Michael L. Chapman is a member of Holland & Knight's senior management team, serving as the firm's general counsel. In this role, Mr. Chapman is legal advisor to management and the firm's Directors Committee and works to ensure that the firm operates in full compliance with all legal requirements, bar ethics standards, its partnership agreement and core principles.
For more than 20 years, Mr. Chapman has practiced as a commercial trial lawyer. He has extensive experience handling disputes among shareholders and other business owners and in cases involving business entity governance, including shareholder actions, securities fraud actions, derivative actions, corporate dissolution, merger and acquisition claims, and dissenters' rights. He also handles trust claims and other commercial litigation. Representative cases include:
- representing a closely held business owner in connection with $13 million litigation against his co-owner for fraud spanning more than a decade involving complex transactions among a long list of entities
- representing a substantial group of minority shareholders of one of Florida's largest private companies in a dissenters' rights action against the company seeking a buy-out of their shares
- representing a major state university in litigation brought after the death of the former owner of an NFL team concerning more than $10 million in gifts to the university
- defending a family trustee against an action concerning the administration of the trust and its ownership in real property valued in excess of $30 million
- representing several public companies in the defense of securities fraud class actions
- representing a major utility in a state tax dispute concerning the valuation of its power plants
- representing the widow of the founder of a national restaurant chain in a dispute concerning a stock buy-sell agreement triggered by the founder's death
- representing affiliates of a major group of Florida property and casualty insurers in connection with the rehabilitation and liquidation of the insurers and related litigation with the state
- representing the government of a United States territory as plaintiff in litigation seeking more than $20 million in a complex fraud case concerning the establishment and failure of a property and casualty insurer
- representing a major utility in the defense of multimillion dollar fraud claims arising from its sale of interests in a subsidiary
- representing the government of a United States territory as plaintiff in litigation seeking over $20 million in a complex fraud case concerning the establishment and failure of a property and casualty insurer
While attending Auburn University, Mr. Chapman was a member of the Alpha
Epsilon, Alpha Zeta, Gamma Sigma Delta, Tau Beta Pi and Phi Kappa Phi honor
societies and a Graduate Fellow of the National Science Foundation. He was
editor-in-chief of the Mercer Law Review and a member of the Brainerd
Currie Society. He is a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers
and is a registered engineer-in-training.
Mr. Chapman is certified as a Florida Circuit Court Mediator and as a Mediator for the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida.
Mr. Chapman previously served as co-section leader for the firm's National Litigation Section, as a deputy section leader for the Litigation Section and as a practice group leader within the Litigation Section. He has also served as a member of the firm's Directors Committee.