Attorney F. Eugene Atwood is a partner at Regan Atwood P.A., and handles construction litigation and arbitration, business litigation, and real estate litigation across Florida from the firm’s home base in Jacksonville, Florida.
Board certified in Construction Litigation by the Florida Board of Bar Examiners, Gene is an incredibly talented and accomplished attorney who has been a Super Lawyer in Construction since 2012.
Gene’s experience includes litigation and arbitration of disputes involving construction defects, delays, and defective performance claims, construction lien claims, defective design claims and other common construction litigation cases.
Gene has represented owners, contractors, design professionals, municipalities and government authorities in various defective performance disputes, and contractors, design professionals and governmental agencies in procurement cases.
Gene has had clients who are investing members and managing members of various businesses, including Fortune 500 corporations, as well as individuals who have brought claims against large companies.
In real estate litigation, Gene has represented creditors, title companies, banks, and investors in real estate legal disputes.
What’s unique about Gene’s life is that he had a compelling 20-year career in the construction industry prior to becoming a lawyer.
A Jacksonville, Florida, native Gene said he tried three times to leave the city, “but each time, the river called me back.”
Gene entered construction through his father in the summer after seventh grade and worked in construction interrupted by a four-year stint in the army. He resumed his construction career after serving as a Czech linguist for the Army Security Agency.
He worked as a laborer, and received his union card as a plasterer graduating high school. He then worked construction while attending Jacksonville University.
Gene took the LSAT and was admitted to several law schools in 1974 but passed on the opportunity in favor of continuing his construction career.
“It was a humble beginning,” Gene said. “Another part of not attending law school was a feeling that I did not belong. “I had only known construction growing up and that is where I was comfortable.”
“I didn’t grow up in the city limits of Jacksonville. That was before we consolidated and I was out in this very rural neighborhood. There were two- and three-acre gardens. I mean, vegetable gardens by people’s houses. It was more farmland than suburb.”
Gene remained in construction, working up from an assistant project manager, to an acting division manager supervising other project managers. Gene said he wasn’t as attracted to supervising other project managers as much as he was in bringing buildings out of the ground and so turned his attention back to the possibility of law school.
Twenty years after first sitting for the LSAT, Gene took it once again. He attended and graduated from the University of Florida earning a law degree, with honors and serving as the Senior Research Editor for the UF Law Review. He worked as an associate attorney, then, became partner at Rogers Towers in Jacksonville.
Gene joined forces with former fellow Rogers Towers partner, attorney Jeffrey C. Regan in 2013, forming Regan, Zebouni & Atwood, P.A., as a shareholder. Gene, a partner with Regan Atwood P.A., has litigated and arbitrated many construction, business, and real estate cases.
One case Gene litigated involved defending a $14 million claim against a national general contractor. After four years of litigation and three mediations, the last mediation that went for three days and was attended by over 100 lawyers and clients, all claims settled with a net $0.00 impact to his client.
Another memorable case involved “a six-week arbitration early in my career that was against a construction company that was incredibly complex. It had delay claims, and construction defect claims, and cross claims and counter claims.
Gene has also handled a number of appeals, “I had an appeal on a nine-million dollar claim against a title company.”
“I’ve handled a $130 million-dollar bankruptcy claim against another company. And of course, bankruptcy litigation and adversary proceedings for creditors.
“The case where I got my client $2.1 million in lost profits on top of $1.8 million in actual damages — which included all of his attorney’s fees,” Gene said. “that was just recently settled.”
Gene is a highly honored attorney with awards including being named from 2012 to 2020 as a Super Lawyers, Construction Litigation Lawyer.
Gene was awarded in 2019-20 with the Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent Rating Judicial Edition.
Gene is also a 1998-2020 Martindale-Hubbell AV-Rated Preeminent Attorney.
Gene said that Regan Atwood P.A. has been a great relationship because he and Jeffrey C. Regan’s experience makes it easy to discuss legal issues.
“We can get into some very intense conversations on the law,” Gene said. “We both have strong opinions and those conversations are beneficial to both of us.”
Jeff finished the statement: “heated legal debates are beneficial for our clients because of the give and take that we have with one another and playing devil’s advocate – for our clients. It helps us see both sides of the problems that we’re trying to resolve. It’s been a great partnership.”