B.A., Mercer University
J.D., University of Georgia
John L. Watkins practiced law in Atlanta for over 35 years with a number of law firms, including McKenna Long & Aldridge (now Dentons), Barnes & Thornburg, and Thompson Hine, where he was a partner. He retired from Thompson Hine in 2019, and moved to Athens, where he established a solo practice and represents businesses in their commercial matters. He is also a registered mediator in Georgia.
While practicing in Atlanta, Watkins practiced in the area of commercial litigation. A primary focus of his practice was insurance coverage. At Barnes & Thornburg and Thompson Hine, he represented policyholders in insurance coverage and bad faith claims and litigation. Watkins has extensive prior experience representing insurance companies in multimillion dollar coverage and bad faith disputes. He also defended many types of underlying claims that lead to coverage disputes, such as construction claims, catastrophic tort claims and environmental claims.
Watkins' commercial practice involves representing domestic and international companies in negotiating and drafting equipment supply contracts, terms and conditions, services agreements non-disclosure agreements and other contracts.
Watkins has been rated "AV" by Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory for many years and has been named to the list of Georgia Super Lawyers? since 2008. He has written extensively on insurance coverage and other legal issues, including authoring the chapter on insurance law in Georgia Business Litigation 2020.
Watkins teaches Insurance Law at Georgia Law, where he shares both theoretical and practical approaches to insurance coverage law based on his experience in representing both insurers and insureds in coverage disputes.
He earned his bachelor's degree from Mercer University and his law degree summa cum laude from UGA, where he was a member of the Georgia Law Review editorial board and was inducted into the Order of the Coif.