About Us

OUR MISSION: To provide professional legal services of the highest caliber and integrity, through responsive, thorough, cost efficient advocacy. With experienced, diverse attorneys, two of whom are board certified, we are committed to aggressively resolving our clients' legal needs, with fearless and compassionate representation.

Mandelbaum, Fitzsimmons, Hewitt & Cain, P.A. is an AV-rated law firm, the highest rating a law firm can achieve. Listed in the Bar Register of Preeminent Law Firms and A.M. Best's Directory of Recommended Insurance Attorneys and Adjusters, We serve local, national, international and governmental clients in a variety of specialty practice areas. Our attorneys have large international law firm experience, training and expertise, and provide boutique-firm personal service, quality and cost-effectiveness to either the individual client or major corporate client.

We are committed to understanding our clients' individual needs and providing the broad spectrum of legal knowledge and expertise necessary to effectively and efficiently handle cases. Clients receive individual attention from the attorney defending their case. Our priority is to obtain a resolution that will be cost effective and fair.

Our lawyers provide the best legal service possible and bring extensive experience from several facets of civil defense litigation. Our lawyers have substantial in-court and trial experience. We recruit new lawyers who have the skills to aggressively handle a trial, if a satisfactory settlement is not possible.

In a typical scenario, a claims representative, risk manager or corporate representative will contact us first. Then we immediately begin reviewing all aspects of the case to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the defense and devise a case specific litigation strategy. As part of our initial evaluation, we render our legal opinion of the merits of the case and the quickest route to a favorable resolution. Our goal is to obtain a dismissal, obtain a defense verdict or secure a discounted settlement or jury verdict based on our presentation of the facts and law. We pursue your defense in an aggressive and cost-effective manner, and keep clients well informed on the status of the case.

Our attorneys have long-standing relationships with leading experts and authorities in many scientific and medical fields to assist in providing efficient and cost-effective representation, while assuring that we present a state-of-the-art defense for our clients.

We sustain a winning record by being prepared and trustworthy. With AV-Rated, B-V rated and Board Certified trial lawyers in our firm, we are legal professionals who follow strict ethical standards and exceptional legal ability. Our quality work results in referrals on a regular basis.

Our attorneys have substantial experience in all areas of civil litigation, including:

  • Civil Trial and Appellate Litigation
  • Insurance & Casualty Defense
  • Risk Management Coverage
  • Extra-Contractual Liability & SIU
  • Auto & Trucking Negligence
  • Personal Injury Protection
  • Premises & Products Liability
  • Employment Liability & Civil Rights Law
  • Construction Law & Litigation
  • Maritime, Shipping & Transportation Law
  • International Business, Trade & Customs Law
  • Business & Commercial Litigation

We have offices conveniently located in Tampa and Clearwater, Florida. Please contact Mandelbaum, Fitzsimmons, Hewitt & Cain, P.A. to address your Insurance Defense & Civil Defense needs.


Sam Mandelbaum

Samuel Mandelbaum

Mr. Mandelbaum is the only Lawyer in Florida who is board certified in International Law and Civil Trial Law. He has a top rating of “A-V” from the national Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory (the highest peer rating for legal ability and ethical standards), and is listed in Who's Who in American Law for “Outstanding Achievement” in Civil Litigation.

Practice Areas: Civil Trial Practice; Commercial Law; Appellate Practice; Insurance Defense Law; International Business Law; Admiralty and Maritime Law; Transportation; Intellectual Property Law; Employment and labor law; Legislative and governmental law.

Admitted: 1979, Florida; 1981, U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida and U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth and Eleventh Circuits; 1982, U.S. Supreme Court; 1984, U.S. Court of Military Appeals; 1985, New York.

Law School: Georgetown University Law Center, LL.M., 1995; Vermont Law School, J.D., 1977

College: State University of New York at Albany, B.A., 1973.
Kevin Fitzsimmons

Kevin Fitzsimmons

Board Certified Trial Attorney whose has a top rating of "A-V" from the national Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory, and was selected as a Florida Super Lawyer in 2008 - a distinction awarded to less than 5% of Florida attorneys.

Practice Areas: Auto liability, Premises liability, Commercial Litigation; Insurance and Surety Defense; Labor and Employment; Civil Trial; Construction and Property Law.

Admitted: 1995, Florida, United States District Court: Middle District of Florida, Northern District of Florida and District of Colorado.

Law School: University of Florida, J.D., with honors, 1994.

College: Florida State University, B.A., 1991.
Scott Hewitt


Mr. Hewitt received a top attorney rating of “A-V” from the national Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory, and was selected as a 2010 Florida Super Lawyer Rising Star.

Practice Areas: Employment Litigation; Complex Personal Injury/Insurance Defense Litigation; Healthcare Compliance and Business Litigation & Consultation.

Admitted: 1999, Florida; 2000, U.S. District Court, Middle, Northern and Southern Districts of Florida; Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals; Florida Supreme Court.

Law School: Stetson University College of Law, J.D., cum laude, 1998.

College: University of Florida, B.S.B.A., 1991.
John Cain


Mr. Cain is a former State of Florida Prosecutor. In addition to his intense criminal exposure, Mr. Cain is also a civil trial attorney whose experience and training includes the representation of individuals, and businesses through all aspects of litigation. Also, Mr. Cain is a former Marine and fluent in Spanish.

Practice Areas: Criminal law, Auto liability, Premises liability, Commercial Litigation; Insurance and Surety Defense; Civil Trial.

Admitted: 2004, Florida, United States District Court: Middle District of Florida

Law School: Syracuse University College of Law, J.D., 2004.

College: Florida State University, B.S., 2001
Stephen Spaid


Mr. Spaid focuses his practice in the areas of civil litigation and general liability, including auto negligence, premises liability, and civil rights litigation. He has significant experience representing professional and corporate clients in various capacities, from pre-suit coverage matters to litigation through trial. He is dedicated to zealously advocating for his clients interests and ultimately achieving the best possible resolution of the claims handled. Prior to joining Mandelbaum, Fitzsimmons, Hewitt & Cain, P.A., Mr. Spaid received his Juris Doctor from the Florida State University’s College of Law in 2010. While in law school, he worked as a law clerk with the Complex Civil Litigation Division of the Office of the Attorney General for the State of Florida; as a certified legal intern representing indigent clients for the Public Interest Law Center’s Family Law program; and served as the Chief Justice of the Student Supreme Court for the Florida State University. Additionally, Mr. Spaid placed 1st in 2009 school-wide Negotiation competition and was selected to represent the FSU College of Law at the regional competition.

Practice Areas: General Civil Litigation; Auto-Negligence Defense; Premises Liability, Employment Discrimination; Civil Rights Litigation

Admitted: The State of Florida (2010); United States District Court: Middle District of Florida (2010); The United States Supreme Court (2015)

Law School: Florida State University College of Law; J.D., 2010

College: Florida State University; Dual B.S. in Marketing & Management, cum laude, 2007
Benjamin Stranzl



Mr. Stranzl received his Juris Doctor from Florida Agriculture & Mechanical University College of Law in 2012, and was admitted to practice law in Florida in 2013. Mr. Stranzl has been employed with Mandelbaum, Fitzsimmons, Hewitt & Cain since his undergraduate studies at the University of South Florida. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the USF College of Arts and Sciences in 2009.

Mr. Stranzl now focuses on commercial litigation, intellectual property, and small business formation. For the past year and in conjunction with the University of Tampa, Mr. Stranzl has been providing pro bono legal assistance to students in the UT Entrepreneurship Center. In addition, Mr. Stranzl represents various local breweries and assists up and coming Breweries, Meaderies, and other establishments with licensing, federal, state, and local applications, trademarks, and other start-up matters.  Recently Stranzl was selected as a Rising Star for 2017 by Florida Super Lawyer.  

Practice Areas: General Civil Litigation; Auto-Negligence Defense; Civil Rights; Corporations and Small Business; Commercial Litigation; Federal and State Alcohol Licensing; Risk Management; and, Intellectual Property

Admitted: 2013, Florida, Unities States District Court: Middle District of Florida; U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit; U.S. Supreme Court

Law School: Florida Agriculture & Mechanical University College of Law: J.D. 2012 Cum Laude

College: University of South Florida: B.A. 2009


Colin Norton


Mr. Norton received his Juris Doctor from Florida State University College of Law in 2015 and was admitted to practice law in Florida in 2015. During his time at law school, Mr. Norton received his Business Law Certificate while attending Florida State. Prior to law school Mr. Norton attended the University of Tampa where he received a degree in economics from the Sykes College of Business. He was awarded multiple scholastic honors societies while in attendance. Mr. Norton was also the captain of the Men’s Crew team. Mr. Norton has been employed with Mandelbaum, Fitzsimmons, Hewitt & Cain since 2010. During his pre-admission employment with Mandelbaum, Fitzsimmons, Hewitt & Cain, Mr. Norton closely assisted with numerous major civil rights cases, as well as various other state court cases.

Practice Areas: General Civil Litigation; Auto-Negligence Defense; Personal Injury; Civil Rights; Entertainment Law; First Person Property; Premises Liability; Contracts and Indebtedness

Admitted: Middle District of Florida – 2016

Law School: Florida State College of Law: J.D., 2015. Business Law Certificate

College: University of Tampa: B.S. 2012
Colin Norton


Mr. Rainey received his Juris Doctor from Stetson University College of Law in 2016 and was admitted to practice law in Florida in 2016. During his time in law school Mr. Rainey focused on honing various litigation skills, competing as a member of Stetson’s Dispute Resolution Board as well as receiving book awards in Legal Research & Writing I, Client Interviewing & Counseling, Pre-trial Practice and Arbitration. Mr. Rainey was also awarded the Victor O. Wehle Award for his performance in his Trial Advocacy Class, and was selected to serve as the Trial Advocacy Teaching Assistant for The Honorable Judge Tom Barber for two semesters. Prior to law school Mr. Rainey attended the Florida State University where he received a double major in Sport Management and Economics along with a minor in Business upon graduating in 2013.

Practice Areas: General Civil Litigation; Auto-Negligence Defense

Admitted: 2016, Florida, United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida.

Law School: Stetson University College of Law: J.D., 2016

College: The Florida State University; B.S., 2013
Charleen Ramus Jaffe

Ramus Jaffe

Of Counsel
Ms. Jaffe focuses her practice on employment law and whistleblower law. She has represented employers & employees in employment and civil rights matters in various federal and state courts and in administrative forums, having litigated cases primarily involving issues on the following matters: sex, race, age & disability discrimination; sexual harassment; retaliation; equal pay; wage and hour; the U.S. Constitution; retirement contribution & benefits; COBRA; fair housing; workers' compensation retaliation; unemployment (or reemployment) compensation; teacher fitness for employment; The Law Enforcement Officers' Bill of Rights; breach of contract and employment-related torts.

Practice Areas: Employment Law & Whistleblower Law

Admitted: Florida, 1986; U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida; U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

Law School: J.D. 1985, Stetson University College of Law, St. Petersburg, FL; Moot Court Board

College: B.A. 1982, Kenyon College, Gambier, OH

Practice Areas

Automobile Accidents

The attorneys of Mandelbaum, Fitzsimmons, Hewitt & Cain, P.A. auto negligence practice handle any variety of automobile or trucking accidents, ranging from the most minor fender bender accidents, to more involved hit and run pedestrian accidents, to more complex multi-vehicle accidents, trucking accidents and motor cycle accidents. Whether the claim involves a simple soft tissue injury, or is a more complicated catastrophic injury or wrongful death case, we can effectively and efficiently handle your case. We have vast experience in all nature of claims, first party, third party, underinsured and uninsured claims.

Our attorneys are well versed in motor vehicle regulations, trucking record retention and licensing requirements and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Our vast experience and depth on knowledge set us apart for our competition.

Serious Personal Injury & Wrongful Death

Have you or a family member suffered a serious personal injury or wrongful death? We can help. Our firm is dedicated to zealously pursuing our clients’ rights with fearless and compassionate determination. Why choose us? Consider the following:

Experience – Our lawyers have over 60 years combined trial experience in personal injury/wrongful death cases. Unlike many firms, we actually take cases to jury trial if need be. When deciding upon a firm to use, ask how many jury trials that firm, and the lawyer handling your case, has conducted in the past year and during their career. Your opponent will know the answer to those questions, and the value of your case will depend on it. Insist upon a personal injury lawyer that tries cases.

Board Certification – Mr. Mandelbaum and Mr. Fitzsimmons are both Board Certified Civil Trial Lawyers, a distinction recognized by the Florida Bar Association. Only 2% of the lawyers in Florida have achieved this distinction, and only those lawyers can represent themselves as specialists in this area of law. While any firm can advertise that they practice personal injury law, only Board Certified lawyers are considered specialists. Insist that the lawyer handling your case be Board Certified.

AV Rated – Our firm is rated AV by Martindale Hubble, the most respected legal publication in the industry. “AV” is the highest possible rating given, and was received based upon recommendations of other lawyers. Only 5% of lawyers nationwide have achieved this distinction, and you should insist that the firm handling your case is AV rated.

Nationwide – Because of our credentials, we have successfully associated with other firms across the State of Florida and nationwide with no additional expense to our clients.

We handle cases involving the following:

  • Automobile/truck/motorcycle accidents - We aggressively pursue drunk driver
  • Premise Liability – including slip and falls, improper security, and assault cases
  • Products Liability
  • Insurance Disputes

If you are unsure whether you have a potential case or not, please contact us at contact@manfitzlaw.com.

Insurance Law

We have extensive experience in all aspects of insurance law. We have represented major insurance companies, businesses and governments, and numerous individuals in prosecuting and defending insurance claims. Our experience includes issues arising from commercial policies, automobile policies, homeowner’s policies, error and omission policies and various other insurance contracts. We have assisted clients in investigating claims, establishing whether there is applicable coverage for a loss, defending and prosecuting cases through trial and appeals, and working on any applicable extra-contractual or “bad faith” issues that may be involved.

By representing a wide range of clients in this area of law, both defending and pursuing cases, we have gained a distinct advantage and knowledge of how to best serve our clients’ needs. Please feel free to fill out our free evaluation form to see if we can help with your individual issue.

Criminal Law

Firm attorney John Cain represents clients in a variety of criminal proceedings. Mr. Cain is a former US Marine and State Prosecutor with the Hillsborough County State Attorneys Office, where he prosecuted hundreds of criminal cases. If you have been charged with a criminal offense, please contact Mr. Cain to set up an appointment to discuss your defense.

Premises Liability

We have aggressively defended against premises liability claims brought against owners, operators and managers of companies and commercial properties. We have shown that our effective and experienced legal counsel can protect your business and financial interests. Representing homeowners, apartment complexes, commercial businesses, construction companies, grocery stores, hospitals, hotels, landlords, nightclubs, office buildings, parking lots, restaurants, retail stores, shopping malls, and other property owners, our attorneys handle a wide range of premises liability matters, including those involving serious injury and complex litigation such as:

  • Defects on the premises
  • Acts of negligent third parties
  • Slip and falls
  • Negligence or improper maintenance of the premises
  • Negligent security
  • Falling merchandise
  • Elevator, escalator and moving sidewalk injuries
  • Lack of effective warning signs
  • Inadequate security or lighting

Product Liability

Product liability defense provides legal defense for designers, manufacturers and distributors of products who have been sued based upon a Plaintiffs allegations that a product was poorly designed, poorly labeled, had a manufacturing defect, was tampered with, or overall had something go wrong with it in the course of its production or distribution. Most products are regulated and tested by either government or trade organizations to protect the public and most manufacturers have internal quality control programs to ensure that the product they produce is safe for the public and fit for its particular purpose. If the product is used properly in the manner described by the designer, manufacturer or distributor, liability for injury or damage associated with a product or its use can be limited or eliminated altogether.

We have defended manufacturers, distributors, and sellers in personal injury and property damage cases involving alleged defects in design, manufacture, production, labeling, such as insufficient warnings or failure to warn, and distribution. The firm's partners have significant experience in product liability defense litigation, having defended major motor vehicle manufacturers against product liability claims involving air bags, rollovers, seat belts, unintended acceleration and the crashworthiness doctrine. Additionally, the firm's partners have defended other manufacturer's products including electrical appliances, elevators, dental lasers, lawn mowers, forklifts, medical devices, spinal implants, paint and lacquers, pyrotechnics and gas tanks against defect theories based on design, manufacture, breach of warranty and failure to warn.

Employment Practice and Civil Rights

The attorneys of our firm have handled a wide range of employment matters. We have served a variety of privately owned businesses, publicly owned businesses, governmental agencies and employment practices liability insurers in lawsuits by employees. Our attorneys are familiar and have successfully litigated claims involving discrimination and retaliation under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. 1983, The Florida Civil Rights Act (FCRA), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), Florida and Federal Whistle-Blower Act claims. We have also provided consultation for employers involving personnel issues and have litigated non-compete & severance agreements. We also handle the defense of civil rights and constitutional claims, as well as liability actions stemming from arrest and incarceration.

Heavy Construction/Industrial

The attorneys of the firm represent a variety of businesses and government agencies involved in the heavy construction, mining, and waste management industries. We become involved with our clients at every level of risk management – from assessing risks before an accident occurs, to defending our client in actions for personal injury, property damage, bid disputes and/or OSHA or MSHA complaints. We have particular expertise in defending industrial accidents, including injury cases and damage to underground utility claims.

For many of our clients, we are available 24/7 to respond immediately to an accident throughout the State of Florida to document and protect those clients’ interests. We also provide training seminars to our clients’ safety managers and general personnel on a variety of topics pertinent to their business. Please contact MFH if you have any questions or to would like to set up an appointment to discuss your companies’ needs.

Maritime, Shipping & Transportation Law

We offer a diverse spectrum of experience and insights in admiralty, shipping & transportation law. The range of clients served include major insurers and underwriters, P&I; clubs, port authorities, vessel owners, shippers, importers and exporters, customs brokers, freight forwarders, stevedores, manufacturers and passenger cruise lines. In addition, the firm's lawyers experience includes vessel arrests and foreclosure, marine casualty, Jones Act claims, charter parties, passenger cruise liability, bills of lading, cargo loss, damage and delay, customs proceedings, export regulation, yachts and pleasure craft, marine regulation and maritime administrative investigations.

International Business, Trade & Customs

The firm offers expertise in international business, in trade and customs law, in commercial transactions, regulatory matters and dispute resolution. Distinctions include board certification by the Florida Bar in international law, serving as an adjunct law professor in international business law and international litigation and arbitration, and leadership positions in a number of international business and trade organizations. Expertise includes international corporate, financing and banking matters, international sales contracts and transactions, establishing foreign joint ventures, branches and subsidiaries, sales agencies a d distributorships, international franchising, international procurement and bid submissions, foreign project development, foreign investment and asset planning, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act issues, trade regulation, GATT, WTO and NAFTA issues, cargo shipping and transportation matters, anti-dumping and countervailing duties, customs proceedings, tariffs, classification, GSP, seizures and penalties and export regulation.

Business & Commercial Litigation

All too often businesses find themselves engaged in disputes and/or litigation thereby reducing the profitability of their businesses and relationships in the communities. Addressing future concerns and legal issues at the outset and receiving proper counseling during a dispute provides for profit maximization in such business endeavors.

The attorneys of Mandelbaum, Fitzsimmons, Hewitt & Cain, P.A. have extensive experience in representing businesses in the pre-contract negotiation phase, litigation avoidance and business counseling phase and ultimately commercial litigation surrounding business disputes. Whether the dispute or contract involves a complex transaction or a basic arrangement between an individual, a professional and a business, we can effectively and efficiently handle your matter and/or dispute.

Civil Trial & Appellate Litigation

The members of the firm provide experienced advocacy to manage risks, resolve business and insurance disputes, and pursue claims in state courts, federal courts, arbitration, administrative proceedings or international tribunals. Substantive areas of litigation handled by the firm involve commercial disputes; personal injury, insurance and employment litigation; maritime and transportation law; construction law; banking & debt recovery; and, international business disputes. The firm includes experience in litigation through Florida Bar Board Certification in Civil Trial Litigation, service on trial & appellate court rules drafting committees, service as chief editor of litigation articles in a major bar journal.


Mandelbaum, Fitzsimmons, Hewitt & Cain, P.A. has substantial experience in representing parties in state and federal regulatory matters, including state licensing, Medicare and Medicaid certification and reimbursement, Controlled Substances Act, and the Food Drug and Cosmetic Act, issues related to HIPAA and in all aspects of compliance with federal and state statutes. We advise physicians, physician practices, pharmacists, pharmacies, nurses and clinics. Our lawyers also provide counsel to clients facing administrative action by the state and federal regulators, complaints, and licensure disciplinary proceedings.

Effective May 20, 2010, the Hillsborough County Board of County Commissioners adopted Ordinance 10-08E, which requires licensure of pain management clinics in order to operate after June 15, 2010. Applications must be received by the Consumer Protection Agency at 1101 East 139th Avenue, Tampa, Florida 33613 by June 14, 2010.

See below for more information: http://www.hillsboroughcounty.org/consumerprotection/pml/

Effective May 24, 2010, the Tampa City Council adopted Ordinance No. 2010-59, requiring certain pain management clinics to obtain a permit in order to maintain operation within the city. The ordinance was effective upon signing by Mayor Iorio and your clinic should have already applied for a permit.


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Our Locations

Wells Fargo Building
100 South Ashley Drive, Suite 1100
Tampa, FL 33602

Tel: (813) 221-0200
Fax: (813) 221-8558
Email: contact@manfitzlaw.com

4207 SW 34th Street
Orlando, FL 32811

Tel: (407) 674-7841
Fax: (813) 221-8558
Email: contact@manfitzlaw.com