Awards

Richard Jay Weiss wins the 2017 Claude Pepper Award

Richard Jay Weiss Richard Jay Weiss has spent 39 years representing, counseling and advocating for numerous governmental entities. He presently focuses his practice on governmental and municipal law and provides advice and guidance to numerous governmental agencies while practicing at the firm he helped establish, Weiss Serota Helfman Cole & Bierman. Since 1991, he has served as City Attorney for nearly a dozen South Florida cities and special counsel and labor counsel to many more. From 1978 through 1984, Mr. Weiss served for seven years as an Assistant County Attorney for Miami-Dade County. His extensive experience includes litigation in both the State and Federal trial and appellate courts. In recent years, he has authored charters for many newly-created cities.

Mr. Weiss was an adjunct professor in the Department of Public Administration at Florida International University and is currently writing a textbook on Florida local government law. He is the author of numerous publications regarding dispute resolution and arbitration and is a frequent speaker on municipal law topics to groups such as the American Arbitration Association, the Florida Association of Police Legal Advisors, the Florida Public Employer Relations Association and the Florida Association of Municipal Attorneys. He has lectured at the Criminal Justice Institute at Broward County Community College.

After the Florida Supreme Court held in 1980 that section 768.28, Florida Statutes, did not prevent a public employee from being sued individually for negligence, Mr. Weiss successfully guided the passage of sub-section 768.28(9), Florida Statutes which protects government employees from being named in a suit for routine negligence. For his efforts, he received the "Unsung Hero's Award" from the Police Benevolent Association. Mr. Weiss's goal of providing legal counsel to municipalities has led to his serving more than fifty municipalities in various capacities.

While Mr. Weiss has not always served government directly through employment with the public sector, he has uniquely served the government as an attorney for the government and provided 39 years of outstanding service to his clients. He shares the same goals of all great public government attorneys, to provide great service to your client, the citizens of the State of Florida.