S. Cary Gaylord

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Eminent Domain Attorney in Tampa, FL

Gaylord Merlin Ludovici & Diaz, Eminent Domain Lawyers
 | 5001 W. Cypress Street, Tampa, FL 33607
Phone: 813-221-9000
Fax: 813-221-9030
Selected To Super Lawyers: 2006 - 2019
Licensed Since: 1974
Practice Areas:
  • Eminent Domain
Attorney Profile

A partner at Gaylord Merlin Ludovici & Diaz, S. Cary Gaylord focuses his practice on eminent domain law. Based in Tampa, Florida, he provides representation to owners of commercial and residential real estate properties throughout the state who are involved in proceedings where a state or local governmental body is attempting to take their asset for public use. Admitted to practice before all Florida state courts, Mr. Gaylord is also admitted to practice before the U.S. District Courts for the Middle and Southern Districts of Florida.

Mr. Gaylord counts among his clients homeowners, retail establishments, farmers, golf courses, and owners of undeveloped parcels. His experience encompasses both traditional eminent domain proceedings where the condemning authority announces its intention to "take" a particular property by the filing of a lawsuit against the owner, as well as inverse condemnation, in which the government has damaged a piece of property to such an extent that it is deemed to have been "taken." In the latter situation, a lawsuit is filed by the owner against the government. In either case, both the U.S. Constitution and the Florida Constitution require that the owner be compensated in full.

Mr. Gaylord's successful track record in these matters throughout his distinguished career has led to a significant amount of recognition from his colleagues. The recipient of both an AV Preeminent* peer review rating through Martindale-Hubbell and a 10.0 "Superb" peer review rating through Avvo, he has also been selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America. Mr. Gaylord has delivered presentations on his practice area before several legal groups, and he has had several articles published on the topic. His professional affiliations include the Eminent Domain Committee of The Florida Bar and the American Board of Trial Advocates.

Practice Areas
Lawyer Practice Area Pie Chart

Eminent Domain (100%)


Selected to Super Lawyers for 14 yearsbottom-image

Super Lawyers: 2006 - 2019

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About Cary Gaylord

Admitted: 1974, Florida

Professional Webpage: http://gaylordmerlin.com/team/cary-gaylord/


  • Phi Delta Phi, University of Florida College of Law
  • Tampa Bay Magazine, “Best Attorney in Tampa Bay” (2008)
  • Florida Trend, “Legal Elite” (2005-17) (Hall of Fame 2016)
  • Best Lawyers in America, “Lawyer of the Year, Eminent Domain and Condemnation Law – Tampa” (2011)
  • Top 100 Lawyers in Florida (2013)
  • Florida Super Lawyer, “Super Lawyer” (2006-17)
  • Best Lawyers in America, “Best Lawyer,”(2006-17)
  • AV-Rated, Martindale-Hubbell

Bar/Professional Activity:

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

Scholarly Lectures/Writings:

  • 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

Educational Background:

  • Graduate of the United States Military Academy, West Point, NY, B.S., 1969
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Office Location for S. Cary Gaylord

5001 W. Cypress Street
Tampa, FL 33607

Phone: 813-221-9000

Fax: 813-221-9030

S. Cary Gaylord:

Last Updated: 8/27/2019

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