Mercedes Gonzalez Hale

Mercedes Gonzalez Hale, the managing attorney of the firm, has been practicing law in the Tampa Bay area for over 24 years. She was the Hiring Partner in the Tampa office of DLA Piper, one of the largest law firms in the world with over 4,200 lawyers. While at DLA, she represented large franchisors throughout the United States and advised clients in general real estate matters. During that time, a significant portion of her litigation practice was on behalf of Cendant Corporation, representing franchisors such as Coldwell Banker, Century 21, Travelodge, Motel 6 and Super 8 Motel.

key accomplishments & background

  • Licensed real estate agent and focuses much of her practice on real estate matters

  • Regularly represents real estate brokers and agents, and has vast experience handling real estate related matters both on the transactional side and on the litigation side

  • One of 12 attorneys in the State of Florida appointed by the Board of Governors to serve on the Joint Realtor Attorney Committee of The Florida Bar, where she helps draft the Florida Realtors / Florida Bar Residential Sale and Purchase Contract

  • Drafts documents for Real Estate Brokers, provides risk management advice, and conducts audits

  • Successfully represented numerous homeowners in lawsuits against their Homeowners Association (HOA)

  • Successfully represented numerous residential real estate buyers in cases involving failure to disclose hidden defects

  • Experienced in handling a variety of commercial litigation cases, including real estate related disputes, construction disputes, and landlord / tenant disputes

  • Successfully prosecuted and defended complex business claims involving: trademark infringement claims, copyright infringement claims, franchise disputes, unfair competition disputes, including covenants not to compete and other business torts

  • Experienced in representing franchisors defending against claims of encroachment, wrongful termination, and breach of contract by franchisees, as well as multiple representations of franchisors seeking enforcement of covenants not to compete, confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements, and trademark infringement

  • Represents multiple privately held companies and their 
directors and officers in shareholder litigation, an investment group suing for rescission, and a securities brokerage firm defending against claims of securities fraud

  • Represents employers in matters including employee termination agreements and releases, enforcement of restrictive covenants and confidentiality agreements, and discrimination disputes

  • Selected by Franchise Times Magazine and profiled as one of the country’s “Hotshots under 40”

  • Fluent in Spanish and regularly represents Hispanic clients in a variety of matters

Ms. Hale lives in New Tampa with her husband Dean and their daughter Katie.


Bar Membership:
Florida Bar: 1992 – Admitted in all District Courts

University of Florida College of Law
Juris Doctor, with Honors 1991

University of Florida
B.A. Economics, with honors
Minor: Business Administration

Honors and Distinctions:
Pedagogy Award, Greater Tampa Association of Realtors
Associate Professor – University of Tampa: Business Law
Appointed to Joint Realtor Attorney Committee of The Florida Bar
Appointed to the Consumer Protection Law Committee
Leadership Tampa Alumni

Community Service:
Brooks DeBartolo Collegiate High School, Board of Directors
The Rotary Club of Tampa, Board of Directors
Wesley Chapel Chamber of Commerce, Board of Directors
Bay Area Real Estate Council, Board of Directors

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(813) 973-8900