Levin Papantonio Rafferty
316 South Baylen St.
Pensacola, FL 32502
After working several years as a litigation paralegal, Matt attended Florida State University College of Law, where he graduated with highest honors in 2002.
During law school, Matt earned 14 "book awards" (given for the highest grade in a course). He worked during all three years of law school as Professor Charles Ehrhardt’s sole research assistant, served as senior articles editor for the FSU Law Review, clerked in private practice, and helped raise two young daughters.
Upon graduating law school, Matt clerked for two years for the Hon. Robert L. Hinkle, U.S. District Judge, Northern District of Florida, in Tallahassee. While living in Tallahassee, he twice served as an adjunct professor to the FSU School of Criminology, teaching a graduate course on criminal law and individual rights.
Matt joined the firm in 2004 and became a shareholder in 2009. His practice has focused on complex individual and class actions with extensive trial experience. He currently co-chairs the firm’s class action department. He has been peer-nominated and selected as a Florida "Super Lawyer" each year since 2009. He is rated "AV" by Martindale-Hubbell. He is a member of the Florida Supreme Court Standard Jury Instructions Committee (Civil).
From a practice perspective, Matt delights in confronting corporate wrongdoers; but he also believes lawyers can be aggressive and effective while maintaining civility and professional courtesy. More than 20 attorneys have peer-reviewed Matt on Martindale-Hubbell and all have given him 5/5 stars for ethical conduct. Corporate defense counsel opposite Matt through trial and appeal describe him as having "high ethical standards" and being "true to his word."
Year Joined Law Firm
Present Position with Law Firm
Areas of Practice
- Complex Individual & Class Actions
- Mass Torts Litigation
- Tobacco Litigation
- 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 District of Colorado
- U.S. District Court District of New Mexico
- U.S. District Court Eastern District of Wisconsin
- U.S. Court of Appeals 11th Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals 5th Circuit
- Florida State University College of Law, Tallahassee, Florida, 2002
Honors: Graduated With Highest Honors
Honors: Board Member, FSU College of Law ACLU
Honors: Meritorious Service Award for his service to the Law Review
Honors: Order of the Coif
Honors: 14 Book Awards
Honors: Law Review: FSU Law Review, Senior Articles Editor
- B.S., University of Southern Mississippi, 1992
- B.S., University of Southern Mississippi, 1993
Honors: With Honors
- Senior Writer, The American Trial Lawyer
- Equitable Repudiation: Toward a Doctrine of Fallible Perfection in Statutory Interpretation, 29 Fla. St. U. L. Rev. 303, 2001
- Bad Faith or No Faith? Finding a Place for Wrongful Refusal to Defend In Florida's Bad Faith Jurisprudence, 29 Fla. St. U. L. Rev. 1389, 2002
- Pulling Skeletons from the Closet: A Look Into the Work-Product Doctrine as Applied to Expert Witnesses, 31 Fla. St. U. L. Rev. 67, 2003
- Martin vs. RJR et al. ($30 million jury verdict)
- Gray vs. RJR et al. ($9.2 million jury verdict)
- Ward vs. RJR et al. ($2.7 million jury verdict)
- Guy vs. Roads Inc. of NW Florida ($4.25 million jury verdict)
- Danielson v. PM USA Inc. ($2.9 million jury verdict)
- Hon. Robert L. Hinkle, U.S. District Judge Northern District of Florida, Tallahassee, Law Clerk