Our Firm


Our Story

Recognizing that a small, nimble law firm provides far better value for clients seeking intelligent, prompt and personalized legal services, Jacksonville attorneys Michael Abel and Daniel Bean launched Abel Bean Law. Since then, we have rapidly grown and continue to add quality team members, each bringing rich expertise in specific legal areas to serve our clients.

The team at Abel Bean Law proudly provides top-tier legal services with personalized dedication, flexibility, convenience and value that only a smaller firm can provide. We provide legal services that help our clients resolve disputes and protect their assets… so they can focus on growing their company.

Abel Bean Law’s founders and the entire team are deeply committed to our community. ABL team members are recognized leaders in wide-ranging civic, charitable, community, bar and pro bono services.

In service to our clients and our community, Abel Bean Law’s core values of Character, Competence and Commitment provide an unwavering guide for our team.

    The price of greatness
is responsibility.
   — Winston Churchill

Our Core Values

You are more than a simple, legal transaction.

Abel Bean Law provides the same superior legal services that clients expect of large national law firms, but our team offers the flexibility, convenience and value only a smaller law firm can provide.

At Abel Bean Law, CHARACTER is our most important value. Character-in-action is an essential part of all our relationships and means treating our clients, our own team members, and all other parties, including opposing parties, with the utmost level of honesty, professionalism, and integrity.

COMPETENCE goes beyond having the legal skill, knowledge, and ability to handle the legal matters at hand. For Abel Bean Law, it’s about how to communicate with all sides of an issue to achieve an optimal solution. It’s about having a longer-term perspective so we can represent both proactive and preventative strategies that allow you to focus on growing your business.

At Abel Bean Law, we constantly strive for perfection while also putting our clients’ needs above our own. COMMITMENT is the passionate advocacy and relentless effort needed to hone a legal strategy that delivers the optimal solution for you and your company. And it means following through… until the job is completely done.

Commitment to Our Community

Our team is deeply committed to our community and believe it is our responsibility and honor to provide pro bono legal services as well as advice to civic organizations serving the people of Florida.

We approach each pro bono engagement with the same high levels of commitment and competence as other projects. Team members have supported community initiatives including those related to veterans’ affairs, juvenile crime, guardianship, probate and prisoners’ rights, and many more.

We have also been active in leadership roles in the Jacksonville Bar Association, local public radio/PBS television, and bar service at the state and federal levels.

Introducing Our Team

Focusing on what is important to you.

We value our team members, and only recruit the best based on their strength of character, their intellect and decision-making abilities, and their client-first philosophy.

MICHAEL ABEL
Co-Founder

Michael Abel is an experienced
and well-respected legal expert.
With over 27 years of practice,
Mike’s clients rely on his
sound judgment and
effective legal insight to resolve a
wide-range of issues.

CHARLES M. TRIPPE, JR.
Partner

Charles Trippe has served as a litigation partner of
a national law firm, as a senior in-house attorney for
a Fortune 500 corporation, as the General Counsel to the
Governor of Florida, and as Chief Counsel of the
Federal Aviation Administration.

KATIE WUBKER
Attorney

After graduating from law school,
Katie Wubker has expanded her knowledge and legal expertise through various roles with the Supreme Court of Florida, the US District Court, in-house counsel and private practice. With over 15 years’ experience, Katie provides skilled counsel to clients on matters that include contract negotiation, general business advice and proactive legal strategies.

JACKIE A. VAN LANINGHAM
Attorney

After graduating in the top three of her class at Florida State University College of Law, Jackie joined a national law firm where she gained experience in multistate class action litigation, consumer finance, labor and employment, and complex commercial litigation. Jackie specializes in the areas of trust and probate, contract disputes, banking, and administrative law.

MELINDA HIGBY
Business Manager/Paralegal

Melinda Higby has over 25 years
paralegal experience working with
distinguished trial attorneys in the state.
Mindy is also responsible for the business
management of Abel Bean Law and assists the team
by supporting the needs of the rapidly growing
law practice, while still maintaining
a personal commitment to every client.

TRACI PEREZ
Paralegal

Traci has an extensive background as a problem solver and client advocate, while consistently providing superior and compassionate service.  Prior to joining Abel Bean Law, Traci was the paralegal and law firm administrator for a small Jacksonville firm.

DANIEL BEAN
Co-Founder

Daniel Bean’s broad-ranging experience
in legal matters is enhanced by his 25+ years
with the US Navy. Daniel has skillfully resolved
complex commercial litigation matters in
both federal and state levels.
Additionally, he also is
a skilled mentor in policy matters.

ANDREW STEIF
Partner

Andrew Steif has spent more than 11 years handling
complex commercial litigation matters in state
and federal court. Andrew has represented clients in hundreds
of matters, including in the transportation, real property, banking, and appellate sectors.

ERIN ALLEN
Attorney

With over 10 years’ experience in both
business and law, Erin Allen has a
proven ability to manage complex cases
to achieve resolution. Erin’s background
in business gives her an added
advantage to assist clients in areas such
as commercial and civil litigation and
contractual negotiation and agreements.

CRAIG AMES
Senior Counsel

Craig Ames is experienced in
labor relations, contract negotiations, unfair labor practices,
representation hearings, arbitration, employment practices,
risk management & insurance.

KAREN IBACH BOWDEN
Attorney

Karen is an experienced transactional lawyer and litigator who provides strategic, business-oriented and proactive legal advice and support to her clients. Karen has practiced law for over twenty years in a wide range of areas, including employment law, litigation, health care, real estate, contracts, business,
and commercial lending.

SUSAN M. SCHAFER
Legal Assistant/Paralegal

Suzie, a Michigan native, graduated with honors
from Oakland University with a BS in Business Management and a minor in Accounting. She started a small business, which she continues to run today out of her home. After spending two years as a vital team member within a premier law firm as an Office Service Specialist, she agreed to join Abel Bean Law.


Individual commitment to a group effort – that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.   – Vince Lambardi

More About Our Services

Abel Bean Law provides a wide range of legal services equal to those of top-tier law firms, with the flexibility and convenience only a smaller law team can provide.

By engaging our General Counsel services, leadership can focus on growing their business while Abel Bean Law takes care of the many day-to-day legal matters that arise. Our innovative program – The General Counsel Program -serves as a reliable in-house partner that provides customized solutions without the anxiety of billable hourly pricing. For either a monthly retainer or other flexible pricing arrangements, our General Counsel services are an affordable legal resource for small and medium-sized businesses and emerging start-ups. ABL takes care of the many day-to-day legal matters that arise.

Abel Bean Law provides customized services to address the complexities of civil litigation and dispute resolution. We have deep, extensive background with trials and appeals in both state and federal courts, including alternative dispute resolution forums. Our experience includes the following areas:

  • Commercial Litigation – commercial matters such as breach of contract, breach of warranty and business tort claims, declaratory judgment actions, claims arising out of fraud allegations
  • Real Estate Litigation – all matters involving representation of developers, purchasers, title insurers, lenders, and landlords and tenants
  • Trust and Estate Litigation – includes representation of both individual, professional trustees and large beneficiaries and probate matters
  • Corporate Litigation – disputes arising out of business entity governance, shareholder actions, derivative actions, corporate dissolution, merger and acquisition (M&A) claims
  • Transportation Litigation – Carmack Amendment, contract, demurrage, and other disputes in federal and state court

Companies, communities and organizations often need assistance
communicating their point-of-view and recommendations with local, state and federal officials.

As a registered lobbyist, Dan Bean represents individual and corporate clients and helps them navigate the City of Jacksonville’s regulatory bodies to achieve their desired goals.

We know our home town and our home state. We are insiders in the courthouse and in our community. Thus, Abel Bean Law provides legal services in coordination with national or other out-of-area firms that are representing clients in Florida courts. We deliver top-tier legal representation to national firms and clients that have litigation pending in Florida State Courts (and especially the Fourth Judicial Circuit) and the United States District Court, Middle District of Florida (and especially the Jacksonville Division).

We offer wide-ranging advice and counsel to individual corporate leaders as they onboard (or “offboard”) to a new company and includes representation for
employment agreements, non-compete agreements, non-disclosure and
confidentiality agreements (NDAs), and severance agreements.

Our services also include all aspects of the executive employment relationship, including negotiating employment-related contracts and serving as employee’s counsel in the event of termination, disputes, claims or litigation arising under
these agreements.

Contact Abel Bean Law today