Accomplished Fort Myers attorney Stephen W. Buckley in June celebrates 50 years with Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz, P.A.
Buckley joined the firm in 1969 after graduating from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1966 and Florida State University with a Juris Doctorate degree in 1969. The firm was established in 1962.
He assists clients with wills, trusts, estate planning, probate, real estate and real property law cases. Buckley is a top-rated lawyer under the Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review rating system.
Buckley has seen tremendous change in the law through the years. “I think today there are more judges than attorneys,” he said. “When I started there were two circuit judges and one county judge.”
The firm’s offices have been in the same building at the corner of Main Street and Broadway in downtown Fort Myers since he started but have expanded into other parts of the building and adjacent buildings as the firm has grown.
He remembers one of his first cases was to get a woman in real estate the right to sell property she owned without consent of her husband, which was the rule at the time. Shortly after he was able to make her a “free dealer,” the rule was abolished. He also remembers a case where he worked with the Coast Guard to have a man declared dead who disappeared in the Bermuda Triangle on a flight to Bimini. Without a body, it would have taken five years for his spouse to get a death certificate. He said the investigation determined how much fuel the plane had and every place the plane could have landed. The plane, the man and his passenger were never found.
Buckley grew up in Connecticut, and his grandparents moved to the west coast in the 1950s. When Edison College, now Florida SouthWestern State College, was opening, they offered to help him with expenses if he would go to college in Florida.
He enjoys spending time at his home in Maine, but Buckley says he has no intention of retiring. “I enjoy what I’m doing,” he said. “I don’t play golf. I don’t play tennis. I don’t fish. I’ll just keep doing it while I can, and the clients want to work with me. My wife would have a long honey-do list if I did retire.”
He and his wife, Bonnie, celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary in August.
About Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz
Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz, P.A., has offered a full complement of professional legal services to Southwest Florida clients since 1962. The firm’s experienced attorneys are board certified by the Florida Bar, and their areas of practice include personal injury and accidents, fall and premises liability, wrongful death, motorcycle and truck accidents, medical malpractice, real estate, commercial litigation, construction law, wills, estate planning and administration, social security law and criminal law. With offices in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Naples, Lehigh Acres and Port Charlotte, attorneys can be reached by calling 239-334-1146 or visiting JusticeStartsNow.com.