Disciplined in Sophisticated Defense and Insurance Litigation

A Partner in the Tampa office, Lewis F. Collins, Jr. specializes in Casualty Defense Litigation, Employment Law, Extra-Contractual issues, and Product Liability Law. He joined us in 1998, bringing extensive experience to the practice.

Lewis began his law career in 1978 when he earned his Doctor of Jurisprudence from Loyola University. He spent over 19 years at another firm, eventually becoming President and Partner before leaving and joining Butler as a Partner. He eventually became head of the firm's Liability Defense Practice Group. In this role, he is responsible for the staffing and continuing education of the lawyers and paralegals in that division.

Lewis is Board Certified in Civil Trial Law by both the Florida Bar and the National Board of Trial Advocacy and is a Board Certified Civil Pretrial Practice Advocate by the National Board of Civil Pretrial Practice Advocacy. He is also a Fellow of the American College of Coverage and Extracontractual Counsel and was a founding member of it's Board of Regents. Throughout his long and exemplary career, Lewis has earned a variety of accolades and authored several publications relating to his litigation practice.


  • Florida


  • Elected as "Florida Super Lawyer"
  • Named Products Liability Defense Lawyer of the year for 2015 in Tampa Bay by "Best Lawyers"
  • Rated by Martindale-Hubbell as an AV Preeminent Lawyer
  • Recognition as a "Leading Florida Attorney" in the field of Products Liability Defense by Leading American Attorney
  • Selected as one of the Best Lawyers in America, Product Liability Litigation - Defendant


  • Florida State University
    Bachelor of Arts
  • Loyola University
    Doctor of Jurisprudence


  • American College of Coverage and Extra-contractual Counsel (ACCEC)
  • Federation of Defense & Corporate Counsel (FDCC)
  • Florida Defense Lawyers Association (FDLA)
  • Lawyers for Civil Justice (LCJ)
  • National Board of Trial Advocacy

Estate of Bell v Infinity Automobile Insurance - Obtained summary judgment in $2.4 million 1st party coverage/bad faith case

Parrott & Crowe v First Floridian Insurance - Obtained summary judgment (upheld on appeal) in a $4 million bad faith case involving a case of first impression for an umbrella carrier

Pinkston v United Rentals - Represented United Rentals in a products liability claim and in OSHA administrative proceedings

May 01, 2012 PUBLICATIONA Once in a Century Opportunity Meaningfully Amending the Federal Rules Will Improve the Administration of Justice

Failing to adjust the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure to meet the demands of twenty-first century litigation will have significant, negative implications today and for our future.

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September 29, 2011 PUBLICATIONTurning Bad Faith Inside Out: How Plaintiff Attorneys Are Creating Third-Party Bad Faith Claims

FDCC Quarterly Vol.61.4

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April 01, 2010 PUBLICATIONLewis F. Collins, Jr.: A Year Of Accomplishment – Keeping LCJ Focused On Procedural Rule Reform

A Year Of Accomplishment – Keeping LCJ Focused On Procedural Rule Reform.

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November 01, 2009 PUBLICATIONLawyers for Civil Justice: Marshalling Legal Expertise to Meet the Challenges of Civil Justice Reform

Originally published in The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel, Special Section, Civil Justice Reform.  Reprinted with permission.  © 2009.

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March 29, 2004 PUBLICATIONDanger Zone: Planning Ahead To Avoid Legal Malpractice

Claims for legal malpractice are exploding. Malpractice insurance is getting more difficult to obtain, and when you can find a carrier, rates are, in some cases, prohibitive. Claims of legal malpractice have no bounds: they cut across many different practice areas. Real estate, transactional lawyers, trial lawyers, general practitioners – all have been (and will continue to be) targets for legal malpractice actions.

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March 01, 1995 PUBLICATIONCivility in Depositions - Hardball Strikes Out - Improper Objections and Tactics During Depositions

Depositions have been described as "the most important of the pre-trial discovery tools."They have also been described by commentators as one of the most frequently abused of all discovery methods. "[I]n many instances, the purpose of a deposition is to sink the witness, and not merely to take discovery...."   In response to this seeming abuse of discovery through depositions, federal courts have sought to limit (through the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and local district court rules) the number of depositions that can be taken without prior leave of Court.

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PUBLICATIONThe Future of Defending Lawsuits: E-Business Enters the Civil Litigation Arena

What do FedEx, Northern Trust Bank, Ford Motor Co. and ACE USA have in common? Each is turning to a new browser technology, the Extranet, to advance their business through the use of electronic communication. The primary tool that will be used for the efficient and cost­effective transmission of all information associated with the handling of claims in the future (the future is now) is an Extranet. Extranets have been driven to the forefront of attention in and surely qualify as one of the Internet buzzwords du jour.

If the use of an Extranet, however, does not save time and expense in the defense of civil litigation while at the same time improving the quality of the legal representation provided, it should not be considered as a "tool" whose time has come.

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PUBLICATIONThe Value of Taking Risks, The Outward Bound Experience

For the full version of the article, please contact the author.

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Blog Posts

August 11, 2016 BLOG POSTEleventh Circuit Finds Insurer Liable for Medicare Lien Notwithstanding Insurer's Efforts to Satisfy the Lien in Settlement, also Grants Medicare Double its Damages

In a case with far-reaching implications, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals issued an opinion concluding that the Medicare Secondary Payer Act (MSP) permits a private insurance company/PART C Medicare Advantage Organization (MAO) to sue a tortfeasor’s insurance carrier for reimbursement of medical expenses incurred by the MAO, and allowing a recovery of double its damages as a private party.

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July 26, 2017 EVENT2017 FDCC ANNUAL MEETING - Inspirational Leadership

Lewis Collins from Butler Weihmuller Katz Craig will be presenting in Montreux, Switzerland at the 2017 FDCC Annual Meeting on the topic of "Inspirational Leadership".

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June 14, 2017 EVENTWESTERN PLRB 2017 REGIONAL ADJUSTERS CONFERENCE - Using Scientific Analysis to Investigate a Casualty Claim

Lewis Collins from Butler Weihmuller Katz Craig will be presenting in Riverside, CA at the Western PLRB 2017 Regional Adjusters Conference on the topic of "Using Scientific Analysis to Investigate a Casualty Claim".

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November 15, 2016 EVENTLewis Collins is speaking at PLRB's Eastern Regional Adjuster's Conference

Lewis, a Partner at Butler, presented on the hot topic of Third Party Bad Faith Setups and Traps on November 15th in Richmond, Virginia.

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October 04, 2016 EVENTWhodunit: How CSI Can Solve a Head-on Collision

PLRB Large Loss Conference

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June 21, 2016 EVENTAvoiding 3rd Party Bad Faith Setups and Traps

Western Regional Adjusters Conference

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June 02, 2016 EVENTConsent Judgments: Strategies in Bad Faith Claims Given the Use of Consent Judgments to Box in Primary and Excess Carriers, Including "Cunningham" Agreement Nuances

ACI -  Extra-Contractual & Bad Faith Liability Seminar

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November 03, 2015 EVENT3rd Annual Bad Faith Litigation Strategies ExecuSummit

Breaking Bad Behavior: Recent Developments In Insurer Bad Faith

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October 28, 2015 EVENTPLRB Large Loss Conference

Creative Ways to Handle a Catastrophic Injury Claim

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November 18, 2014 EVENTPLRB Regional Adjusters Conference

Avoiding 3rd Party Bad Faith Setups

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October 29, 2014 EVENTPLRB 2014 Large Loss Conference

Bad Faith Exposure in a Multiple Claimant Case:  How to Win the No-Win Scenario

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September 16, 2014 EVENTPLRB Regional Adjusters Conference

Avoiding 3rd Party Bad Faith Setups

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June 10, 2014 EVENTPLRB Regional Adjusters Conference

Avoiding 3rd Party Bad Faith Setups

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May 07, 2014 EVENTACCEC Annual Conference

How the Heck Did That Get In? Evidentiary Issues in a Bad Faith or Evidentiary Trial

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April 09, 2014 EVENT2014 CLM Annual Conference

Lewis Collins spoke at the CLM Annual Conference in Boca Raton, Florida. Lewis' topic was, "Electronic Evidence."

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March 31, 2014 EVENTACI 2014 Bad Faith

Recognizing the Red Flags to Avoid Bad Faith Set Ups and Factoring in Recent Case Law Involving Time Limit Demands and Communication With Claimant's Counsel and the Insured

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November 21, 2013 EVENTACI Bad Faith 2013

Procedural and Substantive Nuances in the Bad Faith Context: Attorney-Client Privilege, Wasting a Policy, Burning Limits, Removal, Pleading, Social Media and Beyond

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October 29, 2013 EVENTPLRB Regional Adjusters Conference

Avoiding Third-Party Bad Faith Set-Ups and Traps

Read More »
June 11, 2013 EVENTPLRB Western Region Claims Seminar

Responding to Third Party Settlement Demands: Bad Faith Set Ups And Traps

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April 29, 2013 EVENTACI's 24th National Advanced Forum on Bad Faith Litigation

Time Limit Demands: Timing the Appropriate Response in Your Litigation Strategy, Conducting the Investigation, and Ensuring Effective Communication with the Insured

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January 25, 2013 EVENTCLM 2013 Bad Faith/Coverage/Fraud Conference

Excess Verdicts: How To Keep the Liability Cap on and How to Limit Your Exposure When It's Off

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November 07, 2012 EVENTCLM 2012 Webinar Series

Time Sensitive Demands and Other Bad Faith Setups

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August 01, 2012 EVENTFDCC Annual Meeting

Third Party Bad Faith Set-Ups

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November 30, 2011 EVENTACI Bad Faith Litigation Conference

Innovative Pre-Trial Strategies for Defending Against Bad Faith Claims:  Procedural Considerations, Attorneys Fees, Pleading Standards, Motion Practice, Settlement and Beyond

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July 25, 2011 EVENTFDCC Leadership Institute

The Case for Leadership

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November 30, 2010 EVENTACI Bad Faith Litigation Conference

American Conference Institute's Bad Faith Litigation Conference

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June 10, 2010 EVENTFlorida Liability Claims Conference 2010
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March 24, 2010 EVENTEffective Management Of Discovery In A Complex Case

 "Truman Show"

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August 06, 2009 EVENTA Case For Leadership

This presentation will cover the characteristics of leaders and the importance of developing young leaders.

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April 16, 2009 EVENTA Case For Leadership

Federation of Defense & Corporate Counsel Leadership Institute

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July 28, 2015 NEWSLewis Collins Elected President of the FDCC Foundation

The firm is pleased to announce that Lewis Collins was elected President of the Federation of Defense & Corporate Counsel Foundation at the Federation’s Annual Meeting.  

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September 29, 2014 NEWSSeven Partners Listed in The Best Lawyers in America 2015

Butler is pleased to announce that seven of its Partners were listed in The Best Lawyers in America 2015, a highly regarded directory of attorneys, where inclusion is entirely peer-based and extremely selective.  Fewer than 4% of the nation's attorneys are included.

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November 01, 2013 NEWSSpotlight on Lewis Collins

New Spotlight on Lewis Collins – Making of a Modern Day Knight.

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October 30, 2012 NEWSLewis F. Collins and the ACCEC

The firm is pleased to announce that Lewis F. Collins has been selected to be a founding member of the Board of Regents of the American College of Coverage and Extracontractual Counsel. The newly formed organization was created by leading lawyers in the United States and Canada to improve the quality of the practice of insurance law.

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November 01, 2009 NEWSLawyers For Civil Justice: Marshalling Legal Expertise to Meet the Challenges of Civil Justice Reform

Interview with Butler Partner, Lewis F. Collins, Jr.

Originally published in The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel, Special Section, Civil Justice Reform.  Reprinted with permission.  © 2009.

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May 05, 2009 NEWSButler Partner, Lewis F. Collins, Jr., Elected President of Lawyers for Civil Justice

Lewis F. Collins, Jr., a partner with the Tampa office, was elected President of Lawyers for Civil Justice (LCJ) at it's annual meeting in Washington, D.C., May 3-5, 2009. LCJ is a nation coalition of corporate counsel and defense bar organizations devoted to supporting civil justice reform. LCJ represents over 25,000 defense lawyers and over 25 of the world's top 50 corporations in activities at both the state and national level designed to achieve reforms, which will ensure balance in the civil justice system.

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November 01, 2008 NEWSLewis Collins discusses civil justice issues of concern to corporate community with Metropolitan Corporate Counsel magazine

Lawyers for Civil Justice President-Elect Lewis Collins discusses civil justice issues of concern to corporate community with Metropolitan Corporate Counsel magazine

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Key Points
Practice Area CASE TYPE
  • Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA)
  • Americans with Disabilities Act
  • Anti-Trust
  • Appellate
  • Attorney Fee Disputes
  • Aviation
  • Bad Faith
  • Catastrophic Injuries
  • CGL
  • Charitable Organizations
  • Civil Remedy Notices
  • Civil Rights
  • Class Action
  • Commercial General Liability
  • Commercial Lease Construction and Litigation
  • Commercial Litigation
  • Complex Liability Litigation
  • Construction Defect Litigation
  • Construction Defect Litigation - Design
  • Construction Defect Litigation - EIFS
  • Construction Defect Litigation - Excess Claims
  • Construction Defect Litigation - Indemnity Claims
  • Construction Defect Litigation - Roof
  • Construction Defect Litigation - Stucco
  • Construction Defect Litigation - Windows
  • Contractor Controlled Insurance Program
  • Contribution Claims
  • Copyright Infringement
  • Coverage - Bodily Injury
  • Coverage - First Party Automobile
  • Coverage - First Party Property
  • Coverage - Homeowner's
  • Coverage - Personal Injury
  • Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices
  • Employment Law
  • Employment Law - Gender
  • Employment Law - Race
  • Environmental - Contamination Liability
  • Environmental - Hazardous Waste Coverage
  • Environmental - Hazardous Waste Liability
  • Environmental Liability - Chemicals
  • Environmental Liability - Mold
  • Excess Coverage
  • Explosions
  • Extracontractual Claims
  • False Arrest
  • Federal Multi-District Litigation
  • General Casualty Litigation
  • General Liability - Coverage
  • Heavy Equipment Claims
  • Hurricane Losses
  • Intellectual Law
  • Libel
  • Malicious Prosecution
  • Malpractice - Architecture
  • Malpractice - Engineering
  • Manufacturer Liability
  • Manufacturer Liability - Drugs
  • Manufacturer Liability - Medical Devices
  • Mass Torts
  • Material Failures
  • MDL - Mass Torts
  • Medicare
  • Multi-District Litigation
  • Negligent Hiring
  • Negligent Security - Violent Crimes
  • Negligent Supervision
  • Patent Litigation
  • Police Liability
  • Premises Liability
  • Products Liability
  • Products Liability - Automobile
  • Products Liability - Consumer Products (All Types)
  • Products Liability - Equipment Losses
  • Products Liability - Pipe Failures
  • Professional Liability
  • Professional Malpractice - Accounting
  • Professional Malpractice - Engineering/Architecture
  • Professional Malpractice - Legal
  • Professional Malpractice - Medical
  • Professional Malpractice - Municipal Liability
  • Professional Malpractice - Psychiatric/Psychological
  • Professional Malpractice - Surveyor
  • Psychiatric/Psychological Malpractice
  • Slander
  • Sovereign Immunity Issues
  • Structural Collapse
  • Surveyor Malpractice
  • Third Party Coverage Issues
  • Third Party Liability
  • Toxic Tort - Chemicals
  • Toxic Tort - Isocyanates
  • Toxic Tort - Mold
  • Toxic Torts
  • Trademark/Patent Litigation
  • Trucking
  • Underinsured Motorist
  • Uninsured Motorist