Healthcare Lawyer Michael H. Cohen: My Story

Healthcare Lawyer Michael H. Cohen: My Story

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    What’s your story?

    Why are you doing what you’re doing?

    Why are you devoting so much of your time and energy and breath and resources and late nights thinking about your health and wellness venture?

    Sometimes people ask me, what’s your story, Michael, how did you get into being a healthcare lawyer?

    So, hi, I’m Michael H. Cohen, founding attorney of Cohen Healthcare Law Group. We help healthcare industry clients just like you. I think I’m going to just stop doing this because it’s kind of cheesy, but you know, I was very affected by my boyhood in Michigan. And I used to watch commercials all the time and they would say, “I want to work with my head as well as my hands.” So I get to work with my head, my hands because I’m on a computer, and my heart.

    And what’s my story? My story, I went to law school. I didn’t really have a direction coming out of law school. I clerked for a federal judge. I loved the judge. I loved the clerkship. I got to see actual disputes in the courtroom. I didn’t like the courtroom very much. And I didn’t like the attorneys in the courtroom. I didn’t think they were very truthful and I was highly critical. The judge said focus on the law and the evidence.

    I was highly critical because I thought the cases meant something other than what the lawyers were saying they meant. And I found them manipulative, frankly, many unprofessional. So I decided not to do litigation. And around the time in making that decision, I went and finished my MBA as well. And another thing happened, another fork in the road, which is that I was in a creative writing program. During my MBA program, I started writing about the clerkship and I realized through the help of a wise aunt, that the heart of the experience that I had with the judge was not about the rules of law.

    It was about the characters and the personalities and the emotions. And he always focused on the emotions. He said, “look, if you two are angry at each other, let’s go into my robing room and let’s settle this, but don’t take up my docket in the courtroom. Because it’s about how you feel about that contract going wrong. Take a few moments, step outside, work it out and then come back”. And he would settle most of his cases. And when it required a trial, he would take it to a trial, but otherwise, if he could get it settled, he would. So that affected me a great deal.

    When I went back to complete my MBA at the University of California, Berkeley, I began writing up these stories and that led me into exploring meditation, the world of the unconscious. I wondered if I could access my spirit guides. Maybe I’d be a better writer and maybe I’d learn a little bit more about truth and the meaning of reality.

    Boy did I ever, I mean, Seth Speaks, fell into my hands and a whole bunch of, I don’t know where that came from, I guess I said, spirit guides. You know how to contact your spirit guides, right? Spirit Guides For Dummies. I don’t know if I’m even allowed to say that, but they have a sense of humor up there, out there. I don’t know, they might be horizontal as well as vertical, they’re in all dimensions, but I really connected a lot with my own spirituality. And I went on a very deep spiritual vision quest let’s call it, that took me deeper into yoga, energy healing, before this stuff was popular.

    Side by side, I had my job as a Wall Street lawyer. So there I was with these 100,200-page merger agreements, reps, warranties, covenants, indemnification. And at the same time I was going through this inner purification and I had no idea what I was going to do with it. Someone recommended that I teach law, so I began teaching law and I needed a subject for research and writing. And I chanced upon this issue of how does someone who like me goes on this vision quest and wants to bring these gifts out into the world, how do they navigate the law? The laws that I found were front and center had to do with the definitions of practicing medicine.

    So, I started with a medical licensure and moved on to FDA law, dietary supplements, nutrition, health coaching, MSOs, medical spas, telemedicine, regulation of AI in healthcare, neurofeedback, neuroimaging, neuro this, brain that, FTC, and it goes on and on. It’s all a connected web. And I learned to apply my skills and insights as a lawyer to the health and wellness industry.

    It helped that my mom is a physician and that I grew up around … really I grew up shadowing her as she went through hospitals, but I didn’t really have a keen interest in the sciences. To me, they were very factual, but of course I know there’s a lot of delicious discovery in science. It so happened I was warranted the humanities that led to law school and basically the spiritual vision quest was the heart and foundation of my becoming a healthcare lawyer.

    So I feel very fortunate that I discovered this career path. It’s been very enriching for me. It’s opened me up in a lot of ways. And while it’s spiritual, it’s also of the world, because I’m in a business and we have employees and vendors, and associates. And so I’m growing my business just like you.

    And I’ve learned to cultivate an appreciation for the very rooted, grounded, daily experience of managing a business, growing a business, becoming invested in your business and becoming delighted by the fact that your business will grow and not only help you prosper, but as it gets bigger, really, it becomes a vehicle for more and more people to dedicate their talents and to become enriched by this living thriving organism, which has somehow emanated out of my own creativity and that of the horizontal and vertical and mother earth and all the directions.

    So, for those of you that are watching, thank you for asking. That’s some of my story and I detailed more in my books and on the blog, it’s great to be connected with you. And if you have questions about our legal services, just go to our website, and send us a message. We’d love to hear from you. And we hope to work with you soon. All the best.


    • I would definitely recommend. I needed direction regarding the FDA and how the rules would affect my business. Responsive, accessible, and knowledgeable.

      Richard Freedland
      Richard Freedland GRAMedical, CEO
    • Impressive credentials are only overshadowed by their clear awareness of practical strategies to help Physicians navigate modern healthcare and achieve successful outcomes.

      James Riviezzo
      James Riviezzo Practice On Your Terms

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