Michael Cottone is an associate in the Litigation & Dispute Resolution Practice Group. He focuses on representing clients in a range of tax disputes, including franchise, excise, sales and use, and business taxes. Beyond litigation, Michael assists clients by negotiating with taxing authorities, providing representation in formal administrative proceedings, challenging assessments through the informal conference process, filing claims for tax refunds, and requesting letter rulings. In the past year, Michael obtained a positive letter ruling from the Tennessee Department of Revenue, authored briefs resulting in the favorable resolution of potential excise tax liability, successfully pursued an administrative sales tax appeal, and secured over $4 million in state tax credits for his clients.
In addition, Michael counsels electric membership corporations and other cooperative entities in connection with federal and state tax issues. He also represents clients in a variety of complex disputes in federal and state courts, including class actions, multi-district litigation, and challenges to regulations and other agency actions.
Prior to joining Bass, Berry & Sims, Michael served as a law clerk to the Honorable Eugene E. Siler, Jr., of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and the Honorable J. Daniel Breen of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Tennessee. He also served as a judicial extern and temporary law clerk to the Honorable Gary R. Wade of the Tennessee Supreme Court. Michael earned his law degree from the University of Tennessee College of Law and received a B.A. in philosophy from Middle Tennessee State University.
American Bar Association
Tennessee Bar Association
Institute for Professionals in Taxation
Obtained summary judgment on behalf of a group of 21 Tennessee physicians in federal litigation in Nashville challenging a regulation from Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
We represented R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company (NYSE: RRD) and its affiliate, Check Printers, Inc., in challenges to assessments of Tennessee sales tax and business tax
Tennessee Law Review – Editor-in-Chief
University of Tennessee College of Law – Outstanding Graduate, Top Collegiate Scholar
The Micki C. Fox Tennessee Law Review Award for Extraordinary Service
The Herbert L. Davis Memorial Trust Fund Award
The Knoxville Auxiliary to the Tennessee Bar Association Award
The Harshfield Award for Excellence in Civil Procedure
Academic Achievement Awards: Civil Procedure I and II, Criminal Law, Contracts II, Legal Process II, Property, Torts II, Administrative Law, American Jurisprudence, Business Associations, Class Actions & Complex Litigation, Constitutional Law, Contract Drafting, eDiscovery, Evidence, Fundamental Concepts of Income Taxation, Intellectual Property, Interviewing & Counseling, Pretrial Litigation
Phi Kappa Phi