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Elizabeth M. Hernandez

Elizabeth M. Hernandez


Elizabeth Hernandez is a seasoned trial lawyer with more than 30 years of experience in Florida state and federal courts. She defends both public sector and private sector clients in complex civil and commercial litigation as well as administrative trials, including appeals.

Board certified in City, County, and Local Government since 1997, Elizabeth represents clients in all aspects of local government law, including charters and local governance, regulatory ordinances and codes, municipal and state regulatory compliance issues, procurement and contract negotiation and disputes, premises and general liability matters, public records matters, land use and zoning, environmental permits, election challenges, ethics matters, civil rights litigation, First Amendment and state and federal constitutional law. She also advises on transactional matters including development agreements, leases, marina and dock approvals and issues, federal and state consent agreements and other work involving municipalities and developers.

Elizabeth has represented a broad range of clients including municipal governments, Florida state administrative agencies, law enforcement personnel, a global hotel chain and real estate developers. Serving as chief legal officer for the City of Coral Gables for 16 years, she oversaw the risk management and insurance needs of the city. She served as the city’s chief prosecutor on all code enforcement matters and, during her tenure, tried numerous cases to completion. She also trained personnel in city agencies on code enforcement.

In her free time, Elizabeth enjoys spending time outdoors and has hiked through 10 national parks. She is also interested in historical preservation and has assisted in crafting laws to preserve historic districts as well as homes and other buildings.


Bar Admissions

  • Florida

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida
  • U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida


  • University of Florida Levin College of Law, J.D., 1983
  • Florida International University, B.A., 1980
    Major: Economics

Professional Associations

    • The Florida Bar
      —Board Certified in City, County, and Local Government, The Florida Bar Board of Legal Specialization and Education
    • Florida Trend’s Legal Elite
      —Listed for Environmental and Land Use, 2018 – 2019
    • —Listed for Government and Administrative, 2011 – 2012, 2014
    • Best Lawyers
      —Listed in Florida for Litigation: Real Estate, 2018 – 2020
    • American Registry
      —America's Most Honored Professionals Top 1%, 2016


    • Miami Dade School Board
      —School Board Attorney Selection Committee
    • U.S. District Court Magistrate Selection Committee
    • Florida Municipal Attorneys Association
      —Executive Council Member; Past President
    • The Florida Bar: City, County, and Local Government Law Section
      —Executive Council Member, 1998-2020
    • Eleventh Judicial Circuit Historical Society
      —Board Member; Board Secretary; Past Chair
    • Cuban American Bar Association
      —Past President


  • Spanish

Speaking Engagements

  • “Public Records in a Technology and Social Media Age,” Speaker, The Miami-Dade County League of Cities’ 4th Annual Best Practices Conference & Exhibition, October 2014