Joseph J. Ceccarelli’s practice focuses in the areas of commercial and real estate litigation. He has achieved numerous successful results in federal and state courts for over 25 years. Joe routinely litigates cases involving failed financial transactions, breach of contract, fraud, shareholder and partner disputes, investor actions, broker-dealer and FINRA matters, employment, including non-compete and non-solicit actions, and senior executive compensation.

Joe’s clients range from large corporate and financial institutions to privately held businesses and senior executives. He works closely with clients to execute the preferred resolution strategy, achieving the desired end through the most cost-effective means available to complex legal challenges. He is adept at using cost-benefit analysis to help clients determine if a claim should be litigated or settled. Joe also provides risk management services, advising clients on measures they can take to help prevent litigation or to best position themselves to defend claims that arise.

Joe served as Treasurer for now New York State Assemblyman David I. Weprin during four consecutive successful election campaigns for Finance Committee Chair of the New York City Council from 2002 through 2009.

Industry Experience

  • Finance
  • Government Relations
  • Investment Funds
  • Manufacturing
  • Real Estate
  • Technology

Representative Matters

    Commercial Litigation

  • Prosecuted major international commercial arbitration case under the UNCITRAL Rules in Zurich, Switzerland, on behalf of Fortune 50-company in a suit against Malaysia.
  • Defended airline in an antitrust suit of first impression and achieving a unanimous affirmance on appeal.
  • Prosecuted business tort and contract claims in adversary proceeding on behalf of mid-market New York City business within context of Chapter 11 case in the Southern District of New York against Fortune 50 company resulting in injunctive relief, multimillion-dollar recovery and consent decree.
  • Recovered the full amount demanded for breach of chief executive officer’s employment contract in a proceeding before the American Arbitration Association.
  • Represented a major financial institution in prosecuting fraudulent conveyance actions.
  • Established precedent regarding the defense of 42 U.S.C. § 1983 actions in New York State predicated upon denial of equal protection of the laws.
  • Real Estate Litigation

  • Prosecuted Freedom of Information Act case under federal law regarding a joint federal and state transportation project, resulting in the disclosures required to commence a subsequent case under NEPA.
  • Achieved unanimous reversal on appeal to Appellate Division, First Department from denial by lower court of summary judgment to owner dismissing and discharging multimillion-dollar liens of six contractors and subcontractors under Lien Law § 3.
  • Defended leading commercial property owner and manager against declaratory, injunction, and multi-million damage claims alleging discrimination by former employee under American with Disabilities Act and New York Human Rights laws before Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.
  • Defeated ground lessor’s efforts to block sale of net lease of midtown office building and gain unjust windfall of over $10 million, by delaying and refusing to sign estoppel certificate for closing.
  • Successfully defended leading commercial property manager and owner in New York City regarding the right to seek declaratory relief without liability for over $ 1 million in attorneys’ fees under industry standard form of commercial lease, after hotly contested litigation.
  • Prevailed on bankruptcy appeals in Manhattan Federal Court regarding grounds under which state court receiverships can continue in Bankruptcy Court and commercial leases can be rejected or assumed by the receiver.
  • Defeated rent strike in high-rise luxury residential building in Manhattan’s Upper East Side, resulting in an unprecedented rent arrears award to developer.
  • Represented estate fiduciaries in complex ownership dispute over several million-dollar Soho real estate property in New York State Supreme Court and Surrogate’s Court.