Michael Martinez | Senior Counsel | Marijuana lawyer

Michael Martinez

Senior Counsel

Michael Martinez is senior counsel in the Alcohol Beverage Industry Group. Mr. Martinez has worked in Florida state government for the past fifteen years at the Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR). His primary focus at the Department was with the Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco having held the positions of front line ABT prosecutor, Chief Attorney for ABT and for the last several years serving as Deputy General Counsel over the business divisions housed at DBPR. He provided daily legal guidance to the Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco and consistently worked with the private bar and industry to develop unique and creative solutions to licensure issues as well as the resolution of administrative actions and other regulatory matters. He routinely interacted with other Florida agencies and local governmental entities in areas of overlapping regulation such as alcoholic beverage and hotel licensure, zoning issues and implementation of The Florida Clean Indoor Air Act.

While at DBPR, Mr. Martinez also had supervisory oversight for the legal guidance provided to the divisions of pari-mutuel wagering, hotels and restaurants, Florida condominiums, timeshares and mobile homes, and drugs devices and cosmetics. He has been registered as a legislative lobbyist for DBPR for the past several years and has worked closely with committee staff on drafting alcoholic beverage legislation, constituent issues and interim projects. Mr. Martinez has drafted administrative rules, chaired rule hearings, worked on implementation, testified at rule challenge hearings at the Division of Administrative Hearings and defended rule challenges on behalf of the state. Throughout his tenure at DBPR he routinely interacted with the Governor’s office regarding litigation and policy matters.

Mr. Martinez’s career has been primarily focused on business regulation however, in his role as Deputy General Counsel over Professions (2003-2007), he supervised the professions attorneys and provided guidance and legal advice regarding the following professions: architecture and interior design, asbestos contractors and consultants, athlete agents, auctioneers, barbers, boxing, kick boxing and mixed martial arts, building code administrators and inspectors, certified public accounting, child labor, community association managers and firms, construction industry, cosmetology, electrical contractors, engineers, employee leasing companies, farm labor, geologists, harbor pilots, labor organizations, landscape architecture, real estate, talent agencies, and veterinary medicine.

Prior to joining the state he defended over 20 criminal trials ranging from driving under the influence to robbery.

Bar Admissions

  • Florida


  • J.D., Florida State University College of Law, 1996
  • B.S., Criminology, Florida State University, 1993

Professional and Community Involvement

  • Elder Care Services, “Meals on Wheels,” Volunteer
  • Tallahassee Marathon, Aid Station Coordinator

Speaking Engagements

  • Panelist, Craft Breweries, Florida Independent Spirits Association, 2014
  • Panelist, Regulatory Updates, Retail Beverage Counsel of the Florida Retail Federation, 2013
  • Panelist, Regulatory Issues, Retail Beverage Counsel of the Florida Retail Federation, 2005
  • Lecturer, Wine, Beer, and Spirits Law, “A Synopsis of Florida’s Tied House Evil Law,” CLE International, Las Vegas, NV, October 2004
  • Panelist, Legislative and Regulatory Concerns, Retail Beverage Counsel of the Florida Retail Federation, 2004


  • Florida Trend magazine, Florida “Legal Elite,” 2007, 2009
  • Florida Trend magazine, “Up and Coming Legal Elite,” 2006