2016)
      • Secretary (2014-2015)
      • Treasurer (2013-2014)
      • Nominating Committee, Chair (2020-2021) and Member (2018-2020) 
      • Legislation Development and Drafting Committee, Member (2017 – present)
      • Membership Committee (2014-2016)
      • Council Member (2006-2013)
      • Committee on Special Projects, Chair (2012-2013)
      • Court Rules, Procedures and Forms Committee, Chair (2008-2013) and Member (2014-present)
        • Sub Committee Probate Court Appeals Project, Chair (2010-2017)
      • Liaison, Supreme Court Administrative Office Estates and Trusts Forms Work Group (2008-2014)
      • Michigan Trust Code Michigan Court Rules Subcommittee, Chair (2009-2010)
      • Michigan Trust Code Committee (2005-2010)
    • Elder Law and Disability Rights Section, Member
      • Remote Notarization and Witnessing Joint Committee with Probate and Estate Planning Section, Member (2020-2021)
    • Master Lawyers Section, Member
  • Ingham County Bar Association, Probate and Trust Section, Co-Chair (2011-June 2016)
  • Greater Lansing Estate Planning Council
    • President (2009-2010)
    • Secretary (2008-2009)
    • Board Member (2007-2010)
    • Member (2005-2015)
  • Michigan Supreme Court Administrative Office
    • Forms Committee, Estates and Trusts Work Group Section (2009-2014)
    • TimeGuidelines Work Group, Probate Section (2009)
  • Panelist, Estates and Protected Individuals Code Q&A Panel (2010-2018)
  • Capital Region Community Foundation
    • Board of Trustees (2015-2017)
    • Marketing and Development Committee (2015-2017)
  • Boy Scouts of America Troop 645, Grand Ledge, Michigan
    •  Committee Member (2007-2015)
    •  Outdoor/Activity Chair (2007-2012)
    •  Secretary (2012-2014)
  • Mission Trip, Dominican Republic (Summer 2011)
  • Our Savior Lutheran Church and School, Lansing, Michigan
    •  Board of Directors (2015-2018)
    • Meals Ministry Coordinator (2014-2017)
  • Open Door Ministry, Volunteer (2012)
  • Habitat for Humanity Volunteer (2009)
Honors & Distinctions
  • Achieved an AV© peer review rating by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Named to 'Top 100 Attorneys in Michigan' list in 2018, 2021, and 2022; and named to 'Top 50 Female Attorneys in Michigan' (2014 - 2022), and 'Top 50 Consumer Law Attorneys in Michigan' and 'Top 25 Female Consumer Law Attorneys in Michigan' lists by Super Lawyers in 2014 - 2018; (list now retired).
  • Named a Top 30 'Women in the Law' by Michigan Lawyers Weekly in 2018
  • Named "Michigan Super Lawyer" by the publishers of Law & Politics Magazine (2010-2022), Estate Planning & Probate, Estate and Trust Litigation
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America, Trusts and Estates in Lansing (2010-2024)
  • Selected as a 'Lawyer of the Year' in Trusts and Estates for Lansing, Michigan by The Best Lawyers in America in 2022 and 2019

  • Selected as a '2022 Leading Michigan Lawyer' by Leading Lawyers for Trust, Will & Estate Planning; continuously since 2013
  • Completed Probate and Estate Planning Certificate Program, Probate and Estate Planning Section, State Bar of Michigan and The Institute of Continuing Legal Education (2006), and now a faculty member.
  • Elected to Board of Directors of Fraser Trebilcock, serving as Treasurer and Secretary, (2019 - 2020), and Compensation Committee, Member (2021)
Publications & Presentations
  • Co-Editor, Trust Administration Under the Michigan Trust Code, Second Edition, Institute of Continuing Legal Education (2022)
  • Co-Editor, Trust Administration Under the Michigan Trust Code, Institute of Continuing Legal Education (2010, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2017, 2021)
  • Chapter Author
    • "Mending a Broken Trust" (2022), Trust Administration Under the Michigan Trust Code, Second Edition, Institute of Continuing Legal Education 
    • "Overview of Estate Planning" (2008-2021), "Tax Considerations" (2008-2010), and "Getting Started" (2008-2017), Michigan Estate Planning Handbook, Institute of Continuing Legal Education
  • Lecturer for The Institute of Continuing Legal Education
    • 57th Annual Probate and Estate Planning Institute, "How Do You Mend a Broken Trust" Program and Moderator of the Litigation Track (May and June, 2017)
    • 56th Annual Probate and Estate Planning Institute, Program Coordinator and Moderator (May and June 2016)
    • 21st Annual Drafting Estate Planning Documents, "Drafting Durable Powers of Attorney 2012" (January and February 2012)
    • Administration of Trusts under the Michigan Trust Code, "Trustee's Duty to Inform and Report to Beneficiaries" (December 2015 and October 2010)
    • 50th Annual Probate and Estate Planning Institute, "Michigan Trust Code Rules and Forms" (May and June, 2010)
    • 19th Annual Drafting Estate Planning Documents Seminar, "A Drafting Perspective on the Michigan Trust Code" (January and February, 2010)
    • Fundamentals of Estate Administration Seminar, "Overview of Taxes and Returns" (February, 2009)
  • Article Author, "A Summary of Michigan's New Durable Power of Attorney Law 2012 PA 141 - MCL 700.5501," Michigan Probate and Estate Planning Journal (2012)
  • Article Author, "MTC: New Court Forms and Rules" (2010), Michigan Probate and Estate Planning Journal, State Bar of Michigan
  • Upper Michigan Legal Institute, "Probate and Estate Planning Update" (June 2013, June 2014, June 2020 (cancelled due to COVID-19), June 2022)
  • Michigan Supreme Court Judicial Conference, Faculty Member, "Financial Issues in Conservatorships that May Involve or Require Review by the Probate Court" (2010)
  • "Probate Update on SCAO Forms and Michigan Court Rules," Ingham County Bar Association, Probate and Trust Law Section (2010)
  • "Update on the Michigan Trust Code and Highlights of Relevant SCAO Forms and Michigan Court Rules," Greater Lansing Estate Planning Council (2009)
  • "Special Needs Trusts," Ingham County Bar Association, Probate and Trust Law Section (2008)
Testimonials & Client Matters

"A thousand thumbs up!

I was on a mission to find the very best lawyer for revocable living trusts earlier this year (2021) after I discovered some truly glaring omissions in our current trust documents. I was looking not only for a “fixer,” but someone who could put us on the right track, and then stay with us for annual reviews and updates as we age, retire, and relocate.

I found Marlaine Teahan online and decided to call her after reading a list of honors and awards after her name that just went on and on. But I knew these substantial accolades, as wonderful as they are, wouldn’t in and of themselves make Mrs. Teahan the right choice for my husband and me unless I determined I could entrust to her the most personal details (health, income, savings, debt) of our lives. It’s a scary thing to share that kind of information with a stranger! Mrs. Teahan wasn’t a stranger for long. During the initial call, she was friendly, unhurried, and genuinely interested in learning about us. By the time I hung up, I’d found the attorney I wished we’d started with.

We began our journey with Mrs. Teahan in mid-March, and concluded with our new trust documents signed, sealed and delivered on June 9 (today). Mrs. Teahan was unbelievably thorough in walking us through, step-by-step, every aspect of what we needed to achieve our goals. She was prompt in replying to emails, and very patient in helping me understand some of the more difficult features of what we were working together to accomplish. Friendly, dependable, honest, and incredibly knowledgeable about both asset protection and tax minimization – that is how I can best describe Mrs. Teahan’s work with us on restating our revocable living trust. Her fee is very reasonable; in fact, I feel as if I received far more than I paid for (fantastic new trust and even more fantastic peace of mind!). My husband and I are now able to relax and know that our final wishes are succinctly expressed, and that they will be carried out in the most efficient, tax-favored way possible. Yay!

I should add that the icing on the cake of our relationship with Mrs. Teahan is that she is willing and available to meet with us every year to go over our new documents to determine if changes will be necessary in light of law changes or even a move south after retirement. Calling on resources from around the country, she is able to assist us from Michigan regardless of the state in which we choose to reside. She makes everything so easy! I simply cannot say enough about what a positive and successful experience we enjoyed as a result of partnering with Mrs. Teahan to achieve our trust goals." - Tony D. and Mindy Jane Moore

"Ann and I want to thank you for your exemplary concern and care for us on Tuesday in your office. You made us feel as though we were your most important clients, and we couldn't be happier. Our financial advisor hit a grand slam when he gave us your name. Once again, thank you so much for your expertise and professionalism. We will return to you for any of our future needs." - John & Ann G. 

"Fraser Trebilcock has been invaluable to my wife and me in these last four years. In that time, all four of our parents passed away and the firm's expertise and foresight helped us to navigate some very difficult and complicated times. Marlaine Teahan is more than just our lawyer, she is a trusted friend." – John D.

"Marlaine is top-notch estate planning lawyer. I have enjoyed working with her, and I have been impressed with her knowledge and judgment." – Private Practice Attorney

“Marlaine, I can’t thank you enough for the excellent representation, guidance and thoughtful counsel you provided in this case. After doing a mental review of the hearing, you were “quick on your feet” during the proceedings and I was especially impressed at your final argument – Brilliant! I felt so much more confident going into a potentially negative situation with your help.” - Jenny T.

"You did an outstanding job presenting to the ICBA Probate and Trust Law Section earlier this month. I was impressed by how much material you were able to cover in such a short time frame, paying attention to detail while moving quickly through your outline – the perfect balance! Thanks for contributing your time and expertise to raise the competence level of our local bar members." – Dennis W. Fliehman, President and CEO of the Capital Region Community Foundation

"I have had the pleasure of serving with Marlaine on the State Bar of Michigan Probate and Estate Planning Section Council and seeing her work through numerous ICLE presentations and responses on various bar issues fora. Marlaine is exemplary and I would not hesitate to refer a client to her." – Private Practice Attorney

"I have known Marlaine Teahan since she began to practice in Michigan, and I have observed her develop into a knowledgeable and highly regarded lawyer. She also gives back to the profession through service to the State Bar Probate and Estate Planning Section and through frequent lectures for our continuing legal education service." – Private Practice Attorney

"Marlaine is an outstanding attorney – she is an officer and will be Chairperson of the Michigan Bar's Probate and Estate Planning Section in three years. She constantly strives to improve Michigan's probate system for the public and lawyers. I give her the highest rating possible." – Private Practice Attorney