About Our Firm

The O’Mara Law Group is a private law practice that takes pride in helping good people through difficult situations. As criminal defense attorneys, we help people accused of crimes navigate the justice system. As practitioners of family law, we help people sort through contentious family disputes. Through our trial consultancy work, we support great lawyers with our seasoned trial team. With our media management services, we help clients with high-profile legal issues affirmatively address the press to prevent media coverage from negatively affecting the case.

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OUR TEAM OF

Attorneys

Mark M. O’Mara has been a fixture in the Central Florida legal community since 1982. While he started his career as a prosecutor for the State Attorney’s office in Seminole County, he crossed to the other side of the courtroom and has served as a defense attorney ever since.

Safiya is an associate attorney at the O’Mara Law Group, concentrating on mass torts and civil rights.

Safiya attended Oakwood University, graduating cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts Degree. She then attended Florida State University College of Law for her legal Studies.

Bert W. Barclay, a Central Florida native, is a highly-experienced and respected family law and criminal defense attorney who has practiced in Central Florida for over 35 years. 

Bert obtained his undergraduate degree from the University of Florida and completed his legal education at Florida State University College of Law, graduating with Honors.

Stacey is a U.S. Navy Veteran and a Central Florida native with deep ties to the community. Stacey graduated Cum Laude from Seminole State College with dual degrees. She also graduated Cum Laude from the University of Central Florida, where she earned her Bachelor’s. She then earned her law degree from Barry University, graduating in the top 10% of her class. 

Attorney Lauren Brusca is a native Floridian and a long-standing resident of Central Florida. She attended University of Central Florida for her Bachelor’s and Nova Southeastern University for her Master’s. Ms. Brusca then graduated from Florida A & M College of Law and served as Assistant General Counsel for the Office of General Counsel for the State of Florida.

Lauren Brusca

Lauren Brusca

OF COUNSEL

OUR

Staff

Susan Staggs

NALA Certified and Florida-Registered Paralegal

I am proud to say I have been part of the O’Mara Law Group legal team since 2008. I studied at Valencia and Seminole State Colleges and was on the President’s List. I have been a nationally Certified Paralegal since 2008 as well as Registered Paralegal with the State of Florida.

Susan Staggs

Susan Staggs

NALA Certified and Florida-Registered Paralegal

Brittany Staggs

Florida-Registered Paralegal

I am new to the O’Mara Law Group Team as of July 2021. I hold an Associates degree in Legal Studies, a bachelor’s degree in business and my Florida Registered Paralegal certification. I have worked as a family law paralegal for since 2012 and my goal is to bring comfort to clients while ensuring their concerns are protected and being vocalized during the legal process.

Brittany Staggs

Brittany Staggs

Florida-Registered Paralegal

Kalina Matias

Intake Specialist

Kalina has come into the O’Mara Law Group family with a spectrum of experience. From the hospitality and sales industries to a variety of administrative positions, Kalina has proven to be a quick study in her new work environment. Not only has she tackled many roles throughout her career, Kalina is bilingual and easily bridges many language barriers. This truly eases communications from someone needing OLG’s services.

Kalina Matias

Kalina Matias

Intake Specialist

Anne ‘Annie’ Kunst

Administrative Assistant

Anne is the newest member of the O’Mara Law Group team. She relocated with her Husband from Chicago and has considered Orlando a second home town due to formative roots laid down here as a teenager and young adult. Annie wasted no time and hit the ground running, assisting where ever assistance is needed in our fast-paced firm.

Annie Kunst

Anne ‘Annie’ Kunst

Administrative Assistant

Joan Soto

Joan Soto

Office Administrator

Andrew Garcia

Andrew Garcia

Intern

Justin Gutternman

Justin Gutterman

Intern

Sophia Marcano

Sophia Marcano

Legal Assistant

Richard Midkiff

Richard Midkiff

Legal Assistant

Serving You When You Need It Most

O’Mara Law Group is a private law practice that takes pride in helping good people through difficult situations. As criminal defense attorneys, we help people accused of crimes navigate the justice system.

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Criminal Defense

Find out how we can help you with your criminal case.

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Civil Rights Litigation

No one deserves to have their civil rights taken away.

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Family Law

It’s not just a family law case; it’s your life.

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Mass Torts

Contact us if you've been harmed by a defective drug or device.
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Trial Consultants

You never know exactly what it is going to take to win a case until you have won it — so there is no such thing as “over-preparing.”

Conducting a legal case is like running a race when you do not know where the finish line is. You just have to go faster and further than the other side. In most cases, you can go the distance on your own; however, when the stakes are high, the other side has deep pockets and a team with diverse talents and experience, it is time to even out the playing field. That is when hiring a larger team not only makes sense, it may be what is required to zealously advocate for the client.

Managing a trial team is a unique challenge, and a high-stakes trial is no place for on-the-job training.

Our trial team has been baptized by fire. Everyone knows their job, everyone knows the goal and everyone acts in concert to support the trial attorneys so they can be their best. We have all been in high-stakes, high-pressure courtroom situations when seconds count, and that is when we do some of our best work. There is no substitute for having a cohesive, experienced trial team backing you up when you present your case. If you do not have a full trial team ready to go, we would like to introduce you to ours.

Verdicts & Settlements

Speaking Engagements

Mark O’Mara is a dynamic and engaging speaker on matters related to the Criminal Justice System, Media Coverage of Justice Issues, Race and Justice, and Guns and Self-Defense. He frequently speaks to colleges and universities, conducts law seminars on Criminal Law matters, Family Law matters, and Trial Practice presentations, and presents at law enforcement conferences.

Below, you’ll find summaries of popular speaking topics:

Dynamic Jury Selection

Dynamic Jury Selection is the process we use, not just to pick a jury, but to prepare a jury specifically for the case at hand. It is built on a philosophy that a jury is not just an assemblage of individuals, but rather a cohesive unit prepared by the trial lawyer to perform a very important duty. A jury selected this way gives you a head start on presenting your case to a willing and attuned audience.

An indispensable part of dynamic jury selection is social media jury investigations. Many potential jurors reveal significant details about their lives online, and those details are often very helpful to a trial lawyer who wants to get the most out of every question.

In April 2014, the ABA issued Formal Opinion 466 in which they determined that social media investigation during jury selection is ethical — provided lawyers don’t make any attempt to contact or engage potential jurors online. We have found that social media investigations give lawyers more confidence in their decisions when selecting a jury. As a result, jury selections go faster, there are more substantiated cause strikes, and fewer peremptory strikes are wasted. Social media investigations are, however, labor intensive, and it requires a well-defined workflow to quickly identify actionable information and to deliver this information to the trial only when they need it. This presentation covers the benefits and pitfalls of social media jury selections and identifies best practices that all is to be practical and effective.

The Use of Social Media as an Integral Element of your Case

The Zimmerman case saw the first active use of social media by a defense team in a high-profile legal case. The decision to create an online presence for the defense (which consisted of a website, Twitter account, and a page on Facebook) was, at first, driven by the need to manage the intense media scrutiny. However, by the time of the verdict, the social media campaign had proven effective for managing the attorney’s reputation; avoiding crises; raising funds; selecting a jury; informing trial strategy; and, perhaps most importantly, distinguishing the complicated legal issues from the critical social issues surrounding the case: race, guns, and self-defense. We explore the decision to use social media, how we crafted our social media policy, and we’ll identify specific examples of how the social media campaign directly affected the case.

Managing the Media In High-profile Cases

Once the press takes an interest in a case, the rules change. Whether they’ll admit it or not — counselors and witnesses, judges, and juries behave differently when there are reporters sitting in the courtroom. This presentation explores the ethical considerations involved with the decision to address the press; it illustrates decisions every lawyer should contemplate while drafting a media policy; and it provides practical advice for any lawyer who is approached by the press.

The Zen of Zealous Advocacy

The term “zealous advocacy,” as Mark has come to regard it, is a composite of vigilance and creativity, of tenacity and balance. The Zen of Zealous advocacy is the constant awareness and exemplification of these qualities and the intuition required to keep these qualities in alignment. This presentation examines the most extraordinary legal issues we faced and explains what each issue taught us about the nature of zealous advocacy.

The Art of Cross Examination

This program focuses on the particularly important task of using cross examination to prove your case and to disprove the opponent’s. While there are hundreds of books and seminars on traditional cross, we start with the premise that, like the rest of your presentation at trial, cross examination has to fit in the context of your overall theme of the case. Cross must also be very issue or witness specific: there is no cross technique appropriate for all circumstances. We do identify some guidelines for knowing how and when to use ‘friendly’ cross and aggressive cross.

We also offer a program specific to excelling at cross examination of Expert Witnesses.

What Our Clients Say

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Susan Staggs
NALA Certified and Florida Registered Paralegal

I am proud to say I have been part of the O’Mara Law Group legal team since 2008. I studied at Valencia and Seminole State Colleges and was on the President’s List. I have been a nationally Certified Paralegal since 2008 as well as Registered Paralegal with the State of Florida. I have worked as family law paralegal since 1997 and prior to that worked with Clerk of Court from 1985 to 1997 where I served as a Court Clerk for Judge’s on the Civil and Family Law Bench. I also serve as the Administrator for the Central Florida Family Law Inn where I have to opportunity to work with and know the finest family law attorneys and judiciary in Central Florida. My responsibilities include recognizing and working with complex parenting issues, financial discovery and trial preparation. I am able to understand and work with the often difficult and emotional aspects of Family Law. I have lived in Central Florida since 1983 and enjoy spending time with my amazing husband of over 25 years, my two wonderful sons, equally talented paralegal daughter-in-law and my three awesome grandchildren. “I am extremely thankful for all of life’s lessons and blessings”

Brittany Staggs
Family Law Paralegal

I am new to the O’Mara Law Group Team as of July 2021. I hold an Associates degree in Legal Studies, a bachelor’s degree in business and my Florida Registered Paralegal certification. I have worked as a family law paralegal for since 2012 and my goal is to bring comfort to clients while ensuring their concerns are protected and being vocalized during the legal process. I work closely on each case to ensure all financial issues are thoroughly investigated and each client is advocated for.

I am married with three beautiful children and enjoy spending quality time with my family either on the field or on a family vacation. In addition to spending time with my family, I am pursuing my legal career and beginning law school, which will complete my lifelong dream of being an attorney.

 

Kalina Matias
Intake Specialist

Kalina has come into the O’Mara Law Group family with a spectrum of experience. From the hospitality and sales industries to a variety of administrative positions, Kalina has proven to be a quick study in her new work environment. Not only has she tackled many roles throughout her career, Kalina is bilingual and easily bridges many language barriers. This truly eases communications from someone needing OLG’s services.

While studying Psychology at Valencia Community College, Kalina continued her pursuit of a bachelor’s degree while raising her children at home. She is passionate about ending animal cruelty and volunteers at her local shelter, contributing wherever her help is needed. Kalina keeps busy, if not taking her children to the zoo and other activities, she is appreciating Orlando’s artistic community and museums. Kalina intends to broaden her experience in the legal field by focusing her education and welcomes opportunities to excel at anything that comes her way.

Anne ‘Annie’ Kunst
Administrative Assistant

Anne is the newest member of the O’Mara Law Group team. She relocated with her Husband from Chicago and has considered Orlando a second home town due to formative roots laid down here as a teenager and young adult. Annie wasted no time and hit the ground running, assisting where ever assistance is needed in our fast-paced firm. She has quickly become a welcomed and valuable team member. Even our top-dog, Timber, would agree!

An extensive education in art history and fine art at Valencia Community College, the University of Kansas and The Art Institute of Chicago, have all provided Anne with a unique approach to the constantly changing workday. It is this eclectic path that has groomed Annie to be a flexible, efficient and effective Administrative Assistant the O’Mara Law Group has much appreciated. Her attention to detail pairs well with the broad spectrum of Firm responsibilities; travel arrangements, client or case assistance and team support.

Anne has a passion for helping others and devotes time and dedication to The Faine House and other organizations throughout the community. She has completed two marathons and loves to travel the world.