Stephen C. Watson - Attorney at Law

One Lake Morton Drive
Post Office Box 3 (33802-0003)
Lakeland, Florida 33801

P 863-284-2200
F 863-688-0310
D 863-284-2254

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Biography

Steve is a Florida Bar Board Certified Real Estate Attorney and he has experience in a wide variety of business and real estate activities. Steve's concentration has been the areas of real estate transactions, land use matters, development, construction and financial transactions. He has represented banks, credit companies, life insurance companies, pension funds and other institutional investors in consummating secured financing and equity investments in income properties. He has managed numerous transactions involving acquisition, zoning, permitting, development and sale of retail shopping centers, mixed-use developments, residential communities, multifamily apartment complexes and office buildings. He has negotiated and prepared sophisticated and complex acquisition, sale, lease, financing and land use related documentation. He possesses extensive knowledge and background in the Development of Regional Impact, comprehensive plan amendments, and land use issues in the development of residential, commercial and industrial projects. Steve has served as general counsel to the Lakeland Association of Realtors for over 30 years and is past chairman of the Florida Association of Realtors Council of Local Board Attorneys. Steve represents numerous general contractors in matters involving complex contract formation and related construction issues.

His practice also includes counseling corporate and private clients in business planning and transactions, estate planning, and trusts and probate. Steve has represented public utilities in connection with the acquisition and development of power plant sites, including all land use and environmental matters and permitting together with construction and operations. Steve has represented both governmental and private property owners in significant eminent domain actions including the Lakeland Civic Center and the city of Lakeland/Orlando Utility Commission joint venture project. He is a frequent lecturer on commercial and residential real estate and is an adjunct professor of business law at Florida Southern College.

Additional Information About Stephen C. Watson

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Background

Steve was born in Athens, Georgia, and raised in Lakeland, Florida. Following graduation from Lakeland High School, he received his undergraduate degree with a major in finance from the University of Georgia and his juris doctor from Stetson University College of Law, where he graduated cum laude, was named Graduate of the Year and served as managing editor of the Stetson Law Review. Upon graduation Steve served as a law clerk to the Honorable Joseph P. Lieb, Chief Judge, U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida. Steve then returned to Lakeland, where he has engaged in the practice of law for more than 35 years. Steve is the second of three generations of his family who have practiced law in Lakeland.

Education
  • University of Georgia, B.B.A. (Finance, 1968)
  • Stetson University College of Law, J.D. (cum laude, 1970)
    • Managing Editor, Stetson Law Review
    • Phi Delta Phi Legal Fraternity
    • Outstanding Graduate, 1970
    • Moot Court Team
    • Who's Who Among American Law Students
Admissions
  • Florida
Professional Associations & Memberships
  • The Florida Bar
    • Board Certified in Real Estate
    • Real Property, Probate, and Trust Law Section
  • American Bar Association
  • Lakeland Bar Association, 10th Judicial Circuit
  • Agent for Attorneys' Title Insurance Fund, Old Republic National Title, Chicago Title Insurance Co., Commonwealth Land Title Insurance Co.
Awards & Recognitions
  • AV Preeminent™ rated by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Best Lawyers in America, 2013-2018
  • Tampa "Top Rated Lawyer," Real Estate, 2013
Civic
  • All Saints' Episcopal Church
    • Senior Warden for five terms
    • Vestry, Member
    • Chancellor since 1974
    • Finance Committee, Chairman
  • Boys and Girls Clubs of Lakeland, Inc.
    • Past President
    • Board Member since 1975
  • American Heart Association
    • Polk County Unit
    • Delegate to Florida/Puerto Rico Conference
    • President, 2006-2008
    • Heart Ball, Chairman, 2008
  • Lakeland Chamber of Commerce
  • United Way
  • Lakeland Kiwanis Club, Kiwanis International Legion of Honor Award, March 2011
     
  • YouTube
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Ingenuity in Action.TM

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