Direct Office Line: 757-670-3852
Email Address: email@example.com
Michael D. Collett is a highly skilled and experienced trial attorney with a passion for serving his clients and protecting their interests. With a wealth of experience gained through his 14 years of active duty service in the United States Navy, Michael learned the importance of teamwork and how trust forms the foundation of every successful client-attorney relationship.
Michael’s journey to Breit Biniazan began while growing up in northern New Jersey. After September 11th, he was inspired to join the Navy to protect and serve his country. He graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 2009 with his Bachelor of Science with merit in political science and was inducted into the Pi Sigma Alpha National Political Science Honor Society. Outside of the classroom, Michael was a Division I varsity lacrosse player, who was named to the Patriot League Honor Roll and awarded the Navy Lacrosse LTJG McKeone “Spirit, Sportsmanship, Unsung Hero” Award.
After graduation, Michael served as a Surface Warfare Officer aboard the USS Ashland and Amphibious Squadron Eight, deploying twice to the Middle East. While working on the Chief of Naval Operations staff in the Pentagon, he was selected for the Navy’s highly competitive law education program scholarship and attended William & Mary Law School.
Michael received his Juris Doctor from William & Mary Law School in 2016. While in law school, he competed as a member of the National Trial Team, through which he won multiple mock trial competition championships and advocacy awards. He was also appointed by the student body government as the Chief Justice of the Law School’s Honor Council. In recognition of his outstanding oral advocacy and service to William & Mary, Michael was inducted into the Order of the Barristers and bestowed with the George Wythe Award at graduation.
As a Navy Judge Advocate (JAG), Michael completed multiple litigation tours as a military prosecutor and criminal defense attorney, during which he was designated as a military justice litigation specialist. He quickly gained the reputation as a highly skilled litigator, who represented high-visibility clients in complex felony cases leading 15 to jury trial. Outside of the courtroom, Michael was entrusted with positions of leadership, in which he supervised and mentored dozens of junior attorneys, paralegals, and administrative clerks at duty stations around the country.
Michael understands that clients are looking for guidance during perhaps the most stressful period of their lives, and he makes it his priority to ensure that every client feels heard and understood throughout the legal process. He has the unique ability to connect with people from diverse backgrounds, and his approach to practicing law is to meet every client with empathy, compassion, and respect. It is this ability to connect with his clients on a personal level and his willingness to listen to their concerns that makes him a unique lawyer. For Michael, seeing the relief on a client’s face after they’ve won a case – at times when they have no one else in their corner – is truly what it means to be a trial attorney.
Ultimately, Michael always felt the call to serve – first in the Navy and now at Breit Biniazan. He is a dedicated attorney who leverages his training, education, and experience to represent his clients. As a member of Breit Biniazan, he is proud to be a part of a team of highly skilled attorneys who share his passion for protecting the rights and interests of their clients. Licensed in Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C., Michael will continue serving the Mid-Atlantic through our Virginia Beach office.
Michael and his wife, Chrissie, have three energetic children and one lazy dog. In their free time, the Collett family enjoys going to the beach.
- The College of William and Mary Law School, Williamsburg, Virginia
Juris Doctorate, 2016
- United States Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland
Bachelor of Science, with merit, Political Science, 2009
- Washington, D.C.
- Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces
- Navy and Marine Corps Court of Criminal Appeals
- U.S. District Court – Eastern District of Virginia
- Judge Advocate – U.S. Navy Oct 2016 – March 2023
- Surface Warfare Officer – U.S. Navy Jun 2009 – Jul 2013
Awards – Professional
- 2022 Inaugural CAPT Eldredge Memorial Mentorship Award Nominee
- 2020 Military Justice Litigation Qualified Officer, Specialist I
- 2017 Naval War College Joint Professional Military Education Phase I Graduate
- 2016 New York Bar Association Trial Advocacy Award
- 2016 Graduated with Honors, Naval Justice School Basic Lawyer’s Course
- 2010 Honor Graduate, Surface Warfare Officer School, Advanced Ship Handling and Tactics
- 2010 Junior Officer Award for Excellence in Ship Handling for Amphibious Squadron 8
Awards – William & Mary Law School
- Navy Law Education Program Scholarship: 1 of 4 naval officers selected (out of approximately 80 applicants) for a full law school scholarship while on active duty to continue service as Navy Judge Advocate.
- George Wythe Award: Presented to one member of the class at graduation who had been especially distinguished by his leadership for the good of the law school community.
- Order of Barristers: Presented to graduating law students who excelled as student advocates in written and oral advocacy activities and competition.
- Dean’s Certificate: Presented to a select group of graduating students who initiated new projects, led organizations, participated enthusiastically in law school or community activities, or demonstrated special initiative on behalf of the law school.
- National Trial Team
– Executive Board Member
– Champion, 2016 Texas Young Lawyers Association Regional Trial Competition
– Champion, 2015 Academy of Trial Lawyers Mock Trial Competition
– Best Advocate, Second Place, 2015 Academy of Trial Lawyers Mock Trial Competition
- American Association for Justice
- Federal Torts and Military Advocacy Section Officer (2023-Present)
- Virginia Trial Lawyers Association
- Ethics and Professionalism Committee Member (2023-Present)
- Norfolk & Portsmouth Bar Association
- Maryland State Bar Association
- US Naval Academy Alumni Association, Hampton Roads Chapter Member