Eva T. Cantarella

Eva T. Cantarella

Bloomfield Hills, Michigan

Eva T. Cantarella is a partner at Hertz Schram.  Her primary practice areas are (i) Property Tax Appeals, and (ii) Employee Benefits, with a focus on class claims for pension benefits.  Ms. Cantarella has been selected as a Super Lawyer by Thomson Reuters; a Top Lawyer by Dbusiness Magazine; Lawyer of the Year (Pensions) by both Lawyers Monthly and Finance Monthly; and Best for Property Tax Appeals in Michigan by Corporate America News.

Property Tax Appeals

Ms. Cantarella has extensively practiced in the Michigan Tax Tribunal where she has successfully resolved hundreds of property tax appeals.  She is a Board member of CBOR (Commercial Board of Realtors) and a member of the National Association of Realtors, the Michigan Association of Realtors, the Michigan Bar, the United States Tax Court, and most United States Court of Appeals, including the United States Supreme Court.  Ms. Cantarella is also a continuing education instructor for CBOR and ICSC (the International Council of Shopping Centers).

Ms Cantarella previously owned and operated Oakland/Macomb Appraisal Services, a real estate appraisal company that performed thousands of appraisals for banks, mortgage companies, and other financial institutions.  This experience has proven invaluable in Ms. Cantarella's successful prosecution of hundreds of property tax appeals for her clients.


Ms. Cantarella has been a speaker and commentator on pension issues in, and to, a variety of fora and media, including pension asset managers, pension and investment reporters, the IRS, Department of Treasury, and other governmental agencies, international consulting and accounting firms, cable television, pension interest organizations and associations, and national, state, and local employee benefit groups.

Ms. Cantarella's activities in the pension arena and comments on pension issues have been reported in/on numerous publications and websites, including www.BenefitsLink.com; www.pensionrights.org; www.TheJournalnews.com; www.CFO.com; the Wall Street Journal, IBL Class Action Reporter; Lawyers Weekly USA; Business News; Gannet News; Cincinnati Enquirer; Hartford Courant; Tax Analysts; and Michigan Benefits and Business. Not surprisingly, Ms. Cantarella is frequently solicited for comment on pension issues by our nation's legislators, employee and retiree organizations, and reporters.

In 2002, Ms. Cantarella authored A Class Act: ERISA Pension Claims and the Class Action Mechanism, which was published in the National Lawyers Weekly and Michigan Lawyers Weekly.  In 2006, Ms. Cantarella organized over 160 law professors and attorneys around the country to advocate for amending ERISA's remedial statutes so as to better protect participants and their beneficiaries with respect to their employer-provided benefits.  The group subsequently grew to 330 members and became known as GEER (Group for Equitable ERISA Remedies).

To date, Ms. Cantarella has prosecuted fourteen class actions for pension benefits, reviewed hundreds of pension plans, pursued numerous individual claims for pension benefits, and, along with her partners at the firm, recovered over $120 million in wrongfully withheld pension benefits.

Areas of Practice

  • Property Tax Appeals
  • Employee Benefits, including pension, disability, health and life ins.
  • Class Claims for Pension Benefits, both private and governmental

Bar Admissions

  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court Western District of Michigan
  • U.S. Court of Appeals Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 1st Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 2nd Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 3rd Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 4th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 5th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 6th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 7th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 8th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 9th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 10th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 11th Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Tax Court


  • Wayne State University Law School, Detroit, Michigan
    • J.D. cum laude
    • Law Review: Wayne Law Review
  • Oakland University, Rochester
    • B.A. summa cum laude
    • Honors: Awards in Mathematics
    • Major: Political Science & Economics


  • Practical Law - Employee Benefits, Comcast Cable Television, 1997
  • Practical Law - Pensions, Comcast Cable Television, 2003
  • ERISA Fiduciary Compliance Review, Deloitte & Touche, 1999
  • Cash Balance Plans, Employee Benefit Security Administration, 1999
  • Cash Balance Plans, ISCEBS - Detroit Area Chapter, 2000
  • Corporate Funds Forum - Cash Balance Plans - The Right Way, Investment Management Institute, 1999
  • Corporate Funds Forum - Round Table on Cash Balance Plans, Investment Management Institute, 2000
  • Cash Balance Plans, Michigan Bar, Tax Section Employee Benefits Subcommittee, 2000
  • ERISA Litigation Seminar, Oakland County Bar Association, 2003
  • Pension Issues, IRS &Treasury Department, 2003
  • Pension Issues, Michigan Center for Aging Policies, 2004
  • Employee Benefits Committee - Cash Balance Plans, Chicago Bar Association, 2004

Honors and Awards

  • Super Lawyer Honoree, 2018
  • Pension Lawyer of the Year USA (Lawyers Monthly), 2017

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Michigan Bar - Tax Section
  • ASPPA Benefits Council of Detroit (a/ka ABC of Detroit), Member