Celene Humphries

Celene Humphries is a founder and managing shareholder of Brannock Humphries & Berman.  An appellate specialist for over 25 years, Celene focuses her practice on representing individual plaintiffs in personal injury, class action, and products liability appeals in Florida and around the country.  She has successfully handled dozens of appeals from multi-million-dollar verdicts, has won reversals in every appellate court in Florida, and frequently practices at the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals and the United States Supreme Court.  Celene also has extensive courtroom experience, having provided trial support in complex cases around the state.

Celene is board certified in appellate practice, and she is the longtime Chair of and a speaker for The Florida Bar’s Appellate Board Certification Review Course.  Celene is a regular writer and lecturer on a wide range of subjects.  She has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America, Super Lawyers (top 10 of Florida lawyers), Florida Trend Legal Elite (Hall of Fame), Martindale-Hubbell (AV preeminent), and Chambers USA.  The Florida Justice Association has presented Celene with the S. Victor Tipton Award and the EAGLE Legend Award, and has named her to the EAGLE Hall of Fame.

 

Celene attended Tulane for college and law school, and is a devotee of all things New Orleans.  She and her husband are hiking and camping enthusiasts, and they travel all over the country in their Airstream.

Education

  • Tulane University, B.A
  • Tulane Law School, J.D.
    • Moot Court
    • Order of the Barristers Award for exceptional appellate advocacy skills
    • Winner, Southeast Regional Philip C. Jessup International Moot Court Appellate Competition
    • Winner, “Best Advocate in Trial Advocacy”
Certifications and Bar Admissions
  • Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Appellate Practice
  • United States Supreme Court
  • United States Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit
  • United States District Court, Northern, Middle, and Southern Districts of Florida
  • All Florida Courts
Honors and Distinctions
  • Appellate Court Rules Committee of The Florida Bar Outstanding Contribution Award
  • Best Lawyers in America, Appellate Practice, 2011-2019
  • Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business, 2017-2019
  • Daily Business Review, Florida Verdicts Hall of Fame, 2014
  • Fellow, Litigation Counsel of America, 2019-present
  • Florida Bar Appellate Practice Section Chair’s Recognition Award
  • Florida Justice Association Fellow, 2018-present
  • Florida Justice Association’s EAGLE Hall of Fame
  • Florida Justice Association’s EAGLE Legend Award
  • Florida Justice Association’s Tipton Award, 2009
  • Florida Super Lawyers, Top 10 Lawyers in Florida, 2019
  • Florida Super Lawyers, Top 100 Lawyers, 2009 & 2010, 2012-2019
  • Florida Super Lawyers, Top 50 Lawyers in Tampa Bay, 2013-2019
  • Florida Super Lawyers, Top 50 Women Lawyers, 2007-2019
  • Florida Super Lawyers, Top 25 Women Lawyers in Tampa, 2007
  • Florida Super Lawyers, 2006-2019
  • Florida Trend’s Legal Elite, 2004-2019
  • Florida Trend’s Legal Elite, Hall of Fame, Inducted in 2013
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent rating
  • National Trial Lawyers: Top 100 Civil Plaintiff in Florida Member
  • Tampa Magazine, Top Lawyer in Tampa for Appellate Practice, Runner-up, 2017
  • Tampa Magazine, Top Lawyer in Tampa for Appellate Practice, 2020
Professional Associations
  • Appellate Practice Section of The Florida Bar
    • Chair of the Appellate Board Certification Review Course
    • Planning Chair and faculty member of the Florida Bar’s Appellate Advocacy Workshop
    • Former Chair and a founding committee member of the Appellate Justice Conference
    • Former member of the Executive Council
    • Former Chair of the Programs Committee
  • Florida Appellate Court Rules Committee
    • Former Chair of the Civil Practice Rules Subcommittee
    • Former Parliamentarian of the Committee
  • Florida Bar Grievance Committee
    • Former Chair of the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit Grievance Committee
  • Florida Justice Association
    • Former Chair of the Appellate Practice Section
    • Formerly served on the Board of Directors
    • Former Chair of the Case Law Insider Telephone Seminar
    • Member of the Amicus Curiae Committee
  • Judicial Nominating Committee for Second District Court of Appeal
    • Former Chair of the Committee
  • Second District Court of Appeal Historical Society
    • President of Historical Society
    • Founding officer
  • American Association for Justice
    • Products Liability Section
    • Appellate Litigation Group
    • Class Action Litigation Group
  • Hillsborough County Bar Association
    • Former Chair of the Appellate Section
  • Southern Trial Lawyers Association
  • Florida Bar Foundation Fellow
  • Trial Law Institute
  • Florida Supreme Court Historical Society
  • Third District Court of Appeal Historical Society
  • Fourth District Court of Appeal Historical Society
  • Clifford Cheatwood American Inn of Court (Master of the Bench)
  • Litigation Counsel of America
  • Manasota Trial Lawyers Board
  • American Bar Association Council of Appellate Lawyers and Judges
  • The Federal Bar Association
  • Tampa Bay Trial Lawyers Association
  • Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals Historical Society Member
Lectures
  • “Extraordinary Writs,” Advanced Appellate Practice and Appellate Certification Review Seminar (Annually, 2007-2020)
  • “Spoliation Remedies,” Florida Justice Association, (August 27, 2019)
  • “The William A. Van Nortwick Appellate Workshop,” Faculty Member, The Florida Bar’s Appellate Practice Section, (August 7-9, 2019)
  • “Knowing the Law and Procedure of Voir Dire in State Court in Florida: What you Need to Do in Order to Avoid Traps and Pitfalls,” Faculty Member, Florida Justice Association’s Christian D. Searcy Voir Dire Institute (August 5-7, 2019)
  • “Key Issues in Engle Cigarette Litigation,” 2019 Florida College of Advanced Judicial Studies (May 30, 2019)
  • “Florida Writs,” The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division’s Basic Appellate Practice Seminar (February 22, 2019)
  • “Appellate Considerations at Trial,” The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division’s Basic Trial Practice Seminar (December 7, 2018)
  • “Trial Support Counsel—The Unsung Hero of Your Trial Team,” Florida Justice Association’s Christian D. Searcy Voir Dire Institute (August 29, 2018)
  • “2018 Case Law Update: July 2017-March 2018,” Florida Justice Association Case Law Update Webinar (April 5, 2018)
  • “What Did Worley do to Bias-Related Discovery,” Florida Justice Association’s Workhorse Seminar (March 21, 2018)
  • “What’s All the Fuss about Email Service of Proposals for Settlement Under Fla. R. Jud. Admin. 2.516,” Florida Justice Association’s Proposals for Settlement Webinar (March 2, 2018)
  • “Your Appellate Partner at Trial,” The National Trial Lawyers’ Annual Summit (February 3, 2018)
  • “Keeping Your Verdict: Case Law Update on Proper Closing Argument,” Tampa Bay Trial Lawyers Association (February 1, 2018)
  • “Closing Arguments: Recent Appellate Warnings,” Florida Justice Association (June 30, 2017)
  • “Your Appellate Partner At Trial,” Florida Justice Association’s Annual Convention (June 15, 2017)
  • “Sweating the Small Stuff: A Debate Over The Little Things That Can Make Your Good Appeal Great,” The Hillsborough County Bar Association’s Appellate Practice Section CLE: An Appellate Medley: Diverse Perspectives on Appellate Advocacy (April 5, 2017)
  • “The Consumer Expectation Test and Product Liability in Law—History and Progeny-Jury Instructions and Verdict Form,” Florida Justice Association’s Workhorse Seminar (March 1, 2017)
  • “Appellate Considerations During Trial,” The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division’s Basic Trial Practice Seminar (December 2, 2016)
  • “The Evolving Law Related to Discovery From ‘Hybrid Experts’ and Plaintiffs’ Law Firms,” Florida Justice Association’s Expert Webinar Series (October 21, 2016)
  • “Proposals for Settlement: Heading to Court on a PFS claim, and the Latest Arguments in Court,” Florida Justice Association’s Case Law Insider Seminar (October 14, 2016)
  • “Ten Most Important/Interesting Decisions on Trucking Law in the Past Two Years,” Florida Justice Association’s Masters of Justice Conference (September 28, 2016)
  • “Top Ten Trial Mistakes that Lead to Appeals, and How to Avoid Them,” Tampa Bay Trial Lawyers Association (May 19, 2016)
  • “ACA & Joerg—Fight Collateral Sources Defenses,” Florida Justice Association’s Collateral Sources Seminar (May 5, 2016)
  • “Juror Nondisclosure,” Florida Justice Association’s Case Law Insider Seminar (February 12, 2016)
  • “Proposals for Settlement: Percolating Issues,” Florida Justice Association’s Case Law Insider Seminar (November 19, 2015)
  • “Heading to Court on a PFS claim, and New Percolating Issues in the Courts,” Florida Justice Association’s Proposal for Settlement Seminar (October 30, 2015)
  • The Statute of Limitations and the Relation-Back Doctrine,” Florida Justice Association’s Case Law Insider Seminar (August 27, 2015)
  • “Your Appellate Partner at Trial,” Florida Justice Association’s Workhorse Seminar (February 11, 2015)
  • “Defense Attack on Treating Physicians Based on the Katzman Decision and Progeny,” Florida Justice Association’s Expert Advantage Seminar (February 28, 2014)
  • “Jury Instructions and Verdict Forms in Florida State Court and Federal Court Product Liability Cases—Navigating Minefields,” Florida Justice Association’s Workhorse Seminar (February 19, 2014)
  • “Appellate Strategies Panel Discussion,” The National Attorneys General Training and Research Institute (January 28, 2014)
  • Defense Attack on Treating Physicians Based on the Katzman Decision and Progeny,” Florida Justice Association’s Annual Convention (June 12, 2013)
  • “Evolving Spoliation Law in Florida,” University of Florida, Levin College of Law (March 7, 2013)
  • “Gaps in the Law Regarding Privilege Logs,” Florida Justice Association’s Case Law Insider Seminar (January 31, 2013)
  • “Florida Criminal Appeals: Preservation of Error,” Clearwater Bar Association (October 18, 2012)
  • “Florida Civil Appeals: Preservation of Error,” Clearwater Bar Association, (October 18, 2012)
  • “An Attempt to Understand Florida Law Regarding Proposals for Settlement,” Tampa Bay Trial Lawyers Association (August 23, 2012)
  • “Florida Criminal Appeals: Extraordinary Proceedings,” Herbert G. Goldburg Criminal Law American Inn of Court (May 14, 2012)
  • “Contending with 1.360 Exams,” Florida Justice Association’s Case Law Insider Seminar,” (February 9, 2012)
  • “An Attempt to Understand Florida Law Regarding Proposals for Settlement,” Florida Justice Association’s Case Law Insider Seminar (January 18, 2012)
  • “Collateral Source Evidence: Maximizing Presentation to the Jury, Leaving Setoffs Post-trial, and Other Recent Developments,” Florida Justice Association’s Collateral Sources Seminar (January 25, 2011)
  • “Florida Law Regarding Dismissals for Plaintiff’s Fraud,” Florida Justice Association’s Case Law Insider Seminar (January 14, 2011)
  • “Collateral Sources,” Florida Justice Association’s Collateral Sources Seminar (August 5, 2010)
  • “The Top Ten Most Frequent Errors Appellate Lawyers See,” Florida Justice Association Annual Convention (Jun 16, 2010)
  • “Florida Civil Appeals: Preservation of Error,” Clearwater Bar Association (May 20, 2010)
  • “Florida Civil Appeals: Preservation of Error,” Tampa Bay Trial Lawyers Association (January 21, 2010)
  • “Contending with 1.360 Exams,” Florida Justice Association’s Case Law Insider Seminar (September 11, 2009)
  • “Hospital Liability for Independent Contractors,” Florida Justice Association’s Case Law Insider Seminar (July 20, 2009)
  • “The Amendment 7 Battlefield: Securing Your Client’s Right to Know at the Trial Court Level as Well as the State and Federal Appellate Courts,” Florida Justice Association’s Case Law Insider Seminar (September 19, 2008)
Publications
  • Insurance Companies’ Argument on the Collateral Source Rule Hurts Taxpayers (and other dirty secrets),” Journal (Florida Justice Association), January/February 2019
  • Juror Nondisclosure: Subtleties to the Most Common Post-Trial Argument,” Journal (Florida Justice Association), January/February 2018
  • “Fighting Collateral Sources Defenses After the Affordable Care Act and Joerg,” Journal (Florida Justice Association), July/August 2016
  • “The Proposal to Restate the Certiorari Standard to Ensure Review of Non-Final Orders that Implicate the Right to Due Process Would Change the Historical Scope and Use of the Certiorari Writ,” Stetson Law Review, Winter 2013
  • “An Attempt to Understand Florida Law Regarding Proposals for Settlement,” Journal (Florida Justice Association), July 2011
  • “A Remittitur to Zero is No Remittitur at All,” Journal (Florida Justice Association), March/April 2009
  • “Research, Online Sources of Information,” Journal (Florida Justice Association), July 2008
  • “The Collateral Source Rule: A Rule of Evidence and a Rule for Calculating Damage Setoffs,” Journal (Florida Justice Association), May/June 2008
  • “Keeping Defendants out of Court-Ordered Medical Exams,” Journal (Florida Justice Association), January 2008
  • “Applying Boecher to the Elephant in the Room,” Journal (Florida Justice Association), January 2008
  • “Bad Faith Claims,” Chapter Author, The Florida Medical Malpractice Handbook, 2d Ed., 2009
  • “Bad Faith Claims,” Chapter Author, The Florida Medical Malpractice Handbook, 1st Ed., 2006
  • “Keeping Faith in Bad Faith: Berges v. Infinity Insurance Co.,” Author, Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers Published Materials, June 2005
  • “Bad Faith Under the Knife: Dealing with Medical Malpractice Bad Faith Law,” Author, Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers Published Materials, April 2005
  • “Practice and Procedure in Handling an Automobile Case,” Chapter Author, Florida Automobile Insurance Law, 6th Ed., 2005

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Contact Celene Humphries


chumphries@bhappeals.com
813-223-4300