Dereck G. Capaz, Esq., is an AV® Preeminent™ rated attorney. The AV® Preeminent™ designation is Martindale-Hubbell’s highest peer review rating of a legal professional’s skills and ethics. He focuses his practice in the areas of plaintiff’s tampa personal injury, insurance claims and civil litigation.
Dereck is a third generation Tampa native and graduate of Jesuit High School. He is active in numerous community organizations and lives in Tampa with his wife Laura and three kids. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Florida. He received a Master of Business Administration degree and Juris Doctor degree from Stetson University College of Law. He is a member of The Hillsborough County Bar Association, Tampa Bay Trial Lawyers Association and Florida Justice Association.
Following graduation from law school, Dereck was sworn in as a criminal prosecutor for the State of Florida. While at the Hillsborough County State Attorney’s Office, he developed a reputation as a thorough, successful and well-respected trial attorney. He was a lead trial attorney of a felony division, handling crimes from DUI with serious injury, drug trafficking, armed robbery, gun crimes, aggravated assault, aggravated battery, sex crimes, attempted murder and 10/20/Life cases.
After his tenure at the State Attorney’s office, Dereck accepted a job at well-respected civil law firm in Tampa, Florida representing large corporations, local businesses, and individuals, in a wide variety of legal areas, involving transportation litigation, trucking accidents, corporate negligence, premises liability, and defense of catastrophic injury claims.
Dereck is admitted to practice by The Florida Bar, United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida, and The United States Supreme Court. He was selected for inclusion and named in the 2009 – 2021 editions of Florida Super Lawyers. No more than five percent of the attorneys in Florida are named to the Florida Super Lawyers list.
Dereck is a life member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum. The Million Dollar Advocates Forum is limited to attorneys who have won million and multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements. Fewer than 1% of U.S. lawyers are members of this highly sought after recognition.
Laura earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of South Florida. She then attended Stetson University College of Law, which is one of the top-ranked law schools in the nation for trial advocacy and legal writing. While attending law school, Laura served as an Articles and Symposia Editor for the Stetson Law Review, and she was the recipient of the Elizabeth M. Leeman Award for authoring the best student work published in the Stetson Law Review during 2003-2004. Prior to earning her Doctor of Jurisprudence, cum laude, in 2004, Laura served as a federal judicial intern at the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida.
After law school, Laura was honored to serve as a judicial staff attorney for the Second District Court of Appeal. This experience allowed her the opportunity to gain a significant understanding of the appellate process and to work directly with the appellate court judges, analyzing and providing counsel on a wide range of legal matters.
Thereafter, Laura entered private practice and joined a well-respected insurance defense law firm where she focused her practice on insurance bad faith litigation. As a result of representing many of the large insurance companies for more than eight years, Laura gained extensive experience handling insurance bad faith claims and accumulated significant insight into the operations of large insurance companies, the insurers’ evaluation and handling of claims, and the strategies and tactics used by insurers and their defense counsel. The insight, knowledge, and experience gained while representing insurance companies allows the Capaz Law Firm to provide unique representation to its clients in their claims against the insurance companies.
Laura is admitted to practice by The Florida Bar and the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida. She was previously selected for inclusion and named in Florida Super Lawyers Rising Stars. Each year, no more than 2.5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by the research team at Super Lawyers to receive this honor.
Elizabeth Juszkowski – Certified Registered Paralegal *Profile Coming Soon*
Sasha Rodriguez – Florida Registered Paralegal
As a native Floridian, Sasha graduated From Brooks Debartolo Collegiate High school and earned her A.S. Degree Majoring in Paralegal Studies from Hillsborough Community College.
Sasha joined Capaz Law Firm as a legal assistant in 2016 and has since then become a Florida Bar Certified Paralegal. Sasha serves alongside the firm’s litigation team acting as the initial point of contact for our clients and assisting throughout the litigation process.
In her free time, Sasha enjoys broadening her experiences through travel, supporting local small businesses and volunteering with her local congregation.
Watch and learn what it means to be an AV® Preeminent™ rated attorney.
The AV® Preeminent™ designation is Martindale-Hubbell’s highest peer review rating of a legal professional’s skills and ethics. An AV Rating is achieved only through independent peer review.