Attorney At Law
Born in Manhattan, New York, to Puerto Rican parents, Luis spent the first 12 years of his life living in the Bronx with his three siblings. His parents decided to return to their native Puerto Rico nestling the family in the town of Bayamón located 11 miles from San Juan, its capital. After graduating from High School, Luis joined the U.S. Army at the age of 17 as a combat medical specialist to help pay for college. While stationed at Ft. Buchanan in Cataño, Puerto Rico, Luis obtained a four-year baccalaureate of science in nursing degree from the University of Puerto Rico. After eight years in the Army, Luis earned a commission as a U.S. Air Force officer where he spent the next 12 years serving many tours of duty including three years overseas at Yokota Air Base, Japan. Luis retired as a Major from the U.S. Air Force Reserves after serving honorably for twenty years of combined active and reserve duty in 2006.
While still a reservist, Luis attended Nova Southeastern University's Shepard Broad Law Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, in 2001. As a law student, Luis was a member of the Moot Court Honor Society and was the Bilingual Editor of the International Law Student Association Journal of International and Comparative Law. Luis was hand-picked to attend one semester abroad at the University of Barcelona, Spain, to study Spanish Civil Law as an exchange student for Nova's newly created Dual-Degree Program. Luis also studied international human rights and environmental law abroad having interned at the Inter-American Institute of Human Rights in San Jose, Costa Rica. Awarded the Palm Beach County Legal Administrators Association Scholarship and a Florida Bar Foundation Public Interest Fellowship in Disability Law, Luis graduated from law school in 2004 with a Health Law and International Law concentration.
Luis joined the Office of the Public Defender for the 15th Circuit, West Palm Beach, as an Assistant Public Defender (APD) where for over three years defended indigent clients charged with committing criminal offenses in every critical step of the prosecution process. As an APD, Luis zealously defended his assigned clients in various divisions throughout the years including appeals, juvenile, domestic violence, misdemeanors and felonies where he spent the majority of his tenure. As a result, Luis litigated many trials and defended hundreds of clients.
After over three years working in criminal law, Luis joined the Department of Health (DOH) as an Assistant General Counsel (AGC) in Tallahassee. As AGC, Luis was assigned to the Prosecution Services Unit where he provided legal services to the DOH by evaluating and prosecuting violations of state law and administrative rules by nursing licensees regulated by the Board of Nursing. After a year of prosecuting nurses charged with violating the Nursing Practice Act, Luis returned to his home in West Palm Beach after an offer to touch the lives of high school students at Palm Beach Lakes Community High School's Center for Pre-Law.
As the Pre-Law Magnet Instructor, Luis taught dual-enrolled students Business Law and Court System and Procedure. As the Mock Trial Team and Moot Court Team Coach Luis competed with other Florida High Schools for district and state championships and won. Now immersed in the private practice of law, Luis is also a paralegal studies program adjunct law professor, part-time, for the Palm Beach State College in West Palm Beach, Florida.
- Nova Southeastern University Shepard Broad Law Center, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
- J.D. - 2004
- Honors: Moot Court Honor Society
- Minor: Health Law Concentration & International Law Concentration
- University of Puerto Rico, San Juan, Puerto Rico
- B.S.N. - 1989
- Honors: Student Body Council Representative, Class President; Leadership Award Practicum
- Honors: With Honors
- Major: Nursing
Classes & Seminars
- Business Law I & II, Intro to Paralegal , Palm Beach State College, 2009 to Present
- Court System/ Procedure I & II, Palm Beach State College, 2009 to Present
- Florida High School Mock Trial Teach Coach, 2009 to Present
- Florida High School Moot Court Team Coach, 2009 to Present
- Debra Lynn Meltzer, Esq.
- Rosa H. Soberal-Vigh, Esq.
- Hugo Luis Apellaniz III, Esq.
- Office of the Public Defender, Assistant Public Defender, 2005 to 2008
- Florida Department of Health, Assistant General Counsel, 2008 to 2009
- Palm Beach Lakes High School Law Academy Professor and Mock Trial and Moot Court Coach, 2009 to 2010
- ILSA Journal of International and Comparative Law, Nova Southeastern University Shepard Broad Law Center, Volume 10 Number 3 (Summer), 2004
Fraternities or Sororities
- Phi Alpha Delta
- The Florida Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys, Member, 2010 to Present
- Palm Beach County Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys, Member, 2010 to Present
- United States Air Force Retired Reserves, 2006 to Present
- Palm Beach County Hispanic Association
- Puerto Rican Hispanic Bar Chamber of Commerce
Current Employment Position
- Managing Member
- Criminal Law Defense
- Drug Crimes
- Traffic Violations
- Domestic Violence
- Nursing License Defense
- Public Assistance Fraud
- Stop-Work Order Defense
- Family Law
- Florida, 2005
- District Champion, 5th Place State Champion Florida High School, Mock Trial Team Coach
- District Champion, State Best Appellate Brief, Florida High School, Moot Court Team Coach