1209 S.E. 3rd Avenue,
Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33316
(954) 462-4600

Proven Experience

If you have been charged with a state or federal offense, the decision of whom to hire as your attorney will likely have a significant impact on your life. With over 41 years of experience serving the tri-county area, Miami-Dade, Broward County, Palm Beach, and the surrounding areas, Michael Gelety has the dedication, knowledge, and courage to handle your complex case. Few attorneys can claim the depth of experience and the knowledge of the legal system that Mr. Gelety offers his clients.


•    Private Law Practice, Trial and Appellate Practice and General Litigation, 1979 – present

•    Associate Professor, University of Miami Paralegal Program, Legal Writing, Criminal Procedure, Civil Procedure, 1989-1991

•    Senior Trial Counsel, Travelers Insurance Company, 1986-1991

•    Assistant State Attorney, Office of the Broward County State Attorney, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, 1977-1979

•    Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, Office of the Lake County Prosecuting Attorney, Painesville, Ohio, 1975-1977

•    Legal Counsel for Lake County Ohio Welfare Department, 1975-1976

•    Expert Witness in Criminal and Civil Matters


Attorney Gelety has prepared, successfully litigated and resolved virtually every type of criminal case, charge and accusation, in State and Federal Courts throughout the country, in single defendant as well as multi-defendant trials. His experience includes the following:

•    Private Criminal Defense Attorney, Federal and State Felony, Misdemeanor, Juvenile, Traffic 1979 – present

•    Specially Appointed Public Defender, Major Felony Defense, 1979-1998

•    Specially Appointed Appellate Attorney, Death Sentence Appeals, Florida Supreme Court, 1982-1992

•    Special Prosecutor, Broward County State Attorney’s Office Career Criminal Unit, 1978-1979

•    Felony Prosecutor, Broward County Circuit Court, 60 trials, 1977-1978

•    Felony Prosecutor, Lake County Ohio Court of Common Pleas,  Over 200 cases handled, including 30 jury trials, 1976-1977

•    Lake County Ohio, Grand Jury,  Over 80 cases presented, 1976-1977

•    Municipal Prosecutor for townships and villages in Lake County Ohio, Over 90 cases handled, including 6 jury trials, 1975-1976

•    Juvenile Prosecutor, Lake County Ohio Court of Common Pleas, Over 300 cases handled, 1975


Attorney Gelety has prepared, successfully litigated and resolved several types of civil cases, such as Personal Injury Lawsuits on behalf of the injured clients, and on behalf of Insurance Companies and private clients, defending against such lawsuits. His civil practice experience includes the following:

•    Legal Counsel for the Lake County Ohio Welfare Department, Over 40 hearings and general litigation

•    Forfeiture Actions, State and Federal

•    Personal Injury, Plaintiff and Defense Arbitration Proceedings

•    General Litigation (contracts, leases, child custodies, corporations, etc.)

•    Administrative Proceedings, including:
     Hearings and Litigation before Florida Department of Health (Medical Board)
     Florida Real Estate Commission (Real Estate Licensing Board)
     D.B.P.R. Hearings (professional licensing)
     and Florida Department of Motor Vehicle Hearings (D.M.V.), etc.

•    Florida Bar Proceedings (Florida Supreme Court)


Attorney Michael D. Gelety has handled Appeals and has personally appeared before the Courts to argue his client’s position on Appeal, in virtually all types of criminal matters. His appellate experience includes:

•    United States Supreme Court

•    Florida Supreme Court, Criminal and Civil Appeals

•    Florida Supreme Court, Death Sentence Appeals

•    Florida District Courts of Appeal Second, Third, Fourth and Fifth Districts, Criminal and Civil Appeals

•    United States Courts of Appeal Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Tenth and Eleventh Circuits, Criminal and Civil Appeals

•    Supreme Court of Ohio, State Appeals

•    Ohio District Court of Appeals, State Appeals


Attorney Michael Gelety has handled complex and post-conviction Motions, Petitions and Writs. His post-conviction experience includes:

•    Federal Post-Conviction Litigation, including Habeas Corpus petitions, Ineffective Assistance of Counsel Claims (28 USC §§2254 and 2255) and Appeals

•    State Post-Conviction Litigation including claims of newly discovered evidence and Ineffective Assistance of Counsel Claims (Florida Cr. Rule 3.850) and Appeals

•    Extraordinary Writs, i.e. Habeas Corpus, Certiorari Petitions , Mandamus, Prohibition, Federal and State


Michael Gelety has also successfully represented clients in “complex” federal and state criminal matters, such as post conviction litigation (Rule 3.850 Motions and Section 2254 and 2255 Habeas Corpus Petitions), grand jury representations, RICO, money laundering, conspiracy, etc. He has also successfully handled administrative cases, representing attorneys, doctors, and other professionals in licensing and disciplinary matters and on appeal. His additional miscellaneous practice experience includes the following:

•    Death Sentence Clemency Proceedings and General Clemency Matters (prepared and argued before four different Florida Govenors and their cabinets)

•    Grand Jury Witness Representation, Federal and State

•    Extradition and Removal Proceedings (State and Federal)

•    Parole and Probation Violation Hearings (State and Federal)  

The information appearing on this website is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. You should not take action based upon this information without consulting legal counsel. This site is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship. The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely upon any single source of information, including advertising on this Web site. You may ask us to send you additional information about us, and we urge you to review other sources of information about the firm.

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