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Tampa Personal Injury Lawyer, Matthew D. Powell Biography

Matt Powell is a Board Certified Civil Trial Lawyer who represents injured victims and their families in cases involving catastrophic injuries, wrongful death, automobile crashes, brain injuries, sexual assault, trucking crashes, pedestrian accidents, medical malpractice, defective products, birth related injuries, rape cases, dog bites, motorcycle crashes, negligent security and many other injury cases. He first practiced law with a prominent insurance defense firm in Tallahassee, Florida. The firm represented over 20 insurance companies and defended negligent drivers and doctors. During that time, he learned the methods, techniques and strategies that insurance companies use to reduce the amount of money they pay to people and families who have been injured or killed in accidents or by neglect. After learning these methods and techniques, he decided to stop representing insurance companies. He left the insurance defense law firm and opened his own law firm to represent individuals. Matt has practiced in the historic landmark building known as the Hutchison Mansion on Plant Avenue in Tampa since 1989. Matt Powell is an AV rated lawyer by Martindale-Hubble, the most respected legal rating service in the country. Matt is dual Board Certified as a civil trial lawyer. First he was Board Certified by the Florida Bar and secondly he is also Board certified as a Civil Trial Lawyer by the National Board of Trial Advocacy.

Admissions and Certifications

  • 1987 – Admitted to the Florida Bar
  • 1988 – Admitted to the Missouri Bar
  • 1989 – Admitted into the Federal United States Middle District Court of Florida
  • 1990 – Admitted into the Federal Eleventh District Court of Appeal
  • 1992 – Admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court
  • 2007 – Certified by the Florida Bar as a Board Certified Civil Trial Lawyer
  • 2010 – Certified by the National Board of Trial Advocacy as a Board Certified Civil Trial Lawyer

Formal Education

  • 1987 – Earned Juris Doctorate with honors from the Florida State College of Law
  • 1984 – Received Bachelor of Science from the University of Central Florida
  • 1983 – Received Associate of Arts from the University of Florida

Legal Associations

  • 1988 - present – Sustaining member of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America now known as the American Justice Association
  • 1989 – Admitted Eagle Member, Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers now known as the Florida Justice Association
  • 2008 - present – Life Member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum
  • 2009 - present – Presidents Club Member of the American Association for Justice
  • 2012 - present – Motor Vehicle Trial Lawyers Association
  • 2012 - present – Association of Plaintiff Interstate Trucking Lawyers of America

Matt Powell’s Advanced Education

  • 1987 – Harvard Negotiation Project – Getting to Yes Negotiation Seminar
  • 1999 – Harvard Law School Trial Advocacy Graduate

Teaching, Lecturing and Presentations given by Matt Powell

  • 2003 – “Operation manual for the witness chair” How to testify clearly and effectively.
  • 2004 – “How to prove soft tissue injuries with the use of Digital Motion X-Ray”.
  • 2005 – “Proving Cervical Injuries through basic physics, understanding the phases of motion that injure the spine.”
  • 2006 – Presentation to the Minneapolis Trial Lawyers Association: Proving Cervical Injuries for their true value, how to use Upright MRI to show ligament injuries.
  • 2007 – Presentation to the Houston Trial Lawyers Association: How to use Digital Motion X-ray and Upright MRI to prove neck injuries.
  • 2007 – Workhorse Seminar presented before the State of Florida Justice Association: Cutting Edge Imaging For Soft Tissue Injuries - What is new for 2007.
  • 2008 – Workhorse Seminar presented before the State of Florida Justice Association: Medical Causation Issues That Come Up In Several Cases.
  • 2009 – Workhorse Seminar presented before the State of Florida Justice Association:  An In-Depth strategy and Tactics Assessment and Study into the Techniques and Methods of Interrogating Defense Medical Examiners in Order to Maximize the Benefit For Your Client and in Order to Obtain Truthful Responses.
  • 2010 – Workhorse Seminar presented before the State of Florida Justice Association: Cutting Edge MRI techniques for use at trial to objectively show soft tissue injuries including brain injuries
  • 2011 - What is the time line of a personal injury case, what to expect and what you need to know.
  • 2012 - Cross Examination techniques and how to respond when you are on the stand.

Board Certified Civil Trial Lawyer

Matthew D. Powell
Board Certified Civil Trial Lawyer by the Florida Bar

Board certification recognizes attorneys' special knowledge, skills and proficiency in various areas of law and professionalism and ethics in practice.

"Board certification is a valuable credential that is becoming a significant trend in the legal profession," said Florida Bar President Frank Angones Jr. "Specialization recognizes lawyers' expertise and professionalism, and is a natural progression for lawyers who can demonstrate high skill levels in particular areas of law."

Certified attorneys are the only Florida lawyers allowed to identify or advertise themselves as "Florida Bar Board Certified," as specialists or as experts. Certification is the highest level of recognition by The Florida Bar of the competency and experience of attorneys in the areas of law approved for certification by the Supreme Court of Florida.

A lawyer who is a member in good standing of The Florida Bar and who meets the standards prescribed by the state's Supreme Court may become board certified in one or more of 22 certification fields. Approximately 4,300 Florida lawyers are board certified. Minimum requirements for certification are listed below; each area of certification may contain higher or additional standards.

  • A minimum of five years in law practice
  • A satisfactory showing of substantial involvement in the field of law for which certification is sought
  • A passing grade on the examination required of all applicants
  • Satisfactory peer review assessment of competence in the specialty field as well as character, ethics and professionalism in the practice of law
  • Satisfaction of the certification area's continuing legal education requirements

Matt Powell has been certified by the Florida Bar as specialist in Civil Trial Law. Basically, the Florida Bar, and their peers have agreed that Matt has the highest skills in trying injury cases that can be measured by the Florida Bar.

AV® Peer Review Rating


An AV rating is a significant accomplishment - a testament to the fact that a lawyer's peers rank him or her at the highest level of professional excellence.

Matthew Powell is an AV rated lawyer by Martindale-Hubble.

Peer Review Ratings - Explanation
There are two components to each Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rating:

  1. General Ethical Standards Rating
    The General Ethical Standards Rating denotes adherence to professional standards of conduct and ethics, reliability, diligence and other criteria relevant to the discharge of professional responsibilities.

    The General Recommendation Rating is:
    V - Very High

    A lawyer must receive a General Ethical Standards Rating before his or her review can proceed to the next step.

  2. Legal Ability Ratings
    Legal Ability Ratings take into consideration the standard of professional ability in the area where the lawyer practices, the lawyer's expertise, and other professional qualifications. If a lawyer's practice is limited or specialized, Peer Review Ratings are based on performance in those specific fields of law.

    Legal Ability Ratings are:
    C - Good to High
    B - High to Very High
    A - Very High to Preeminent

Books Authored by Matt Powell

  • 1996 –"What to Do in Case You Are in an Automobile Accident"
  • 1998 –"Knowing Your Rights Concerning Medical Malpractice"
  • 1999 –"Automobile Accident Injury Guide"

Powell & Espat are pleased to offer the following fbooks as FREE downloads.

Automobile Accident Guide

Download a copy of our book in PDF format

The Automobile Accident Injury Guide focuses on the step by step procedures you may want to take to handle your case without a lawyer. The information in this book includes:

  • What you should do at the scene of the crash
  • What evidence you need to preserve
  • What to do when the police arrive
  • Things that you should not do
  • Injuries what to watch out for
  • What to expect from the emergency room
  • Medical specialists, treatment and proper documentation of your injuries
  • Insurance Adjusters, know who you are dealing with
  • How to document and recover your lost wages
  • How to know what is fair compensation for your losses
  • Fault the concept of negligence and comparative negligence
  • Do you really even need a lawyer, or can you handle the claim yourself
  • How to get your car fixed without a lawyer
  • Which insurance company will pay, and for what
  • How much will the insurance company pay to fix your car
  • Renting a car
  • Insurance propaganda
  • Insurance coverage what they are and what you should have to protect yourself
  • What are your rights if you drive a motorcycle
  • What time limits should you know about

Medical Malpractice – A Simple Guide To A Complex Issue

Download a copy of our book in PDF format

The Medical Malpractice book explains many of the complex issues regarding the laws of medical malpractice, the procedures required to bring a medical malpractice claim, the facts and issues that must be addressed in every medical malpractice claim. The information in Medical Malpractice – A Simple Guide To A Complex Issue includes:

  • Your rights concerning medical malpractice
  • What to do if you suspect medical malpractice
  • What is medical malpractice
  • Who can commit medical malpractice
  • What is the acceptable standard of care you should expect from your doctors
  • What is “causation” and how does it apply to a medical malpractice claim
  • Common defenses used by insurance companies for doctors
  • How to find out if a doctor has breached the standard of care
  • What about consent forms you signed when you went to the doctor
  • What you should do if you have been injured by a health care provider
  • What you should not do if you have been injured
  • How should you select a lawyer for a medical malpractice claim
  • What you can expect your attorney to do on your behalf
  • How to find the best experts to prove your claim of medical malpractice
  • Laws that delay medical malpractice claims
  • Critical time limits that affect all medical malpractice claims
  • Children and medical malpractice
  • Tort reform and limits on recoveries for children
  • The so called medical malpractice lawsuit crisis
  • How can you avoid medical malpractice
  • What is your medical malpractice case worth
  • What if someone changes your medical records, what can be done
  • What if your doctor does not carry medical malpractice insurance

Films produced by Matt Powell

  • 2008 – Produced the documentary film Hidden Damage. This film addresses the legal and medical issues that most people must address after a car accident.

Board certified civil trial lawyer Matt Powell
and experienced personal injury lawyers Mitch Espat, T. Edmund Spinks and Anita DiGiacomo

Contact Powell & Espat Now!