Michael C. Naughton

Professional Background

Michael has worked with businesses, individuals, municipal governments and the State of Michigan to create common sense solutions to complex problems. Michael has given presentations across Michigan, the United States and Canada regarding technology and the practice of law. He specializes in electronic discovery and litigation support; civil and criminal appeals (both federal and Michigan); health care compliance and litigation; government compliance and consulting; and corporate consulting on human resources.

Michael began his practice in Detroit, Michigan with the Law Offices of James C. Thomas, P.C. He represented individuals across the country charged with public corruption, health care fraud, seditious conspiracy and racketeering. Michael has litigated matters in every level of the federal and Michigan courts, including the United States Supreme Court, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, the Michigan Supreme Court, the Michigan Court of Appeals, both the Eastern and Western District Courts of Michigan and trial courts across the State.

Michael became a partner in 2012 and formed Thomas & Naughton, P.C. Additionally, Michael was named an of counsel attorney at the law firm of O’Reilly Rancilio, P.C. where he specialized in complex civil litigation, Affordable Care Act compliance and litigation support using various forms of technology.

In 2014, Michael moved to Traverse City and opened the Law Offices of Michael C. Naughton, PLLC. He practiced criminal defense, appeals and estate planning. He also consulted for the State of Michigan to reform indigent criminal defense in Northern Michigan. He was hired as Regional Manager for Northern Michigan and the Upper Peninsula for the Michigan Indigent Defense Commission in October of 2016. Michael joined North Coast Legal in February, 2017.

Affiliations and Associations

  • Recognized as 40 Under 40, Traverse City Business News
  • GTLA Bar Association, President-Elect (2016 - 2017)
  • Grand Traverse County Economic Development Corporation, Treasurer, appointed by the Grand Traverse County Commission to a six-year term (2017 - 2023)
  • Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan, District 3 Representative (2015 - Present)
  • Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan, Chairman of Technology Committee (2012 - Present)
  • Superlawyers Rising Star (2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016)
  • TCNewTech, Board (2016 - Present)
  • Utopia Foundation, Vice President (2015 - Present)

Bar Admissions

  • Western District of Michigan
  • Eastern District of Michigan
  • Northern District of Illinois
  • Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • State Bar of Michigan

Presentations and Publications

  • How to Stay Out of Legal Trouble, Startology presentation (October, 2017)
  • Practicing Smarter to Save Time and Money, Michigan Assigned Appellate Attorney Service (November, 2016)
  • MIDC Compliance and the Upper Peninsula, State Bar of Michigan (October, 2016)
  • Update on MIDC, Circuit Court Judges for SCAO Region III & IV (October, 2016)
  • Update on MIDC, District Court Judges for SCAO Region III & IV (October, 2016)
  • Update on MIDC, Court Staff for SCAO Region III & IV (September, 2016)
  • Report on Northern Michigan and the Upper Peninsula, Michigan Indigent Defense Commission (June, 2016)
  • Frequent guest on The Ron Jolly Show, WTCM AM 580, to speak live, on the air, concerning on issues involving technology and the law
  • Stored Communications Act and Entrepreneurs, TCNewTech (October, 2015)
  • Managing E-Discovery Costs, ICLE (July, 2015)
  • Electronic Discovery and the Canada Evidence Act, Upper Canada Legal Institute
  • Featured in “New Technology, Traditional Legal Tests” Canadian Lawyer
  • Appeared on Detroit ABC affiliate WXYZ as an expert for a live, in-studio interview on the Target credit card breach (December, 2013)
  • Buttressing Your Investigation with Cell Phone Data, Institute for Criminal Justice Education, Auburn University, Alabama (September, 2013)
  • Seeing is Believing: Presenting Electronic Evidence to a Jury, Upper Michigan Legal Institute (May, 2013)
  • ESI as a Teaching Tool for Juries, Michigan Young Lawyers Section (June, 2013)
  • Opening the Large Paper Case in the Digital Age, CJA Panel Attorneys Seminar (September, 2012)
  • FBA Panel Discussion with Judge Robert Cleland, Judge David Lawson, Daniel Lemisch, Chief of the Criminal Division (U.S. Attorney’s Office, Detroit), FBI Special Agent Matthew Zentz and Joseph Richotte on ESI and federal criminal practice (May, 2012)
  • Criminal Defense Series: Trial Strategy and Tactics, ICLE (June, 2012)
  • The Nimble and the Lazy: ESI and Criminal Practice, Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan Spring Conference (March, 2012)
  • Advanced Overview of New Forms of Electronic Discovery, Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan Fall Conference (November, 2011)
  • Electronic Discovery, Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan, Spring Conference (March, 2011)
  • Presenter, Human Rights Symposium in Yoshkar Ola, Russia (June, 2005)


University of Detroit Mercy 2004 - 2007

  • Juris Doctor
  • Recipient, Dean’s Scholarship (2004-2007) 
  • Member of the University of Detroit Mercy Moot Court National Team
  • Selected as a Dean’s Tutorial Society member to assist fellow law students with legal writing and research (2005- 2007)

Summer Study Abroad, University of San Diego School of Law, Moscow, Russia, 2005 

  • Studied Russian Law and East-West Trade Law in Moscow and St. Petersburg
  • Presented to American and Russian law students on developments and differences between human rights law and the Russian Federation and the United States

Wayne State University, Detroit, MI 1997 - 2002

  • Bachelor of Arts, cum laude


800 Cottageview Drive
Suite 1080
Traverse City, MI   49684

Phone: (231) 421-7076
Fax: (231) 613-4560