S. Cary Gaylord


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Cary Gaylord has represented clients in over 30 counties in Florida, as well as in the federal courts and courts of Illinois and Georgia. He has handled cases involving large vacant parcels, churches, retailers, gas stations, supermarkets, farmers and grove operators, golf course owners, homeowners, and other eminent domain and inverse condemnation proceedings.

Mr. Gaylord has authored and co-authored numerous articles including chapters in Nichols on Eminent Domain covering maps of reservation as well as power lines and electromagnetic fields. Mr. Gaylord also co-authored “The Public Purpose Doctrine” chapter of the Florida Eminent Domain Practice and Procedure Manual – the authoritative publication on eminent domain issues for the Florida Bar. He has also lectured on these and other
condemnation topics for the American Bar Association, Southwestern Legal Foundation, ALI-ABA, the Florida Bar and the Hillsborough County Bar Associations as well as numerous other groups.


  • The Florida Bar, 1974
  • U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida, 1974
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida, 1974


  • University of Florida College of Law, J.D., 1974
    • Phi Delta Phi
  • United States Military Academy, B.S., 1969


  • The Florida Bar (Member, Eminent Domain Committee, 1979-Present; Chairman, 1982-84)
  • American Bar Association (Member, Litigation Section)
  • Hillsborough County Bar Association
  • Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers (Member, Environmental and Land Use Section)
  • American Association for Justice, formerly the Association of Trial Lawyers of America
  • Grievance Committee for the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit (1987-90)
  • American Board of Trial Advocates (1998-Present)
  • Tampa Chapter of the American Inns of Court (2005-Present; Treasurer, 2012-13)
  • Judicial Nominating Commission for the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit (Member, 1999-2012; Chairman, 2002-03, 2004-05)
  • International Council of Shopping Centers (Member)
  • JAGC, U.S. Army, (1974-77)


  • AV-Rated, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Florida Trend, “Legal Elite” (2005-2022)
  • Florida Trend, “Hall of Fame” (2016-2022)
  • Best Lawyers in America, “Best Lawyer,”(2006-2023)
  • Florida Super Lawyer, “Super Lawyer” (2006-2023)
  • Top 100 Lawyers in Florida (2013)
  • Top 50 Lawyers in Florida (2013)
  • Best Lawyers in America, “Lawyer of the Year, Eminent Domain and Condemnation Law – Tampa” (2011, 2018, 2021 and 2023)
  • Tampa Bay Magazine, “Best Attorney in Tampa Bay” (2008 and 2023)

Beyond The Bio

Beyond The Bio

The thing I have enjoyed most about our practice, over the years, is the friendships I’ve developed with clients as a result of helping them through a taking of their property by the government. Every property owner is sued in eminent domain only because they own property in the path of a government project. They are without fault and frequently have a difficult time understanding how they are being treated. I have found it easy and rewarding being an advocate for people in that situation.

Not only have I enjoyed friendships with clients, but I’ve been privileged to work alongside great partners and staff each day. I enjoy coming to work and seeing them and watching them gain satisfaction from helping our clients. Away from the office I enjoy being with my family and sharing hunting and fishing adventures all over Florida and the Caribbean. We are truly blessed to live in a great state!