Widely recognized as one of Florida's leading appellate lawyers, Raoul focuses on cross-border commercial disputes relating to Latin America.
Head of the Firm's Miami Commercial Litigation Practice, his reputation is based on more than 20 years' litigation experience, as well as a six-year tenure as a Justice of the Florida Supreme Court. Renowned for his intellect, integrity and commitment to professional excellence, Raoul brings the same dedication to his private practice that he brought to his distinguished public service.
Appointed to the Florida Supreme Court in 2002 by then-Governor Jeb Bush, Raoul was the first justice of Hispanic descent and one of the youngest ever to sit on the Court. He heard hundreds of appeals and authored well over 100 majority, concurring and dissenting opinions involving precedent-setting and evolving areas of law. Among these opinions, he was the sole dissenter in Cardegna vs. Buckeye Check Cashing, where the majority held that a borrowers' claim that an underlying contract was void was required to be resolved by a court, not the arbitrators. The United States Supreme Court later reversed the Florida Supreme Court, adopting Raoul's position.
Before his judicial appointment, Raoul spent 14 years in private practice, focusing on civil and criminal appeals. During this time he handled more than 300 appeals and more than 150 oral arguments in all five District Courts of Appeal of Florida, the Florida Supreme Court and several US Courts of Appeals.
Raoul's formidable track record, both as a justice and as a litigator, has given him a wealth of knowledge, which enables him to steer clients through even the most technically complex disputes.
Combining substantial international experience with broad sector knowledge, Raoul has represented an array of domestic and multinational companies and institutions. These include QBE Insurance Co., Odebrecht USA, Wells Fargo Bank, The Florida Senate, Honeywell International, Philip Morris USA, Mastec, Inc., Florida Power & Light Co. and the Village of Palmetto Bay.
Raoul also serves regularly as a certified arbitrator for the American Arbitration Association and the International Centre for Dispute Resolution. Among his many other distinctions, he has also served as an adjunct professor at Florida State University College of Law.
Committed to issues of racial diversity within the legal community, Raoul was honored by the Cuban American Bar Association (CABA) with the creation of an endowment in his name, to financially assist those who share in CABA's mission to promote equality of its members. In 2008, Hispanic Business Magazine named Raoul as one of the top hundred Most Influential Hispanics.