Benjamin H. Shipley III


Robertson, Beasley, Shipley & Robinson, PLLC
315 North Seventh Street
Fort Smith, AR 72901
United States

Tel: 479-782-8813


Ben Shipley is Of Counsel in the Fort Smith office of RBSR, a leading full service Arkansas law firm.

Ben has an extensive background representing employers in a wide range of labor and employment law matters and related litigation. He has appeared before administrative agencies on behalf of employers on numerous occasions, including work before the National Labor Relations Board, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and the Arkansas Employment Security Division. He also represents clients in both state and federal court proceedings.

Ben has substantial experience with the federal and state statutes and regulations governing the employer-employee relationship. He has evaluated and addressed employer needs concerning a host of legal issues involving the workplace, from the drafting of employee handbooks to the management of complex, multi-party lawsuits. He has worked with employers in handling all of the legal aspects of traditional labor-management relations, including union elections, contract negotiations, labor and employment-related arbitration, strikes, and litigation.

His legal work includes a full-spectrum business transactional practice, including the formation and organization of corporations, partnerships and limited liability companies. He advises clients on the preparation of corporate agreements and documents, the purchase, financing, and sale of assets, and issues involving reorganization, dissolution, and liquidations.

Ben has an active commercial litigation practice, and handles the preparation and trial of the full range of business and commercial disputes. He has represented business clients involved in controversies concerning contracts, real estate, construction, employee disputes, partnership controversies, shareholder actions, business torts, trade secrets, banking and finance, director and officer liability, business dissolutions, and other legal areas. When needed, he has continued to provide effective representation throughout appellate proceedings.

In addition to these areas of practice, Ben also has considerable experience advising retailer clients operating in Arkansas on all aspects of the state’s alcoholic beverage licensing and regulation. He provides assistance before state and local agencies to help clients obtain necessary liquor licensing, and advises on compliance with Arkansas statutes and regulations in this area.

  • University of Arkansas (Juris Doctor, 1980)
  • Southern Methodist University (B.S., with honors, 1976)
Admitted to Practice
  • Arkansas (1980)
  • United States District Courts of Arkansas (1980)
  • Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals (1980)
  • United States Supreme Court (2002)
  • Arkansas Bar Association
    • Labor and Employment Section
    • Foundation Fellow
    • Law School Committee
  • American Bar Association
    • Labor and Employment Law Section
  • Alliance of Alcohol Industry Attorneys & Consultants
  • Western Arkansas Human Resource Association (President 2012)
  • W.B. Putnam American Inn of Court (Master)

The attorneys of Robertson, Beasley, Shipley & Robinson represent employers in all areas of labor and employment law. They have considerable experience in providing practical advice concerning legal matters which can arise daily in the workplace, including hiring and human resources issues, compensation practices, wage-hour issues, employee misconduct and disciplinary actions, employee loyalty issues, and proprietary information and trade-secret protection.

Our attorneys regularly assist managers in navigating and maintaining compliance with the complex state and federal laws and regulations that relate to employee relations. They routinely evaluate needs and provide counsel and advice relating to the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), and the Fair Labor Standards Act. (FLSA), among others.

They also work closely with clients to assist in the careful preparation of personnel manuals, affirmative action plans, and drug-and-alcohol policies. They draft all manner of employment-related documents, including employment agreements, separation agreements, non-competition agreements, and non-disclosure documents.

Our attorneys have extensive experience in representing management across multiple forums. They are familiar with investigations and lawsuits involving the Department of Labor, including those under the Occupational Safety and Health Act and the Fair Labor Standards Act. The firm’s attorneys have successfully represented state, local, and national employers in all aspects of traditional labor-management relations, including labor arbitrations and union contract and collective bargaining negotiations. They also have extensive experience in providing effective and zealous representation before administrative agencies, as well as in state and federal courts.

Should the need arise, our attorneys have the expertise to provide comprehensive litigation counsel and support. They have managed cases spanning the range of employment law, including contract administration, discrimination cases of all types, hiring, discipline, and discharge matters, harassment issues, and employee benefits. In each instance, Robertson, Beasley, Shipley & Robinson attorneys seek to provide their employer clients with a timely, cost-effective resolution to the legal issues affecting their business.

Robertson, Beasley, Shipley & Robinson, PLLC, (RBSR) is among the oldest law firms in the Arkansas-Oklahoma region, with a rich tradition of service to its clients and the legal community.

RBSR represents individuals, small businesses, and large corporations on a wide variety of legal matters. In addition to providing civil advocacy in state and federal courts, the firm’s attorneys advise and counsel clients on contract, corporate, commercial, and tax matters.  They work closely with business clients on all types of labor and employment law issues. They also help individuals and business owners in estate planning and trust and probate administration, and provide assistance in family law matters, real estate, and bankruptcy.

Building and maintaining productive, long-term client relationships has been a hallmark of the firm. Several national insurers became clients of the firm during the 1920s, and have remained thus for a period of more than 90 years.  RBSR attorneys prepare and try cases encompassing all areas of insurance practice, including motor vehicle accidents, property, fire, and casualty claims, construction litigation, premises liability, insurance coverage disputes, excess coverage, bad faith, and products liability.