Karen Pifer is a real estate attorney who advises and represents clients across the country in wide range of real estate transactions. She is a member of the firm’s Executive Committee, Board of Directors and the Leader in the Real Estate Transactions Practice Group. She represents landlords, tenants, hotel owners and developers in lease negotiations, acquisitions, dispositions, financings and the negotiation of management and franchise agreements.

Karen possesses extensive experience in retail and hospitality matters and is a frequent speaker at the ICSC law conferences. She counsels a wide range of clients from large public companies to small business owners and they have all come to trust and rely on her advice and guidance.



Representative Matters

  • Assists Ramco-Gershenson Properties Trust in the leasing of more than 75 shopping centers located throughout the country
  • Counsels a publicly traded retail tenant in leasing space throughout the country
  • Counseled Phillips Edison and Company on the acquisition and financing of shopping centers located throughout the country
  • Represented a national developer in the acquisition, financing, and leasing to a national drug store chain
  • Represented an office building owner in the leasing of multiple office buildings in the metropolitan Detroit area
  • Represented a life insurance company in closing approximately $5 billion of credit tenant loans

Prior Experience

  • Dykema Gossett PLLC, Attorney, 1994-2000






  • Listed in Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, 2023
    • Recognized as one of America's leading business lawyers in the Real Estate field in Michigan; Chambers USA wrote:
      • Karen Pifer has a national practice and is a trusted adviser to clients in various types of real estate transactions. Her experience includes the acquisition, development, financing and leasing of shopping centers, hotels and industrial buildings, among other real estate projects. "Karen Pifer is a solid, respected practitioner."

  • The Best Lawyers in America, 2010-2024
    • Recognized in practice area of Real Estate Law
  • DBusiness, Top Lawyers, 2013-2015, 2017, and 2018
  • Law Bulletin Media
    • Leading Lawyers, Real Estate Law: Commercial, 2017, 2023
    • Leading Lawyers, Real Estate Law: Finance, 2017, 2023

Professional & Community Involvement

  • International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC)
    • Government Relations Committee, 2011-17
    • Michigan Continuing Education Program Planning Committee Mentor
      • Roundtable Program Chair, 2012, 2013
  • State Bar of Michigan
    • Real Property Law Section
  • Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber
    • Executive Committee, 2010-2013
    • Board of Directors, 2007-2013
  • Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) Detroit
    • Past Programs Chairperson
  • Leadership Oakland
    • Graduate, 1997

News & Insights


  • Media | Honigman Podcast |
  • Karen R. Pifer and Stanley H. Pitts are featured in the DBusiness article “Honigman Elects Partners to Board of Directors”
    Media |
  • Karen R. Pifer is featured in the Inside Counsel article “Honigman’s Pifer counsels Pebblebrook on a string of deals”
    Media |
  • Karen R. Pifer is mentioned as counsel to Pebblebrook in the Law360 article “Honigman Guides Pebblebrook In $125M Loan Deal”
    Media |
  • J. Adam Rothstein and Karen R. Pifer are mentioned as counsel for Pebblebrook in the Law360 article “Honigman Steers $260M Pebblebrook Boston Hotel Deal”
    Media |

Press Releases


  • ICSC U.S. Shopping Center Law Conference
    Event | Orlando, FL | October 24-27, 2018
  • Anchors Away: Co-Tenancy Issues in our new Realty Reality
    Event | October, 2017 |
  • Won't you be my Neighbor? Co-Tenancy, Opening and Operating Covenants
    Event | San Diego, CA | October 16-19, 2013 | | Presenter
  • Anatomy of a Lease - Can We Operate our Business as (Un)Usual?
    Event | Columbus, OH | | | Moderator


  • Real Estate Leasing: Michigan
    Publication | Practical Law Company |
  • Managing Commercial Real Estate Leases: Michigan
    Publication | Practical Law Company |

From Chambers USA:

"Karen Pifer is a solid, respected practitioner."

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