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Former Tampa state lawmaker disciplined by Florida Supreme Court

Former state Rep. Kevin Ambler, R-Tampa, was “negligent” and “made disparaging comments” to opposing counsel, the Florida Bar said.
Kevin Ambler testifying in a Leon County courtroom to have Jim Norman removed from the State Senate ballot in 2010.
Kevin Ambler testifying in a Leon County courtroom to have Jim Norman removed from the State Senate ballot in 2010. [ STAFF PHOTO BY DAVE KRAUT | Tampa Bay Times ]
Published Oct. 24, 2019
Updated Oct. 24, 2019

Attorney and former state Rep. Kevin Ambler was publicly reprimanded by the Florida Supreme Court for his behavior in federal court, the Florida Bar announced Thursday.

Ambler, a Tampa Republican when he served in the House from 2002 to 2010, was “negligent” and failed to comply with a court order regarding discovery, according to the bar.

He also “made disparaging comments in rebuttal to opposing counsel’s allegation of committing fraud upon the court,” the bar said in a statement.

Ambler, a lawyer since 1991, was representing Danubis Group, LLC in a case against Landmark Insurance Company alleging that Landmark had underpaid a claim for loss of rent on a commercial property, according to the bar complaint.

Ambler said he apologized for the “temporary lapse in judgment.”

“I accept the reprimand of the Florida Supreme Court and publicly apologize for my temporary lapse of judgment in 2014 during a time that I was dealing with terminal health issues relating to my father-in-law of 29 years," he said in an email. "This has been a difficult learning experience, but as a result, I am committed to becoming a better lawyer.”

Ambler lost a state senate race to Sen. Jim Norman in the 2010 Republican primary, then sued to overturn the results, alleging that Norman didn’t disclose a $500,000 contribution from a conservative activist. Ambler lost the case.