Skip to main content

William R. Clayton

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Personal Injury Attorney in Fort Lauderdale, FL

Clayton Trial Lawyers, PLLC
401 East Las Olas Blvd., Suite 1400
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301
Phone: 954-363-0122
Selected to Super Lawyers: 2006 - 2021
Licensed in Florida Since: 1985
Practice Areas: Personal Injury - General: Plaintiff
  • Free Consultation
Attorney Profile

With experience in more than 100 federal and state court cases and over $150 million recovered for his clients, William R. Clayton is a personal injury attorney with Clayton Trial Lawyers PL. He represents clients in South Florida and is certified by the National Board of Trial Advocacy, and in Business Litigation and Civil Trial Law by the Florida Bar Board of Legal Specialization. An attorney with an Avvo “Superb” rating, for his high ethical standards and long list of successful results, he holds the highest peer rating possible of AV Preeminent* from Martindale-Hubbell.

Admitted to practice in Washington, D.C., New York, Nevada and Florida, Mr. Clayton is also admitted before many federal courts in New York, Florida, South Dakota and Nevada and before the Supreme Court of the United States. He is admitted before the United States Court of Federal Claims, the United States Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit, the United States Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, the United States Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit and the United States Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit.

Mr. Clayton attended Northwestern University, where he graduated with distinction and a Bachelor of Science. At Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, he earned his Juris Doctor and has been practicing law for almost four decades. Named a Legal Elite in Employment Law by Florida Trend magazine, he is also one of the Best Lawyers in America for several types of litigation.

A member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, he is actively involved in a long list of professional organizations. These include the Litigation Counsel of America, the Broward County Bar Association, the Federation of Defense & Corporate Counsel, the Florida Bar, the American Judicature Society and the American Inns of Court.

* AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished and Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell® is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Rating™ fall into two categories – legal ability and general ethical standards.

Practice Areas
  • 100%Personal Injury - General: Plaintiff
Focus Areas

Personal Injury - Plaintiff

Selections

16 Years Super Lawyers
  • Super Lawyers: 2006 - 2021

About William R. Clayton

First Admitted: 1978

Professional Webpage: https://ctllawyers.com/william-clayton-attorney/

Scholarly Lectures/Writings

  • Faculty Member, GT Litigation Skills Academy, Mediation/Negotiation Training, July 2010
  • Author, "2008 Case Law Update: Title Insurance, Real Property & Commercial Cases," Paper Presented to Florida Land Title Association, April 15, 2007, Omni Rosen Centre Hotel, Orlando, Florida; Author, "2007 Case Law Update," Paper Presented to Florida Land Title Association, April 19, 2007, Crowne Plaza Hotel, Orlando, Florida; Author, "Annual Case Law Update," Paper Presented to Florida Land Title Association, April 19, 2006, Crowne Plaza Hotel, Orlando, Florida; Co-Author, "Annual Case Law Update," Paper Presented to Florida Land Title Association, April 20, 2005, Crowne Plaza Hotel, Orlando, Florida; Co-Author,  "Protection is Possible:  Key Issues Under Sarbanes-Oxley," Paper Presented to Inaugural Federation Forums, October 14, 2004, Chicago, Illinois, and New York, New York; Co-Author, "Recent Developments: Title Insurance, Real Property and Related in Florida," Paper Presented to Florida Land Title Association, April 21, 2004, Orlando, Florida; Co-Author, "A Title Insurance Company's Blueprint for Pursuing Its Former Agent," Committee News, Title Insurance Litigation Committee of the Tort, Trial & Insurance Practice, Summer 2003; Co-Author, "Recent Developments: Title Insurance Decisions in Florida," Paper Presented to Florida Land Title Association, April 23, 2003, Orlando, Florida; Co-Author, "What You Need to Know About Daubert Today," Paper Presented to Federation of Defense & Corporate Counsel, March 7, 2002, Boca Raton, Florida; Author, "Spoliation of Evidence: The Trend to a New Tort," Federation of Insurance & Corporate Counsel Quarterly 2, 1999; Author, "Ex-Parte Contacts with Present or Former Employees of Corporate Defendants by Plaintiff's Counsel," Presented to Federation of Insurance & Corporate Counsel, July 26, 1997, The Broadmoor, Colorado Springs, Colorado; Co-Author, "Advocating in Closing Arguments: Avoiding Pitfalls of Reversible Error," 47 Federation of Insurance & Corporate Counsel Quarterly 3, 1997; Author, "Trademark Piracy in Developing Countries," Paper Presented to Federation of Insurance & Corporate Counsel, March 1995, Registry, Naples, Florida; Co-Author, "The Impact of FIRREA on Insurer and Surety Defense Litigation," 45 Federation of Insurance & Corporate Counsel Quarterly 3, 1995

Honors/Awards

  • , Listed, The Best Lawyers in America, Commercial Litigation; Litigation – Construction; Litigation – Intellectual Property; Litigation – Real Estate, 2010-2020
  • Selected "Top Attorney in Business Litigation" in the U.S., Corporate Counsel Super Lawyers magazine, 2009 and prior edition; Selected "Most Effective Lawyers 2008," Complex Business Litigation Finalist, South Florida Daily Business Review, 2008; Listed, Best Lawyers in America, 2010; Chosen as a "Florida Legal Elite" attorney (top 2% of Florida Lawyers), Florida Trend magazine, 2007; Named a "Super Lawyer " in Florida (top 5% of Florida lawyers) by Super Lawyers magazine, 2009 and prior editions; Selected, "Top Lawyer" in Litigation, South Florida Legal Guide, 2009 and prior editions; Ranked, AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5**AV® Preeminent and BV® Distinguished are certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies, Named one of the "Most Influential Sports Lawyers" in the U.S. at an ABA Sports Lawyers Conference; Inducted to the South Dakota Tennis Hall of Fame

Special Licenses/Certifications

  • Board Certified as a Civil Trial Advocate by the National Board of Trial Advocacy; Elected to membership in American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) and Fort Lauderdale Chapter of ABOTA; Board Certified Business Litigation Lawyer, The Florida Bar Board of Legal Specialization and Education; Board Certified Civil Trial Lawyer, The Florida Bar Board of Legal Specialization and Education; Member, THE MILLION DOLLAR ADVOCATES FORUM; Civil Trial Advocacy Specialist, Nevada

Bar/Professional Activity

  • Florida
  • Member, Northwestern University Leadership Circle, 2008-2009
  • Member, The Florida Bar, Business Law Section, Trial Lawyers Section
  • Member, American Judicature Society
  • Member, American Inns of Court
  • Faculty Member, National Institute for Trial Advocacy (NITA), Nova Southeastern University, Shepard Broad Law Center
  • Member, Greater Fort Lauderdale Chamber of Commerce and Leadership Broward Foundation, Senior Executive Orientation
  • Member, Leadership Broward Foundation, Inc.
  • Member, Leadership Florida, Class XXV
  • Federation of Defense & Corporate Counsel, Former Dean of College, Litigation Management College, Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management, Faculty Member, Litigation Management College, Emory University, 2013, Former Chair, Construction, Fidelity, Surety & Public Contract Section, Former Vice-Chair, Projects & Objectives Committee
  • Member, Broward County Bar Association, Board Member, Board of Directors, Professionalism Panel, 17th Judicial Circuit, Broward County, Florida, Member, Bench Bar Committee
  • Fellow, 2010, Litigation Counsel of America, Senior Fellow, 2017
  • Member, American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), Fort Lauderdale Chapter National, Board Representative, American Board of Trial Advocates, Fort Lauderdale Chapter, 2015-present, Co-Chair of Programs, American Board of Trial Advocates, Fort Lauderdale Chapter, 2012-2013, Member, Faculty Member, Masters in Trial programs
  • President, American Board of Trial Advocates, Fort Lauderdale Chapter, 2013
  • President, American Board of Trial Advocates, Florida Chapters, 2017
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida
  • U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida
  • U.S. District Court for the District of South Dakota
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • Washington DC
  • New York
  • Nevada
  • William is listed in the 2021 edition of The Best Lawyers in America. He and CTL are a “Best Lawyers, Best Law Firm” (No. 1 in Region) according to the U.S. News & World Report. He was named in a Business Edition, Super Lawyers among “Top Attorneys in Business Litigation” in the U.S. He has been named a “Super Lawyer” in Florida” (top 5% of Florida lawyers) for over ten (10) years. For 2021, William was chosen again in 2021 as “Legal Elite” by Florida Trend magazine (top 1.4%). Nationally, he is Board Certified as a Civil Trial Advocate by the National Board of Trial Advocates (“Board Certified — Proven, Tested Excellence”). He is also Board Certified as a Civil Trial Lawyer (1% of Florida lawyers) and Board Certified as a Business Litigation Attorney (.2% of Florida lawyers), having passed rigorous standards. Of over 100,000 lawyers in Florida, William is among only a small percentage of lawyers (.02%) who are board certified in both specialities. In Nevada, he is also Board Certified as a Civil Trial Lawyer. William has also been recognized by Corporate Counsel for his superior client service in the BTI Client Service All-Stars 2015 report — just one of about 250 lawyers in the U.S. He was listed in 2015 edition of The Legal 500 United States Guide to Outstanding Lawyers. William was selected as “Trial Lawyer of the Year” by the Fort Lauderdale chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA). By invitation only, he was chosen as member of American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), which is considered by many judges as the “best of the best” trial lawyers in the U.S. (at the time of his admission, applicants were required to try at least 20 jury trial trials — to verdict). William was selected — by invitation only — as a Fellow in the Litigation Counsel of America, which is limited to less than .5% of American lawyers. He is a member of Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an organization whose membership is limited to trial attorneys who have achieved jury verdicts of $1 million or more. William has been rated AV Preeminent® by the peer review rating publication, Martindale-Hubbell®. Outside of Florida and in past years, William was included among top litigation attorneys in New York City as “Legal Elite” Avenue magazine, “Top Lawyers” in Class Action Litigation in Vegas Inc. and “Top Lawyers in Southern Nevada by Desert Companion magazine. He is licensed to practice law in: Florida, Nevada, New York and Washington DC, 2021

Educational Background

  • Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, B.S. with distinction

Verdicts/Settlements

  • Won a two-week jury trial and obtained a "zero" verdict for all three defendants where the plaintiff (a shareholder and former, terminated, "at will" employee) asserted numerous claims for breach of fiduciary duty and breach of contract and sought about $17 million in damages, plus punitive damages, against our clients (two doctors and one of the most prominent medical laboratories in the U.S.); Won on appeal and obtained a complete reversal -- for a new trial -- from a jury verdict and final judgment for $8.25 million against a doctor for his alleged medical malpractice involving a breast augmentation procedure (Greenberg Traurig did not try the original case); Won a federal jury verdict after two weeks of trial for $41.5 million for a developer of one of the largest real estate condominium projects on the Gulf coast in a breach of contract lawsuit arising from Hurricane Dennis damage to the building -- within only about one year from filing suit -- and recovered $42.5 million for our client in just four months from the date of the verdict; Successfully defended in New York a $300 million intellectual property case, where the plaintiff's claims -- against one of the largest auto rental companies in the nation -- asserted trademark and Lanham Act violations; Successful in obtaining a settlement of $4.9 million in a breach of contract case three months prior to trial and for our client's investment of a few hundred thousand dollars; Successful in numerous federal court actions protecting the intellectual property rights of one of the most famous Las Vegas casinos and hotels against the unlicensed use of federally registered trademarks; Within weeks of engagement, successful in defeating an action -- based upon a $62 million real estate contract -- for specific performance and a lis pendens recorded against a Las Vegas hotel and casino located near the Strip; Won a federal jury verdict in excess of $41 million in a contractual lawsuit within about one year from filing suit -- and the jury awarded our client the exact amount requested in closing argument against the defendant; Within approximately three weeks of our engagement by a major insurance company, successfully resolved an alleged bad faith claim -- without ever having to file an answer to the complaint; Successfully defended one of the largest computer software and hardware companies in the world in a product liability case filed in federal district court and obtained a dismissal with prejudice of the case -- without having to pay a dime to the plaintiffs; Successfully defended serious charges and complaints filed by the Florida Board of Professional Engineers against an engineer and one of the largest swimming pool contractors in Florida before an Administrative Law Judge, and not only defeated the Board on the merits, but also succeeded in recovering attorneys fees' against the Board; Succeeded -- within eleven hours -- in defeating a lawsuit by an Independent gubernatorial candidate seeking to become a third participant in the first televised debate for Governor of Florida scheduled between Republican Candidate Charlie Crist and Democratic Candidate, Jim Davis, based upon First Amendment grounds; Within three months after filing suit for a professional football player, obtained a judgment granting specific performance and conveyance of real property valued at approximately $2 million, won the appeal in a per curiam decision just six days after oral argument, and obtained an award for attorneys fees and costs of $350,000; Obtained a voluntary dismissal with prejudice for a client in an alleged sexual harassment case in California, where a co-defendant was an national sports organization, two months before a jury trial and without paying a dime.
Show More
Office Location for William R. Clayton

401 East Las Olas Blvd.
Suite 1400
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301

Phone: 954-363-0122

Last Updated: 7/2/2021

Page Generated: 0.28996205329895 sec