The Business Services Practice Group at Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes, PLC focuses its practice on assisting clients grow their businesses. We assist clients to create a method of distributing the client's products or services to achieve the client's business goals. We assist clients in developing a corporate growth strategy, designing a distribution system, designing and documenting licensing relationships, or franchising the client's concept. We are experts in the regulatory requirements of franchising. We assist clients by drafting the necessary franchise disclosure documents, including the FTC required Franchise Disclosure Document, franchise agreements, area representative agreements, area development agreements, and all ancillary documents necessary to secure the franchisees' performance, as well as work with the client on the required regulatory compliance in various states.
We have industry expertise in the hospitality industry. Michigan is one of the most highly regulated liquor control states in the nation. We routinely obtain liquor licenses for clients all over the state, and are experts in the Michigan Liquor Control Code and the procedures for obtaining or transferring a liquor license in Michigan. We represent national restaurant and hotel chains and local independent owner/operators in various areas of the hospitality industry, such as on premises, off premises, golf courses, and hotels. We also represent clients in litigation at the Michigan Liquor Control Commission.
I have taught Michigan Administrative Law at Cooley Law School since 2001. I also taught Federal Administrative Law at Cooley Law School between 2010 and 2013. I am the past chair of the Administrative Law Section of the Michigan Bar Association. My vast experience in navigating the Michigan regulatory maze gives me unique abilities to assist clients in virtually all agencies regulating businesses.
I have written several articles for publication on various topics. I co-authored “Recent Developments in Administrative Law,” ICLE State of the Law, 1991, and authored “Recent State Court Decisions,” Administrative Law Quarterly, Winter 1991, Spring 1992. In 2003, I co-authored “Vive la Difference? Selective Enforcement of Franchise Agreement Terms and System Standards,” in the Franchise Law Journal (Fall 2003). In 2004, I participated on a panel that presented a paper on the issue of selective enforcement of franchise agreement terms and system standards at the American Bar Association Forum on Franchising Annual meeting. I am a contributing author for the Michigan Restaurant Association’s Michigan Restauranteur Magazine, writing a column under the title “Ask the Experts.”
I am listed in the Best Lawyers in America (2009 – present) and in Super Lawyers (2009 – present). I was awarded Lawyer of the Year for 2015 by Best Lawyers in the area of Governmental Relations. I have been active with the James Madison College Alumni Association Board of Directors, the Board of Directors of the MSU Alumni Club of Mid-Michigan and a Committee Member of the Michigan State University Alumni Association, Alumni as Resource Committee. A member of the Catholic Lawyers’ Guild, I also belong to St. Martha’s Parish in Okemos and St. Martha’s Council of Knights of Columbus. In 1998, Michigan Governor John Engler appointed me to the Board of the Michigan Municipal Bond Authority and served until his term expired on March 31, 2004. In 2002, Governor Engler appointed me to the Board and as Chairman of the newly created Michigan Public Education Facilities Authority and served on the MPEFA board until 2010. In 2011, Governor Snyder appointed me to Liquor Licensing Advisory Rules Committee, which was charged with recommending revisions to the Liquor Control Code and Rules. In 2012, I served as a facilitator at the International Franchise Association’s Annual Convention in Orlando, Florida, where I facilitated a discussion on the topic of “Disclosure Issues related to Promotional Franchise Sales Incentive Programs.”
Specialties: Franchise Law
Alcoholic Beverage Regulation
Michigan Administrative Law
Michigan Regulated Businesses