Mark A. Kamilar is an active trial lawyer with over forty-years trial experience in commercial litigation and dispute resolution.
Mark was born and raised in Miami, Florida and has lived and worked in Miami-Dade County throughout his professional career.
Mark went to college at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and graduated in 1976 with highest honors.
Mark received his Juris Doctor degree in 1979 in the study of law at the University of Florida Frederic G. Levin College of Law.
Mark has worked briefly in Dade County government and further worked at Miami law firms Sams, Anderson, Gerstein, & Ward; Bartel, Shuford, & Dubitsky; and Sweetapple & Kamilar.
Since those associations Mark has had his own firm in Downtown Miami and Coconut Grove from 1982 to the present.
Over a broad and varied career, Mark has tried over one hundred cases including jury trials in Dade, Broward, Palm Beach and Monroe counties.
Mark has also been involved as a principal in construction projects in Miami Beach, Coral Gables, and the Florida Keys.
He further has business interests in commercial projects in Dade, Broward, Manatee, and Pinellas counties.
Mark has further done substantial pro bono and volunteer work for many decades on behalf of local not-for-profits and charities. This has included work for the U.S. Olympic Committee and Mark has been twice President and thirty-year Board Member of an Olympic Training Facility.
Mark has been involved in a general litigation practice with a concentration in business disputes, partnership disagreements, contract law and insurance claims.
We are small firm dedicated to personal service and a competitive rate structure.
Our representations have included resolving individual and corporate business disputes from many different perspectives. Such litigation can involve complex business and litigation strategies that are best handled by attorneys with decades-long experience and successes in these unique areas of practice.
Mark has handled appeals in numerous appellate courts including the Third District Court of Appeals, Fourth District Court of Appeals, Florida Supreme Court, Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, and the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.
Mark has also been involved in numerous alternative dispute resolution procedures including mediations, arbitrations, and private civil trials.
In addition, Mark has had an active office and drafting practice including commercial transactions, contracting, and asset protection engagements.
Mark has further served as arbitrator and lead arbitrator in complex commercial disputes including as Chairman for the Dade County Bar Association Fee Dispute Committee.
Mark has also been recognized by the Courts of Dade County as an expert witness on over fifty occasions regarding attorneys’ fee valuations, admiralty rules and boating collisions, and prevailing standard for legal representation.
Mark’s work over his career has included representation on behalf of Plaintiffs, Defendants, doctors, lawyers, developers, architects, contractors, employers, employees, corporations, and entities in their business and litigation needs.
The Law Office of Mark Kamilar has handled these representations and clients for over 40 years in South Florida boardrooms and courtrooms with results that we are proud of. We are a small firm dedicated to fighting hard for results that make a difference to our clients and for their future.
$17,000,000 settlement against manufacturer in defective product wrongful death case.
$3,000,000 fraud verdict in favor of investors in Bar business with settlement after collection action and 3 bankruptcies.
Successful suit to terminate interest of family member in marine industry holdings.
Engineered favorable buyout of shareholder interest in Construction Company and real property ownership.
Defending Miami Syndicator involving Colorado marijuana growing operation.
Defending architect and engineer in luxury single-family residence construction.
Settling warranty and products claims on behalf of boatbuilding manufacturer.
Successfully concluding litigation and buyout structure of restaurant partnership.
Settling 14-year partnership dispute involving acquisition and development of multiple commercial properties.
Successfully resolving franchise litigation involving acquisition financing.
Successful private trial verdict for Hurricane Andrew insurance claims.
Pretrial settlement of telecommunications contract disputes.
Representing boat owner in contested claim against marine insurance carrier in yacht sinking case.
Litigating airframe and engine contracts in aviation disputes involving litigation in multiple countries.
Successful representing doctors and lawyers against profession misconduct complaints.
Mutiny Management Corporation
Sundays on the Bay Restaurant
First National Bank of South Miami
BCC Engineering Inc.
Optical Telecommunications Inc.
Deep Impact Powerboats
Asjet Aviation Inc.
Rumi Nightclub and Bar
Allegiance Global Construction, LLC
Dr. Mark Florio DPM
Permuy Architecture, Interior Design & Planning, Inc.*Past and present
NEWS & PRESS
Ruslan Shudrik alleges he hasn't been able to move into his $8.6M unit
December 01, 2016 11:15AM
Amid all the buzz surrounding the Art Basel grand opening for Faena Forum, a company linked to Argentine developer Alan Faena is facing allegations in Miami-Dade Circuit Court of shoddy construction and failing to deliver a finished unit at Faena House.
Ruslan Shudrik in late October sued Tower 3315, a company incorporated by Faena to develop the ultra-luxury 18-story building, alleging breach of contract, negligence, and breach of warranty under Florida law. According to Shudrik’s attorneys Mark Kamilar and Bolivar Porta, their client has not been able to move into his 14th floor unit since closing on the condo 13 months ago ago due to alleged construction delays and defects.
“Mr. Shudrik purchased this unit for $8.6 million,” Kamilar said. “Yet he has not received the quality of service or product worthy of his investment or the brand name.” Faena declined comment through a spokesperson.
According to the complaint, Shudrik was notified in October 2015 that construction on his condo was complete and set the closing for Nov. 2 of that year. The buyer, who is a Russian national, alleges that Faena’s representatives only allowed him to do a walk-through of the two-bedroom unit hours before closing, the lawsuit states.
“During the walkthrough, plaintiff’s representatives found that the unit was not complete, had substantial defects, improper construction and requested to postpone the closing,” the suit says. “Defendant at the time acknowledged the problems with the unit and agreed to expedite completion of all items listed on the punch list.”
Shudrik alleges substantial portions of ceramic, marble, Terrazzo and wood floors had to be replaced, requiring partial demolition and other dangerous and invasive construction activities that rendered the unit unlivable. In addition, the lawsuit says, wall finishings, balcony railings, and air conditioning duct work were improperly installed, among other defects.
Nevertheless, Faena demanded Shudrik close on the unit despite the unfinished and improper work and promised the unit would be completed “expeditiously,” according to the suit. Porta, Shudrik’s other lawyer, said a general contractor and an engineer have provided written reports substantiating the lawsuit’s allegations.
“Mr. Shudrik is putting his faith in the U.S. courts to protect his investment in this high-end condo product,” Porta said.
Martin Siskind wants to sell the property to pay for a life-saving gallbladder surgery and pay off a promissory note.
August 29, 2017 08:45AM
Two years after being restored, a 1920s Neoclassical building that once housed the Cuban consulate in Miami’s Little Haiti neighborhood is at the center of an ugly legal dispute between local art dealer Martin Siskind and his brother, Richard.
According to a recently filed lawsuit in Miami-Dade Circuit Court, Martin Siskind wants to sell the Paula Villa property at 5811 North Miami Avenue so that he can use the proceeds for a life-saving gallbladder surgery and pay off a promissory note on the property. However, his brother Richard — who holds title to the property — is refusing to cooperate, the complaint alleges. Martin Siskind, along with the note holder Raymond Klein, are suing Richard and his company 5811 Investment Group for breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty. They are also seeking an injunction to force Richard into agreeing to the sale of Paula Villa.
Javier Rodriguez, an attorney for Richard, declined comment. “It is an unfortunate dispute among family members that we are hopeful will be resolved in the short term for the benefit of all involved,” said Mark Kamilar, lawyer for Siskind and Klein.
Paula Villa was built in 1926 by the Cuban government using Cuban labor and all materials, according to a July 2015 NBC 6 report. Paula Milord, the wife of the Cuban consul and namesake of the villa, is buried in the backyard.
According to the complaint, Martin Siskind and a group of investors purchased the property in 2003 and he has been “its caretaker, and advanced substantial sums for the renovation of Paula Villa from 2004 to the present.” Martin Siskind has been using the former consulate building as an art gallery that displayed several Picassos, a Renoir sketch, a painting by Alexander Calder, and many pieces by Cuban artists.
In 2014, Martin Siskind settled a separate lawsuit with his partners by buying them out using loans provided by Klein and his brother Richard. While the property is being used as a gallery, the 75-year-old art maven always intended to sell Paula Villa so that he could use the money from the sale to pay for his care and provide an inheritance for his children, the lawsuit states. Richard agreed to act as his brother’s trustee and he set up 5811 Investment Group to purchase the property in 2016 for $500,000.
The lawsuit claims that Martin Siskind’s health has deteriorated in recent months and he wants to sell. However, Richard doesn’t want to, “citing unrelated issues between the two brothers including back to childhood.”
Moreover, Richard has indicated that he no longer intends to honor his brother’s wishes and will do with the property as he sees fit, the lawsuit alleges.
Note: The following questions and answers are generally informative on the issues, but individual cases can involve particular circumstances or additional factors which can change the outcome. Each case must be analyzed on their specific facts, which is best accomplished in consultation with an experienced local Miami civil litigation attorney regarding business disputes in Florida.
I want to start a new business, should I incorporate?
Generally speaking, residents of Florida are advised to start a new business through a corporation, limited liability corporation, or other lawful business entity. Use of such an entity provides liability protection for individuals owners in most circumstances and can provide other tax and legal benefits. The forms to start a simple Florida corporation are available online which need to be filled out with the Florida Secretary of State with a simple filing process and payment of limited fees. However, if there are a number of different owners or other complications such matters are best handled by a business lawyer and a shareholder agreement drafted setting forth responsibilities of the parties, the conduct of business, and other corporate issues.
I want to protect my business assets from liability lawsuits. Are there legal ways to do this?
Florida law does allow legal protections through asset planning in a number of different ways. The strongest protection can occur through planned and timely transfers to protected destinations such as homestead property and retirement accounts. Other asset planning including use of other entities and alternative title ownership can be utilized as well. The best approach is to consult with an experienced Miami litigator familiar with this area and create a plan and execute it before problems occur. Other remedies may be available after problems arise but are more difficult and can run afoul of improper transfer rules.
What are my rights where I am a 50/50 owner with someone in business?
Under Florida law equal owners have equal say in the running of a corporation. If the business has been incorporated with the Secretary of State, there are responsibilities for officers such as the President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer as well as for Directors. Nevertheless, problems arise when equal business owners disagree on particular issues or actions to be taken. If the owners cannot resolve the matters by agreement among themselves and there is no other mechanism agreed to by the parties such as arbitration, then matters may need to be settled by litigation in court. You should speak with an experienced business lawyer to review your remedies.
My corporation signed a contract for certain products and services which we did not feel was properly performed and was not fully paid. They are now suing me personally, is this legal?
Generally under Florida law a corporation is solely responsible for its own contracts and liable for any breaches, not individuals signing on behalf of the corporation or officers or directors. However, there are exceptions including where fraud or misrepresentation has occurred or if the individual has signed a personal guarantee. The wording of the contract and the facts of what occurred can be critical in determining whether personal liability attaches. You are well advised to have these issues reviewed by an experienced local Miami civil litigation attorney.
My partner locked me out of the business, what do I do now?
Generally under Florida law where the owners agree to work together in a business then both have a right to participate in the business. If the business is a Florida corporation, a corporation may act with a majority vote of the shareholders unless there is a different agreement requiring a supermajority of votes for certain actions. If the parties are equal owners and there is no shareholder agreement among them, then the parties must try to work out a resolution. If they cannot reach agreement and are “deadlocked”, the matter may need to be resolved by a lawsuit filed in court.
My partners took the business for themselves and left me nothing, what can I do in response?
Generally partners in a business are required to act for the benefit of the business and are not permitted to take over the business personally or to personally profit at the expense of the business or their business partners. The first response should be to try to communicate and work out differences when problems arise. However, if an accommodation cannot be reached then litigation is available as a last option to preserve the business and enforce your rights. An experienced business litigation attorney should review the facts and go over potential remedies with you.
My business partner sued me, what do I do now?
Differences of opinion are very common among business owners. The best approach is to try to work in good faith to resolve such differences and proceed in the best interests of the company. However, not all disputes can be resolved on what all parties consider to be a fair and reasonable basis. Under such circumstances, Florida law allows business participants to resolve these issues in lawsuits filed in court. These disputes can be complicated and involves conflicting rights and remedies under the law and you are well advised to hire a local Miami attorney experienced in commercial litigation to assist you in dealing with such proceedings.
I am a part owner in a business, but the other owner will not allow me to see the books and records of the company, what can I do?
Pursuant to Florida Statute, a shareholder in a company is allowed to request to see portions of the books and records of the company on a limited basis for specific matters set forth in the request. The Statute requires that the request be made to a corporation with five days’ notice in writing specifically setting forth what records are being requested and for what purpose. If the person in charge of the books and records does not comply, Florida law allows a lawsuit to compel such production. F.S. 607.102; Computer Solutions v. Gnaizda, 633 So.2d 1100 (Fla 3 DCA 1994)
My business partner wants to sell our business and I do not want to sell, what can be done?
Florida corporations are generally run by majority vote of the interest holders. Unless there is a specific agreement setting forth some different mechanism, if more than 51% ownership decides to sell a business then it will be sold. There are other actions which can bring about a forced sale by the courts which again can be pursued through litigation either to force a sale or prevent one. Speak to an experienced business lawyer to review your options.
I started a business with a friend to perform certain work but now my friend wants to change the business in a way in which I do not agree. What do we do now?
If parties are equal owners in a business then they should agree among themselves on any direction especially as to new business. The best action is to attempt to discuss these issues with the other owner and come to an agreement you both can live with. However, if agreement cannot be reached, a lawsuit can be filed to have these issues decided through the court system.
I signed a non-competition agreement with my previous employer. Does this prevent me from starting my own business?
Noncompetition agreements are generally enforceable under Florida law as long as they comply with Florida Statutes. The question of whether it is an improper competition depends most critically on compliance with Florida Statute §542.335 and the wording of the agreement. You were best advised to have the individual circumstances and the noncompetition agreement reviewed by a local Miami civil litigation attorney experienced in this area.
I started a business with another owner, but we now disagree and are no longer able to run the business together. Is there a legal way to get rid of my partner?
Business disputes among owners are common and the best approach is to try to work things out and reach some resolution which is acceptable to both parties. If this does not work there are remedies available in litigation which can address these issues. You are best advised to consult with a local business litigation attorney experienced in these areas and try to move forward before the other side moves first or there is substantial damage to the business.
My corporation entered into a contract with another company who refuses to perform or give the money back. What can be done?
Contracts are enforceable in Florida whether they are in writing or verbal as long as the parties agree to all essential terms. The first effort should be to communicate with the non performing party and see if things can be worked out. If they cannot, the courts is available to enforce legal rights and remedies between the parties to an agreement. You should discuss your rights with a civil litigation attorney which can usually be done with a free initial consultation.
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Law Office of Mark A. Kamilar
2921 SW 27th Avenue
Coconut Grove, Florida 33133
Telephone: (305) 567-1112
Fax: (305) 567-2334
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