Joseph Lafayette III Gufford

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Practice Areas:

  • Family Law
  • Divorce
  • Child Custody
  • Domestic Violence
  • Guardianship

Professional Associations

  • Martin County Bar Association, Chairman, Family Law Committee , 2008
  • Chairman of the Martin County Bar Association Family Law Committee, Chairman, 2008 to 2009

Education

  • Stetson University College of Law, St. Petersburg, Florida
    • J.D. - 1990
  • University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
    • Major: Political Science

Bar Admissions

  • Florida, 1991

Classes & Seminars

  • The Changes to Chapter 61 of The Florida Statutes , Martin County Bar Association Family Law Committee, 05/01/2008 to 05/01/2008

Published Works

  • Grandparent Rights- Temporary Legal Custody by Relatives
  • Should I Tell My Spouse or Significant Other that I am Filing for Divorce or Custody or that I Hired
  • What is the legal divorce process like?
  • Various Types of Florida Adoptions
  • Stuart Guardianship Lawyer
  • How to Find a Good Family Law Lawyer

Fraternities or Sororities

  • Kappa Alpha Order

Languages

  • English
  • Spanish

Biography

Possessing an extensive history in law and business, attorney Joseph Gufford III currently serves clients from The Gufford Law Firm in Martin County, Florida. The former Chairman of the Martin County Bar Association's Family Law Committee, Gufford concentrates on family law and its subsections including divorce, child custody, guardianship law, visitation rights, paternity, prenuptial agreements, child support enforcement actions and spousal support. Family Law practice is very document intensive  and requires  a close examination of each party's assets and income. Joe Gufford has an extensive staff of experienced paralegals that  give him the ability to maximize his efforts on behalf of each and every client.   In many cases, the opposing party will intentionally hide assets or attempt to reduce their income to lessen their exposure to child support, alimony and equitable distribution.  Thus, having an experienced staff to sift through bank statements, Financial Affidavits and  Tax Returns is essential. Additionally, in some cases, it is necessary to  have the right experts to consult with  in order to achieve the client's goals. Whether it is a custody evaluator, a forensic accountant or a vocational assessment, knowing the right experts to call upon if often the key to success in complicated matters.

Other areas Joe Gufford, III practices in range from civil litigation,  probate, landlord/tenant disputes, business organizations and estate and probate law.

Before starting his professional life as a lawyer, Joseph Gufford attended the University of Florida and majored in Political Science and History. During this period, Gufford acquired a commission as a Second Lieutenant after graduating from the U.S. Army Airborne School. Subsequently, he enrolled at Stetson University College of Law and commenced his career as a Clerk with Justin C. Johnston and Associates PA. In his first trial, he was successful at  assisting his client  in obtaining a multi-million dollar judgment against a manufacturer  of a defective heater.
  
Following the receipt of his Juris Doctor, Joe Gufford became an Associate Litigation Attorney with O'Brien & Hooper, PA. At the personal injury firm, he litigated against Cellular One in one of the nation's first AIDS discrimination suits. Joe's vast experience has enabled him to represent clients in civil suits, family law, and business litigation.

The holder of a “Superb” rating from Avvo.com, Gufford has written and presented on legal issues, such as changes to Florida statutes that affect custody and equitable distribution. Covered by the Martin County Bar Association (MCBA) for his pro bono work, Gufford has also obtained Pro Bono Service Awards from MCBA and Florida Rural Legal Services on multiple occasions. Pro Bono work is important  to Joe Gufford and he does as much of it as possible. All Pro Bono cases that Mr. Gufford handles are referred to him through Florida Rural Legal Services. 

Current Employment Position

  • Managing Partner

Past Positions

  • O'Brien & Hooper, PA, Associate Litigation Attorney
  • Barber & Gufford; Gufford & Lawrence, Attorneys at Law
  • Grazi & Gianino, Attorneys at Law
  • Brandt & Gufford, Attorneys at Law

Honors

  • While attending UF, Mr. Gufford was the recipient of a full scholarship from the United States Army and earned numerous awards for his performance in the Army ROTC program. Unlike many cadets, Mr. Gufford was selected via a vigorous selection process to attend the US Army Airborne School . He successfully completed Airborne School and received the much coveted “Airborne Wings”. Later, Mr. Gufford received his commission as an officer in the United States Army. Joe Gufford was also active in various student activities while at the University of Florida including being the President Pro-Tem of the Student Senate, Chairman of the Judiciary Committee and a Member of Kappa Alpha Order. http://www.kappaalphaorder.org/
  • “Superb” rating from Avvo.com
  • Pro Bono Service Awards from MCBA and Florida Rural Legal Services

Pro-Bono Activities

  • 2012 Pro Bono Service Award 19th Judicial Circuit Pro Bono Coordinator/ Martin County Bar Association
  • 2010 Board of Directors Florida Rural Legal Services
  • 2010 Board of Directors Florida Equal Justice Center
  • 2008-2009 Martin County Bar Martin County Bar Association
  • 2008 Outstanding Pro Bono Service award Florida Rural Legal Services
  • 2008 Martin County Bar Association Family Law Committee Chairman Martin County Bar Association
  • 1987 Airborne Wings US Army Airborne School