C. Richard Newsome, Esq.

Rich Newsome is the senior partner of the Newsome Melton law firm. He is a trial lawyer and represents people and families in complex civil litigation.

After graduating from the University of Florida College of Law in 1989, Rich worked as a federal prosecutor for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Northern and Middle Districts of Florida. Rich left the U.S. Attorney’s Office in 1993 and went to work for a large product liability defense firm in Orlando, Florida where he represented manufacturers. After defending a manufacturer in a case brought by a family who lost a child in a motor vehicle collision, Rich felt compelled to leave the defense practice and began representing only families and individuals. Since then, for more than 25 years, Rich’s practice has focused on representing people who have suffered catastrophic or fatal injuries.

In 2001, Rich was appointed by Governor Jeb Bush to the Fifth District Court of Appeals Judicial Nominating Commission and served as the JNC’s Chairman during his term. He is a Past-President of the Orlando Federal Bar Association, Past-President of the Florida Justice Association, Past-Member of the Board of Governors of the American Association for Justice, Past-President of the Central Florida Trial Lawyers Association, and is a member of the American Board of Trial Advocacy (ABOTA).


Rich is a graduate of the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyer’s College and was invited to serve as a member of the College Faculty. Rich is a member of the Florida, Texas, New Mexico, Oregon, and U.S. Virgin Islands Bar Associations.

Rich was selected as the “Orlando Personal Injury Lawyer of the Year” by Best Lawyers, a peer review publication. In 2015, Rich received the Steven C. Sharpe Public Service Award from the American Association for Justice, in recognition of his representation of Corey Burdick who was severely injured by a defective Takata airbag. The Steven C. Sharpe Award is awarded annually to one attorney and their client.

In 2017, Rich was appointed to the Constitution Revision Commission by Richard Corcoran, the Speaker of Florida’s House of Representatives. The 37 member Commission drafted and submitted 32 amendments to the Florida Constitution which were placed on the ballot and approved by Florida voters to be part of the Florida Constitution in November 2018.

In 2019, Rich was recognized by the National Law Journal as having won two of the Nation’s 100 largest verdicts in 2018.

Rich is the President of the Central Florida Chapter of ABATE of Florida, Inc., a motorcycle safety and advocacy charity. Rich is also President of the American Council of Motorcycle Attorneys (ACMA), a national association of lawyers who represent motorcycle riders.

Rich is a member of the American College of Trial Lawyers, the International Trial Lawyers Association, the International Order of Barristers, and the Summit Council. All of these groups are invitation-only organizations who limit membership to the most elite trial lawyers in the country.

Rich is a founding faculty member of Trial School, Inc., a not-for-profit organization which seeks to foster collaboration between lawyers on today’s best trial advocacy methods and to provide free education and practice for trial lawyers who exclusively represent people and families.

Bar Admissions

  • State of Florida, 1989
  • State of New Mexico, 2009
  • State of Texas, 2012
  • State of Oregon, 2015
  • U.S. Virgin Islands, 2022
  • U.S. District Court Middle District of Florida, 1992
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Florida, 1992
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of Florida, 1992
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 11th Circuit, 1990
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims, 1998


  • Trial Lawyer’s College, Graduate, Class of September 2016
  • University of Florida, Juris Doctor, 1989
  • Winner, National Prince Evidence Appellate Moot Court Competition, 1988
  • Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida, 1986 – Bachelor of Science, Economics, Political Science

Honors and Awards

  • Best Lawyers’ 2016 Orlando Personal Injury Litigation, Plaintiffs “Lawyer of the Year,” 2016
  • American Association for Justice’s Steven J. Sharp Public Service Award, 2015
  • The National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Trial Lawyers, 2013 to Present
  • The Summit Council, 2012 to Present
  • US News “Best Law Firms”, 2011 to Present
  • Florida’s Legal Elite by Florida Trends Magazine, 2005 to Present
  • Best Lawyers in Orlando, Orlando Magazine, 2004 to Present
  • AV Rated Attorney by Martindale-Hubbell, 2004 to Present
  • The Best Lawyers in America, 2003 to Present
  • Association of Trial Lawyers of America’s Steven J. Sharp Public Service Award, 2001
  • FL Lawyer’s Action Group, Chairman’s Outstanding Electoral Achievement Award, 1999
  • United States Department of Justice Special Achievement Award, 1991
  • Association of Trial Lawyers of America’s Top 100 Trial Lawyers
  • Million Dollar Advocates
  • Avvo rating 10.0 out of 10.0

Professional Associations, Memberships, and FJA Award

  • Florida’s Constitution Revision Commission, Commissioner, 2017-2018
  • Florida Guardian Ad Litem Foundation, Board of Directors, 2017
  • Florida Justice Association (FJA), President, 2010-2011
  • Florida Justice Association (FJA), Executive Committee, 2005-2012
  • American Association for Justice (AAJ), Board of Governors, 2005-2015
  • 5th District Court of Appeals Judicial Nominating Commission, Member and Chairman, 1999-2002
  • Central Florida Trial Lawyers Association (CFTLA), President, 2004
  • Orlando Federal Bar Association, President, 1990-1996
  • National Trial Lawyers, Top 100 Diplomat
  • The National Crime Victim Bar Association, Member
  • ACMA, Member and President
  • General Counsel of ABATE of Florida, Inc.
  • President of ABATE of Florida, Central Florida Chapter
Play Video


Grisel D.

Mr. Newsome , Laurie and his staff were amazing from beginning to end. They all made sure to keep in communication with me and that I was well informed of my case. I would recommend Mr. Newsome to anyone who needs a great attorney. Thank you to Mr. Newsome , Laurie and staff for being so kind and hard working. I’m truly great full for everything.

Richard Rizk

Richard " Rich" Newsome is a trial lawyer's trial lawyer. Obtaining the best results possible and helping other trial lawyers is not his job, it's his passion. He naturally attracts other excellent lawyers. He flew across the US in 2020 from Florida to Oregon to meet my legal team. He went on to help us with a previously frustrating case. His smile is contagious! I love this guy! He's a wonderful, caring, and compassionate human being. Thank you, Rich!


Rich Newsome

Personal Injury Lawyer