Top Notch Humanitarian and Legal Elite – Meet Michael Stein of Ben Moshe and Stein
By Candice Wiener
When I think of a solid and genuine hearted man in our local community, right away I think of Michael Stein. I first met Michael Stein around 10 years ago as I was helping a family member navigate through some hard-pressed family legal woes.
My family member was married to a prominent CEO in town with strong connections in the Las Vegas legal community and well versed on gaming the legal system by obtaining consultations with the top family law practitioners to create a conflict of interest with them all. We basically hit a brick wall on finding the right attorney. Making matters worse, my family member was suffering with financial and health problems.
We realized few lawyers were not conflicted out of representation, willing to work for discounted rates or on a pro bono basis, and not intimidated to take on the powerhouse law firm we were facing. I knew there had to be competent representation out there who would see the injustice and take on this complicated case. So, we made an appointment at the Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada. The intake and case workers worked hard to find an attorney who was not prohibited from taking on the assignment because of a conflict of interest and willing take the case on a pro-bono basis, but no one would take on the powerhouse law firm. That’s when we met Michael Stein who was a partner at Snell & Wilmer at that time.
Michael was clear with us that family law was not his practice area and that he would need to review the statutes and case law to get up to speed. He let us know he would need help since the case had been ongoing and he primarily practiced business and real estate law and commercial litigation. Michael told us that any associate who helped him would do so voluntarily as well. We were thrilled to meet Alison Krieser who agreed to work with Michael on the case and on a pro-bono basis. Today, Alison practices corporate law and is a partner with the prestigious law firm Katten in its Dallas, Texas office.
Supported by Snell & Wilmer, Alison and Michael simply got to work without hesitation, studying the proper case law, statutes, and case files. Alison and Michael litigated and achieved an unexpected favorable outcome. Watching them during the depositions and in court, it became readily apparent that Alison and Michael were not only fearless advocates for what’s right, but they always maintained professionalism towards witnesses, opposing counsel, and the court. It was so refreshing to see such professionalism. Michael was like a guardian angel and didn’t feel intimidated in the slightest bit, even with no family law experience! Not just a professional relationship, but even more so a respected personal relationship was developed from this circumstance.
Since that occasion, I know firsthand that Michael has taken on difficult cases on a pro bono basis to address injustice including one in 2022. He dedicated hours of time to the case resulting in a favorable outcome for his pro-bono client. Michael Stein, having earned a prestigious Martindale® AV Preeminent rating from his peers and judges, is one of the most brilliant and ethical attorneys I have ever had the pleasure of working with in Nevada.
Michael and I stayed in touch throughout the years. I enjoyed seeing his posts on social media spending time with his three daughters Mia, Daria, and Gia, seeing his youngest daughter, who he often calls “The G,” develop into a beautiful young lady, and the trips and journeys they share. As much as law and family life are Michael’s passions, he also has a deep love for the arts. Over 10 years ago, with the support and encouragement of many including his former law firm Snell & Wilmer and partner Steven Yoken, Michael created Paint the Town™ — an annual one night only “pop up” fine art gala benefiting local charities. Michael believed artists should be compensated for their original works of art whether involved in a charity event or otherwise. A core principle of Paint the Town™ is that all participating artists receive a generous part of the proceeds from the sale of the artist’s pieces, the rest benefits a local charity. By cutting out the fees that would normally flow to an art gallery, Paint the Town™ creates a “win-win-win” experience for the artist, charity, and art enthusiast. You can learn more about Paint the Town™ on its Facebook and Instagram pages and at pttlv.com.
Recently, I caught up with Michael to discuss the business environment surrounding today’s practice of law and Paint the Town™ and to catch up on his family life. He invited me to join him for “an artsy fartsy coffee beverage” at one of his favorite local coffee roasters on the west side. I was aware that he had recently settled a major lawsuit he took on a pro-bono basis and I wanted to ask him about hat experience. Litigators generally have Type A personalities and Michael fits that category. But he is a different kind of Type A personality. He doesn’t like to talk about himself, his firm’s achievements, or his cases. He prefers to talk about the law as a profession, his charity event Paint the Town,™ and his daughters. During our visit, he shared with me how surprised he was when The G recently told him she wants to practice Muay Thai kickboxing. He never thought she meant it, but he said she loves going. We also discussed the diversity of his family. He shared with me how his twin daughters, Mia and Daria, couldn’t be more different yet they are very close. Mia is a certified public accountant and senior finance manager at Zappos. Daria owns her own hair studio in Henderson –Daria Does Hair – specializing in hair coloring, balayage, ombre, and extensions.
After 10 years with Snell & Wilmer, Michael left for the corporate world becoming corporate counsel for a large real estate company. After being in the corporate world, he returned to the private practice of law and formed Ben Moshe & Stein with his partner Amit Ben Moshe. Michael explained that Amit and he share the same philosophy about client service – listen to your clients. Before undertaking an assignment, they strive to understand their clients’ business, industry, and the trends affecting success and risk management. According to Michael, “this approach enables us to better help clients solve problems, recognize opportunities, achieve goals, and deal efficiently and effectively with an ever-changing economic, business, and legal landscape.”
Michael and I also discussed how the practice of law is rapidly changing. And although billing, communication, and time management remain at the forefront of client concerns, law firms have face new problems and challenges after the outbreak of Covid-19. Lawyers and staff worked from home and don’t want to return to the office setting, new lawyers are demanding a better work/home balance, seasoned lawyers are suffering fee earner burnouts, and both depositions and court appearances are more often done by video conferencing. Technology has changed how documents and data are stored and accessed, and the way research is now conducted requires lawyers to possess a stronger working knowledge of technology and software. According to Michael, “the pen and yellow pad are almost obsolete.” Clients have strong digital expectations from their law firms. According to Michael, the future of legal practice management mandates strong case management software systems which offer a broad range of functionality to let lawyers embrace the online world and satisfy client needs for timely information.
When the conversation turned to community, Michael’s eyes lit up. Because of Covid-19, Paint the Town™ took a 3-year break. With a big smile on his face he announced, “you are the first to know that Paint the Town™ is coming back in 2023!” Over the past couple of years, Michael, Amit, and past committee members have discussed how to improve the event and it sounds like it will be a smash hit when it returns! I know I am certainly looking forward to attending. To learn more about Ben Moshe & Stein, visit the firm’s website online at bmslawlv.com.
Congratulations to Michael Stein on being named a 2022 Most Magnificent Men of Las Vegas and a 2022 Leading Lawyer of Las Vegas!
For TOP-NOTCH representation, contact Michael Stein at 702.744.8065