Florida Bars Board Certification Part 1
Description of the program and what it means to be Board Certified.
For many years there was no way for the public to select lawyers distinguished in their particular area of law. Then, in l982, a voluntary program officiated by the Florida Supreme Court and administered by The Florida Bar was created called Board Certification. A lawyer must be in active practice for at least five years, be in good standing of the Florida Bar, and meet the standards subscribed by the Florida Supreme Court before he or she can begin the process of becoming board-certified in their area of practice. In Grant Gisondo’s case, his area of practice is Marital and Family Law. The slogan for board certification is “Evaluated for Professionalism, Tested for Expertise,” which refers to the fact the Florida Bar thoroughly evaluates through rigorous testing and examination all lawyers who are applying for board certification for credibility and expertise in a particular area of law and ethics and professionalism in the practice of law. Demonstration of expertise and skill in the applicant’s area of practice will be reviewed. A lawyer’s peers will evaluate and recognize that the lawyer receiving board certification is ethical and has attained a level of professional expertise in their chosen field. This recognition represents the gold standard for Florida lawyers.
What does it mean to be board-certified? To quote the Florida Bar, this means “Board-certified lawyers have dedicated themselves to achieve a heightened level of excellence through character, professionalism, ethics, and credibility in the practice of law.” The practice of law will be narrowed to the candidate’s area of practice. As laws and rules are continually changing, a board-certified lawyer will be required to satisfy the certification area’s continuing legal education requirements, including courses required by the Florida Bar. These requirements are more difficult than those required for continued licensing in the general practice of law.
Not only is it an honor to be board-certified, but it is also a responsibility to practice in a manner above reproach. Only 1% of lawyers practicing Marital and Family Law in Florida are board-certified. The certification is valid for five years, and then the lawyer must be recertified. Recertification is very similar to the original certification process. Also, during the five years, the lawyer must continue to practice law in his or her area of expertise and attend Florida Bar-approved legal education courses.
Attorney Grant Gisondo is excited about his board certification status and looks forward to using his expertise to continue helping and advising clients in Marital and Family law. His office is in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, where he has practiced for over a decade serving clients in Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie, Miami-Dade, Broward, Orange, and Hillsborough Counties in Florida and Washington DC and New York. To better help clients choose their attorney by answering general questions regarding marital and family law Attorney Gisondo offers a free, initial, in-office consultation. His office hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and for new clients on Saturday from 8:30 AM to 1:00 PM. You can call his office at 561-530-4568 to make an appointment. Be sure to read part two of this blog to learn how and why board certification can help a client.