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Aaron Dunlap brings a multifaceted perspective to advising real estate developers, financial institutions and lenders, and clients with real estate interests or that regularly interact with state and local administrative agencies throughout Florida on real estate developments. With private practice, state agency, and local government experience, Aaron has an insider’s understanding of private party and governmental priorities that helps him find common ground across both the public and private sectors to benefit his clients.

His specific experience includes land use and zoning matters before elected officials and local government boards, drafting zoning code and comprehensive plan amendments, and navigating the public hearing process in municipalities throughout Florida, including specialty areas such as developments of regional impact and areas of critical state concern.

Aaron also has almost two decades of experience representing real estate developers on homeowners association and condominium association matters, including turnover of association control, and drafting amendments and revisions to declarations and restrictive covenants for clubs, amenities, and build-to-rent communities.

Combining his land use and development experience, Aaron also represents banking and private equity in land use and condominium due diligence for acquisition and construction loans worth billions of dollars a year.

He also has significant state administrative challenge experience in bid protests, environmental permit challenges, and development order and comprehensive plan amendment challenges.

Aaron is board certified in city, county, and local government law by the Florida Bar.


Land Use and Development

  • Advise clients on zoning and land use regulations, including state and local approval processes for rezonings and comprehensive plan amendment, drafting amendments, lobbying, and areas of critical state concern.
  • Assist clients with zoning and statutory interpretation in all facets of real estate development regulations, including impact fees and proportionate share issues.
  • Appear before local governments for development approvals.
  • Experience drafting local zoning regulations, affordable housing ordinances, and general development regulations.
  • Routinely provide land use counsel related to large-scale development projects throughout Florida, including in areas of critical state concern and the Florida Keys.
  • Significant experience in land use and real estate development litigation against local governments, homeowners and condominium associations, and neighboring property owners.
Financial Institution Representation
  • Represents multinational financial institutions in loan due diligence for zoning and land use and condominium document analysis for acquisition, construction loans, and equity positions in residential, condominium, commercial, and industrial real estate projects in dozens of loans a year, for billions of dollars of lending.
  • Routinely provides advice on local government law requirements for project implementation, along with risk analysis concerning project viability. 
Developer Representation Related to Homeowners Associations, Condominium Associations, Community Development Districts
  • Advise community developer and condominium developer clients on the applicability and interpretations of master community documents, existing homeowners association documents, condominium association documents, and commercial mixed-use restrictive covenants for the development or redevelopment of property, including significant litigation experience.
  • Drafts developer-focused amendments to homeowners association and condominium association declarations, including for issues related to clubs and amenities, build-to-rent communities and subdivisions, and amendments for additional phases of construction in existing communities post-turnover of developer control.
  • Experience representing developers in both homeowners association and condominium association turnover of control.
  • Provide analysis to prospective developers and financial institutions on outstanding community development district (CDD) bonds and financials.
State and Local Administrative Representation
  • Lead or second-chair counsel in numerous administrative challenges through final order issuance, including environmental permit applications and challenges, state-level bid protests, affordable housing finance challenges, and development order and comprehensive plan challenges, including within Florida Keys area of critical state concern.
  • Advised local government procurement department on RFPs, RFQs, and bid selections.
  • Advise and represent client interests before Florida state agencies in the capacity of lobbying agencies, facilitating discussions with agency staff, and working with agencies to accomplish client goals.
  • Legislative and statutory tracking, interpretation, and statutory drafting in conjunction with state-level legislative lobbying efforts.
Sovereign Immunity, Public Records, and Sunshine Law
  • Represented state agency in public records litigation and successful appeal to overturn attorneys' fee award against the agency.
  • Draft and tailor public records requests to all Florida state and local agencies and governmental bodies to obtain relevant documents for clients' particular needs.
  • Assist clients in determining the scope and applicability of public records laws to documents submitted to the government for applications, grant applications, and other submissions, including the applicability of statutory exemptions and exclusions.
  • Experience with litigation issues related to the application of sovereign immunity to government contractors, and 11th Amendment sovereign immunity claims.


Professional & Community Involvement

  • American Bar Association
    • Real Property, Trust, and Estate Law Section
      • Co-Chair, Corporate Sponsorship Committee (2023–present)
      • Chair, Land Use and Zoning Committee (2023–present)
      • Vice Chair, Governmental Incentives Committee (2022–2023)
  • The Florida Bar
    • Governmental Advocacy Committee (2022–present)
      • Executive Subcommittee (2022–present)
      • Director of Outreach (2022–present)
  • The State Bar of California
  • California Lawyers Association
  • Association of Florida Community Developers

Speaking Engagements

  • “Ownership and Investment of Real Property by Foreign Principals: Florida Legislation and Its Nationwide Effects” and "Avoiding Public Hearing Pitfalls: Preparation, Presentation, and Legal Challenges," ABA Real Property, Trust and Estate Law's Land Use and Environmental Section Presentation (March 21, 2024)
  • “Avoiding Public Hearing Pitfalls: Preparation, Presentation, and Legal Challenges,” Florida Chamber’s Annual Environmental Permitting Summer School, Marco Island, FL (2019–2024)
  • “Brownfields Redevelopment and Remediation in Underprivileged Communities: Coalescing Developer Goals, Development Incentives, and Community Benefits,” ABA Real Property, Trust, and Estate Law National CLE Conference, Washington D.C. (May 10–12, 2023)
  • “Drafting Open Meetings and Public Records Legislation,” Tulane University Law School’s International Legislative Drafting Institute, New Orleans, LA (June 16, 2022)
  • “New Policy Directions for Growth Management,” Florida Environmental Network's 35th Annual Environmental Permitting Summer School, Marco Island, FL (July 21–23, 2021)
  • “What’s Ahead and Why – Comprehensive Planning and Growth Management,” Florida Environmental Network's 35th Annual Environmental Permitting Summer School, Marco Island, FL (July 21–23, 2021)
  • “Concurrency, Impact, and Mobility Fees – The State of the Law on Local Government Exactions to Fund Infrastructure,” Florida Environmental Network's 35th Annual Environmental Permitting Summer School, Marco Island, FL (July 21–23, 2021)
  • "Opportunity Zones: Maximizing Municipal Benefits Through Long-Range Planning," The Florida Bar’s 43rd Annual Local Government Law in Florida Conference (July 17, 2020)
  • "Coastal Issues and Shoreline Management," The Seminar Group, Miami, FL (May 7–8, 2020)
  • "Strategizing, Handling, and Defending Clients' Interests at Local Quasi-Judicial Proceedings," Florida Environmental Network's 32nd Annual Environmental Permitting Summer School, Marco Island, FL (July 20, 2018)
  • "Planning for Sector Plans," The Florida Bar’s City, County, and Local Government Law Section Land Use Seminar, Orlando, FL (May 5, 2016)



  • University of Miami School of Law (J.D., cum laude, 2007)
  • University of Miami (B.A., cum laude, 2004)

Bar Admissions

Industry Specialization Certifications

Court Admissions


  • Assistant Village Attorney, Village of Wellington, Wellington, FL (2015–2017)
  • Assistant General Counsel, Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, Tallahassee, FL (2014–2015)
  • Litigation Associate, Shubin & Bass, P.A., Miami, FL (2007–2011)


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