J. Nathan Cole


J. Nathan Cole, a Shareholder at Kenney & Sams, is an experienced trial lawyer who represents businesses and individuals before the Massachusetts Superior Court, the Massachusetts Appeals Court, the U.S. District Court, numerous private mediators, and arbitrators. His clients are involved in construction, manufacturing, solar, real estate development, insurance, food services, retail, waste management, and hazardous-materials cleanup.

Nate has extensive experience with construction litigation, representing general contractors, solar developers, scaffolding manufacturers, subcontractors, building owners, and property managers in payment disputes, delay claims, lease disputes, jobsite-defect cases, premises liability, product liability, and insurance coverage disputes. He uses this experience to guide businesses in all phases of risk management and planning, including construction and business contract negotiations, indemnification agreements, and employee hiring and termination considerations.

In 2023, Nate was named to Boston Magazine’s Top Lawyers List (Construction) and has been recognized in The Best Lawyers in America® (Commercial Litigation, Construction Litigation, and Personal Injury – Defendants) since 2020. He has been named to the Massachusetts Super Lawyers® list (Business Litigation) every year since 2013 and been twice recognized by BTI Consulting Group, Inc. as a Client Service All-Star (2022-2023). He is rated AV Preeminent® by Martindale-Hubbell, the highest peer rating given to attorneys for their professional excellence, legal expertise, communication skills, and ethical standards.

Nate currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Massachusetts Defense Lawyers Association, where he is chair of the Construction Law Committee. He is also chair of the International Association of Defense Counsel’s (IADC) Construction Law and Litigation Committee and is serving a three-year term on the IADC’s Membership Committee. He began his career as an Attorney-Advisor in the Ethics Division of the United States Department of Commerce’s Office of General Counsel in Washington, D.C. He left the Department of Commerce to serve as a law clerk to the Justices of the Massachusetts Superior Court before entering private practice.

Nate frequently presents to industry groups and bar associations on risk management, construction, and insurance matters. In 2019, he presented on general contractors’ non-delegable duty for jobsite safety at the annual meeting of the IADC in Asheville, N.C. In 2021, Nate moderated a panel on “Blockchain and the Practice of Law: How Cryptocurrency Will Impact the Legal Profession and Our Clients” for the IADC’s 2022 mid-year meeting in Scottsdale, Ariz. Nate has also been a guest lecturer at various law schools and presented on topics to the Boston Bar Association, Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, and IADC, and was invited to serve as a trial tactics instructor for the National Institute for Trial Advocacy. He regularly presents on the cross-examination of expert witnesses for Exponent and other expert witness providers.

Practice Areas


  • Massachusetts

  • United States District Court

  • New Hampshire


  • Boston College Law School, J.D., 2003

  • Bates College, B.A., 1997

Awards & Recognition 

  • Recognized by Best Lawyers in America® 2021-2024

  • Selected to the Massachusetts Super Lawyers list every year since 2017

  • Awarded Client Service All-Star by BTI Consulting Group 2022-2023

  • AV® Preeminent™ rating by Martindale-Hubbell®

  • 43rd Annual IADC Trial Academy

  • Selected for inclusion in 2013-2015 Massachusetts Rising Stars®

  • Recommended Insurance Attorneys – General Defense 2014