David Plante is an experienced trial lawyer who has been practicing law in the Tampa Bay area for the last Twenty one years. Mr. Plante is proud of the fact that he spent five of those years as a law partner of the late Robert W. Merkle, the former United States Attorney for the Middle District of Florida, and five years prior to that as an associate attorney in Mr. Merkle’s law firm. Mr. Plante has been the sole managing member of the Plante Law Group since 2005.


Prior to moving to the Tampa Bay area, Mr. Plante served as a judicial law clerk to the Honorable G. Ross Anderson, United States District Court Judge for the Greenville Division of South Carolina. Mr. Plante was fortunate to be able to perform his judicial law clerk duties at both the Federal District Court (trial court) level, as well as the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals level.


Mr. Plante was awarded a merit recruitment scholarship to attend the University of South Carolina School of Law. He obtained his Juris Doctor degree in 1992 from that University with Honors. While attending law school, Mr. Plante was selected to serve as Articles Editor for the American Bar Association’s Real Property, Probate & Trust Journal and was elected to the Executive Board of the University of South Carolina School of Law’s Student Bar Association.


Prior to attending law school, Mr. Plante was employed in a regional management capacity with a large multinational corporation. Mr. Plante also obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Florida Atlantic University with Honors and an Associate of Arts degree in Business Management with Honors. Mr. Plante is also an active real estate investor, property manager and title agent in Hillsborough and Pinellas Counties, as well as a brown belt in Yoshukai Karate.

Mr. Plante’s areas of practice are quite diverse. Such areas include but are not limited to Business Transactions and Litigation, Real Estate Transactions and Litigation, Employment Transactions and Litigation, Family Law Matters, Construction Law, Bankruptcy (Chapters 7, 11 and 13), Mediations, Arbitrations, Post Conviction Relief, State and Federal Criminal Law Matters, Licensure and Regulatory issues, as well as State, Federal and Administrative Appeals. Some of the reported Federal and State appellate cases that Mr. Plante has litigated and argued include: St. George v. Pinellas County, 285 F.3d 1334 (11th Cir. 2002)(reversal of order dismissing civil rights claim against a sheriff’s deputy for his killing of a fifteen year old child), Garbutt v. LaFarnara, 754 So.2d 727 (Fla. 2d DCA 1999)($1.75 million verdict against a former City Commissioner of Treasure Island for physical and emotional abuse of live in paramour defended); Johnson v. Fla. Dept. of Health & Rehabilitative Services., 695 So.2d 927 (Fla. 2d DCA 1997)(seminal case establishing a Plaintiff’s right to sue both individual and state actors, as well as the State agency that employed them, despite language in Florida’s waiver of sovereign immunity statute which had previously been construed to create a mutually exclusive right to sue either the individual actor or agency, but not both); Upshaw v. Singletary, 54 F.3d 718 (11th Cir. 1995)(reversed denial of evidentiary hearing on claims of Federal Habeas Corpus relief in relation to conviction for allegedly killing three persons during an act of arson); Castro v. Luce, 650 So.2d 1067 (Fla. 2d DCA 1995)(reversed trial court’s denial of Appellant’s motion for the trial judge’s disqualification); Johnson v. Sackett, 793 So.2d 20 (Fla. 2d DCA 2001)(seminal case holding that an employee of the State Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services is not entitled to immunity, neither absolute or qualified, in a state malicious prosecution action in which it is established that employee filed Dependency Petition without probable cause and for a malicious purpose); Harper v. Harper, 848 So.2d 1179 (Fla. 2d DCA 2003)(successfully defended trial court’s ruling that marriage of a dependent adult child to an individual who is also mentally incapacitated is not an emancipating event warranting termination of a parent’s support obligation). Other reported agency and administrative decisions include: DeLeon v. The Dept. of Retirement Services, Case # 04-0266 (Feb. 23, 2005)(award of In Line of Duty Death Benefits to a Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Deputy’s widow whose husband died of a heart attack while at his bait and tackle shop); Inquiry Concerning a Judge, Re: The Honorable Charles Cope, Florida Supreme Court No. SC01-2670 (May 29, 2003)(defended claims which, if proven, would have resulted in the judge’s permanent removal from the bench); Miron v. Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1593 Order No. 07U-266, Florida Public Employees Relations Commission (Nov. 5, 2007)(establishing that Union violated duty of good faith representation to a union member as a result of acts and omissions taken in retaliation to union member’s opposition to union officers’ re-election resulting in an award of back-pay and attorneys fees). These reported cases represent only a fraction of the numerous legal matters in which Mr. Plante has provided aggressive legal representation to his clients over the past eighteen years.

In addition to litigation matters, Mr. Plante has represented numerous corporations, partnerships and individuals in various complex business transactions. Such transactions include but are not limited to Business Formations and Liquidations, Shareholder Agreements, Licensing Agreements, Multi-million dollar Asset Purchases, Family and Business Trusts, Executive Employment Agreements, Severance Packages and Shareholder Buyouts.

Mr. Plante has been qualified and accepted as an expert witness in litigation matters in Florida state courts.

Mr. Plante is a member of the Hillsborough County, Pinellas County and Florida Bar Associations, as well as the Tampa Bay Bankruptcy Association for the Middle District of Florida.