Charles J. Messina

Charles J. Messina is a member of the firm’s Complex Commercial Litigation, Intellectual Property Law, Employment Law & Litigation, Insurance Law, and Construction Law & Litigation Practice Groups.

While Mr. Messina is experienced in all aspects of litigation, he has substantial experience handling insurance and employment defense matters, complex contract and commercial disputes, trademark litigation, professional liability and coverage issues, and construction litigation. In addition, he has developed an expertise with counseling corporations, their executives, and employers with various consumer and employee related disputes as well as professional athletes, musicians, restaurants, franchisors and master franchisees. He is experienced at the trial and arbitration level, including AAA arbitration and other forums for alternative dispute resolution.

Representative Matters:

  • Successfully litigated complex commercial, employment litigation, and professional liability matters in the state and federal district courts of New York and New Jersey
  • Represented national franchisors, securing numerous injunctions on their behalf as well as several judgments exceeding a million dollars, including a significant victory in connection with a franchisor’s trademark infringement and breach of contract claims against a New York franchisee who was subsequently indicted for masterminding a $50 million mortgage fraud scheme
  • Defended an accounting firm from inception to trial in a professional malpractice action where plaintiffs alleged millions of dollars in damages, ultimately securing a dismissal with prejudice for the client
  • Provided legal counseling to both start-up and reputable companies on a wide variety of matters
  • Obtained numerous dismissals with prejudice of employment and other lawsuits filed against hotels and car dealerships in New Jersey and New York by plaintiffs alleging claims ranging from discrimination to misrepresentation and fraud, including a recent “no liability” verdict against a car dealership following a three-day hearing involving alleged violations of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act
  • Negotiated favorable settlements for various employers and business owners, including successful negotiations with the State of New Jersey, Division of Consumer Affairs
  • Secured an important dismissal and summary judgment award with potentially national implications after four years of litigation and several Appellate Division successes on behalf of a client, defending against plaintiffs’ claims that the County of Essex’s contractual arrangement for housing over 1,000 inmates at certain facilities constituted an unlawful privatization of county jail operations
  • Led the firm’s litigation team in obtaining a dismissal of a high-profile politician’s emergent complaint just before a municipal election
  • Represented and defended a variety of businesses and business owners in connection with breach of contract, defamation, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, intellectual property, and trademark infringement disputes
  • Negotiated more favorable contract provisions on behalf of franchisees and employers
  • Represented clients in commercial arbitration disputes and administrative hearings in New York and New Jersey, including a significant victory overturning a contract award made by an independent state agency

Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Messina clerked for the Honorable Deanne M. Wilson in the Superior Court of New Jersey, and then worked as a litigation associate at a large, well-respected firm, where he gained extensive experience handling complex commercial, employment, class action, insurance defense, and franchise law matters.

Since 2012, Mr. Messina has been recognized every year in New Jersey Monthly magazine and Super Lawyers in the New Jersey Rising Star List, a distinction given to no more than 2.5 percent of the lawyers in any state.  Mr. Messina was also recently selected as a “New Leader of the Bar” by the New Jersey Law Journal (50 Under 40 Award, 2015).

Bar Admissions

  • New Jersey, 2008
  • New York, 2010
  • United States District Court, District of New Jersey, 2008
  • United States District Court, Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, 2010

Education

  • New York Law School, J.D., 2008

  • Villanova University, B.A., 2005, cum laude