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Attorney appointed chair of firm’s business litigation unit

Carlos Kelly has been with the firm since 1997.

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  • | 1:41 p.m. May 9, 2021
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Courtesy. Carlos Kelly has been with Henderson Franklin since 1997.
Courtesy. Carlos Kelly has been with Henderson Franklin since 1997.
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FORT MYERS — Henderson, Franklin, Starnes & Holt P.A., one of the largest law firms in Southwest Florida, has named Carlos Kelly chair of the firm’s business litigation department.

Kelly succeeds Douglas Szabo, who recently assumed the role of Henderson Franklin’s managing stockholder, according to a statement. Kelly helps his business clients in the areas of partner/shareholder claims, creditors’ rights and other contract-based claims, the release states. A large part of Kelly’s practice involves contested real estate matters, including eminent domain, inverse condemnation, private property rights protection act claims, purchase and sale disputes, real estate broker/agent defense and landlord/tenant claims, the release states. Kelly joined the firm in 1997.

“Our clients, and our staff and lawyers, are the most important contributors to the success of our Business Litigation Department,” Kelly says in the release. “Our most recent chair, Doug Szabo, helped build on that mentality, which John Noland fostered during his many years of service to our department as its first chair. Both John and Doug have provided outstanding examples of hard work, dedication and leadership. I hope to follow their example as chair, as our Department grows to meet the ever-changing needs of our clients.”

Kelly is a sought-after speaker on a multitude of eminent domain aspects, including best practices to prepare an appraiser witness for trial in condemnation cases. He’s also co-chair of Lee County Bar Association’s General Civil and Business Litigation Practice Section.

“I have had the honor and privilege of working extensively with Carlos for nearly 25 years,” Szabo says in the release. “I have watched him grow and become an outstanding lawyer. He is bright, detail-oriented, and driven to do his best for his clients. I have no doubt these same skills and traits will serve him, the firm, and the Business Litigation Department in his new role as chair.”

Henderson Franklin is one of the largest, locally-based law firms between Tampa and Miami with over 60 attorneys dedicated to providing a wide range of legal services in the areas of business and tax planning, estate planning, family law, business and civil litigation, eminent domain, intellectual property, workers' compensation, employment law, real estate, and land use and environmental law. Henderson Franklin operates offices in Fort Myers, Bonita Springs and Naples.




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