Meet Our JO Team

Jones Obenchain partner, John B. Ford, is a fourth-generation St. Joseph County attorney. Born and raised in South Bend, John attended John Adams High School and was an avid swimmer. John’s practice areas include general business, commercial and residential real estate, employment, construction, estate planning, and probate. Visit to get to know John better and to learn more about how he can help you.

Visit the JO Snack Shack

As part of the 2018 Best Week Ever, Jones Obenchain hosted a water and snack station today in the KeyBank Building plaza from 11:00 am – 2:00 pm. Thanks to all who dropped by on their way to or from the first Red Table Concert of the year to say hi and enjoy a popcorn snack and some good old H2O!

JO Knows Insurance Litigation

At Jones Obenchain, we’ve been representing local, regional, and national insurers and the folks they insure for over 110 years. The work we do for them runs the gamut from defending personal-injury claims, to litigating employment-discrimination claims, to prosecuting and defending insurance-coverage actions, and handling errors-and-omissions lawsuits.

All of this litigation gets us into court…a lot. In 2011 Jones Obenchain tried more civil jury trials in Indiana than all but one other firm.*

Though litigation is an adversarial process, our peers consistently rank us among the best at what we do. So do our clients, if the feedback they’ve given us on legal sites such as AVVO and Martindale-Hubbell are any indication.

But as essential as courtroom skills are to a litigation prac­tice, they’re worthless if our clients and the courts don’t want to read what we have to say. Let’s face it: there’s a lot of writing in a litigation practice, and most legal writing is a chore to get through. We read it because we have to, not be­cause we want to.

So our litigators emphasize writing in plain English and use cutting-edge tech­nology in the documents we publish to make them a pleasure to read. What does that mean, exactly? It’s not unusual to see photographs, hyperlinks, and video embedded in our briefs and motions. These add visual interest to the text and corroborate the arguments without sending readers to riffle through mounds of exhibits.

Not only are plainly written, visually appealing documents easier for clients to read and understand, they help persuade mediators and judges about the merits of our clients’ position. That means we’re often able to bring cases to a successful resolution before we ever step foot in a courtroom.

*Source: 2011 Indiana Jury Verdict Reporter

Happy Memorial Day Weekend!

Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States, and is meant as an opportunity to remember the people who died while serving in the country’s armed forces. The holiday, which is observed every year on the last Monday of May, was formerly known as Decoration Day and originated after the American Civil War to commemorate the Union and Confederate soldiers who died in the war.

The attorneys and staff of Jones Obenchain, LLP wish you and yours a safe and happy Memorial Day Weekend!

JO In Action – CASA Volunteer – Brian Gates

Would you like to make a difference in the life of an abused or neglected child? Consider becoming a Court Appointed Special Advocate like Jones Obenchain partner Brian Gates. Brian has been representing children’s best interests as a CASA since 2002, and now helps train other CASA volunteers by teaching them about the legal system. Find out more about the St. Joseph County CASA program by clicking here:, or visit the national CASA site:


JO Knows Guardian Ad Litem

A “Guardian ad litem” (GAL) is a person the court appoints to investigate what would be in a child’s best interests. Here, we are talking about a child involved in a divorce or parental-rights-and-responsibilities case, including paternity, delinquency, and abuse or neglect cases. The GAL will look into the family situation and advise the court about where the children should live most of the time, whether the child is being harmed by one parent’s substance abuse, and what contact the child should have with the other parent. Jones Obenchain partner, Brian Gates, has experience serving as a GAL and can answer your questions.

JO Knows Commercial Litigation

Contrary to popular belief, business disputes—not personal-injury claims—make up the bulk of non-domestic-relations civil court filings in the United States. That’s right: businesses suing to enforce contractual obligations are what keep our courts busy.

Litigation is often a last resort, but when it can’t be avoided, we work with our commercial clients to manage litigation risks and find the most cost-effective approach to resolving business disputes. We aim to get to the bottom of the matter, avoid lengthy litigation, minimize business disruption, and conclude the case creatively and expeditiously.

Our litigators have decades of experience handling complex, multi-party litigation. We also represent trustees, receivers, creditors, and debtors in major insolvency and restructuring matters.

When a promising deal goes south, or when an employee strikes off on their own to set up a competing enterprise, see why business owners in northwest Indiana and southwest Michigan have looked to Jones Obenchain, LLP for help for over 100 years.

Indiana Primary Election Day

Indiana’s primary election day is a state holiday on which state government is closed, including the Secretary of State’s office. A primary election is a preliminary election in which voters nominate party candidates for office. Voters select candidates for subsequent elections. It is one way that a political party nominates candidates for an upcoming general election. Primary elections are common in the United States and are conducted by the government on behalf of the parties. Indiana primaries are “closed” primaries. When voters sign in at their polling place, the clerks ask them which political party’s ballot they prefer. They vote for only the candidates on that ballot. In the primary, voters nominate the candidates of their party who will be on the ballot in the general election. In Indiana, polling places are open from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. local time.