The first job Jason Purvis accepted after receiving his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Southern Mississippi in 1998 was teaching special education in the Hancock County School District. His sights then turned to law school at the University of Mississippi from which he received his Juris Doctorate in 2002. As a clerk and later an associate with Gerald Cruthird in Picayune, Jason learned to run title, work on title curative cases, and litigate Chancery matters. From there, he associated with or became a partner in several Gulfport firms before settling into his practice as a member of Purvis & Co, PLLC, from 2015 to the present.
Jason’s true introduction to transaction work was a “trial by fire” involving a multimillion-dollar, bond-backed, development loan secured by property in multiple states for a manufacturing company. Seven rail lines crossed the primary property, four of them abandoned. He says, “It’s been pretty straightforward since that deal.” In addition to transactions, however, he has a diverse practice of Chancery and commercial litigation, representing both plaintiffs and defendants, and claims coverage work, often property-related, for Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s London.
From Jason’s perspective, his firm’s strength is the team’s ability to pivot from one area of law to another in order to handle a wide variety of matters. “Generally, I find it is becoming rare for an attorney to handle both transaction and litigation practices. Starting in rural areas as ‘county lawyers,’ we had to practice in many areas to keep the pots boiling.” A key lesson he has learned in his practice is to have the courage to say, “I’m not sure . . . .” Jason explains, “In practicing law, surviving as a small businessperson, and playing a part in transactional processes, we experience significant pressures to be perfect. By learning that I don’t have to know all of the law, recognizing that good months follow bad months (and vice versa), and a little grace brought to the closing table can grease the machinery of a transaction, I’ve learned that I can deliver a better service and experience to my clients.” His greatest professional accomplishment? “We’ve never missed a payroll.”
Jason is a down-to-earth guy who wears bib overalls when not at work. He recently sailed a sailboat across the Gulf of Mexico, stopping halfway to repair the transmission when it gave out. He describes himself as a carpenter, a mariner, a fisherman, a hunter, and a ham radio operator, and someone who likes to tinker with all things mechanical. Jason also likes to cook and primarily enjoys the chance to do all of these things with his family. Married to Charmayne Purvis, he has a son and grandson who each share his heart and a mom who drops by the office for coffee and a visit.
If you like a good story or could use some words of wisdom, Jason is a great resource. After sheltering in a 14-foot skiff in Bay St. Louis during Hurricane Katrina, he lost everything and had no flood insurance. The experience “was the best thing that ever happened to me because it taught me what was important in this life – the people in your life. I also learned to buy flood insurance . . . no matter where you live.” Jason advises young attorneys to get to know other lawyers and learn from them. He says, “I have not found a single instance where I sought help from a fellow lawyer (even an adversary) where that lawyer did not help me. We’ve all been there, and we can be professional and kind to one another WHILE we zealously advocate.”
To learn more about Jason Purvis, visit his member profile.