(844) 243-5021

Trent Cotney | Lobbyist

As a Florida Board Certified Construction Lawyer who is also licensed in Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Texas, and Washington, Trent focuses his practice on all aspects of construction litigation and arbitration, including OSHA defense, lien law, bond law, and bid protests, as well as construction document review and drafting. He routinely represents general contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, manufacturers, architects, engineers, developers, and others in the construction industry in a variety of matters.

Trent serves as General Counsel for the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA), Florida Roofing & Sheet Metal Association (FRSA), National Slate Association (NSA), Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA), Canadian Roofing Contractors Association (CRCA), and several other industry associations.  He routinely advocates for the construction industry and is active in molding contractor-friendly statutes, rules, and regulations on the local, state, and national levels.  Trent has been recognized as one of the leading attorneys in the field by his peers and the construction industry and has received numerous honors and distinctions as identified below. He is the editor and primary author of the Amazon best-selling book OSHA Defense for the Construction Industry.

Education

  • Vanderbilt University, J.D. (Dean’s List, Best Brief Award), 1999
  • Vanderbilt University, B.S., summa cum laude, high honors (Phi Beta Kappa, Dean’s List, top 1%), Alexander Heard Award, 1996
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Work Experience

  • Cotney Construction Lobbying, LLC, Tampa, FL, President
  • Cotney Construction Law, Tampa, FL, January 2012 to present, CEO
  • Glenn Rasmussen Fogarty & Hooker, P.A., Tampa, FL, January 2006 to January 2012, construction law shareholder and hiring partner
  • Glenn Rasmussen Fogarty & Hooker, P.A., Tampa, FL, April 2000 to December 2005, construction law associate
  • Ruden, McCloskey, Smith, Schuster & Russell, P.A., Tampa, FL, September 1999 to February 2000, commercial litigation associate
  • Ruden, McCloskey, Smith, Schuster & Russell, P.A., Ft. Lauderdale, FL, May 1997 to August 1997, June 1998 to August 1998, construction law summer associate
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Professional Recognition

  • Florida Roofing & Sheet Metal, The Earl Blank Memorial Heart Award, 2020
  • The American Registry, America’s Most Honored Lawyers, 2020
  • Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Outstanding Service Award, 2020
  • MyTechMag, Top 20 Pioneering CEOs, 2020
  • Best Lawyers in America – Construction Litigation, Construction Law, 2013-2021
  • Chambers & Partners USA, Listed in Construction Law, 2013-2020
  • Acquisition International, Leading Advisor Awards – Leading Construction Litigation and Arbitration Lawyer of the Year, South East USA, 2019
  • Tampa Magazine, Top Lawyers, 2019
  • American Institute of Legal Advocates, Rising Star Immigration Law, 2018
  • Tennessee Association of Roofing Contractors, Service to the Industry Award, 2018
  • Legal Awards Corporate Insider, Most Outstanding Construction Lawyer Florida, 2017
  • Global Awards CorporateLiveWire, Best in Construction Litigation Law Services, 2017
  • The American Lawyer Magazine, Top Rated Lawyer, 2016
  • Legal Awards 2015, Most Outstanding Construction Lawyer – Florida (Corporate Livewire)
  • Lawyers World, Annual Award 2013
  • Corporate LiveWire, Excellence in Construction Dispute Resolution Law 2017
  • AV Peer Review Rated, Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory
  • AVVO 10 out of 10, Superb Rating
  • Expert Guide, The World’s Leading Lawyers Chosen by Their Peers, Construction and Real Estate, 2017
  • FRSA Earl Blank “Heart” Award, 2010
  • FRSA President’s Award, 2008
  • West Coast Roofing Contractors Association, Byron Curry Award, 2009
  • Who’s Who Legal Thought Leader in Construction 2018
  • Acquisition International Magazine, Best Florida Lawyer – OSHA Defense
  • Top Lawyers in Florida, The Legal Network, 2014-2017
  • Florida Super Lawyers, Rising Stars, Construction Litigation, 2008-2012
  • Florida Super Lawyers, Construction Litigation, 2013-2020
  • Florida Trend Magazine’s Legal Elite, Up & Coming Construction, 2007-2009
  • Florida Trend Magazine’s Legal Elite, Construction Law, 2010-2020
  • InterContinental Finance Magazine, Leading Lawyer 500 Award Winner 2013, 2015, 2016
  • LegalComprehensive.com, Law Awards, 2014
  • Lawyers World Global Awards, 2014
  • Top Attorneys in Florida, Miami Herald, Tampa Bay Magazine & Orlando Life, 2014
  • Wall Street Journal, Best Lawyers in America, 2016
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  • Finance Monthly Law Awards, OSHA Defense Lawyer of the Year, 2018
  • Florida Super Lawyers, Top 100 Lawyers, 2016-2020
  • International Advisory Experts, Construction Litigation Lawyer of the Year in Florida, 2018
  • Worldwide Financial Advisor Magazine, Golden Adviser Award
  • LegalComprehensive.com, Top 100 Lawyers in the World, 2016-2017
  • Corporate LiveWire, Construction Lawyer of the Year USA, 2016
  • Expertise.com, Best Litigation Attorneys in Orlando, 2016
  • Lawyers Worldwide, Super Lawyers in Construction Law, 2017
  • National Roofing Contractors Association, Gold Circle Award for Service to the Roofing Industry, 2014
  • Construction Lawyer of the Year USA, Finance Monthly, 2016
  • 40 Under 40, Gulf Coast Business Review, 2007
  • Tampa Bay Magazine’s Tampa Bay’s Top Lawyers, 2010, 2013-2016
  • Lawyers World Global Awards, 2014
  • Top Attorneys in Florida, Miami Herald, Tampa Bay Magazine & Orlando Life, 2014
  • Business Leaders Magazine, Top 50 Entrepreneurs 2012
  • Tampa Bay Business Journal, Up & Comers, 2010
  • Best Attorney’s Network, Construction Law
  • Legal Elite, Construction Lawyer of the Year in Florida, 2015
  • Acquisition International Magazine, Business Excellence Award, 2014
  • American Registry, America’s Most Honored Professionals 2011, 2014, 2016, 2017
  • International Who’s Who of Construction Lawyers, 2012-2018
  • International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers, 2013-2018
  • Tampa’s Top Rated Lawyers, 2012-2015
  • InterContinental Finance Magazine, Global Award, 2013
  • Who’s Who Registry Association, Edition for Best Lawyers World Rankings, 2016-17
  • DealMakers Country Award, 2014
  • Acquisition International Magazine, Business Excellence Award, 2014
  • Acquisition International Magazine, Ones to Watch — The Most Influential Practice in Construction Law, 2014
  • Legal Media Group, Construction and Real Estate Expert Guide Nominee, 2014
  • Tampa Magazine, Top Lawyer, 2020
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Certifications

  • Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Construction Law (inaugural class)
  • Florida Supreme Court Certified Circuit Court Mediator
  • Florida Supreme Court Certified Appellate Mediator
  • American Arbitration Association (AAA) Construction Mediator
  • Member of AAA Panel of Construction Arbitrators
  • Qualified Florida Court-Appointed Arbitrator
  • Department of Business & Professional Regulation Condominium Certified Mediator
  • OSHA 10 Hour Safety Training Certification
  • OSHA 30 Hour Safety Training Certification
  • OSHA 24 Hour HAZWOPER Training
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Admissions

  • The State of Florida
  • The State of Illinois
  • The State of Indiana
  • The State of Massachusetts
  • The State of Tennessee
  • The State of Texas
  • The State of Kansas
  • The State of Washington
  • Ontario Foreign Legal Consultant respecting the laws of FL, IL, TX, TN, and U.S. Federal Law
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals Armed Forces
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Florida
  • U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida
  • U.S. District Court, Kansas
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Reported Decisions

  • City of Oldsmar v. State, 790 So.2d 1042 (Fla. 2001)
  • In re: Petition for Declaratory Statement of Sun Star Energy LLC, Construction Industry Licensing Board, DS 2013-043 (2013) (intervenor FRSA).
  • In re: Petition for Declaratory Statement of Pro/Max Construction LLC, Construction Industry Licensing Board, DS 2014-70 (2014)(intervenor FRSA).
  • In re: Petition for Declaratory Statement of Robert Cade, Construction Industry Licensing Board, DS 2014-098 (2014)(intervenor FRSA).
  • In re: Petition for Declaratory Statement of City of Orlando, Construction Industry Licensing Board, DS 2014-099 (2014)(intervenor FRSA).
  • In re: Petition for Declaratory Statement of Hernando County, Construction Industry Licensing Board, DS 2015-056 (2015)(intervenor FRSA).
  • In re: Petition for Declaratory Statement of J&K Roofing, Inc., Construction Industry Licensing Board, DS 2015-129 (2015)(intervenor FRSA).
  • In re: Petition for Declaratory Statement of SGS Contracting, Construction Industry Licensing Board, DS 2015-137 (2015)(intervenor FRACCA).
  • In re: Petition for Declaratory Statement of TSC Southeast, LLC, Construction Industry Licensing Board, DS 2015-138 (2015)(intervenor).
  • Jody Wilson Constr., Inc., Respondent., 2018 O.S.H. Dec. (CCH) ¶ 33661 (CMPAU Feb. 28, 2018)
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Seminars

Trent Cotney speaks on such topics as lien law, construction contracts, construction mediation, licensing regulations, employment law issues and design defects. Trent lectures across the United States on construction law topics and has given more than 200 seminars for 50 different construction groups, associations and law schools.  He has spoken at multiple national conferences including Best of Success, International Roofing Expo, Metalcon, National Minority Homebuilders Summit, National Safety Council, OSHA Stakeholders’ Meetings, WSRCA Expo, FRSA Expo and the FRACCA Education Conference.

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Publications

Trent has published more than 200 articles in 40 different local, regional and national publications on such topics as construction mediation, arbitration, negligent design, delay damages, contract provisions and defective workmanship and is a regular columnist for Roofing Contractor Magazine as well as FRSA and WSRCA trade publications.  He is the editor and primary author of the Amazon best-selling book OSHA Defense for the Construction Industry (2016).

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Selected Professional and Civic Activities

  • Canadian Roofing Contractors Association, (CRCA), General Counsel
  • Roofing Contractors Association of Washington (RCAW), General Counsel
  • Construction Law Section Legislative Committee, Florida Bar
  • Florida Roofing and Sheet Metal Contractors Association (FRSA), General Counsel, Director, Education & Research Foundation Member & Governor Level Sponsor
  • Florida Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Contractors Association (FRACCA), General Counsel, Member
  • Tennessee Association of Roofing Contractors (TARC), General Counsel, Member
  • National Women in Roofing (NWIR), General Counsel, Governance Committee, Founding Sponsor
  • Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress, Founding Sponsor, Governor Level Contributor
  • NRCA, One Voice Member, Health & Safety Committee Member, Pro-Certification Committee Member
  • ROOFPAC Political Insiders Council, Member
  • Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), Director, Member
  • West Coast Roofing Contractor’s Association (WCRCA), General Counsel, Treasurer
  • Construction Partners of Tampa Bay
  • Department of Business and Professional Regulation Contractor Continuing Education Lecturer
  • The Florida Bar – Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section
  • Tennessee Bar Association — Construction Law Section
  • Associated Builders & Contractors (ABC), Member
  • Florida Transportation Builders’ Association (FTBA), Past Member
  • Humane Society of Tampa Bay, Past Member – Board of Directors
  • Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Contractors Association (RACCA), Member
  • Pinellas County Contractors Association (PCCA), Past Member
  • Underground Utility Contractors of Florida, Past Member
  • University of Tampa Board of Counselors, Past Board Member
  • Central Florida Roofing Contractors Association (CFRSA), Member
  • Northeast Florida Roofing and Sheet Metal Contractors Association (NEFRSA), Member
  • Capital City Roofing & Sheet Metal Association, Inc. (CRSA), Member
  • North Central Florida Roofing & Sheet Metal Association (NCFRSA), Member
  • Roofing Contractors of South Florida Association (RCASF), Member
  • Palm Beach County Contractors Association (PBCCA), General Counsel, Member
  • Midwest Roofing Contractors Association (MRCA), Past Member
  • Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA), Member
  • Treasure Coast Roofing Contractors Association (TCRCA), Member
  • Sarasota/Manatee Roofing & Sheet Metal Contractors Association (SMRSMCA), Member
  • Vanderbilt University Undergraduate and School of Law, Initial Admissions Interviewer
  • Black Dagger Military Hunt Club, Sponsor
  • Chicago Roofing Contractors Association (CRCA), Member
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