Hospitality & Alcohol Law

The Hospitality and Alcohol Law practice group at Willingham & Coté, P.C., takes pride in its ability to navigate Michigan’s complex alcohol beverage laws and regulations.

Our attorneys have substantial experience in handling a wide variety of Hospitality and Alcohol related matters including obtaining liquor licenses, transferring liquor licenses, sales or purchases of businesses with liquor licenses, representing licensees in administrative proceedings before the Liquor Control Commission or appeals to courts from adverse administrative rulings, as well as representing industry trade groups.

Our clients benefit from our in depth and “insider” knowledge of the Michigan regulatory system which comes from years of experience working in the field and, in the case of one of our attorneys, working as counsel for the Michigan Liquor Control Commission.  Our in-depth industry knowledge is buttressed by the broad resources of the  law firm which include practices in tax, real estate, commercial litigation and estate planning.





Hospitality and Alcohol Law Experience

Our hospitality and alcohol law attorneys have experience in the following areas of practice:

Business Transactions

Our attorneys have handled business transactions ranging from a single outlet to multi-million dollar deals involving numerous licensed locations.

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Our attorneys have assisted clients in dealing with State and Local regulatory bodies to obtain or transfer liquor licenses and permits.  We also assist clients in obtaining federal permits required of suppliers, wholesalers and importers.

Constitutional Issues

Our attorneys have litigated in federal and state courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court, on questions involving the Twenty-First Amendment and Commerce Clause.


Our attorneys have experience in representing licensees in regulatory enforcement actions involving alleged violations of the Liquor Control Code and its regulations.  Our attorneys have experience both in defending against alleged license violations before the Commission as well as appealing adverse rulings of the Commission.

Commercial Litigation

Our attorneys are exceptional litigators with experience in a wide variety of commercial disputes including breach of contract claims, shareholder actions and employment related issues.

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Other Related Practice Areas

Hospitality & Alcohol Law Blog View All blog posts »

You've Been Served a Liquor Violation - Now What?

posted on November 20, 2019
Torree J Breen, Alcohol Beverage

              Most people fail to understand the great expense and the time consuming c...

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The Half-Mile Rule Is Dead: At Least for Now

posted on April 17, 2018
Alcohol Beverage, Scott Breen

    In 1968, the Michigan Liquor Control Commission established an administrative rule that generally prevented a retail store from ob...

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