Daniel M. Cavanaugh

Daniel Cavanaugh

Daniel M. Cavanaugh has been a successful trial attorney for over 20 years. He grew up in West Springfield, Massachusetts and moved to Naples in 1997 where he started his legal career. He has been recognized for his trial skills as the recipient of multiple awards including Attorney of the Year at the State Attorneys Office in Fort Myers. Daniel M. Cavanaugh has received the highest possible rating by his peers by being rated AV Preeminent®.

Criminal Defense

With over 20 years’ of quality experience in criminal law, Mr. Cavanaugh has handled virtually every crime in Florida. He prides himself on great communication with his clients. He understands the anxiety one faces when being thrust into the criminal justice system and takes proper time to explain the process.

In addition to his work as a criminal defense attorney, Mr. Cavanaugh prosecuted and supervised prosecutors in various counties. He worked in Lee County (Special Victim’s Unit) and served as Chief Assistant State Attorney in Hendry and Glades counties. He was the Misdemeanor and Juvenile Chief in the Collier County State Attorney’s Office. As a prosecutor, Mr. Cavanaugh handled serious and high profile cases including being featured on the Dateline NBC “To Catch a Predator” series. He also sat on the hiring and death penalty committee. He was awarded “Attorney of the Year” in 2004 out of nearly 100 prosecutors.

He has trained law enforcement in both Florida and Vermont. He was a part-time instructor at the Southwest Florida Public Service Academy and organized and presented quarterly trainings to a cross-section of law enforcement at inter-agency trainings in both states.

Civil Litigation

Mr. Cavanaugh handles several areas of commercial and individual litigation including:

  • Commercial landlord eviction actions
  • Business litigation
  • Construction litigation
  • Contract disputes
  • Negligence

Personal Injury & Wrongful Death

Mr. Cavanaugh has spent many years successfully pursuing personal injury claims including Wrongful Death, Automobile and Motorcycle Accidents, Slip and Fall and those victimized by Sexual and Physical Abuse.

He has brought actions against individuals, corporations and governmental entities. He will work hard to settle cases short of litigation but welcomes the opportunity to fight in Court if insurance companies refuse to be reasonable.

His passion to help protect those most vulnerable has led Mr. Cavanaugh to pursue claims and litigation on behalf of children, and victims of violence and tragic circumstances.


  • Juris Doctor from Oklahoma City University
  • Bachelor in Science from Springfield College
  • Associates in Science from Springfield Technical Community College

Honors & Activities

  • 2018 – Received “10 Best” Attorneys by American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys™
  • 2011 to current – Received the highest possible rating by his peers by being rated AV Preeminent®
  • 2011 – Recognized as a “Top Lawyer” by Gulfshore Life Magazine
  • 2005 – Recognized by Governor Jeb Bush and Florida Statewide Guardian ad Litem Program for Outstanding Community Advocacy for Abused and Neglected Children and the Guardian ad Litem Program, with five members of the Special Victim’s Unit of the State Attorney’s Office
  • 2004 – Attorney of the Year, Office of the State Attorney, Twentieth Judicial Circuit
  • 2004 – Trial Team Award, Office of the State Attorney, Twentieth Judicial Circuit

Professional & Volunteer Service

  • Prior Night Court Hearing Officer for civil matters, Lee County, Florida
  • Past member, Judicial Independence Committee
  • Thomas S. Biggs Inns of Court
  • Mock trial coach and judge
  • Youth soccer coach


  • 2011 – Character Evidence in Civil and Criminal Cases, Collier County Bar Association, Adverse Witness, June 2011
  • 2016 – Criminal Justice Reform, VTDigger, January 2016
  • 2016 – Acknowledging Victims is Just the Beginning, The Times-Argus, April 2016