I was just a one year old when my parents arrived from Havana, Cuba to the United States in 1969. Growing up in Northwest Miami, I attended Comstock Elementary School, Kelsey L. Pharr Elementary School, and Allapattah Junior High School. Eventually, my family, which had grown to my parents and four boys, settled in Hialeah, Florida. My parents owned their own business, cleaning office buildings and restaurants such as Flanigan's and retail stores including Kmart and the old McCrory’s Department Store in downtown Miami. I often worked in the family business in the evenings and weekends.
am the oldest of my brothers. In Hialeah, I attended Palm Springs Junior High
School and graduated from Hialeah High School in 1986. While at Hialeah
High I participated in the Diversified Cooperative Training work program.
I held jobs at Bojangles and Wendy’s fast food restaurants early in my high
school days. I spent the last two years of high school working the 4pm-midnight
shift at my Uncle's plastics factory in Hialeah.
After high school, I attended Miami-Dade Community College, North Campus, now known as Miami-Dade College and continued my education at Florida International University (FIU). In addition to working 30-40 hours a week as the night time dispatcher at City Gas Company while at FIU and carrying a full time student course schedule, I also served as the Sports Editor of my college paper and was a member of the Pre-Law Society. I borrowed and worked my way through college, graduating with Honors from FIU in 1990 with a degree in Political Science.
After college I took a year off to work and save money. It was during this year that I worked as a claims adjuster at De La Torre Insurance Adjusters in Miami. I handled hundreds of claims on behalf of several insurance companies.
1991 I went off to law school. Having been admitted to a number of law
schools, I chose Vanderbilt
University School of Law, on a partial scholarship. Once
again, I borrowed and worked my way through law school working as a Vanderbilt
Reeve on campus. In my last year in law school I worked at a prominent
insurance defense law firm.
Although I respect and learned a great deal from the individuals that I worked with during my time in claims handling and at an insurance defense law firm, I realized that my heart was not in representing the Goliaths of the world. After reading Jay Foonberg's How to Start and Build a Law Practice, I turned down interviews with some of the best law firms in Miami. In 1994, borrowing from credit cards, I started my own law practice in Hialeah, Florida. In 1996, I moved my office to Coral Gables, Florida where my practice has grown and remains today in the historic Douglas Entrance office complex. I also make my home in Coral Gables with my wife and “our” cats (they are really her cats). From day one in my practice, it has been about representing the “Davids” of the world. And I have never looked back. The insight that I gained working as a claims adjuster and working for an insurance defense law firm now serve my clients in working towards a just resolution of their claims.
I take pride in zealously representing those that have been wronged. Those injured as a result of wrongdoing. Insurance policyholders who sacrifice and work hard to make their premium payments and then find their claims delayed, ignored, lowballed, and/or denied when the need to file a claim becomes necessary, often in the midst of a tragic or catastrophic event. My job is simply to hold Big Insurance true to the promises that they make in the insurance policies that they sell. Not a dollar more. And not a dollar less. My mission is to hold wrongdoers accountable.
- Vanderbilt University School of Law1994