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J. Michael Dady

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Meet Minneapolis Franchisee Lawyer Michael Dady


Michael Dady is the founding partner at Dady & Gardner, P.A., and is widely regarded as one of the most prominent franchisee attorneys in America. He and the other lawyers in his firm, Dady & Gardner, P.A. of Minneapolis, Minnesota, limit their nationwide practice to helping franchisees and dealers preserve and enhance the value of their businesses as effectively and as efficiently as possible. He and his colleagues at Dady & Gardner have made new law for franchisees, and together they are credited with having tried and won more cases on behalf of franchisees and dealers than any other firm in America. He and his partners have successfully represented franchisees and dealers in more than 350 different franchise and supplier organizations, and they currently represent 32 different national franchisee and dealer associations. Again in 2012 Chambers USA ranked Dady & Gardner as the top franchisee law firm in America, and it ranked Michael Dady and his partner, Ron Gardner, as two of the top three franchisee lawyers in America.

Michael is a frequent national speaker and writer on franchise law topics, and was an adjunct professor at the University of St. Thomas Institute for Franchise Management. Michael is listed in the Best Lawyers in America, is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum (having obtained several results in excess of one million dollars for franchisee victims of unfair treatment), was selected by the Minnesota Lawyer as one of its ten "Attorneys of the Year" for the year 2000, has been consistently recognized by his Minnesota lawyer peers as one of Minnesota's Top 100 Super Lawyers from among its more than 29,000 lawyers, and he, along with four of his partners at Dady & Gardner, has been consistently recognized by Franchise Times as one of the top 100 franchise lawyers in America.

Michael is active in supporting several service organizations. He formerly served as both the Chair of the Board of Directors of Catholic Charities of St. Paul and Minneapolis and the Chair of the Board of Regents of St. John's University. He has been honored by both his university, Saint John's University, and his high school, Sisseton High School, as their Alumnus of the Year. He is currently a member of both the National Advisory Council of the American Creativity Association and the Board of Directors of the C.M. Russell Museum of Western Art. A native of Sisseton, South Dakota, Michael is a rancher in his spare time, and considers "doing cowboy work" his favorite recreational pursuit.


  • University of Minnesota Law School, Minneapolis, Minnesota
    • J.D., Doctor of Jurisprudence – 1975
    • Law Review: Minnesota Law Review, Editor, 1974 – 1975
  • St John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota
    • B.S., Bachelor of Science – 1971
    • Major: Government

Bar Admission

  • Minnesota, 1975
  • U.S. District Court District of Minnesota, 1976
  • South Dakota, 1983

Published Works

  • "Evaluating the Termination Decision, Common Law and Dealer Statute Considerations" in Corporate Counsel's Guide to Distribution Counseling, Business Laws, Inc., 1998
  • Manufacturer/Dealer Relationships: The Present State of the Law, Contractor, February, 1989
  • Underinsured Motorist Coverage, Contractor, December, 1988
  • Appellate Brief, Art of Advocacy, Mathew Bender, 1991
  • Opening and Closing Arguments for the Case of Koeppe v. Philbrick, in "Persuasive Trial Arguments", Minnesota Trial Lawyers Association, 1991

Representative Cases

  • Lano Equipment Inc. v. Clark Equipment Company, 399 N.W.2d 694, 1987, Minn. Ct. App., 1987013505
  • Wadena Implement Co. v . John Deere & Co. Inc., 480 N.W.2d 383, 1992, Minn. Ct. App., 1992030849
  • TCBY Systems, Inc v. RSP Company, Inc., 1994 WL 460804, 1994, 8th Cir., 1994175711


  • Listed in "The Best Lawyers in America"
  • Identified by the Minnesota Journal of Law Politics, as one of Minnesota's Super Lawyers
  • AAFD’s Total QualiFranchising Award for Lifetime Achievement to the Franchising Community, 2023.
  • “WWL Thought Leaders” by Who’s Who Legal, 2023

Classes & Seminars

  • Speaker, American Bar Association, National Franchise Law Institute
  • Speaker, International Franchise Association's Legal Symposium
  • Speaker, Forum on Franchising, American Bar Association
  • Speaker, Distribution and Dealer Termination, The National Law Journal
  • Lecturer, Mini-MBA in Franchise Management, University of St. Thomas Graduate School of Business, 1999
  • Lecturer, Institute For Franchise Management, University of St. Thomas Graduate School of Business, 1998, 1999

Past Positions

  • Lindquist & Vennum, Partner, 1975 - 1975
  • Lindquist & Vennum, Senior Partner, 1994 - 1994

Professional Associations

  • St. John's University, Chairman, Board of Regents, 1992-1995
  • St. John's University, Former President, Alumni Association
  • American Creativity Association, Past Member, Board of Directors
  • Children's Heart Link, Past Member, Board of Directors
  • Minnesota Trial Lawyers Association, Past Member, Board of Directors
  • American Bar Association's Forum on Franchising, Past Member, National Governing Committee
  • The Franchise Handbook, Member, Board of Advisors

Certified Legal Specialties

  • Civil Trial Specialist, Minnesota
  • Nationally Certified Trial Lawyer, National Board of Trial Advocacy
Lawyer | Legal Awards 2016 | Winner
Chambers Top Ranked In USA 2024 J. Michael Dady
Click the arrow to watch more Michael Dady Franchisee Q&A Reel Lawyers.com Where America's Lawyers Talk Law
Best Lawyers | Best Law Firms | U.S. News & World Report | Franchise Law - Tier 1 | Minneapolis | 2023
Best Lawyers Lawyer Of The Year 2011 Franchise Law J. Michael Dady Minneapolis, Minnesota
Rated By Super Lawyers Top 100 Minnesota SuperLawyers.com
Rated by Super Lawyers(R) - J. Michael Dady Selected on 2023 | SuperLawyers.com
J. Michael Dady Recognized By Best Lawyers 2024
2023 Franchise Times Legal Eagles
Rated By Super Lawyers J. Michael Dady 15 Years