301 East Pine Street
Orlando, Florida 32801
Kelly is a shareholder whose practice focuses on litigating complex business disputes, ERISA benefits matters and appeals in state and federal courts. Her business litigation practice encompasses a wide range of disputes, including breach of contracts and security agreements, tortious interference, trade secrets, non-compete violations, shareholder and partner disputes, asset recovery, and loan repurchase obligations. In the ERISA context, Kelly defends plan and claim administrators in employee benefit disputes. She is experienced in identifying issues that can arise in litigation ahead of time and strategizing with her clients to develop cost-effective solutions to their business problems.
In addition to her litigation practice, Kelly handles a wide range of appeals in both state and federal appellate courts and she is certified as a Florida Supreme Court circuit court mediator.
Active in the community and various bar associations, Kelly has served as a Guardian Ad Litem, has served as the vice chair of the Federal Court Practice Committee’s pro bono committee, and is a former member of the Ninth Judicial Circuit Pro Bono Committee. She also served on the board, including as president, of the Orlando Chapter of the Federal Bar Association for many years. Kelly enjoys giving back to her community by volunteering at local charitable organizations, food banks, public schools, and assisting with voter registration and protection initiatives.
Kelly attended the University of Michigan, where she majored in political science. She then earned her law degree from Duke University School of Law. While in law school, Kelly served as the articles editor of the Duke Journal of Gender Law and Policy and was an active member of the student government. Following graduation from law school in 1998, she clerked for the Honorable E. Clayton Scofield, III, U.S. Magistrate Judge for the Northern District of Georgia for three years and entered private practice in Atlanta as a commercial litigator.
- University of Michigan, A.B., political science (with distinction, 1992)
- Duke University School of Law, J.D. (1998)
- Articles Editor, Duke Journal of Gender Law and Policy
- U.S. Supreme Court
- U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit
- U.S. District Court, Northern District of Florida
- U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida
- U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida
- U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia
Professional Associations and Memberships
- The Florida Bar
- Federal Court Practice Committee
- Vice Chair 2022-2023
- Pro bono subcommittee vice chair 2021-2022
- Appellate Practice Section
- Alternative Dispute Resolution Section
- Florida Supreme Court
- Certified Circuit Civil Mediator
- Federal Bar Association, Orlando Chapter
- National Delegate 2017-2018
- President 2016-2017
- President-elect 2015-2016
- Vice President of Membership 2014-2015
- Board Member-at-large 2013-2014
- Legal Aid Society of the Orange County Bar Association
- Guardian Ad Litem volunteer advocate
- Ninth Judicial Circuit Pro Bono Committee 2016-2018
Awards and Recognitions
- Florida Super Lawyers "Rising Star," 2009
- Represented 50 percent of the owners of deadlocked limited liability companies in the PEO insurance agency arena in a breach of duty dispute with the co-owners. The conflict was resolved through the expeditious settlement of multiple lawsuits.
- Kelly’s commercial litigation experience includes representation of a business landowner in the defense of breach of contract and tortious interference claims by a licensee, and prosecution of counterclaims for trespass and civil theft, concerning a 150 acre borrow pit, including trial and subsequent appeals.
- Represented a developer in an appeal of judgment imposing limitations on the property’s development not contained in the Declaration of Restrictive Covenants, resulting in appellate court reversal and directive to grant judgment in favor of developer.
- Representation of a claim administrator in an ERISA action focusing on issues of first impression at both the federal district and appellate court levels, including authoring the response to a petition for writ of certiorari to the U.S. Supreme Court.
- Representation of floor plan lenders in federal and state cases involving injunctions, recovery of collateral, breach of contract and guarantor liability.
Presentations and Seminars
- Panelist, "Facing the Challenges: Women in the Law," Legal Marketing Association, May 16, 2019