Law Firm of Michael W. Porter 727-327-7600
Our firm handles Estate Planning matters which is the area dealing with the distribution of an individual's property at his or her death, taking into account wills, taxes, insurance, property, and trusts so as to gain maximum benefit of all laws and, at the same time, carrying out the person's wishes. Estate Planning may include the use of wills, testamentary trusts, revocable inter vivos trusts, and other estate and tax planning documents.
Our firm handles Probate and Estate Administration. Probate is the legal process by which a person's debts are paid and assets are distributed upon her or his death. Lawyers refer to the entity that owns the deceased's assets until those assets are distributed as an "estate." Estate Administration includes the probate process as well as non-probate transfers of the deceased's assets. The process, generally, includes collecting and valuing the assets of the decedent, liquidating assets, paying necessary taxes and liabilities, and distribution of property to heirs. Individual state laws direct the probate court how to distribute the deceased's estate. State laws and procedures vary greatly, so, it is important to consult a firm with experience in this area of the law to ensure that the deceased's assets are distributed correctly, according to Florida law.
Our firm has extensive experience in all aspects of Florida Guardianship law including proceedings for the determination of incapacity, appointment of a guardian, restoration of rights, as well as representation of persons who are alleged to be incapacitated. This area of our practice also includes Planning for Incapacity to avoid the need for guardianship through the use of durable powers of attorney, living wills, health care surrogate designations, pre-need guardian declarations, and living trusts.
Our firm has experience in the body of health and health care law which encompasses areas such as disability law, elder law, and mental health law and is impacted by Social Security Disability, Medicare and Medicaid.
Our firm represents individuals in transactions that deal with real property - land and the structures attached to it - including purchase and sale, mortgages, leases, title examinations, closings, and management.
The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for individual advice regarding your own situation.
Michael W. Porter, Esquire, has been engaged in the practice of law primarily in the areas of Guardianship, Probate & Estate Administration, Trusts, Estate Planning, and Real Estate Law since his admission to the Florida Bar in 1986. He has attended and received credit for over 350 hours of continuing legal education, relating to probate, guardianship and estate planning. Since his admission to the Florida Bar, he has represented the guardian, the ward, or another interested person in over 1,000 guardianship matters.
He has authored numerous articles on subjects relating to Florida guardianship procedures, estate planning, and advance directives.
From 1989 to 2006, he taught various portions of the forty (40) hour guardianship training course, which was required of professional guardians, and the eight (8) hour family guardianship training course, at St. Petersburg College. In addition, he has lectured on various aspects of Florida Guardianship Law at meetings and seminars conducted by the St. Petersburg Bar Association, the Florida State Guardian's Association, and the Guardian's Association of Pinellas County, as well as having personally conducted several continuing education seminars for professional guardians. He is also a frequent speaker at hospitals, nursing homes, and other community forums on the topics of guardianship, advance directives, and estate planning.
Due to his experience, reputation, ability and diligence, in addition to his reliance upon a highly trained support staff, and the tools of technology, Michael W. Porter, Esquire is able to provide legal representation more efficiently and in less time than the average attorney.
He currently practices law as a shareholder in Michael W. Porter, P.A., providing legal services to clients located throughout Pinellas County, Florida. With an office located in St. Petersburg, Florida, he frequently meets with clients at hospitals, nursing homes, and even in their own homes when their physical limitations and circumstances make it impractical to meet at his office.
Areas of Practice:
25% Estate Planning.
25% Probate, Estate and Trust Administration.
Bar Admissions: Florida, 1986.
Widener University School of Law, Wilmington, Delaware, 1986 Juris Doctor.
High Point College, High Point, North Carolina, USA, 1982 B.A.
Double Major: Political Science & History
Double Minor: Business & International Relations .
Guardianship Court Documentation and Record Keeping, Pinellas County Guardian Association, Sept., 1999. Termination of Florida Guardianships, St. Petersburg College, Training Manual, 2000.
Numerous Guardian Seminars, Guardian Association of Pinellas County, Inc., 1989 - 2006.
Guardian Training, St. Petersburg College, 1989 - 2006.
Advance Directives Seminars, Palms of Pasadena Hospital, 1993 - 2000.
Honors and Awards:
Sertoman of the Year, 1988 - 1989.
Professional Associations and Memberships:
-St. Petersburg Bar Association, Member 1986 - present.
-Lighthouse of Pinellas, Inc., Director, 2010 - present.
Chairman of the Board 2013 - 2015, and 2019 - 2021.
-Thomas E. Penick, Jr. Elder Law American Inn of Court, Founding Member May 2014 - 2022.
Treasurer, May 2014 - May 2018.
-Suncoast Estate Planning Council, Member, 2011 - 2022
-Pinellas County Estate Planning Council, Member, 2011 - 2018.
-Christian Recovery Centers, Inc., 1988 - 2006 - President and Director.
-Guardian Association of Pinellas County, Inc., 1989 - 1993 - Legal Counsel.
-Sertoma Club of St. Petersburg, Florida, 1989 - 1992 - President, Vice President and Director.
-Apollo (f/k/a Greenbrook Nursing and Rehabilitation Center), 1989 - 2003 - Ethics Committee Member.
-Bon Secours Maria Manor, 2001 - 2006 - Ethics Committee Member.
-North Rehabilitation Center, 2005 - 2006 - Ethics Committee Member.
Pro Bono Activities.
Legal Representation of guardians of indigent wards of the court, 1987 - Present.
Legal Advice to persons recovering from drug and alcohol abuse, 1987 - 2006.