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Michele Kenyette Rayner

Criminal defense Attorney at Clearwater, FL

4.6   10 reviews

also known as Michele K. Rayner, Michele Rayner

  • Licensed for 11 years
    State FL
    Acquired 2012
    Member in Good Standing No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Michele

Learn Michele’s areas of practice.

Attorney Michele Rayner-Goolsby is the founder and principal attorney of Civil Liberty Law. Attorney Rayner-Goolsby is an award winning and highly sought after attorney due to her commitment to pursue justice for her clients. Attorney Rayner-Goolsby has been selected as a “Rising Star” by Super Lawyers and is a Top-Rated AVVO attorney, and has garnered many community awards.

Born and raised in Clearwater, Florida, Attorney Rayner-Goolsby came back to her hometown to hone her legal skills as a criminal defense attorney for the State of Florida. She later continued her career working with two well-established law firms in the Tampa Bay Area before establishing her own successful practice.

Attorney Rayner-Goolsby is passionate about her client’s rights and takes that approach in every matter she handles. She ensures their rights are protected as if they were her own family. She has successfully represented clients in criminal, civil rights, family law, and personal injury matters.

Attorney Rayner-Goolsby is committed to serving the Tampa Bay Area, as she regularly volunteers with the Pasco County Teen Court, Pinellas County Law Fest, and the Clearwater Bar Legal Fair as a volunteer attorney. She is a member of the Fred G. Minnis Bar Association, where she is the co-chair for community outreach. She previously served on the Florida Bar’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee and is a founding member of the Women Lawyers of Pasco County. Attorney Rayner-Goolsby is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and is the chair of the Social Action Committee and Political Awareness and Involvement.

Attorney Rayner-Goolsby has been featured on CNN, The Today Show, Fox News, Good Morning America, The Root, HLN, The Huffington Post, Blavity, and various local radio, television and print media.

State of Florida
United States District Court, Middle District

Florida Coastal School of Law
Florida State University (B.S. and M.S.)

Photos and videos


Civil Liberty Law
1802 N. Belcher Road
Suite 100
Clearwater, FL, 33765

Criminal Defense lawyers nearby


4.6 / 5.0
  10 customer reviews
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1 Star
Posted by anonymous | January 8, 2019
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Please know you have the support of the entire community in your representation of Ms. James. Thank you for all that you do to represent those who need your help the most. I hope you are successful in getting her all the help she needs and the policy changes that are so desperately needed to protect employees in the future. You are an inspiration and I am proud to know that in February, when I take and hopefully pass the bar, I will lucky enough be among such wonderful professional company as yourself.
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Posted by Greg | March 25, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Great attorney! Very reasonable.
I have used Michelle in many cases. She is very knowledgeable and has a great network of support. She often times gets busy so you have to be patient but you will get what you need from her and she will eventually get all of your problems resolved with the best results possiable.
Posted by Joe | September 16, 2015
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Excellent Attorney! Would hire again!
Michele is exceptional and very fair. I was very pleased with our results.
Posted by mzdeg68 | April 19, 2015
Michele walked into the court and stated our case... not mildly either!!! She was most aggressive and got us where we felt good about things! I would recommend her for your legal needs!
Posted by ValTrenda | April 16, 2015
Michele was very information and direct with my case. She was very honest and upfront even when I did not want to hear it. She knows her work and I was confident that we would win!!! Thank you Michele for working so hard for me!
Posted by anonymous | March 19, 2015
Michele was terrific! She really offers aggressive representation without a doubt! She keeps you up to date and is an absolute pleasure to talk to. I would strongly recommend her!
Posted by Tanya | March 18, 2015
Trustworthy and Dependable
Feel confident that you can trust Mrs. Whitfield with any of your legal needs. She is trustworthy, dependable, and professional. She is also down to earth and makes the whole process simple, explaining each step of the process along the way answering all questions. If she doesn't know the answer (which isn't very often) she will find out and get back to you quickly. I have actually known Michele since college when she was my RA. So when it came time to do my prenuptial agreement, I couldn't think of anyone better to handle it for me than someone I trusted to look after me back in college. She is and always has been an amazing woman and has become a phenomenal lawyer.
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Posted by anonymous | March 16, 2015
Mrs. Whitfield always responded in a timely manner to my requests and because of her legal advice, I received a favorable outcome with my situation.
Posted by Jason | March 16, 2015
One of these best
She gave me amazing legal advice on how to fight a very ugly custody battle. With her impeccable insight I was able to gather the correct tools to complete the process!
Posted by Chad | June 17, 2021
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
She quit on me she will quit on you.
So her ads say attorney Michele Rayner won't give up fighting for you but she sure gave up fighting for me and my divorce she actually took almost $7,000 from me and quit on me twice and left me in a much worse position than when I hired her to represent me. She did not give the judge or me a valid reason for quitting she just quit after telling another attorney she would represent me to the end. She also didn't give me an itemized list of expenses like she said she would and just kept all my money that I had to beg and borrow and work hard for. One of the reasons I hired her is to protect my land in Georgia that I bought with my house money from my nana but she couldn't even do that so now my wife is entitled to half of that. So I would definitely say she would quit on you and not finish the fight and this comes from my own personal experience. I am not divorced yet because she quit on me.
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  • Retainer Always
Payment methods
Cash, Check, Credit Card


AVVO RATING 8.8 (Excellent)

Work Experience

  • Associate
  • Eloise Taylor, P.A.
  • 2014 - 2015
  • Attorney
  • Office of Public Defender, 6th Circuit
  • 2014 - 2014
  • Attorney
  • Office Of Public Defender 13th Judicial Circuit, Tampa
  • 2012 - 2014
  • Legal Intern
  • Office of the Public Defender, 5th Circuit
  • 2010 - 2011
View all work experience


  • Florida Coastal School of Law
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 2011
  • Florida State University
  • MS - Master of Science
  • 2006
  • Florida State University
  • BS - Bachelor of Science
  • 2003


  • Florida Bar Leadership Academy
  • Fellow
  • 2019 - Present
  • Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
  • Social Action Chair
  • 2018 - Present
  • Florida Bar
  • Diversity and Inclusion Committee
  • 2015 - 2017
  • Women Lawyers of Pasco
  • Director for West Region
  • 2014 - 2015
  • West Pasco Bar Assocation
  • Member
  • 2014 - 2015
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Participation
  • Pasco County Teen Court
  • 2014
  • We Are The Hope Award
  • Office of the Public Defender-6th Circuit
  • 2014
  • Mentorship
  • Lawyers for Literacy
  • 2013

Speaking Engagements

  • Honors Program
  • Stand Your Ground
  • 2015
  • Annual Meeting
  • Stand Your Ground
  • 2013

Attorney endorsements

Received (35)
Given (26)
Endorse Michele
Civil rights Attorney | Dec 16
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. If you want a lawyer that GOES THE DISTANCE for EVERY CLIENT, hire Michelle Rayner! I have witnessed Mrs. Rayner's tenacity, compassion and brilliant legal strategy play out to her clients' benefit TIME AFTER TIME! She communicates well with clients and is highly respected within the legal community. Mrs. Rayner is THE REAL DEAL!!!! pensive stratefy can une"
Criminal defense Attorney | Jul 15
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Relentless zealous advocate and amazing Criminal Defense attorney."
Unknown Attorney | Mar 13
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"An excellent lawyer who treats clients with patience, care, understanding, and utmost professionalism - an even better person and I wholeheartedly recommend for future services."
Criminal defense Attorney | Feb 13
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Attorney Whitfield is an awesome criminal attorney who advocates zealously for her clients. She is very passionate about her clients and ensuring the best possible results. She is always prepared having researched all relevant issues. I highly endorse this lawyer."
Family Attorney | Aug 19
Relationship: Friend
"I endorse this lawyer. Ms. Whitfield is your go to attorney! She is gold star and first class. If you are looking for an individual with great research skills and the ability to get the job done, look no further. Your legal needs will be met by her firm. She will identify and evaluate your issues and determine the next appropriate action. She is very professional and her credentials speak for themselves. Her performance record is outstanding! She is a great asset to the legal community and I am honored to call her friend."
Criminal defense Attorney | Aug 18
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"Stellar advocate who goes to great lengths to obtain the results that her clients deserve. I endorse this lawyer. She is awesome!"
Criminal defense Attorney | Aug 08
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. Very knowledgeable and a strong advocate for her clients"
Criminal defense Attorney | Jul 23
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. She is a knowledgeable member of the legal community dedicated to meeting the needs of her clients."
Family Attorney | Jun 06
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Michele is an star attorney who provides top-notch legal counsel to her clients. Her strong client reviews speak volumes about her commitment to excellence in advocacy. I endorse this lawyer."
Family Attorney | Apr 21
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Michele is an zealous and tenacious attorney. She truly cares about her clients and fights for their rights. She is a force to be reckoned with in the courtroom. I confer with Michelle regularly to determine strategy and/or plan of action to litigate cases. I endorse this lawyer!"
Criminal defense Attorney | Mar 01
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I had the pleasure of attending law school with Michele and seeing her graduate and grow in her career. She is confident, knowledgable, and willing to fight for her clients. She is also a great source of reference for other attorneys."
Unknown Attorney | Feb 02
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Divorce and separation Attorney | Feb 02
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. Michele is a hard working and dedicated advocate of justice. I am lucky to call her a friend and fellow attorney in the community. She doesn't stop until the job is done and if she's on your side, you will be alright!"
Criminal defense Attorney | Jan 30
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | Jan 29
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Unknown Attorney | Jan 28
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | Jan 28
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Divorce and separation Attorney | Jan 28
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Unknown Attorney | Jan 28
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Family Attorney | Jan 28
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
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