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Hellmuth & Johnson

8050 West 78th Street, Minneapolis, MN 55439
LOCAL 952-941-4005
FREE 888-343-3918
FAX 952-941-2337

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“A good transactions attorney has sufficient experience to identify the issues, ability to address each one, and judgment to determine if the risk or benefit justifies the expense.”

Michael offers practical advice and effective representation regarding land use regulation and development, real estate transactions and common interest communities. He is an MSBA Certified Real Property Law Specialist, and he has repeatedly been recognized as a “Rising Star” by Mpls.St.Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business.

Prior to joining Hellmuth & Johnson, Michael represented several Minnesota cities and worked with urban planners and civil engineers regarding residential, commercial and industrial developments. He also served as chairman of several municipal boards and commissions, including a planning commission, board of adjustment and appeals and environmental advisory committee.  Michael has extensive experience with subdivisions, plats, development agreements, business subsidies, zoning, conditional use permits and variances.

Michael also has represented clients in hundreds of residential and commercial real estate transactions, including acquisitions, construction, financing, leasing and sales. He consults with clients regarding potential transactions, negotiates agreements, assists with due diligence regarding property, title, and environmental matters, drafts or reviews loan documents, and represents clients at closing.

Michael’s broad experience with community associations ranges from small buildings to master-planned communities with golf courses, lake resorts and mixed-use residential and commercial developments. He assists with drafting and amending governing documents, declarant control and turnover, enforcing rules and covenants, and general corporate and management issues. Michael has served as President of the Minnesota Chapter of Community Associations Institute, and he is a member of the Minnesota Common Interest Ownership Act Committee of the MSBA Real Property Law Section and the Minnesota Legislative Action Committee of Community Associations Institute.

Among his successes, Michael:

  • Represented a real estate development company in connection with property acquisition, financing, redevelopment and sale of build-to-suit projects for tenants in banking, retail and restaurant sectors with total project value exceeding $30 million
  • Represented the developer of championship golf course community in connection with governing documents for master association and neighborhood associations, subdivision and sale of real estate, architectural control, and enforcement of rules and covenants
  • Represented non-profit dental clinic in connection with real estate acquisition, financing and construction of multiple offices to serve low-income and minority patients
  • Represented custom millwork company in connection with sale of manufacturing facility


Michael earned his J.D. from the University of Minnesota Law School, cum laude, with honors in legal research and writing. He earned his undergraduate degree in Psychology from the University of Minnesota-Morris, with distinction, where he was a National Merit Scholar and a member of the Honors program.



  • New CIC Disclosure Requirements Real Estate Agents Need to Know, Real Estate Agent Magazine, August 2017
  • Implementation of Minnesota’s Buffer Law: Alternative Practices, Hellmuth & Johnson Blog, June 2017
  • New Requirements Under MCIOA: Preventative Maintenance Plans and Construction Defect Claims, Hellmuth & Johnson Blog, June 2017
  • Crossing the Line? Obtaining Building Permits for Decks in CIC’s, Minnesota Community Living Magazine, Spring 2017
  • Criminal Records and Fair Housing, Minnesota Community Living, Jul./Aug. 2016
  • Quoted in article re: criminal history screening, Common Ground, CAI's Magazine for Community Association Leaders, Jul./Aug. 2016
  • Coordinating Emergency Preparedness with Police and Fire, Minnesota Community Living, Mar./Apr. 2015
  • Solar Legislation, Minnesota Community Living, Jan./Feb. 2015
  • Know Where You're Going?, Minnesota Community Living, May/June 2014
  • Contracts, Minnesota Community Living, Jan./Feb. 2014
  • Efficient Meetings, Minnesota Community Living, Nov./Dec. 2013
  • Ask the Experts: Money Grab, Common Ground, CAI's Magazine for Community Association Leaders, Mar./Apr. 2013
  • Action Without Meeting / Meeting Without Action, Minnesota Community Living, Jan./Feb. 2013
  • Association Turnover: Making the Transition from Declarant Control, Minnesota Community Living, Mar./Apr. 2012
  • MCIOA Reshuffled, Minnesota Community Living, Jul./Aug. 2011
  • Replacement Reserves: Assessing the Alternatives, Minnesota Community Living, Mar./Apr. 2011
  • Home Warranty Dispute Resolution, Minnesota Community Living, Nov./Dec. 2010
  • MCIOA Amendments in a Nutshell, Minnesota Community Living, May/Jun. 2010
  • In the Hot Seat: Making Board Decisions, Minnesota Community Living, Jan./Feb. 2010
  • Collecting Assessments in Hard Times, Minnesota Community Living, Jul./Aug. 2008
  • "Top 10" Annual Checklist for Homeowners Associations, Minnesota Community Living, Mar./Apr. 2008
  • Tips & Traps: CIC Disclosure, Minnesota Bench & Bar, October 2004


  • Community Association Embezzlement, Hellmuth & Johnson Community Association Seminar, 2017
  • Rental Restrictions and Director Conflicts of Interest, Where You Live, AM 1280 The Patriot, 2017
  • Preventative Maintenance Plans, Community Associations Institute, 2017
  • Construction Defect Legislation, Where You Live, AM 1280 The Patriot, 2017
  • Fair Housing Issues, Hellmuth & Johnson Community Association Seminar, 2017
  • MCIOA Disclosure Requirements, Warranties and Legislative Issues, Community Associations Institute, 2017
  • Guest Speaker re: FCC Over-the-Air Reception Devices (OTARD) Rule, Where You Live, AM 1280 The Patriot, 2016
  • Regulation of Satellite Dishes, Antennas & Cable TV in Common Interest Communities, Community Associations Institute, 2016
  • Guest speaker re: Short-Term Rentals in Common Interest Communities, Where You Live, AM 1280, 2016
  • Construction and Maintenance of Streets, Sidewalks & Utilities, Community Associations Institute, 2015
  • Guest speaker regarding Group Homes for Persons with Disabilities, Where You Live, AM 1280, 2015
  • Guest speaker regarding Dispute Resolution and Political Signs, Where You Live, AM 1280, 2015
  • The Legislative Process in Action, Community Associations Institute, 2015
  • Guest speaker regarding Mortgage Foreclosure Mediation, Where You Live, AM 1280, 2014
  • Board Meetings, Community Associations Institute, 2014
  • Commercial Leases, Apple Valley Chamber of Commerce Legal Seminar, 2013
  • Guest speaker regarding Condominiums, Where You Live, AM 1280, 2013
  • Picking Up the Pieces After the Developer Walks Away, Community Associations Institute, 2013
  • Budgeting, Reserves and Assessments, Community Association Seminar, 2012
  • Legislative Update, Community Associations Institute, 2012
  • Avoiding Legal Landmines, Community Associations Institute, 2011
  • Summary of 2010 Amendments to MCIOA, Community Associations Institute, 2010
  • Legal Framework for Enforcing Governing Documents, Community Association Training Services, 2009
  • Legislation Impacting Common Interest Communities, Community Association Training Services, 2009
  • Foreclosure of Assessment Liens, Community Associations Institute, 2009
  • Legislative Update, Community Association Training Services, 2009
  • Featured in KARE-11 TV news report: Solar Panels Pit Homeowners Against Associations, 2009
  • Guest speaker regarding Mortgage Foreclosure, Seeking Precedence, AM 980, 2009
  • Ethics, Conflict of Interest, and Apparent Authority, Community Associations Institute, 2007


  • Minnesota State Bar Association Board Certified Real Property Law Specialist
  • Member of the MCIOA Committee of the Minnesota State Bar Association Real Property Law Section 
  • Member of the Minnesota Legislative Action Committee of Community Associations Institute
  • Past President of Community Association Institute - Minnesota Chapter

Community Involvement

  • Shakopee Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors
  • Past Chairman of the City of Shakopee Planning Commission
  • Past Chairman of the City of Shakopee Board of Adjustment and Appeals
  • Past Chairman of the City of Shakopee Environmental Advisory Committee
  • Assistant Scoutmaster for Boy Scouts of America Troop 619