Serving Lake County And The Surrounding Community For Over 40 Years
In 1960, Robert A. Clair invited John W. Wiles to join him in the practice of law in the City of Willoughby. At the time, Clair had been practicing law for several years and both his father and brother were judges in Lake County. In 1961, Clair and Wiles formed a partnership known as “Clair and Wiles” to engage in the general practice of law.
In the beginning, Clair worked primarily in representing private citizens with legal matters, while Wiles devoted his practice to insurance defense work. The practice expanded rapidly over the next five years, with Daniel F. Richards joining the law firm as an associate attorney. He was made a partner one year later and the firm became known as “Clair, Wiles Richards.”
Using community contacts cultivated through extensive civic involvement and service, Wiles developed his practice in the municipal law area, serving as legal counsel for a number of cities and townships. The firm represented the City of Mentor, the City of Kirtland, as well and Painesville, Concord, Leroy and Madison Townships. During this time, Daniel Richards worked to expand the firm’s litigation expertise in defending a wide variety of negligence actions on behalf of the insurance industry.
Richard O. Bates joined the firm in the early 1980s, having practiced law with his father Madison, Ohio for over twenty years. The firm then became known as “Clair, Wiles, Richards and Bates.” Mr. Bates was responsible for significantly expanding the firm’s probate practice to include the wide array of estate planning services it offers today.
Through the years, the firm developed a reputation for quality legal work and cost-effective solutions for both individuals and businesses. Concurrent with this growth, it continued to provide quality service for an expanding menu of legal matters in Lake, Geauga, Cuyahoga and Ashtabula Counties. It also expanded its commitment to increasingly specialized areas of the law, including land use and zoning, the representation of developers and governmental entities, and corporate law. The firm continues to retain its historically active personal injury practice.
Michael C. Lucas became a partner in 1989 and continues as a partner with Wiles & Richards today. After Richard Bates left the firm in 1988 and Robert Clair retired in 1990, the firm became known as Wiles & Richards, as it is known today and Stephanie E. Landgraf also joined the firm. Abigail E. Bell has joined the firm as well.
The firm’s legal practice is well-respected throughout Northeastern Ohio, and we pride ourselves on serving our clients with personal, aggressive, and quality legal services. In representing and maintaining a diverse clientele while providing fair and reasonable service, Wiles & Richards remains committed to continuing the tradition begun by our founders over forty years ago.