Matthew J. Lavisky joined Butler in 2009, bringing with him a strong background that enables him to handle cases that deal with Coverage Defense and Extra-Contractual matters. Matt graduated from the University of Central Florida with a Bachelor of Science degree, and then later earned his Doctor of Jurisprudence degree from Barry University. While at Barry University, he was a member of the Moot Court Honors Board and the president of his university’s Federalist Society chapter-a major influential legal organization.
In 2013, Matt earned the James A. Dixon Young Lawyer of the Year Award from the Florida Defense Lawyers Association (FDLA). He currently serves as a member of the board of directors for the FDLA. He is also an AV peer-rated attorney by Martindale-Hubbell.
Matt tackles cases that involve such things as bad faith, civil remedy notices, property insurance coverage, deceptive and unfair trade practices, and uninsured motorists.
•Florida Defense Lawyers Association 2013 James A. Dixon Young Lawyer of the Year Award
•Florida Defense Lawyers Association 2015 Trial Advocate Quarterly Award
October 15, 2018 PUBLICATION Fighting Removal Spoiler Claims Against Adjusters, Attorneys, and Agents in Bad-Faith Lawsuits
This article discusses cases permitting and prohibiting lawsuits against adjusters.
June 13, 2018 PUBLICATION Good-Faith Claim Handling in Florida - Part II
This article is a continuation of the Good-Faith Claim Handling in Florida article that appeared in the Southern Loss Association Newsletter in February 2018. That article discussed the history and background of Florida Statute 624.155, which is commonly referred to as Florida’s bad-faith statute. The statute provides the exclusive remedy for people who believe they have been damaged by bad-faith claim handling practices in the first-party insurance context in Florida.
February 05, 2018 PUBLICATION Good-Faith Claim Handling in Florida
Like many states, Florida law allows a person under a first-party insurance contract to sue an insurer if the person has been damaged by certain actions often referred to as bad-faith claim handling practices. The purpose of this article is to explain how Florida addresses bad-faith claim handling practices. This article will also provide examples of how claims professionals can ensure they are always handling claims in good faith.
November 29, 2017 PUBLICATION Existing Tools to Curb Runaway Attorney FEE Awards
Florida provides one of the most generous insurance fee-shifting mechanisms in the nation. The lure of a large attorney fee award has spawned the very litigation that the fee-shifting statute was intended to avoid. It is common for attorneys representing insureds to file lawsuits over matters that could easily be resolved informally or to drive up a fee claim by unnecessarily aggressive litigation. Courts often reward these tactics by failing to adjust a claim for attorney fees to account for unnecessary litigation, or, worse, by applying a contingency fee multiplier. But courts can only respond to arguments made by the litigants. Florida law provides existing tools that, if applied, can help curb a runaway attorney fee award. This article sets out the current legal environment and discusses ways defendants can fend off a runaway attorney fee award.
March 13, 2015 PUBLICATION Liability and Damages: Understanding Property Insurance Bad Faith Litigation in Florida
Florida recognizes two general categories of insurance bad faith: first-party and third-party. A cause of action for third-party bad faith exists at common law, but also may be brought under the Florida bad faith statute. The essence of a cause of action for third-party bad faith is that the insurer breached its duty to its insured by failing to properly or promptly defend claim, which resulted in the insured being exposed to a judgment in excess of the coverage limits.
September 25, 2018 WEBINARS Challenges and Strategies Defending Florida Property Insurance Claims - 2018 WEBINAR
Partner Matthew Lavisky held a discussion on Florida property insurance trends and recent case law for the FDLA.
April 24, 2018 WEBINARS Defending first-Party Property Bad Faith Lawsuits
Lawsuits for First-Party Property bad faith presented unique challenges to Florida insurers. In Part Two of this webinar series, common issues insurers face when defending these lawsuits have been discussed. We explored allegations commonly made by insureds and their attorneys to support bad faith lawsuits, the damages recoverable by a successful plaintiff, discovery, and strategies for defending against these lawsuits.
March 07, 2018 WEBINARS First-Party Property Bad Faith in Florida
Matthew Lavisky hosted a Webinar on the topic First-Party Property Bad Faith in Florida .
August 16, 2018 BLOG POST Not so Fast! The Confession of Judgment Doctrine in Dispute-Over-Amount Cases
Florida law allows an insured to recover attorney’s fees if the insured prevails in a lawsuit against the insurer for insurance benefits. See 627.428, Florida Statutes. The plain text of the statute requires a “judgment” against the insurer. In Wollard v. Lloyd’s & Companies of Lloyd’s, 439 So. 2d 217 (Fla. 1983), however, the Florida Supreme Court held that an insurer’s post-suit payment of a claim may be the “functional equivalent of a confession of judgment or a verdict in favor of the insured”, thus, triggering the fee-shifting statute.
March 07, 2018 BLOG POST First-Party Property Bad Faith in Florida - Podcast
Increasingly, property insurers in Florida are being sued for bad faith. What accounts for this increase? Mainly, it has been driven by recent appellate court decisions that have eroded and all but eliminated any prerequisites to bad faith actions. In part one of this two-part webinar series, we will outline the legal environment created by those decisions; attempt to define “bad faith” explore the use and abuse of the civil remedy notice of insurer violation, and; discuss some things that can be done either to avoid a bad faith lawsuit altogether or, at least, to put the file in the best posture if a bad faith lawsuit can’t be avoided.
December 15, 2017 BLOG POST Duty to Initiate Settlement Negotiations Under Powell not Triggered Unless Liability is Clear
In a recent decision, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed an important order of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida in a so-called “Powell claim.” Welford v. Liberty Mutual Ins. Co., --- Fed. App’x ---, 2017 WL 5899784 (11th Cir. November 29, 2017). The District Court order can be found at Welford v. Liberty Ins. Corp., 190 F. Supp. 3d 1085 (N.D. Fla. 2016).
August 24, 2017 BLOG POST Why Butler?
Why Butler? Find out more from Partner Matthew Lavisky.
August 15, 2018 EVENT NBI’s Advanced Insurance Bad Faith Seminar
Strategic Discovery in Bad Faith Lawsuits Presented by Matthew Lavisky at the National Business Institute
December 08, 2017 EVENT 2017 DRI Insurance Coverage and Practice Symposium - Hot Topics in Problem Jurisdictions
Matthew Lavisky from Butler Weihmuller Katz Craig along with co-presenter Dan D. Kohane presented in New York, NY at the 2017 DRI Insurance Coverage and Practice Symposium on the topic of Hot Topics in Problem Jurisdictions .
September 17, 2018 NEWS Matthew Lavisky Elected to the Board of Directors for the FDLA
Congratulations to Partner Matthew Lavisky for being elected to the Board of Directors for the FDLA!
August 29, 2013 NEWS Florida Defense Lawyers Association Young Lawyer of the Year award
The firm is pleased to announce that Matt Lavisky has been awarded the Florida Defense Lawyers Association Young Lawyer of the Year award. This year, Matt also served as chair of the editorial board for the FDLA Journal. Please join us in congratulating this well-deserved achievement.