Ricardo J. Cata
Before joining Upchurch Watson White & Max at the beginning of 2014, Ricardo Cata practiced law in South Florida for 38 years; for the past 25 years, he was at the Miami office of national law firm Wilson Elser, becoming a partner there in 1992. From 2007 to 2013, Ricardo was also the Regional Managing Partner of that office.
Ricardo’s legal practice focused on various areas of liability. He represented hotels, resorts and tour operators from Latin America in litigation filed in Florida’s Circuit and Federal Courts, obtaining several dismissals on the basis of forum non conveniens or lack of personal jurisdiction. Ricardo also regularly handled lawsuits in Florida, representing manufacturers of products made domestically and internationally, in which allegations of design and/or manufacturing defects – as well as insufficient or inadequate warnings – were made.
He also has represented clients in cases involving allegations of design and construction defects, negligent inspection claims, and delay claims. During his litigation practice, Ricardo was involved in hundreds of mediations, and has significant trial experience. He also is certified and authorized to mediate civil cases referred to him by the United States District Court, Middle District of Florida.
A native of Cuba, Ricardo is bilingual in Spanish and English — and able to mediate in both languages — and has an understanding of the culture and business environment in Latin America. He served as the point person at Wilson Elser, managing the defense for a number of insurance and reinsurance clients in the region, in litigation throughout the United States.
Professional Education and Qualifications
B.A. ~ Long Island University, 1972, summa cum laude
J.D. ~ St. John’s University School of Law, 1975
M.A. ~ University of Miami Graduate School of International Studies
- Florida Supreme Court Certified Circuit Civil Mediator
- Martindale Hubbell AV® Preeminent™ rated
- CPR’s Advanced Commercial Mediation Training, 2013
- American Arbitration Association, Essential Mediation Skills for the New Mediator, certificate of completion, Los Angeles, 2013
- International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution, 2013-2014
- ABA Section of Dispute Resolution, Professional Education and Qualifications, 2013-2014
- The Florida Bar
- U.S. District Court, Southern, Middle and Northern Districts of Florida
- U.S. District Court, District of Puerto Rico
- U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit
- U.S. Supreme Court
- Cuban American Bar Association
- Hispanic National Bar Associations
- American Bar Association, Section of Dispute Resolution
- Miami International Arbitration Society, founding member, international arbitration and mediation
- The Florida Bar, International Law and Alternate Dispute Resolution sections