Sammy Cacciatore Photo

Sammy Cacciatore

  • Profile

After a long, successful career, Sammy recently retired to spend more time with his family. 

In addition to obtaining numerous multimillion-dollar verdicts and settlements for people injured in auto accidents or victims of medical or professional malpractice, Sammy Cacciatore helped rewrite legal history in 1973.

His pioneering efforts in the case Hoffman v. Jones established comparative negligence as the standard in Florida, which ultimately led to the change to this standard throughout America. He stood off more than 400 corporations in America and changed the way in which injured people are compensated.

In the early 1970s, if defendants could prove that an accident victim was even 1% at fault for the accident, the victim would receive nothing. This legal argument, which unfairly protected big corporations, was called contributory negligence. Sammy argued that contributory negligence was unfair and benefited the wrongdoers who caused accidents. Hoffman v. Jones established comparative negligence as the fairway to rule in personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits. Today, courts and juries determine the degree of fault of all involved and then award damages accordingly.

Born and raised in central Florida, Sammy attended undergraduate and law school at Stetson University. He moved to his wife’s hometown, Melbourne, joining Jim Nance one of the founding members of the Inner Circle of Advocates in August 1967. In addition to his heavy trial practice, Sammy has served on the Board of Directors of the Florida Justice Association for more than 20 years, serving as its president from 1984 to 1985. He was also elected by his colleagues in the Eighteenth Judicial Circuit to represent them on the Board of Governors of the Florida Bar.

Sammy is one of the few lawyers board certified in Civil Trial Law by the Florida Bar and in the specialty of medical malpractice by the American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys. He has handled many medical malpractice cases throughout Central Florida.

Here at home, Sammy has always been involved in the community in some way or another. He is an active member of the Holy Name of Jesus Catholic Church, the Coastal Conservation Association, and the Back Country Fly Fishing Association. When his children were growing up, he was involved in their schools.

Year Joined Organization:

  • 1967

Litigation Percentage:

  • 100% of Practice Devoted to Litigation


  • Board Certified in Medical Malpractice, American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys
  • Board Certified in Civil Trial Law, Florida Bar
  • Board Certified in Civil Trial Advocacy, National Board of Trial Advocacy

Bar Admissions:

  • Florida, 1966
  • U.S. District Court Middle District of Florida, 1966
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 5th Circuit, 1967
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 11th Circuit, 1981
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 1971
  • District of Columbia Court of Appeals, 1982


  • Stetson University College of Law, Gulfport, Florida, 1966
    • J.D.
  • Stetson University, 1966
    • B.A.
  • Orlando Junior College, 1962
    • A.A.

Published Works:

  • A chapter on “Opening Statement”, Florida Bar Handbook, “Trial Law Update”
  • A chapter on “Comparative Negligence and Damages”, Florida Bar Manual, “Florida Civil Practice Damages”
  • Article on “Demonstrative Evidence”, Florida Bar C.L.E. Manual

Representative Cases:

  • Hoffman v. Jones

Classes/Seminars Taught:

  • Lecturer, Trial Techniques, Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers’ Seminars
  • Lecturer, Personal Injury Law, and Trial Techniques, American Trial Association Seminars
  • Lecturer, State of Florida Circuit Judges’ Annual Educational Conference, 1985
  • Lecturer, Applications and Problem Solving: Automobile Cases, AFTL CLE, 1993
  • Lecturer, Hospital Credentialing Negligence, ABPLA, 1999

Honors and Awards:

  • Listed in Who’s Who in America
  • Listed in Who’s Who in American Law
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America
  • 2009 Trial Lawyer of the Year, Central Florida Chapter of ABOTA (American Board of Trial Advocates)
  • Hall of Fame, Stetson University College of Law
  • Clarence T. Johnston Lifetime Achievement Award, Brevard County Bar Association, 2006
  • The Best Lawyers in America
  • A.V. Rated by Martindale-Hubble
  • Super Lawyer

Professional Associations and Memberships:

  • International Academy of Trial Lawyers, 1988 – Present
  • Brevard County Bar Association, 1967 – Present
  • Vassar B. Carlton American Inn of Court, 1983 – Present
  • Florida Supreme Court’s Committee on Standard Jury Instructions in Civil Cases(Appointed by the Supreme Court), 2001 – Present
  • Florida Justice Association, 1984 – 1985
    • President, Board of Directors
  • Eighteenth Judicial Circuit, Florida Bar
    • Board of Governors
  • Coastal Conservation Association
    • Civic and Social Member
  • Several Judicial Nominating Commissions, Florida State Courts
    • Member
  • Stetson University, 2000 – Present
    • Board of Trustees
  • Stetson University College of Law Board of Overseers, 1995 – Present

Past Employment Positions:

  • Ninth Judicial Circuit Court, State of Florida, Assistant Public Defender, 1966
  • Billings, Frederick and Rumberger, Associate, 1966 – 1967
  • Law Offices of James H. Nance, 1967 – 1970
  • Nance & Cacciatore, Partner, 1970 – 1977
  • Nance, Cacciatore & Sisserson, Partner, 1977 – 1983
  • Nance, Cacciatore, Sisserson & Duryea, Partner, 1983 – 1991
  • Nance, Cacciatore, Sisserson, Duryea & Hamilton, Partner, 1991 – 1999
  • Nance, Cacciatore & Hamilton, Partner, 1999 – 2003
  • Nance, Cacciatore, Hamilton, Barger, Nance & Cacciatore, Partner, 2003 to present

Pro Bono Activities:

  • Holy Name of Jesus Catholic Church, Active Member
    Professional & Efficient

    “Mr. Cacciatore and his staff were very professional and efficient in successfully settling my case in record time.”

    - George W.
    Extremely Grateful

    “You and your firm smoothed the road. I want you to know that I believe the Nance Cacciatore Law firm performed flawlessly on my behalf.”

    - Michael
    Always Kept Me Informed

    “You all were wonderful, I never needed a lawyer before and I’m glad that I chose you. The whole process was very simple and smooth for me.”

    - Susan
    Great Law Firm

    “They paid extra special attention to every case and make you feel like you’re their only case. Their reputation and record are spotless. You can’t go wrong by choosing them to represent you.”

    - Kevin
    Highly Recommend

    “They truly care about you and your family. They are very knowledgeable and passionate about standing up for your rights against Giants who would definitely prevent you from getting what is fair in the present and future.”

    - Kevin

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