We’re Not Just Lawyers. We’re YOUR Lawyers.

We’re committed to every client. And invested in every outcome.

James A. (Jim) Erwin - Principal

James is the founding partner of Erwin Law LLC, a Chicago firm providing legal counsel in real estate, business, estate planning and bankruptcy. James’ practice focuses primarily on real estate and entrepreneurial business, representing his clients in residential and commercial real estate development, investment and management as well as small to mid-size business start-up and operations guidance. A fast-growing subset of his practice is in counseling athletes in the selection, maintenance and oversight of their real estate and business investments.

James graduated from Lake Forest College in 1989 with a B.A. in Business Administration and obtained his law degree from De Paul University’s College of Law in 1992, the same year in which he was admitted to the Illinois Bar. He earned a Masters in Tax Law (LL.M.) at Chicago-Kent College of Law in 1996 and was also admitted to the Bar of the United States Tax Court that year. In 1997, he was licensed to practice before the United States Supreme Court.

A member of numerous local, state and national bar associations, James is also committed to various philanthropic efforts including support and work for the Lane Tech 2nd Century Foundation, Merit School of Music and Welles Park (Chicago) Little League Baseball.

Shari Erwin - Partner

After obtaining a BA in accounting from DePaul University, Shari went on to graduate from DePaul University College of Law in 1996 and became a member of the Illinois bar that same year. She later was also admitted to practice before the US Tax Court. In 2006, Shari became a licensed CPA in the State of Illinois.

Combining her legal and accounting backgrounds, Shari has gained valuable experience in several high profile entities, including work with the Chicago Appeals Office of the Internal Revenue Service, Ernst & Young LLP, Chapman & Cutler, the National Bank of Canada, Commerzbank and Bearing Point.

She serves as a consultant to Erwin Law, providing expertise on areas of complex accounting and other compliance matters faced by the firm’s corporate clients.

Daniel (Dan) Hawkins - Partner

As the firm’s lead trial attorney, Dan concentrates his practice on the litigation of real estate disputes, complex commercialcases, and construction defect cases. He represents a diverse base of clients including condominium associations, commercial landlords, corporate entities and entrepreneurs.

Dan graduated from Michigan State University with a B.S. in Construction Management, working as a construction manager before receiving his J.D. from Chicago-Kent College of Law in May 2011. Licensed to practice law in Illinois November 2011.

Prior to joining Erwin Law, Dan practiced as a litigation attorney for Brown, Udell, Pomerantz, and Delrahim, where he represented Chicago’s premier real estate developers in commercial litigation. He has also worked for the Chicago Board of Education where he selected and evaluated new leased facilities, negotiated leases, and drafted license agreements.

Mark M. Berardi - Of Counsel

Mark M. Berardi practices in the areas of estate planning, wills, trusts, trust administration, estate administration, probate, guardianship and tax preparation, planning and avoidance.

Mark earned his Juris Doctor magna cum laude from Chicago-Kent College of Law in May 2011 where he was a member and editor of the Chicago-Kent Law Review for two years. His studies focused on estate planning, tax law, and securities and futures regulation. During his law school career, Mark interned at the United States Securities and Exchange Commission and served as a law clerk to the Honorable Henry Simmons in the Cook County Circuit Court. He was also a law clerk at law firm that focused on estate and tax planning, including drafting estate plans with the goal of minimizing the estate tax liability of estates.

Prior to earning his law degree, Mark received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago, graduating summa cum laude with a major in economics and with highest distinction from the Economics Department. In addition to his legal work, he has presented seminars on estate tax and planning for the University of Illinois Extension Office.

Michael N. Oreluk - Associate

Michael graduated magna cum laude from Vanderbilt University in 2008, earning a B.S. in Cognitive Studies.

He earned his Juris Doctor from Tulane University Law School in 2011, with a Certificate in Maritime Law.  During law school, he was published in the Tulane Journal of Technology and Intellectual Property for his analysis of digital property rights

Michael practices in the area of bankruptcy law.  Prior to working at Erwin Law, he represented debtors in the filing of bankruptcy petitions, Rule 2004 examinations, contested hearings, and adversary proceedings.

Michael is admitted to practice in the State of Illinois (2011), the State of California (2013 Inactive Status), and the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois (2011 General Bar).

Ezekial McDonald-Lewis - Associate Attorney

Ezekial McDonald-Lewis - Associate Attorney

Ezekial McDonald-Lewis joined Erwin Law in 2021, and practices in the areas of civil litigation and real estate, bringing to bear his background in title insurance and real estate matters.

Zeke passed the Illinois State Bar in 2020, and practiced civil litigation and family law before joining Erwin Law. He earned his Juris Doctor from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in December of 2019 and, while there, represented clients in landlord-tenant and employment litigation through the Neighborhood Law Clinic. He also helped collect research for a study on revocation of supervision in Wisconsin, and was a T.A. for first-year law students in property law and criminal law classes.

Zeke received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in December 2016, double-majoring in Legal Studies and Philosophy. He received a certificate in Criminal Justice, as well. His Criminal Justice internship, a requirement for the Program, resulted in a Probation and Parole Agent position through the Wisconsin Department of Community Corrections.

 

 

 

 

Ralph Marks - Litigation Assistant

Alicia Erwin - Managing Real Estate Assistant

Angela Adams - Real Estate Assistant