DeCotiis News
DeCotiis lawyers are frequently in the press in their areas of expertise as well as being sought-after speakers, panelists and authors.

for council in Morristown Democratic primary By Ben Horowitz of The Star-Ledger The Star-Ledger MORRISTOWN - A Superior Court judge ruled today that a replacement Morristown Council candidate, Michael Elms, may be listed on the ballot in the June 4 Democratic primary, even though he submitted petitions after the deadline. Elms was endorsed by the Morristown Democratic Committee on April 17, two days after Councilman Kevin Gsell withdrew from the race. In his ruling, Judge Stephan Hansbury upheld the argument by the committee's attorney, Daniel Zwillenberg, who said elections laws over the years have been "liberally construed" to "promote voter… Continue

In the New Jersey Law Journal's Suits and Deals column, which summarizes New Jersey's largest settlements and verdicts, George Frino and Avis Bishop-Thompson were recognized for winning a major verdict on behalf of East Orange, New Jersey. The trial was heard before the Hon. Thomas Vena in the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Essex County. Three plaintiffs alleged that the East Orange's Director of the Division of Property & Maintenance sexually harassed three City Employees, and that the employees were retaliated against by both the City's Human Resources Director and Business Administrator - the City's second-ranking official after the Mayor.… Continue

Winners and Losers: Week of March 18th By PolitickerNJ Staff WINNERS Barbara Buono The underdog gubernatorial candidate had a good week. She landed the endorsements of the NJEA and HPAE, then picked up media coverage for two events in as many days: a walking tour with Newark Mayor Cory Booker and a rally with Essex County Democrats. Jerry Healy The incumbent mayor of Jersey City landed the enthusiastic public support of President Barack Obama. Robert Andrezejcak The Iraq War veteran assumed the oath of office as assemblyman in the 1st Legislative District. The ally of state Sen. Jeff Van Drew… Continue

DeCotiis, FitzPatrick, Cole & Giblin, LLP has been ranked in the top one percent of the Nation's law firms.  In addition, the DeCotiis firm has been distinguished by Fortune Magazine, The American Lawyer, Corporate Council, and, as one of the "2013 Top Ranked Law Firms" in the United States. These designations are  indicators of DeCotiis, FitzPatrick & Cole, LLP's high ethical standards and professional ability.

This was the second year the selection process was held. The DeCotiis firm also received this honor in 2012. Editors asked LexisNexis® Martindale-Hubbell® to leverage its comprehensive database of one-million lawyers and firms… Continue

Alex Keoskey, a partner in the DeCotiis firm, has just been certified by the New Jersey Supreme Court as a Civil Trial Attorney. The New Jersey Supreme Court, through its Board on Attorney Certification, designates this honor to attorneys who successfully apply for certification and meet the standards set by the Board and approved by the Supreme Court. In order to be certified, an attorney must be a member of the Bar in good standing, show that they've actively participated in the preparation and litigation of numerous civil matters, completed the mandatory number of trials in the Superior Court and fulfilled a… Continue

Whether submitting or receiving bids for publicly-funded projects, negotiating private contracts, or resolving disputes concerning cost over-runs, contractors and property owners should be aware of site conditions.

Public entities that solicit bids, and private owners who negotiate construction contracts, should make sure that their disclosures and disclaimers protect them should site-related work prove more costly than anticipated. Accurately discerning, investigating and evaluating surface and subsurface conditions is essential for staying on budget. Moreover, appropriate record keeping, and the ability to present sufficient proofs using appropriate methods, is critical to prevailing in site-related disputes. Construction firms should properly document and segregate… Continue

that accused Edison officials of political retaliation

By Brian Amaral/ The Star-Ledger
on February 06, 2013 at 5:56 PM, updated February 06, 2013 at 7:20 PM

EDISON - A federal judge has dismissed a union's lawsuit that had accused top town officials of waging political war on firefighters, calling the case a waste of time.

U.S. District Court Judge William J. Martini said last week that the claims made by Edison's firefighters union had been rejected in 13 different proceedings, "Yet Plaintiffs now seek a fourteenth bite at the apple. ... [T]he Court finds that the Complaint should be dismissed."… Continue

that detailed millions in wasteful spending

By Mike Frassinelli/The Star-Ledger The Star-Ledger
on January 15, 2013 at 11:34 AM, updated January 15, 2013 at 11:39 AM

Following up on a blistering 2010 audit of the New Jersey Turnpike Authority that found such perks as snow-shoveling and birthday bonuses and the use of toll dollars to run an employee bowling league, the state comptroller today said the authority has since installed significant cost-saving reforms.

Comptroller Matthew Boxer said the authority, which operates the New Jersey Turnpike and Garden State Parkway, has at least partially implemented all but two of his office's… Continue

Steven C. Mannion, a partner at DeCotiis, FitzPatrick, Cole & Giblin, LLP, was sworn in Tuesday as a United States Magistrate Judge. Mannion, who was a partner at the firm since 2001, is one of only 13 full-time federal magistrates appointed in the State of New Jersey.

As a federal magistrate, Mannion will be authorized to exercise the Court's jurisdiction in civil and criminal cases assigned by statute or delegated by a district judge. In order to become a federal magistrate, candidates must receive a majority vote of active district judges where the magistrate is assigned. This prestigious honor speaks… Continue

We at DeCotiis, FitzPatrick, Cole & Giblin, LLP would like to extend our thoughts and prayers to all of those who are dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. As our State and its residents now move into a recovery phase, we wanted to share with you some valuable post-storm information concerning the rebuilding of lost homes, businesses and government facilities.

The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), which regulates the construction of facilities within the coastal area of New Jersey and along certain tidal water courses, has issued new and important guidance to assist residents and businesses in… Continue

The New Jersey Alliance for Action has again chosen to honor DeCotiis, FitzPatrick, Cole & Giblin, LLP for its work in improving New Jersey's infrastructure, economy, environment and quality of life.

The Alliance, a not-for-profit, non-partisan coalition of more than 2,500 business, laborers, academics and other professionals dedicated to improving infrastructure in the Garden State, has selected DeCotiis as a "Savior of the Environment" for its work as local bond counsel to the City of Elizabeth on a $7 million New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust (NJEIT) project to separate the City's combined sewer system in the Midtown area of the City.… Continue

The Executive Committee at DeCotiis, FitzPatrick, Cole & Giblin, LLP would like to recognize Richard F.X. Regan for his exemplary work on a high-profile tampering trial involving two Bergen County police officers.

The Bergen Record details the trial and features Regan extensively. The Prosecution alleges that a Hackensack Police Detective ordered another officer to remove a suspect's name from a police report, and a second colleague concealed evidence to protect the department's Police Chief. The Prosecution's key witness gave testimony to that effect.

Regan, during an effective cross examination, pushed the Prosecution's key witness to admit bias against the defendants.… Continue

The Executive Committee at DeCotiis, FitzPatrick, Cole & Giblin, LLP would like to congratulate Victoria A. Flynn on her appointment to the New Jersey Supreme Court Committee on Women in the Courts.

Vicki is a leader at our firm and in the community. She is a trusted partner in our Litigation and Government and Regulatory Affairs practice groups, an elected member of the Nutley Board of Education, and an active participant in the Women Lawyers Association and other civic organizations. Her appointment to a Supreme Court Committee is a testament to her leadership and her legal expertise.

We wish Vicki… Continue

By Tom Haydon/The Star-Ledger The Star-Ledger

EDISON - An appellate court panel today upheld a lower court decision denying a former Edison business administrator's claim for severance pay.

The court rejected an appeal from Anthony Cancro, who served as the township administrator under former Mayor Jun Choi from 2006 through 2009. Cancro claims that when he was hired, he was assured to receive three months severance, worth $38,800 if he was removed or not reappointed.

In June 2009 Choi lost the Democratic primary for mayor to then Councilwoman Antonia Ricigliano, who went to win the November general election and become… Continue

In the August 2012 issue of Inside New Jersey, 35 DeCotiis, FitzPatrick & Cole attorneys received 72 "Top Lawyer" ratings across 16 separate practice areas. DeCotiis, a full-service law firm, has attorneys listed in the following practice areas: administrative; banking and finance; business and commercial; civil law; commercial litigation; environmental; general practice; government law; healthcare law; labor & employment; litigation; real estate law; taxation; and, zoning, planning and land use.

The Attorneys listed in the magazine received an AV Preeminent Rating, Martindale-Hubbell's highest peer-review rating for ethical standards and professional excellence. Martindale-Hubbell, the nation's premiere legal directory, uses a rating… Continue

From the 7/5 issue of Politifax:

THE MERGER. All you need to know about the process -not the merits - of the higher ed merger is that, as Bob Smith pointed out in his floor speech before the vote last week, the people who wanted this to happen dropped 48 pages of amendments -- to a 121- page bill -- on legislators' desks about eight hours before they had to vote on it. (And, as one of our wags put it, we're "absolutely certain every member of the Senate and Assembly used that time to digest thoroughly every aspect of… Continue

Posted on Sunday, June 10, 2012 10:53 am

by John Brennan

Veteran observers of the Atlantic City casino industry well remember the epic battle between entrenched mogul Donald Trump and Las Vegas czar Steve Wynn starting in the mid-1990s, when Wynn decided he wanted to return to Atlantic City and build the biggest casino of all there.

The battle raged until 1999-2000, and the outcome proved to be unexpected across the board. Many have no doubt said to themselves, "too bad someone didn't write a definitive book about that battle."

Now, someone finally has, called "The War at the Shore"… Continue

In the June 2012 issue of (201) Magazine, 30 DeCotiis, FitzPatrick & Cole attorneys have been listed as top lawyers in Bergen County. DeCotiis, a full-service law firm, has attorneys listed in several practice areas including: administrative & regulatory; business, corporate & commercial; civil litigation; environmental; general practice; health care; litigation; municipal; public finance; real estate; white collar crime; and, zoning, planning and land use.

Attorneys listed in the magazine received an AV Preeminent Rating, Martindale-Hubbell's highest peer-review rating for ethical standards and professional excellence. Martindale-Hubbell, the nation's premiere legal directory, uses a rating system driven from the confidential… Continue

Posted: Jun 05, 2012 6:09 PM EDT Updated: Jun 05, 2012 8:33 PM EDT

Associated Press

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - A legal analysis of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie's proposed higher education reorganization finds 1 of the most vocal opponents - Rutgers University's Board of Trustees - may be powerless to block a merger between the Camden campus and Rowan University.

The document disputes the trustees' claim of control over the Camden campus's land. The 27-page analysis was obtained by The Associated Press.

The memo prepared by DeCotiis, FitzPatrick, Cole & Giblin of Teaneck for Cooper… Continue

By James Osborne and Matt Katz

Inquirer Staff Writers

Battle lines were drawn more sharply Tuesday over the proposed overhaul of New Jersey's public universities a day before the plan faces a key test: votes by Rutgers' two governing bodies.

Two former governors lent their support to legislation introduced Monday to enact the proposal, and a legal opinion commissioned by its backers sought to sideline a center of opposition, the Rutgers University Board of Trustees.

Some trustees, however, held out the threat of litigation, and a legislative opponent lashed out at a prime backer of the plan.

On Wednesday, both… Continue

LexisNexis® Martindale-Hubbell® was asked to research their comprehensive database of one million lawyers and firms in over 160 countries and identify U.S. law firms of 21 or more attorneys, where at least one out of three of their lawyers achieved the AV Preeminent Peer Review Rating. This rating indicates the rated lawyer has been deemed by his or her peers to have demonstrated the highest level of ethical standards and legal ability.

 Martindale Hubbell Peer Review Ratings are driven by the confidential opinions of lawyers and members of the judiciary who provide reviews of lawyers about whom they have professional… Continue

Methodology: To compile a list of top law firms in the United States, LexisNexis® Martindale Hubbell®-the authoritative source for information about U.S. lawyers since 1868-researched their comprehensive database of 1 million lawyers and firms in over 160 countries and identified Tri-State area law firms of 10 or more attorneys, where at least one out of four of their lawyers achieved the AV® PreeminentTM Peer Review RatingSM. This rating indicates the rated lawyer has been deemed by his or her peers to have demonstrated the highest level of ethical standards and legal ability.

Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings are driven by… Continue

By Bob Considine/The Star-Ledger

1. NJTV is celebrating its first anniversary on July 1. What are your comparisons between NJTV now and NJN then?

Both are trying to accomplish the same thing - to become mandatory viewing for people who want to know what's going on in New Jersey. The approach is a little different. At NJN, we didn't realize we had the luxury of seven or eight camera crews and a reporting staff of 10. We thought that was meager. Now we have maybe three camera crews and five reporters. The template for NJN News was really a program… Continue

On April 9, PERC issued its first decision reviewing an arbitration award issued under the 2-percent arbitration cap. The holding opens a new front for PERC's continuing attacks and increasing limitations it is imposing on negotiations and, by extension, interest arbitration. The award involved the Borough of New Milford and PBA Local 83. PERC took issue with the arbitrator's decision in this case, at least in part, because the arbitrator did not provide details about the methodology he used to reach the total base salary or explain why other economic figures presented by the Borough were not included, although PERC… Continue

In a March 23rd story by Law360, "Enviro Groups Challenge New Jersey Waiver Rule" DeCotiis, FitzPatrick, Cole & Giblin partner and executive committee member William Harla explained the discretion administrative agencies have been granted by the courts, and how it relates to the NJ Department of Environmental Protection's proposed commonsense waiver.

Mr. Harla said that the new rule does not violate separation of power provisions. "The DEP is an administrative agency, and they have the power to act through rulemaking, subject to certain public processes and standards," Harla said. "The courts have upheld the rights of agencies to relax their… Continue

Courier Post - March 13, 2012

I am writing to take issue with the legal opinion of Ron Chen,  dean at the Rutgers-Newark School of Law, as reported in the article titled, "Rule seen to cool merger" (C-P, Feb. 21). He argues that the Legislature must pass a law to implement a proposal, currently under discussion in Trenton, to transfer certain functions from Rutgers, the State University, to Rowan University.

Chen would deny the governor, who has endorsed the Rutgers-Camden to Rowan proposal, the use of the reorganization powers conferred on him by the "Executive Reorganization Act of 1969" to… Continue

DeCotiis, FitzPatrick, Cole & Giblin, LLP would like to congratulate Jason Attwood on his promotion to Contract Partner.

Jason joined our firm right out of law school in 2002 and quickly became a valued member of our Litigation and Redevelopment practices. While our law firm is proud to attract top talent across the legal spectrum, Jason's promotion demonstrates the importance of developing legal talent from within.

Jason is a respected attorney at our firm, and we look forward to his continued success in his new position.

The Salvation Army Hackensack Corps thanks DeCotiis, FitzPatrick & Cole for a Successful Holiday Toy Drive

This holiday season, the law firm of DeCotiis, FitzPatrick & Cole, LLP donated time and resources to make sure that the underprivileged could enjoy the Holiday Season.

This year, the Salvation Army provided 300 children with gifts. The DeCotiis firm, an annual contributor, was happy to continue to give back to the local community.

Click here to see the "thank you" letter from The Salvation Army Hackensack Corps.

On January 18th, DeCotiis, FitzPatrick, Cole & Giblin's Managing Partner Joseph DeCotiis attended the White House Business Leaders Forum to discuss job creation and economic expansion with senior officials in the White House. In fact, the popular political newsletter, Politifax, took note of Joseph DeCotiis' participation. 

Full text of Joseph DeCotiis' mention in the "Winners and Losers" section of Politifax is below.

Winner: Joseph DeCotiis

The DeCotiis, FitzPatrick, Cole & Giblin Managing Partner took part in a White House Business Forum on economic expansion.

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