Nicolas J. Watkins Attorney At Law

Nicolas J. Watkins - Attorney at Law

Of Counsel

T 305.416.6880
F 305.416.6887
Miami 333 SE 2nd Avenue Suite 3200 Miami, Florida 33131

Born and raised in England, Nic has more than 35 years of experience in his practice areas of immigration and nationality law and real estate law. Nic heads up GrayRobinson's business immigration law practice group.

Nic's Immigration practice focuses on nonimmigrant (temporary) and immigrant (permanent/residency) visa petitions and applications on behalf of investors, executives, managerial and other skilled foreign workers and their employers. This includes E, H, L, O and P temporary worker visas, among others, as well as applications for temporary and permanent employment certification and residency applications under the Immigrant Investor (EB-5) Visa Program. Nic also represents employers in connection with immigration-related regulatory compliance proceedings in the employment setting (employment eligibility verification, E-verify and I-9 audits) as well as individuals in naturalization proceedings and consular matters.

Nic's real property law practice is both broad and varied. He represents individual and institutional clients alike and has extensive experience in commercial and residential transactions, from acquisition through financing, development and disposition, including purchases, sales, leases, condominiums, title examination and title insurance matters, and construction and permanent lending. He also has experience with refinancings, loan renegotiations, workouts and foreclosures, as well as construction law matters, including design and construction contract drafting and negotiation.

  • Background

    Prior to joining GrayRobinson in April 2008, Nic was a partner in Howe, Robinson and Watkins, LLP, a firm that he helped form in 1996. Before that, Nic practiced for more than a decade with Steel Hector and Davis, LLP where he was a partner in that firm's Real Estate Department and also chair of the firm's Business Immigration Law practice group. Before joining Steel Hector and Davis, Nic practiced law at Squire, Sanders and Dempsey in Cleveland, Ohio, and Miami, Florida, in Immigration Law, Litigation and Business Law areas.

    Nic received his LL.B. (Hons.) degree from Brunel University, Uxbridge, England, in 1981 and his juris doctor degree from Florida State University College of Law in 1983. While at Florida State, he served as an editor of the Law Review and as chair of the Moot Court Editorial Board.

  • Education
    • Brunel University, Uxbridge, England, LL.B. (with honors, 1981)
    • Florida State University College of Law, J.D. (1983)
      • Law Review, Editor
      • Moot Court Editorial Board, Chair
  • Admissions
    • The Florida Bar
    • U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida
    • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida
  • Professional Associations and Memberships
    • The Florida Bar
      • Real Property Law Section, Member, 1987-presen t
      • Unauthorized Practice of Law Committee, Member, 1999-2002
      • Grievance Committee, Member, 1993-1996 
    • American Immigration Lawyers Association, Member, 1984-present
    • American Immigration Lawyers Association, South Florida Chapter, Member, Board of Directors, 1989-1990
  • Awards and Recognitions
    • AV Preeminent® rated by Martindale-Hubbell
    • Chambers USA, Immigration, 2014-2024
    • Best Lawyers in America, Immigration Law, 2017-2024
    • Florida Trend Legal Elite, 2008
    • Florida Super Lawyers, 2010-2013
    • Honorary Legal Advisor to Her Britannic Majesty's Consul-General (formerly Consul), Miami, 1995-Present
  • Civic
    • British-American Business Council, Miami (formerly British-American Chamber of Commerce of Miami), Member
      • Legal Counsel, 2013-2017
      • Secretary, 2009-2010
      • Chair, 2004-2005
      • President, 2002-2004
      • Treasurer, 2000-2002 and 2017-2019 
      • Board of Directors, 1994-present
  • Articles and Publications
  • Presentations and Seminars
    • "US Immigration Webinar: The Annual US H-1B Cap Lottery is Now!"  Employment Law Alliance (ELA) Webinar, February 23, 2022
    • "US Business Immigration: The Road Ahead Under the Biden Administration," Employment Law Alliance (ELA) Webinar, May 18, 2021
    • "Shake It Off – Expect the Unexpected," 41st Annual American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) South Florida Immigration Law Update, February 28, 2020
    • American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) South Florida July CLE Lunch and Membership Meeting, Miami, Florida, July 17, 2019
    • "2019 Immigration Law Update," GrayRobinson 22nd Annual Employment Law Seminar, Orlando, April 4, 2019
    • "BREXIT' Europe's New Reality," Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance, March 21, 2019
    • "US/UK Comparative Immigration," British American Business Council of Miami’s Breakfast Series, February 21, 2019
    • "Do’s and Don’ts of Labor Certification," Catholic Legal Services Summer CLE Series Session One, July 13, 2018
    • "US/UK Comparative Immigration," British American Business Council of Miami’s Breakfast Series, May 18, 2017
    • "Immigration Compliance," GrayRobinson 20th Annual Employment Law Seminar, Orlando, April 6, 2017
    • "Dream-On: Impact of Immigration Enforcement on Construction Projects," 7th Annual Construction Law Institute, Orlando, Florida, March 20-22, 2014
    • "Immigration Law Update," Central Florida Human Resources Association's Employment Labor Law Seminar, Orlando, Florida, March 17, 2009
    • "Trends in Immigration: The Iceman Cometh," GrayRobinson, P.A.'s 12th Annual Labor and Employment Law Seminar, Orlando, Florida, November 6, 2008
    • "Visa and I-9 Issues for the HR Practitioner," Greater Miami Society for Human Resource Management's Legal Update for Effective HR Management, Coral Gables, Florida, May 2, 2002
    • "Employer Sanctions Update," Miami Jobs and Benefits Center Florida Employer Advisory Council Meeting, November 22, 1996
    • "Immigration-Related Employment Practices: A Tightrope of Compliance," Labor and Employment Law in Florida Seminar, Miami and West Palm Beach, February 21 and 23,1995, and October 25 and 27, 1995
    • "Planning Ahead for Visas to do Business in the United States," British-American Chamber of Commerce, Florida/U.K. Trade Mission, Bristol and Edinburgh, November 11-14, 1994
    • "H-2B Visas," American Immigration Lawyers' Association South Florida Chapter Annual Immigration Law Update, Miami, Florida February 1994