Summary of Practice
DENNIS J. DRASCO is a Certified Civil Trial Attorney in New Jersey and is listed in The Best Lawyers in America, New Jersey Super Lawyers (Top 100), (Top 10 in 2011), Chambers USA – America’s leading lawyers in Business and Who’s Who in American Law. He is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, the International Academy of Trial Lawyers and the Litigation Counsel of America. He is a New Jersey Court Approved Mediator and Federal Court Mediator.
He is a member of the House of Delegates of the American Bar Association, as the Section of Litigation delegate (2013 to the present) having served on the Nominating Committee and Issues of Concern to the Profession of the House. He previously served in the House as Essex County Bar delegate from 2003-2012.
He is a former Chair of the ABA Section of Litigation (2004-2005). The Section of Litigation is the largest Section in the ABA.
He served as Chair of the Commission on The American Jury (2006-2009), having served as Co-Chair of the ABA American Jury Project in 2004-2005 and chaired ABA National Jury Symposium in 2006 and 2008. He has been a member of the ABA Coalition For Justice, served as the Section of Litigation Liaison to the Standing Committee on Judicial Independence and the Commission on Public Financing of Judicial Campaigns. He has been Co-Chair of the Section of Litigation Coordinating Committee on Diversity, Task Force For The Minority Trial Lawyer, its Strategic Planning Committee, and Co-Chair of a NITA Program to teach legal services attorneys trial skills. He also served as a member of the ABA Standing Committee on Meetings and Travel from 2014-2017.
He is a Past President of the Association of the Federal Bar of New Jersey. He has been a moderator and panelist on several New Jersey Federal Bar Judicial Conference Programs on Jury Innovation, Cross Examination, Federal Practices in New Jersey, September 11, 2001 Victim’s Compensation Fund and social media issues in Jury Trials. In 2000, he received the Essex County Bar Association’s Civil Trial Attorney Achievement Award and in 2006 received a “Professional Lawyer of the Year” award from the New Jersey Commission on Professionalism in the Law. In 2009, he received the Essex County Bar Association’s Walter A. Lucas Special Merit Award. In October, 2010, he received the ABA Jury Service Impact Award by the ABA Commission on the American Jury. He is a long time member of the Lawyers Advisory Committee to the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey.
In November 2018, he was recognized by Rutgers Law School as a Distinguished Alumnus for 2018 at its Annual Gala.
Additionally, he served as a speaker on programs entitled “Procurement Law and International Arbitration”, “Are Trials Vanishing?”, “Mediation of Complex Commercial Cases”, “Commercial Litigation From the Masters” and “Federal Practice for State Court Practitioners” sponsored by the New Jersey State Bar Association. A past Member of the Editorial Board of New Jersey Lawyer, the magazine, he authored articles entitled “How to Get From the War Room to the Courtroom: The Basics for Civil Trial Preparation”, 152 New Jersey Lawyer 32 (1993) and Construction Contracts: Arbitration as a Means of Dispute Resolution in New Jersey, 219 New Jersey Lawyer 22 (2003).
He served as a member of the ABA Litigation Section Council and as Co-Chair of the Condemnation, Land Use & Zoning and Construction Litigation Committees, where he wrote articles and served on several programs as a panelist, including programs entitled “ADR in Construction Litigation”, “When the Banker Becomes Builder”, and “Environmental Contamination on the Construction Site” and chapters in two books published by the ABA on Condemnation Practice.
He delivered the summation in a mock trial entitled “Design/Build Construction Disputes” for the ABA Forum on the Construction Industry and the opening statement and summation in a mock trial/mediation sponsored by the American Bar Association Dispute Resolution Section. He participated in the ABA Section of Litigation videos “73 Ways to Win” (2001), “64 Ways to Improve Your Law Practice (And Life)” (2002) and “Ethical Issues: 40 Solutions for litigation” (2005).
He is an active Member of the ABA Forum on the Construction Industry, the New Jersey State Bar Construction and Public Contracts Law Section and the ABA TTIPS Life, Health and Disability Committee and has authored articles on ERISA litigation. He is listed in Who’s Who Legal: Construction 2014, to the present.
He also authored an article for the Journal of Dispute Resolution entitled: “Public Access to Information in Civil Litigation v. Litigant’s demand for privacy: Is the “Vanishing Trial” an avoidable consequence?” 2006 J. Disp. Resol.
He is Past Chair of the Essex County Bar Association’s Judicial Selection Committee and its Joint Medical-Legal Committee and Annual Conference.
He has been a Master in the Seton Hall Law School Inn of Court and was elected a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation in 2002. He has served on many civic and charitable boards, including the United Way of North Essex and has served as President of the Essex County Legal Service Foundation and was a longtime member of its Board of Trustees.
He is admitted to practice in New Jersey, New York, the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey, the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, the United States Tax Court, the Second and Third Circuit Court of Appeals, and the Supreme Court of the United States.
Dennis specializes in the trial of complex commercial, construction, condemnation, insurance, medical malpractice and legal malpractice cases in Federal and State Court in New York and New Jersey and the mediation and arbitration of those cases in ADR forums.
Areas of Practice
Business Litigation, Construction Law, Eminent Domain, Ethics & Professional Responsibility, Health & Health Care Law, Insurance Law, Land Use & Zoning, Legal Malpractice, Litigation & Appeals, Medical Malpractice, Motor Vehicle Accidents – Plaintiff, Personal Injury – Defense, Personal Injury – Plaintiff, Products Liability Law, Professional Malpractice Law, Toxic Torts, Estate Litigation, Appellate Practice, Alternative Dispute Resolution
Professional Associations & Memberships
ABA Nominating Committee, Member
ABA Section of Litigation, Chair, 2004 – 2005
Association of the Federal Bar of New Jersey, 2008-2009, President
House of Delegates of the American Bar Association, Member
American College of Trial Lawyers, Fellow
International Academy of Trial Lawyers, Fellow
Litigation Counsel of America, Fellow
American Bar Foundation, Fellow
American Bar Association – Section of Litigation, Fellow
Capital Health Systems, Inc. v. Horizon Healthcare Serv., 230 N.J. 73 (2017)
Guardian Life Insurance Co. vs. Weissman, 223F 3rd 229 (3rd Cir. 2000) (2000)
Township of West Orange vs. 769 Associates, 172 N.J. 564 (2000) (2000)
Halpern vs. Halpern, 164F 3rd 830 (3rd Cir. 1999) (1999)
Jersey City Redevelopment Agency vs. Tug and Barge Urban Renewal Corp., 228 N.J. Super 24 (App. Div. 1998) (1998)
Pittston vs. Sedwick James, 971 F. Supp 915 (D.N.J. 1997) (1997)
Pittston vs. Allianz, 905 F. Supp 1279 (D.N.J 1995). (1995)
Jersey City Redevelopment Agency vs. Costello, 252 N.J. Super 247 (App. Div. 1991) (1991)
Shell Oil vs. Trailer & Truck Repair Co., 828 F2nd 205 (3rd Cir. 1987) (1987)
Broadway Maintenance Corp. vs. Rutgers, 90 N.J. 253 (1982) (1982)
National Newark & Essex Bank vs. American Ins. Co., 76 N.J. 64 (1978) (1978)
Honors & Awards
Essex County Bar Association’s Civil Trial Attorney Achievement Award, 2000 and Walter A. Lucas Special Merit Award, 2009
New Jersey Commission on Professionalism in the Law – Professional Lawyer of the Year, 2006
ABA Jury Service Impact Award, 2010
Rutgers Law School, Distinguished Alumnus for 2018
Francis X Dee Award, The NJ Fellows of the American College of Trial Lawyers, 2022
New Jersey, 1973
New York, 1982
U.S. Court of Appeals 3rd Circuit, 1973
U.S. Court of Appeals 2nd Circuit, 1991
U.S. District Court District of New Jersey, 1973
U.S. District Court Southern District of New York, 1985
U.S. District Court Eastern District of New York, 1989
U.S. Tax Court, 1985
U.S. Supreme Court, 1978
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey School of Law – Newark, Newark, New Jersey
J.D. – 1973
BA – 1970
Certified Legal Specialties
Civil Trial, New Jersey Supreme Court