Photo of Thomas C. Phillips

Thomas C. Phillips

Of Counsel




University of Detroit Mercy School of Law, J.D. 1974

Michigan State University, M.A. 1968

Concordia University-Chicago, B.A. 1966

Bar Admissions

With more than 25 years of experience in the practice of environmental and regulatory law, Thomas Phillips has developed a broad working knowledge of the state and federal statutory frameworks and judicial opinions. Furthermore, he has extensive experience in applying the law, on a practical basis, to environmental issues.

As a former Assistant Attorney General and Special Assistant Attorney General for Michigan, he understands the arena in which the Department of Attorney General and Michigan Department of Environmental Quality function. Tom has worked closely and cooperatively with both MDEQ regulators and Assistant Attorneys General during the course of his career. He endeavors to identify and analyze clients' environmental issues and work towards a satisfactory resolution.

Representative Matters

Tom has extensive experience in the negotiation and drafting of permits, consent orders, responses to letters of violation, and so forth. He has been involved in representing clients in two of the state’s largest environmental investigation and remediation projects. In these two large projects he has worked on a consistent basis with MDEQ regulators, Assistant Attorneys General, co-counsel and opposing counsel. He has also regularly represented cities, municipalities, and corporations in defending enforcement actions by state and federal regulators, including both civil and criminal matters.


Best Lawyers in America, 2015 Lansing Environmental Lawyer of the Year; Environmental Law 2006-present; Eminent Domain and Condemnation Law 2012-present

Michigan Super Lawyers, Environmental 2006-2009, 2011-2014

Professional Activities

American Bar Association

State Bar of Michigan, Environmental Law Section

Ingham County Bar Association, Environmental Law Section

Civic, Cultural & Social Activities

Michigan State Board of Ethics, Member

Revitalizing our Michigan Cities, Ad Hoc Committee, Citizens' Advisory Group

Michigan State University, College of Communication Arts, Member, Alumni Board


"Condemnation for Municipalities," Michigan Municipal League

"Environmental Law Update," 11th Annual Advanced Institute of the Michigan Association of Municipal Attorneys

"MERA Amending Package at League's Legislative Conference," MERA/Redevelopment, and the Amendments Proposed by the Mayors' Group and the League

"Urban Core Mayors MERA Amendments Proposal," Michigan Municipal League's Transportation and Environmental Affairs Committee

"Environmental Law Section Update 94," Act 307 Developments in the Law-1994, Legislative and Administrative Developments

"Protecting against Liability in the Acquisition of Real Estate," The Public Corporation Law Section of the State Bar of Michigan's Spring Seminar titled Solid Waste Management and Environmental Planning

"Building on Our Mistakes--Redeveloping Contaminated Property," Air, Water and Waste Technologies (AWAWT) Conference

"Polluter's Pay," Michigan Association of Counties' 92nd Annual Meeting


"Environmental Law," (Co-authors: Steven E. Chester and James R. Lancaster Jr.),  Local Government Law and Practice in Michigan, published jointly by the Michigan Municipal League and the Michigan Association of Municipal Attorneys

"Financing Brownfield Redevelopment,"  (Co-author Jay B. Rising) Michigan Bar Journal, January 1997, Vol. 76, No. 1