Civil Appeals

Handling appeals of trial court decisions in civil cases has been a part of Richman Greer’s practice since its founding in 1961. The firm handles appeals of final judgments and non-final orders in the intermediate state courts of appeal, the Florida Supreme Court and the Federal Circuit Courts of Appeal. Most often the firm represents clients on appeal in cases where the firm handled the case at the trial court level.  However, where an appropriate record has been established at the trial court, the firm also undertakes appeals in civil cases for clients whom it did not represent at the trial level.  The firm’s appellate court experience provides its trial court attorneys with the experience needed to anticipate appellate issues throughout trial.

Skills in written and oral advocacy are essential to the successful handling of civil appeals and the firm prides itself in the work of its members in this regard.

Featured Experience

1Successfully defended commercial tenant as to landlord's claim for alleged unpaid common area expenses in excess of $8,000,000. Judgment entered in tenant's favor after trial on the merits. Judgment was affirmed on appeal. Miracle Center Assoc. v. Scandinavian Health Spa, Inc., 889 So.2d 877 (Fla. 3d DCA 2004).
2Defended lender in state court action involving civil conspiracy claims arising out of lender's termination of revolving line of credit. Trial court granted summary judgment for lender, which judgment was affirmed on appeal in per curium decision. UTC Industries, Inc. v. Presidential Financial Corp., 46 So.3d 1012 (Fla. 3d DCA 2010).
3Represented family owned company in defense of claims that it was responsible for the debts of an alleged predecessor company. Trial court held that creditor failed to establish that company was responsible as a successor corporation. The decision was upheld on appeal. H.J.J., Inc. v. Party Productions, II, Inc., 712 So.2d 441 (Fla. 3d DCA 1998).
4Defended the City of Belle Glade in response to claims filed by tenants of a predominantly black housing project located outside the City limits for alleged violation of civil rights and of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Tenants claimed that City’s refusal to annex property deprived them of their right to vote in City elections. After summary judgment in favor of City, appellate court affirmed holding that tenants failed to present evidence that City’s decision not to annex was racially motivated and that tenants failed to establish claim of vote denial under Voting Rights Act. Burton v. City of Belle Glade, 178 F.3d 1175 (11th Cir. 1999).
5Defended trustee owner of property against claims arising out of an alleged promise to sell real estate. Claimant alleged that trustee promised to sell it a 120 acre tract of land, and tried to block trustee’s sale to another purchaser, alleging specific performance, breach of contract, fraud and civil RICO. The trial court granted summary judgment for trustee on all counts, which judgment was affirmed on appeal in India America Trading Co., Inc. v. White, 896 So.2d 859 (Fla. 3d DCA 2005). The trial court further determined that the lawsuit was filed in bad faith and awarded trustee his attorneys fees.
6Successfully defended Bermuda insurance company in federal court in response to claims for insurance coverage. Trial court dismissed case based on lack of personal jurisdiction over insurer and on the international abstention doctrine. Appellate court affirmed the dismissal of claims. Posner v. Essex Insurance Co., 178 F.3d 1209 (11th Cir. 1999).
7Successfully prosecuted appeal on behalf of dentist client in breach of lease case against landlord which required client to relocate dental practice at great expense. Appellate court affirmed judgment in favor of client in excess of $500,000, plus attorney’s fee and costs.
8Successfully defended a law firm client in an investigation by the attorney general in assessing whether fraudulent documentation had been created and filed by the firm in an effort speed up foreclosure processes. The law firm client denied all allegations and successfully quashed the subpoena, upheld on appeal, and creating new law in the State of Florida as to the power of the attorney general to investigate law firms.
9Retained post-judgment to prosecute appeal on behalf of corporate client seeking to overturn a judgment after jury trial that found client owed a former employee a severance payment of over $3 million. Obtained reversal of judgment.
10Retained following adverse ruling to prepare and prosecute appeal seeking to reverse summary judgment entered against client on multiple counts for breach of contract and unjust enrichment. Obtained reversal of summary judgment and reinstatement of all seven counts contained in complaint. Settlement following appeal.
11Represented religious organization in a landmark case that established the principle of law in Florida that Courts may not consider employment disputes between a religious organization and its clergy because such matters necessarily involve questions of internal church discipline, faith, and organization that are governed by ecclesiastical rule, custom, and law.