William W. Merrill III is a shareholder at Icard Merrill. His nationally recognized practice in land use, planning, transportation and environmental law includes representation of both developers and public sector clients. He has received the “AV” rating, the highest rating available, from Martindale-Hubbell, which is recognized as the most respected source of authoritative and dependable information about members of the legal community and reflects confidential ratings by other lawyers and the judiciary. Bill has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America each year since 2007, and was named Best Lawyers Sarasota Lawyer of the Year in Land Use & Zoning Law in 2018 and 2021.
Bill has particular skill and practical daily experience with state, regional and local development approval processes, including rezonings, comprehensive plan amendments, redevelopment, mixed use projects, developments of regional impact, environmental, coastal and water-related permitting, subdivision and platting, vested rights, and lobbying efforts. He also represents developers and lenders in complex real estate transactions.
Bill’s extensive land use litigation experience complements his practice. He has litigated the “taking” issues, concurrency (adequate public facilities), quasi-judicial government decisions and other land use issues. Bill is a regular speaker at growth management and land use conferences and has published a number of articles relating to land use law. He served as President of the Sarasota County Bar Association and has actively served his community as a board member on local civic and charitable organizations.
Bill’s public sector work has enhanced his effectiveness as a land use and environmental lawyer. From a public sector perspective, he has focused his practice on land use, planning and growth management law with particular emphasis on the preparation of land development regulations, impact fees and implementation. He has successfully represented over 35 governmental entities in eight states. Land development codes and regulations prepared by him have received the highest state awards from the Florida and Colorado Chapters of the American Planning Association as well as a national award and recognition from the American Planning Association.
Bill received his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Florida.
Florida Trend Legal Elite, Government & Administrative, 2021, 2022
Elite Top Attorneys, Sarasota Magazine, 2020, 2021, 2022
Best Lawyers in America®, 2007-2022
Best Lawyers® Sarasota Lawyer of the Year, Land Use & Zoning Law, 2018, 2021