Justice John D. Couriel

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Candidate Background

Judicial experience


Retired or Appointed Elsewhere


Expected Retirement

2020 - present

Justice, Florida Supreme Court. Appointed by Governor Ron DeSantis.

* Appointed instead of running for election because of a vacancy between election cycles.

legal experience

Before he became a judge, Couriel had about 16 years of experience as an attorney. In that time, he argued 12 jury trials, 3 non-jury trials, and 4 cases for administrative bodies (government agencies) to completion. These were mostly in federal court.

He spent the first 5 years in private practice in New York, where he specialized in cross-border internal investigations, often in Europe or Latin America. He represented large corporations and financial institutions for litigation, insolvency, and transactions. He then returned to Florida and spent 4 years as a Federal Prosecutor. In that role, he prosecuted fraud, public corruption, identity theft, narcotics offenses, and violent crimes. After that he returned to private practice, where he represented clients like Latin American corporations, investment funds, and individual investors. He specialized in cross-border disputes and investigations, including financial disputes, government enforcement defense, judgement enforcement, and claim monetization.

While working in private practice in 2017*, he interviewed to be appointed as U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida. Senator Marco Rubio suggested his appointment to then-president Donald Trump. According to Politico, he was not selected because Couriel didn't vote for Trump in 2016.

Early in his career, he clerked for 1 year at the U.S. District Court, District of Columbia. He was also a Summer Associate at 2 law firms, one in New York.

* His application for Supreme Court places this in 2019.

political experience

Couriel also ran unsuccessfully for political office as a Republican twice.

  • 2016: Florida House of Representatives, District 114. He lost the race with 49.01% of the vote. 2016 campaign website
  • 2012: Florida Senate, District 35. He lost the race with 38.3% of the vote. He was endorsed by former Governor Jeb Bush and Senator Marco Rubio.

other relevant tidbits

This judge is a member of the Federalist Society.

This judge is a textualist, who uses an interpretation of the Constitution that is advocated by the Federalist Society.

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