Brian M. Zets


Phone: 614.221.2121
Direct Line: 614.221.2121
Fax: 614.365.9516


Kelli Lady

about Brian M. Zets

Brian serves as the Chair of the Automotive/Motorsport Practice Group and Chair of the Public Law Practice Group.
In his personal and professional life, Brian has a passion for all things automotive and motorsport. Whether it’s classic muscle or collector cars, the NHRA, corporate sponsorship, or the companies that supply aftermarket high-performance parts, like JEGS Automotive, Brian is an enthusiast and understands the industry. Brian has experience with drafting contracts, sponsorship agreements, and employment agreements. He also represents these clients in complex litigation and helps them navigate thru regulatory matters across the country.
In 2016, as Ohio became the next state to legalize medical marijuana, Brian began watching the rules develop and followed closely as the Medical Marijuana Control Program came into focus. He has spoken many times to various groups about all aspects of medical marijuana – from zoning issues to employment matters to licensure. Being at the forefront of this growing industry, Brian has the experience and knowledge necessary to help his numerous cultivator and dispensary clients succeed in the industry. Whether it is actual litigation or administrative hearings, Brian provides trusted advice and representation to the medical marijuana industry. His client secured a provisional cultivator license after filing a lawsuit against the Department of Commerce. And, Brian successfully argued an administrative appeal that resulted in his client being awarded a provisional dispensary license.
When not helping his private sector clients be successful, Brian works equally as hard in the public sector. He serves as Law Director for the City of Pataskala, Legal Advisor for two townships – Washington Township and Orange Township, and as Solicitor for a number of municipalities, including the Villages of Shawnee Hills, Greenfield, Thurston, Kirkersville, Thornville, Buckeye Lake, Glenford, Brice, South Salem, and Bremen. And, he has been retained as special counsel by the Cities of Upper Arlington, Gahanna, Groveport, Newark, and Sandusky. Brian has skillfully handled, and often lectures on, legal matters in the areas of municipal contracts, water and sanitary sewer agreements, zoning and land use, annexation, eminent domain, public meetings and public records law, administrative appeals, Mayor’s Court and municipal court prosecution, police liability, as well as Section 1983 and state tort litigation.



education & admissions


The University of Toledo College of Law, J.D., 1996
The Ohio State University, B.A., Political Science, 1993

Bar & Court Admissions

Ohio, 1996
U.S. District Court, Northern and Southern Districts of Ohio, 1996
U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit, 1997

articles & presentations


  • “Township Cemetery Law: What You Are Dying to Know,” Ohio Township News, September/October 2018
  • “Summertime Hiring – Be Careful of These Pitfalls,” Ohio Township News, May/June 2018
  • “What State’s Medical Marijuana Law Means for Ohio Employers,” Columbus Business First, February 2017
  • “Ohio’s Medical Marijuana Law,” Ohio Township News, November/December 2016
  • “Pre-Suit Mediation: An Often Overlooked Risk Management Tool,” Public Risk Magazine, February 2009
  • “The Ohio Supreme Court Agrees with Employers; Trade Secrets, Including Client Lists, Cannot Be Memorized and Used by Former Employees,” Courting Success, Spring 2008
  • “Wallace v. Kato: The Supreme Court Invites Even More Federal Lawsuits Against your Municipality and Police Officers,” Public Risk Magazine, March 2007
  • “To Enjoin or Not to Enjoin: The Supreme Court Will Decide,” E-Currents, 2006
  • “Tort Law Update,” Cities and Villages: Journal of the Ohio Municipal League January/February 2005


“The Ethical Public Official,” Mayors Association of Ohio Conference, June 2019
“Use of Competitive Bidding to Buy or Sell Township Property,” Ohio Township Association, Winter Conference, February 2019
“Ohio Township Cemetery Law,” Ohio Township Association, Winter Conference, February 2019
“Use of Competitive Bidding to Buy or Sell Township Property,” Ohio Township Law Directors CLE, December 14, 2018
“The Fourth Amendment – Arrest and Search/Seizure,” 2018 New Albany/Gahanna Citizens’ Police Academy, January 31, 2018
“Medical Marijuana Law Update,” 2017 Delaware County Township Trustee Training, November 18, 2017
“Understanding Medical Marijuana in Ohio and the Effects on Commercial Real Estate,” Co-presenter, NAIOP Central Ohio Chapter luncheon, August 9, 2017
“Case Law Update,” OMAA Spring CLE Conference, March 2017
“The Fourth Amendment – Arrest, Search/Seizure, Use Of Force,” 2017 New Albany Citizens Police Academy
“Dazed and Confused, Understanding Medical Marijuana,” Ohio Township Association Winter Conference, 2017
“Medical Marijuana in Your Township,” Ohio Township Association Law Directors CLE, December 2016
“Use of Executive Session,” Ohio Township Association Law Director’s Group Meeting & CLE, 2015
“Social Media for Public Entities,” Municipal Civil Law Institute, 2013
“End of Life Issues: Presentation on Living Wills and Powers of Attorney,” Church of the Resurrection, 2008

professional & community activities


Ohio State Bar Association – Young Lawyers Committee Board of Governors (1997 – 1999); Labor and Employment Law Section; Litigation Section
Columbus Bar Association – Admissions Committee, Federal Court Committee, Labor and Employment Law Committee
Licking County Bar Association
Public Risk Management Association – Ohio Chapter Member
Ohio Municipal Attorneys Association
Ohio Township Association


Strait Farm Homeowners Association, Board of Trustees, President, 2017-present
City of New Albany Cemetery Restoration Advisory Committee, Chair (2016 – Present)
Village of New Albany Board of Tax Appeals (2007–Present)
Pelotonia Bike Tour, benefiting The James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute, Lead Volunteer in City of Athens, 2009, 2010, 2011; Bike Volunteer in Gambier, Ohio (2012 and 2013)
Nationwide Children’s Hospital Development Board (2010 & 2011)
New Albany Chamber of Commerce, Board of Trustees (2005 – 2007, 2010 and 2011); 2010 Chairman – Board of Trustees; 2007 Vice Chair & Legal Advisor; 2006 Executive Recorder & Legal Advisor; 2005 Golf Classic Chair
Village of New Albany, Charter Review Commission (2008–2009)
OSBA Ohio Mock Trial Program State Competition, Judge (2003–2005, 2009)
Adventures for Wish Kids, Miracles& Magic Committee Chair (2007 & 2008)
New Albany Community Foundation, Advancement Committee Member (2005–2007)
Komen Columbus Race for the Cure, Event Volunteer (2000–2005)
Muscular Dystrophy Association, MDA Telethon Volunteer (1998 – 2001)


AVVO Rating – Excellent
Ohio Super Lawyers®, 2015-2021 State, Local, and Municipal
Ohio Super Lawyers® Rising Stars, 2009-2011 Government, Cities, Municipalities