John M. Joseph


John is a Director with Coats Rose and heads the firm’s Real Estate, Land Use, Government Affairs & Banking Law section.  For the past 30 years John has been primarily involved in the representation of owners and developers of real property before city, county, and state authorities. He conducts and leads the representation of clients involved in: the master planning, zoning, and rezoning of real property; securing water, wastewater, and utility service commitments; creating and dissolving municipal utility and road districts; securing legal tract and Chapter 245 determination; “due diligence” development and yield analysis; the preliminary and final platting of tracts; and the creating and revising of city and county ordinances, rules, and regulations affecting the development of real property.

John also serves as expert witness in condemnation and government taking cases, and represents clients in securing variances, waivers, and determination of specific application of ordinances. He negotiates and drafts development and inter-local agreements, license agreements with city, county, and state authorities, reimbursement agreements, and agreements addressing the application of environmental laws, rules, and regulations. He also represents municipal utility districts in negotiation of utility issues and adding and negotiating annexation of utility districts by cities.

  • J.D., 1975, St. Mary’s University School of Law
  • B.B.A., 1973, The University of Texas at Austin
  • Texas, 1976
  • State Bar of Texas Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundations
  • Austin Young Lawyers Association (Vice President, 1981; Director, 1979-1980; Co-Chairman of Continuing Legal Education Committee, 1979-1980)
  • Texas Young Lawyers Association (Chairman of the Board, 1983 -1984; Director, 1981 – 1983)
  • Joseph Pritchard Inn (Chairman)
Community Service & Civic Associations
  • Superhero Kids Fund and Superhero Kids Foundation, (Co-Founder, 2009-Present) an organization that provides direct family financial assistance and programming for children and their families in treatment at the Dell Children’s Blood and Cancer Center.
  • Dell Children’s Medical Center (Volunteer, 1980 to present)
  • Children’s Hospital of Austin (Council; Volunteer, 1994-Present; Co-Chair Underwriting Committee, CHOA Miracle Market)
  • Brackenridge Hospital Foundation (1993-1994)
  • City of Austin (Member, Airport Task Force)
  • City of Austin/Travis County (Balcones Canyonlands Conservation Planning Committee)
  • Children’s Blood and Cancer Center (Advisory Council)
Representative Experience
  • Zoning: Represent clients in obtaining approval of zoning changes and variances from use and site development restrictions. This representation has included many appearances before the Austin City Council, the Planning Commission, the Board of Adjustment, and the Environmental Board and preparation of related development agreements and restrictive covenants.
  • Traffic Issues: Provide legal services for traffic related issues, including assisting in preparing, modifying, releasing and interpreting Traffic Phasing Agreements, and addressing right-of-way reservation, dedication, and acquisition issues.
  • Annexation. Represents clients in annexation issues.
  • Subdivision: Assist clients in obtaining subdivision approval, both for preliminary plans and final plats, and in vacating and amending subdivision plats and preliminary plans and in obtaining variances from and amendment of subdivision regulations.
  • Site Plans/Development Permits: Represent landowners in processing and obtaining approvals for mixed-use and single site plans and related variances and waivers. This representation includes obtaining Conditional Use Permit approval and phased site plans approval.
  • Condemnation: Represent condemning authorities, as well as landowners subject to eminent domain actions. This representation draws on experience in and knowledge of land development regulations.
  • Environmental: Represent clients in environmental issues in land use/development and before environmental agencies such as U.S. Fish & Wildlife, TNRCC, Travis County, and the City of Austin. This representation also includes assisting clients in obtaining 10a Permits under the Endangered Species Act, environmental variances from the City of Austin, and other environmental permits necessary for real estate sale and development.
  • Water and Wastewater: Assist clients in obtaining water and wastewater service to their property involving obtaining service commitment from the utility providers, including the City of Austin Water and Wastewater Utility, MUDs, water supply corporations, and water conservation and improvement districts. This also involves negotiating and preparing agreements and restrictive covenants related to the commitment and payment of such service. Creating and dissolving Municipal Utility Districts and Water Control and Improvement Districts.
  • Regulation: Participate and represent property owners in the formation of nearly every development regulation in the City of Austin and Travis County during the past 30 years.
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