Michael M. Giel


I practice family law and family law appeals exclusively, bringing perspective and diverse skills to aid my clients. Though I began handling family law cases in 2008, I had long focused my practice on complex business litigation and appeals. And that background's proven especially useful when helping clients grapple with the complex financial issues that can arise in family law, such as taxation, discovering hidden income or assets, or the valuation and distribution of businesses, properties, retirement funds, and other investments.

Ah, youth. I'm a bit older now.

I believe that background and my approach to divorce law contributed to the privilege of being selected for inclusion as a Super Lawyer in Family Law in 2017 and 2018 Florida Super Lawyers. The Super Lawyers selection process is based on peer recognition and professional achievement, and no more than 5% of the lawyers in the state are named to the Super Lawyers list. Indeed, only eight lawyers based in Jacksonville, Florida were named to the 2018 Florida Super Lawyers list for family law.

Before private practice, I clerked for Judge Emerson R. Thompson, Jr. of Florida’s Fifth District Court of Appeal, where I received invaluable perspective on how judges evaluate and decide cases. This experience shapes my approach to litigating family law cases. It’s not enough to strive to secure the best possible results for my clients and their families at the trial level, but to ensure they’ll withstand appeal as well.

Yet many of my most valuable experiences were earned while serving as a machinegunner in the United States Marine Corps, completing active duty as a Sergeant. I bring to cases the same dedication and tenacity fostered in the Corps. And, having deployed as a team leader and squad leader, I especially appreciate the challenges facing service members and their families every day.

EDUCATION and Honors

J.D., University of Chicago Law School
B.A., University of South Florida

Super Lawyers, Florida Super Lawyers:

  • Family Law (2017, 2018)

Rising Star, Florida Super Lawyers:

  • Family Law (2015, 2016)

  • Appellate (2014)

  • Business Litigation (2010-2012)

Professional Associations

  • Florida Family Law American Inn of Court Executive Committee, Bylaws Chair/Parliamentarian, 2017-2018

  • Florida Bar's Family Law Section

  • Florida Bar's Appellate Practice Section

  • Jacksonville Sports Council

  • Jacksonville Bar Association

  • Catholic Lawyers Guild

  • Jacksonville Semper Fidelis Society

  • Rotary Club of Orange Park Sunrise

Selected Publications and Speaking Engagements

  • Appellate CPR: Resuscitating Your Case on Appeal Without a Transcript; Florida Bar Family Law Section Commentator, Spring 2016.

  • Protecting the Ruling on Your Motion in Limine, The Lawyer, 2014.

  • Moderator, Professionalism Presentation and Panel Discussion, Practice Before the Fifth District Court of Appeal Continuing Legal Education Seminar, 2010.

  • Key Considerations for Litigating Class Action Waivers within Arbitration Agreements, Parts I and II, Conflict Management, 2009.

  • Recent Developments in Commercial Litigation, Fla. Civil Trial Cert. Review, 2008 (co-authored with David M. Wells).

  • Accounting for Accountants’ Breaches of Fiduciary Duty in Motions to Dismiss or for Summary Judgment, ABA Business Torts Journal, 2007.

  • Litigating Lost Profits for New Businesses, ABA Commercial and Business Litigation Newsletter, 2007.

  • Fifteen Common Mistakes in Appellate Briefs, The Record: The Journal of The Florida Bar’s Appellate Practice Section, 2007 (co-authored with Elaine Williams, Rob Seegmiller, and David Barr).