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J. Derek Kantaskas | Partner

Derek Kantaskas joined Cotney Construction Law in 2018. He is a construction litigator who represents clients in various complex business disputes. Derek has a wide range of experience counseling and representing clients in all areas of construction law, including complex contract disputes, construction defect claims, project delay claims, regulatory investigations, lien and bond disputes, and copyright and trademark infringements.

Prior to joining Cotney Construction Law, Derek was a shareholder at a full-service national law firm, where he focused his practice on construction law and business litigation. He currently serves as the co-chair of the Construction Law Section for the Hillsborough County Bar Association.


  • Stetson University College of Law, J.D., summa cum laude
  • University of South Florida, B.A., cum laude
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Work Experience

  • Carlton Fields, Tampa, Florida, Shareholder, January 2016 – June 2018
  • Carlton Fields, Tampa, Florida, Associate, September 2007 – December 2015
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Professional Recognition

  • 15th Annual Judicial Pig Roast/Food Festival, Hillsborough County Bar Association – Most Pro Bono Hours Pledged
  • Florida Super Lawyers (2013-2018)
  • Florida Super Lawyers – Rising Stars (2011, 2012)
  • Florida Trend Legal Elite – Up and Comer (2011)
  • Recipient of 2011 “One” Pro-Bono Award from the Florida Bar Foundation and the Hillsborough County Bar Association
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  • State of Florida
  • Florida State Courts
  • U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida
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Honors and Activities

  • Hillsborough County Bar Association, Construction Law Section, Co-Chair
  • American Bar Association, Forum on Construction Law, Division 9 Steering Committee
  • Leadership Tampa (Class of 2017)
  • Ferguson-White American Inn of Court , Best Program Award (2010-2011)
  • Board of Adjustment, City of Pinellas Park , Vice Chairman (2010-2011), Board Member (2008-2010)
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