Michael has a diverse transactional/litigation practice representing clients in the real estate and construction industries, and other businesses seeking general counsel assistance. He understands the daily business and legal concerns of his clients and has earned a reputation for finding the proper balance between the legal issues and his clients’ business objectives, which allows him to craft efficient, creative and economical solutions to the complex issues his clients encounter.
Michael represents the firm’s real estate owner, developer and contractor clients in a myriad of construction disputes, litigating construction issues through the administrative, trial and appellate process, and various alternative dispute resolution procedures throughout the State of Arizona. Michael has broad experience in complex business and commercial litigation and arbitration cases in several substantive areas, including real estate, intellectual property, corporate and partnership issues.
Michael’s diversified experience has been key to his ability to come up with novel theories when handling complex litigation matters and to develop creative solutions to resolve difficult business problems for his clients. On the transaction side of his practice, Michael has extensive experience in entity formation and governance, drafting and negotiating contracts and advising clients in regard to business and intellectual property matters.
Michael also has extensive experience in advising business clients regarding employment related matters, including internal policies and procedures, restrictive covenants and representing employers in the defense of employment related claims brought before municipal, state or federal agencies, or litigation in state and federal courts.
Construction Litigation: Representation of owners, contractors, subcontractors and suppliers in complex litigation and arbitration matters involving defect allegations, contractor defaults, terminations, lien enforcement and payment issues. Successful pursuit and defense of claims to recover damages arising out of construction defects and design and engineering errors/deficiencies in commercial, multi-family, and large construction projects.
Business and Commercial Litigation: Represent companies and individuals in the prosecution and defense of commercial and business disputes involving a variety of contract and tort claims, including breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, fraud, negligence, conversion, employment, covenants not to compete and other legal theories. Represent financial institutions, businesses and individuals in connection with all aspects of loan enforcement and collection, including suits on notes, suits on guaranties, suits on foreclosures, and various other contract and tort claims. Represent commercial landlords and tenants in litigation involving breach of lease, evictions, and other legal theories. Represent businesses and individuals in regard to the enforcement or defense of intellectual property matters including copyright, trademark and trade secrets in state and federal actions.
Construction and Real Estate Transactions: Preparation and negotiation of various industry contracts for owners, developers and general contractors. Provide legal advice concerning interpretation and construction of contract clauses, insurance and surety coverages and early resolution of day-to-day construction related problems. Represent sellers and buyers in commercial real estate transactions, and commercial landlords and tenants in lease negotiations.
Business and Corporate Law: Assist with the formation, governance, risk assessment, risk management, and risk avoidance, contract preparation and review, and operations for business entities, including the sale or acquisition of business interests or assests. Advise not for profit entities in regard to operation, compliance and board duties and obligations. Represent businesses and individuals in regard to licensing, intellectual property matters involving copyright, trademark and trade secrets.
Employment Matters: Michael has represented employers before the City of Phoenix Equal Opportunity Division, Civil Rights Division of the Arizona Attorney General’s Office, the US EEOC, and in litigation in the Arizona Superior Court and the US District Court, District of Arizona.
Local Counsel: Assist out of state counsel with administrative, trial and appellate, and various alternative dispute resolution matters throughout the State of Arizona. Provide local knowledge and advice concerning local, county and state matters in Arizona for out of state counsel and corporate in-house counsel doing business in Arizona.
2013 MASHup: New Video Art – Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art Presentation and roundtable discussion entitled: “MASHup: New Video Art” featuring DJ Alex Votichenko/ Djentrification, exhibiting video artist Natalie Bookchin and copyright lawyer Michael Cordier. The roundtable discussion was moderated by SMoCA Assistant Curator Claire C. Carter in the SMoCA Lounge on March 20, 2013.
1999 ARIZONA VOLUNTEER LAWYERS FOR THE ARTS Program Co-Chairman and Guest Speaker. Co-chaired a seminar entitled E-Mail in the Workplace presented to the public. The program was a discussion on the positive and negative impact of use of e-mail in business, including employee confidentiality, employer liability, and use by a party in litigation.
1997 STATE BAR OF ARIZONA, CORPORATE AND BUSINESS LITIGATION SUB-SECTION Program Chairman and Guest Speaker. Chaired a seminar entitled Trade Secret Litigation presented to members of the State Bar of Arizona, Business Section and Litigation Section. The program was focused on the protection of trade secrets by a business entity, the drafting and enforcement of confidentiality, non-disclosure and employment agreements.
1997 ARIZONA VOLUNTEER LAWYERS FOR THE ARTS Program Chairman and Guest Speaker. Chaired a seminar entitled Copyright Basics for Artists presented to an audience of artists and members of community arts organizations. The discussion was a primer on basic copyright law including exclusive rights granted to artists under the Copyright Statutes, use of copyright notices, copyright registration procedures, and a discussion of artists’ moral rights.
1997 SOUTHWEST ARTS CONFERENCE Guest Speaker. Delivered presentation regarding the National Arts Stabilization Project to an audience of officers, directors and management of state-wide arts organizations. The presentation included a discussion of corporate governance, fiduciary duties and internal governance topics as a part of the National Arts Stabilization process.
1996 STATE BAR OF ARIZONA, CORPORATE AND BUSINESS LITIGATION SUB-SECTION Chairman and Organizer. Organized a continuing legal education seminar for sub-section on the topic of the discovery of computer based evidence entitled The Pitfalls and Opportunities of Computer Based Evidence. The discussion centered on discovery rules and the use of discovery to obtain electronically stored data. Topics of discussion also included information on how and when to use computer experts in the reconstruction of electronically stored data.
1996 ARIZONA VOLUNTEER LAWYERS FOR THE ARTS Program Chairman and Guest Speaker. Chaired a seminar entitled Contract Basics for Artists presented to an audience of artists and members of community arts organizations. The discussion was a primer of contract law, including discussion of fiduciary relationships with gallery owners pursuant to Arizona statute and general discussion on negotiating and the entering into of contracts.
Michael is rated AV® Preeminent™ by Martindale-Hubbell Highest Possible Peer Review Rating in Legal Ability and Ethical Standards and identified as a Top-Rated Lawyer™ in Labor & Employment Law by Martindale-Hubbell. Michael is also a contributing author for the “Arizona Litigation Guide” published by the Maricopa County Bar Association Litigation Section, for 2015 and the to be published edition for 2019.