BACKGROUND AND EXPERIENCE

Attorney Joseph Conrad Smith is a graduate of Harvard University Law School, where he received his Juris Doctorate in 1975.  From 1975 until 1980, Mr. Smith was an associate attorney in the Detroit office of the law firm of Dykema Gossett.  In 1980, he founded his own firm, Joseph Conrad Smith, P.C.

Law bookMr. Smith has represented plaintiffs in litigation matters for more than thirty-five years. During that time, he has successfully tried numerous wrongful death and serious injury cases. He has also used alternative dispute resolution approaches, such as binding arbitration, special mediations and facilitations, to resolve complex cases. Mr. Smith represented and obtained monetary awards for more than 100 women in the silicone gel breast implant class action against Dow Corning and other breast implant manufacturers.

Mr. Smith is admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court; the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit; the United States Court of Claims; and all State and Federal Courts of Michigan.

PROFESSIONAL RECOGNITION:

 Each year since 2003, Mr. Smith has been selected by his peers for inclusion in the annual publication, The Best Lawyers in America.

Mr. Smith has been a Fellow of the Michigan State Bar Foundation since 1997.  Selection as a Fellow signifies “significant accomplishments and dedicated service to the professional community.”  Membership is available only by nomination of other Fellows.  As a result, invitations to membership are extended to a very limited number of Michigan lawyers each year.

Mr. Smith has been a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates since 1994.  Membership in ABOTA, a national organization of trial lawyers, is by invitation only, and is based upon demonstrated trial experience and acumen.  Its membership is evenly divided between members of the plaintiffs’ bar and the defense bar.  The organization is dedicated to the preservation of the jury trial system, and promoting the highest standards of advocacy, ethics and civility in trial practice.  Mr.Smith served as President of the Michigan Chapter of ABOTA in 2013. 

For nearly two decades, Mr. Smith has held the highest rating (AV) assigned by Martindale-Hubbell, the leading evaluator of legal skill and professionalism.

In September of 2014, Mr. Smith was inducted into the American College of Trial Lawyers in London, England.  As a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, Mr. Smith is joins a distinguished group of trial lawyers that comprise less than 1% of the trial bar nationwide.  

In 2015, Mr. Smith was selected as a member of the National Association of Distinguished Counsel.  This organization is composed of the “Top One Percent” of  lawyers nationally who demonstrate “the highest ideals of the legal profession.”

MICHIGAN SUPREME COURT APPOINTMENTS:

 In May of 1999, the Michigan Supreme Court appointed Mr. Smith to serve on the Advisory Committee on the Rules of Evidence.  The Committee was composed of six judges, the Wayne County Prosecutor, a professor of law from the University of Michigan, and three practicing attorneys.  In August of 2000, the Committee submitted its first Report to the Michigan Supreme Court.  The Report proposed changes to several Michigan Rules of Evidence, including MRE 703, which governs the admissibility of expert testimonyThe changes to MRE 703 were adopted by the Michigan Supreme Court as submitted.

On December 28, 2006, the Michigan Supreme Court appointed Mr. Smith to a three (3) year term on the Committee on Model Civil Jury Instructions.  The Committee’s mission is to review current civil jury instructions and to make appropriate recommendations to the Supreme Court regarding modifications and amendments to those instructions.