How Sheila Helps Clients
Sheila is a litigator and trial attorney who serves as lead counsel in all of her cases. She advises clients on complex commercial litigation matters that span a variety of industries. From entertainment, real estate and healthcare, to construction, condominium associations and hotels, her experience also includes money transmitters, professional services, moving and mobile storage, automobile dealerships and audio/visual services. Sheila is the Co-Chair of Buchanan's Class Action Litigation Practice Group.
Notably, Sheila successfully defended a $14 million commercial foreclosure trial and successfully prosecuted the counterclaim for declaratory relief in that action that went to trial for over 4 days. She has also served as an attorneys’ fees expert and in one case the client recovered 100% of the fees she testified were reasonable, which amount was affirmed by the appellate court (Bennett v. Mortg. Elec. Registration Sys., 2018 Fla. App. LEXIS 126, (Fla. 3d DCA 2018). She has handled matters involving partnership and business disputes, defamation, non-competes, commercial foreclosures, civil theft, breach of contract, civil fraud, motor vehicle dealership law, consumer fraud, bank litigation, commercial landlord/tenant disputes, condominium law and public adjuster compliance nationwide. Sheila also has experience in assisting clients with general corporate and contractual matters.
Since 2016, Sheila has been selected to the Florida Super Lawyers List. She was selected for inclusion in Florida Trend’s Legal Elite in 2010 as a top “Up and Comer” and was recognized again in 2021 & 2022. Sheila was selected by her peers as an honoree for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s 40 Under 40 Outstanding Lawyers of Miami-Dade County Award in 2012. She was also selected as one of the Top 14 Lawyers to Watch in 2014 by Attorney at Law Magazine. In 2019, Sheila was recognized as a Leader in the Law by the Florida Association for Women Lawyers. In 2022, Sheila was also recognized as a leading attorney in Florida in the Litigation: General Commercial category by Chambers USA. Additionally, in 2022, she has been recognized by her peers as Martindale AV Preeminent.
What Clients Can Expect
Sheila approaches each case as if it was her own. Clients should expect that she will take their problem on entirely so they can continue to sleep at night. She is the type of lawyer that tries to find the best and most economical way to successfully resolve a problem.
Outside the Office
Sheila is a strong believer in giving back to the community and is active in several charitable and legal organizations. She also dedicates a significant amount of time to pro bono services, including serving as a judicially appointed pro bono Guardian ad Litem for minor children in child custody disputes. In her spare time, she enjoys travel, reading, foreign and independent films. She especially enjoys spending time with her husband, two daughters, Tala Emmanuelle and Isla Rumi, and two dogs, Larry and Lola.
- Prevailed in case and obtained favorable arbitration award in matter for large motor racing company in dispute with seller of business.
- Successfully defended a $14 million commercial foreclosure action at trial brought against a local developer. Also obtained judgment on developer’s counterclaim for declaratory relief to extend the maturity date of the loan.
- Successfully defended a multi-office law firm in a $85 million malpractice claim.
- Obtained summary judgment in favor of condominium association in the defense of a Petition to Dissolve the Condomonium Association and Declaratory Relief claim. Hershoff, Lupino & Yagel, LLP v. Center Cocoanut Grove Condominium Association, Inc., et al. per curium affirmance of attorneys’ fees awarded under §57.105.
- Successfully defended a credit card processing company at an evidentiary hearing in a preliminary injunction action brought against a former sales representative of in a non-compete action and obtained summary judgment striking the non-compete clause as unenforceable and limiting the non-solicitation clause.
- Obtained dismissal, with prejudice, of constructive fraud counts in defense of malpractice claim.
- Obtained a successful settlement in a claim for sentimental value damages in a unique property damage case.
Florida International University College of Law, J.D., 2005
University of Florida, M.A., 2002
University of Florida, B.A., 2001, Honors
- New York
- U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida
- U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida
- U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida
The Florida Bar, Judicial Nominating Procedures Committee, 2019-2020; Vice-Chair (2020); Chair (Present)
New York Bar Association
Dade County Bar Association
Florida Association for Women Lawyers - Committee Chair since 2015
Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce - Member of the Board of Governors, 2018- Present
Sundari Foundation d/b/a Lotus House / Lotus Village, Member of the Board of Directors 2018 – Present
Court-appointed Guardian ad Litem in child custody disputes
The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, Suncoast Chapter, Board of Governors, 2019-2020
Pro bono matter - Successfully defended a former wife at trial in an action for modification of time sharing brought by her former husband and obtained judgment in the former wife’s favor on counter-petition for upward modification of child support.