Nicole Martins

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Estate Planning & Probate Attorney in Miami, FL

The Martins Law Firm
999 Brickell Ave, Suite 410
Miami, FL 33131
Phone: 786-785-2236
Selected to Rising Stars: 2021
Licensed Since: 2014
Practice Areas: Estate Planning & Probate (80%), Civil Litigation: Plaintiff (20%)
Languages Spoken: English, Portuguese, Spanish
  • Free Consultation
Attorney Profile

Attorney Nicole Martins is the founder and owner of The Martins Law Firm in Miami, Florida. A top-rated trial and transactional lawyer with more than 6 years of total legal experience, Ms. Martins provides exceptional counsel and support to clients throughout the greater Miami metro and surrounding areas of South Florida who have legal needs involving any of the following:

·        Estate planning

·        Probate and estate administration

·        Asset protection

·        Civil litigation

Before establishing her own law firm, Ms. Martins worked as a trial attorney, handling complex civil litigation and personal injury claims. Prior to that, she worked for the world's third largest aircraft manufacturer, where she drafted multimillion-dollar contracts for commercial aviation clients in both North America and South America. 

Since focusing on estate-related matters, Ms. Martins has achieved remarkable success helping her clients protect themselves, their assets and their loved ones for the future while assisting them with creating a lasting legacy for their heirs and loved ones. She still handles contested estates and other civil litigation matters. At all turns, she delivers highly personalized counsel to her clients to help them make the best-informed decisions as she works tirelessly to assist them in pursuing their goals as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible.

Honored for her impeccable professionalism and outstanding client service, she has earned many top rankings and endorsements from her peers, and she has received numerous testimonials and referrals from her satisfied clients.

A 2006 graduate of Florida International University, Ms. Martins attended Western Michigan University's Thomas M. Cooley Law School, where she served as associate editor for the Journal of Practical & Clinical Law and was a member of the moot court. She also helped establish and served as vice president of the Hispanic Latino Law Society.

Ms. Martins received her license to practice from The Florida Bar in 2014, and she is admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida and the U.S. Supreme Court. She is also an active member of The Florida Bar, the Dade County Bar Association and Florida Association for Women Lawyers, and she has served as guardian ad litem for Miami Dade County. 

Along with maintaining a successful legal practice, she routinely volunteers her time and services with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

Practice Areas
  • 80%Estate Planning & Probate
  • 20%Civil Litigation: Plaintiff
Focus Areas

Estate Planning, Probate & Estate Administration, Trusts, Wills


1 Years Rising Stars
  • Rising Stars: 2021

About Nicole Martins

Admitted: 2014, Florida

Professional Webpage:

Pro bono/Community Service

  • Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Volunteer
  • Provide undocumented families who faced the threat of deportation to nominate guardians for minor children born in the United States, and to create emergency action plans for these families, 2019
  • Spearhead pro bono efforts for parents of minor children to name guardians for children, 2018
  • Assist in legal relief efforts for victims of Hurricane Irma through Florida Bar, 2017
  • JDRF (2016-present): raise funds for research on cure for Type 1 Diabetes, participate and volunteer for yearly walk, and volunteer in fundraising events throughout the year to raise additional funds for research for a cure, 2016

Bar/Professional Activity

  • Guardian ad Litem for Miami Dade County
  • United States Supreme Court
  • Florida Bar, Member
  • United States District for the Southern District of Florida
  • Florida
  • Young Lawyers Section of The Florida Bar, 2016
  • Hispanic Latino Law Society, Vice President
  • Florida Association of Women Lawyers, 2017
  • Miami-Dade County Bar Association, 2017


  • I have a weekly e-newsletter that is sent via email to my contact list. The topic changes each week, but each newsletter focuses on a different aspect of estate planning and how to avoid pitfalls. Below is a sample newsletter (text only): Avoid These 4 Mistakes When Naming Life Insurance Beneficiaries Investing in life insurance is a foundational part of estate planning. However, when naming your policy’s beneficiaries, there are a number of mistakes you can make that could lead to potentially dire consequences for the very people you’re trying to protect and support. The following four mistakes are among the most common we see clients make when selecting life insurance beneficiaries. If you’ve made any of these errors, contact us right away, so we can amend your policy to ensure its proceeds provide the maximum benefit for those you love most. 1. Failing to name a beneficiary Although it would seem like common sense, whether intentional or not, far too many people fail to name any beneficiary at all. Others make the mistake of naming “my estate” as the beneficiary, rather than listing a specific person. Both of these errors will mean your insurance proceeds will have to go through the court process known as probate. During probate, a judge will determine who gets your insurance death benefits, and this process can tie the benefits up in court for months or even years, depending on who the beneficiaries of your estate are under the law. Moreover, probate opens up the proceeds to creditors, which can seriously deplete—or even totally wipe out—the funds. To prevent this, make certain you name—at the very least—one primary beneficiary. In case your primary beneficiary dies before you, you should also name a contingent (alternate) beneficiary. For maximum protection, name more than one contingent beneficiary in case both your primary and secondary choices die before you. 2. Failing to keep beneficiaries updated While failing to name any beneficiary at all is a huge mistake, not keeping your beneficiary designations up to date can be even worse. This is particularly true if you are in a second (or more) marriage and fail to remove an ex-spouse as beneficiary, which can leave your current spouse with nothing when you die. To prevent this, you should review your beneficiary designations annually as part of an overall review of your estate plan, and immediately update your beneficiaries upon events like divorce, deaths, and births. When you are a client of ours, we have built-in systems to ensure your beneficiary designations (along with all other documents in your plan) are regularly reviewed and updated. 3. Naming a minor as beneficiary Though you are technically allowed to name a minor child as beneficiary, it’s never a good idea. Minor children cannot receive insurance benefits until they reach the age of majority—which can be as old as 21 in some states. If a minor is listed as the beneficiary, the proceeds of your insurance will  be distributed to a court-appointed custodian, who will be in charge of managing the funds (often for a fee) until the age of majority, at which point all benefits are distributed to the beneficiary outright. This is true even if the minor has a living parent. A child’s living parent could petition to the court to be appointed custodian, but there is no guarantee that a parent would be appointed as custodian, especially if the parent cannot qualify or pay for a bond. In many cases, a court could deem a parent unsuitable (if they have poor credit, for example) and instead appoint a paid fiduciary to control the funds. Rather than naming a minor as beneficiary, you should set up a trust to receive the insurance proceeds, and name a trustee to hold and distribute the funds to a minor child you would want to benefit from your insurance proceeds. By doing so, you get to choose not only who would manage your child’s money, but also how and when the funds are distributed and used. 4. Naming an individual with special needs as beneficiary Although a loved one with special needs is likely one of the first people you’d think of naming as beneficiary of your life insurance policy, doing so can have tragic consequences. If you leave the money directly to someone with special needs, it could disqualify that individual from receiving much-needed government benefits. Rather than naming someone with special needs as beneficiary, you should create a “special needs trust” to receive the insurance proceeds. This way, the money won’t go directly to the beneficiary upon your death, but it would be managed by the trustee you name and dispersed according to the trust’s terms, without affecting benefit eligibility. The rules governing special needs trusts are complicated and vary greatly from state to state, so if you have a child with special needs, meet with us today to discuss your options. In the end, special needs planning involves much more than just life insurance—it’s about providing for a lifetime of care and protection. Don’t create problems While naming life insurance beneficiaries might seem like a simple task, if you’re not careful, you can create major problems for the loved ones you’re trying to benefit. Meet with your Personal Family Lawyer® today to be certain you’ve done everything properly. We can also support you in putting in place planning tools like trusts—special needs or otherwise—to ensure the proceeds provide the maximum benefit for your beneficiaries without negatively affecting them in any way. Schedule a Family Planning Session to get started, Varies by Week, Banking, Professional Services

Educational Background

  • Florida International University, B.A. Political Science, 2006

Scholarly Lectures/Writings

  • I was invited to speak as the keynote speaker at a conference for foreign (Brazilian) investors living in the US for less than two years. The purpose of the lecture was to explain how their children, and in a later speaking engagement, their assets, could be affected by lack of planning and/or nominating guardians for same. (I have served as a keynote speaker in a series of over 20 speaking engagements throughout Florida to the Brazilian community since late 2018. The topics vary between protecting children, to assets, to businesses and their investments in the US. This has become my niche practice area: Brazilian investors with young families in the US.), Guest Speaker, What happens to your children if something happens to you?, 2018
  • Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law Journal of Practical & Clinical Law, Associate Editor

Representative Clients

  • Walmart, Sam's Club, Philip Morris USA, 2018
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Office Location for Nicole Martins

999 Brickell Ave
Suite 410
Miami, FL 33131

Phone: 786-785-2236

Last Updated: 1/20/2021

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