In 1977, I handled my first complex construction case and had the opportunity to develop my skills in the areas of construction and condominium law. After taking every deposition personally and spending nine months on trial, my client recovered more than $3 million. From that point forward, I felt confident in my ability to handle any matter of this nature.

Mr. Estis concentrates his practices on complex commercial litigation, with a particular focus on construction law, condominium and community association law, public entity law and alternative dispute resolution. His practice also encompasses real estate and business disputes and general equity matters. He serves as counsel to numerous developers, condominiums and cooperatives, New Jersey municipalities, and one of the major sewerage authorities in the state.  He has served as an arbitrator and mediator for numerous private and public entities, and has participated as both an advocate and as a neutral in hundreds of mediation proceedings.  He is an American Arbitration Association trained mediator and arbitrator and sits on the AAA’s national panel.

Mr. Estis has played a prominent role in a number of high-visibility cases.  He was lead public entity counsel in one of the largest landfill cases ever conducted in New Jersey. He served as lead counsel in New Jersey for more than 100 developers involved in numerous law suits in connection with defects related to fire retardant treated (FRT) plywood,  helping draft New Jersey’s FRT Plywood regulations after spearheading successful efforts to overturn the then existing FRT regulations in order to obtain greater funding for the replacement of FRT plywood. 

Mr. Estis has presented and moderated programs on a broad range of topics, including alternate dispute resolution, trial practice, training and handling of experts, condominium and community association law, construction law, and real estate law.  He has addressed various groups including the American Bar Association, the New Jersey State Bar Association, the New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education, the Litigation Counsel of America and the Community Associations Institute.

Honors & Awards

  • Recipient of the Middlesex County Bar Association Arthur H. Miller Lawyer Achievement Award (2013)
  • Recipient of the Middlesex County Bar Association David Pavlovsky Service to the Bar Award (2009)
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers In America© (a trademark of Woodward/White, Inc.) in the Construction Law, Municipal Law, Commercial Litigation, Litigation:Real Estate, Litigation:Municipal, and Litigation:Construction practice areas (2005 – present)
  • Selected by Best Lawyers® (a trademark of Woodward/White, Inc.) as 2016 Woodbridge "Lawyer of the Year" in Construction Law; as 2014 Woodbridge "Lawyer of the Year" in Litigation - Construction; as 2013 Woodbridge "Lawyer of the Year" in Construction Law; as 2010 Newark "Lawyer of the Year" in Construction Law
  • Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Rated AV® Preeminent (a trademark of Internet Brands, Inc.) (1984 – present)
  • Listed in New Jersey Super Lawyers (a Thompson Reuters business) in the Construction Litigation practice area (2005 – present); listed by Super Lawyers as one of the Top 100 Lawyers in New Jersey (2011, 2016)
  • Listed in Who’s Who Legal (a publication of Law Business Research Ltd.) in the Construction Law practice area (2012  present)
  • Listed in the Who’s Who Legal 2015 - Compendium Edition (a publication of Law Business Research Ltd.)
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation
  • Fellow, College of Community Association Lawyers
  • Fellow, National Conference of Bar Presidents

A description of the standard or methodology on which the accolades are based can be found HERE. No aspect of this advertisement has been approved by the Supreme Court of New Jersey.

Representative Matters

  • Nobrega v. Edison Glen Associates, 167 N.J. 520 (2001) — Case clarified when newly adopted statute undercut vesting rights of individuals
  • Horosz v. Alps Estates, 132 N.J. 134 (1994) — Case clarified when Statute of Repose might restart running
  • Lamb v. Global Landfill, 111 N.J. 134 (1988) — Case clarified under what circumstances an injured party was able to extend the time for filing a Notice of Tort Claim
  • In re Request for Solid Waste Utility Customer Lists, 106 N.J. 508 (1987) — Case clarified when a customer list may or may not be protected given the public interest considerations
  • Tung v. Briant Park Homes, Inc., 287 N.J. Super. 232 (App. Div. 1996) — Case clarified when and under what circumstances a purchaser of the condominium unit could assert a claim for breach of the Planned Real Estate Development Full Disclosure Act, N.J.S.A. 45:22A-21 et seq.
  • First National State Bank v. Commonwealth Savings & Loan, 610 F.2d 164 (3rd 1980) - Case holds that specific performance is a proper remedy against the permanent lender in order for the lender to be certain and honor its standby loan commitment
  • Carlyle Towers Condo Association v. CrossLand Savings, 944 F. Supp. 341 (D.N.J. 1996) – Case clarifies the standards for by which a law firm was not required to withdraw from representation where the firm had previously represented a subsidiary of bank which was the primary defendant in an action
  • Cardell Inc. v. Piscatelli, 277 N.J. Super. 149 (App. Div. 1994) – Case clarifies when a court is determined to have abused its discretion in not permitting the filing of an amended counter- claim
  • Appeal of Adoption of N.J.A.C. 5:25A-1.1, 266 N.J. Super. 625 (App. Div. 1993) – Case limited the ability of an administrative department to adopt regulations when they were contrary to the legislative intent behind the subject statute
  • Jersey City v. Roosevelt Stadium Arena, 210 N.J. Super. 315 (App. Div. 1986), certif. den., 110 N.J. 152 (1988) – Case held that formal governmental action was required in order to approve a settlement where a municipality is a party to the action
  • Vines v. Orange Memorial Hospital, 192 N.J. Super. 496 (App. Div. 1984) – Case established that failure to issue summons for a lengthy period of time still did not justify dismissal of the action unless prejudice can be shown
  • Fidelity Land Development v. Reider & Sons Building & Development Co., 151 N.J. Super. 502 (App. Div. 1977) – Case provided that mere paper transfer of title by mortgagor to its principal stockholder did not cause the note to accelerate

Uniquely NJ

  • Superior Court of New Jersey List of Civil Mediators (1998 – present)
  • Member, New Jersey Builders Association
  • Member, Community Associations Institute
  • Member, New Jersey State Bar Association; Member, Construction Law Section; Member, General Council; Former Member, Nominating Committee; Past Chair, Equity Jurisprudence Committee
  • Member and Past President, Middlesex County Bar Association
  • Former Member, Middlesex County Bar Foundation Board of Trustees
  • Senior Member, New Jersey Institute of Local Government Attorneys Board of Trustees
  • Former Member, Board of Directors of the Jewish Federation of Central New Jersey
  • Past President, New Jersey Chapter of the NYU Law School Alumni Association
  • Past Co-Chair, New Jersey Alumni Chapter of the Johns Hopkins University
  • Past Chair, Democratic Party of Union County, New Jersey
  • Former President of the Board of Trustees, The Discovery Orchestra
View Expanded Bio

More Activities & Experience

  • Senior Charter Fellow, Litigation Counsel of America
  • Member, American Bar Association; Past Co-Chair, Construction Litigation Committee of the Sections of Litigation and Dispute Resolution; Member, Ethical Standards for Mediation Task Force of the Section of Litigation; Member, ABA Forum on Construction Law
  • Member, College of Community Association Lawyers
  • Member, National Conference of Bar Presidents
  • Former Member, Editorial Board of the Journal of Community Association Law
  • Former Member, Board of Directors of the NYU Law School Alumni Association
  • Member, Diversity Law Institute and Institute of Trial Presentation
  • Co-Founder of the Alternate Dispute Institute

Presentations & Speaking Engagements

Publications & Alerts

View Abbreviated Bio

Departments

Education

New York University School of Law, J.D., 1972

Johns Hopkins University, B.A., 1969

Bar Admissions

  • New Jersey, 1972
  • New York, 1983
  • U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey, 1972
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Third Circuit, 1981
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 1982

Clerkships

  • Former law clerk to The Honorable Samuel Allcorn, Judge of the Appellate Division of the New Jersey Superior Court

Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rated AV Preeminent Dennis A. Estis Listed in Best Lawyers Dennis A. Estis Best Lawyers Lawyer of the Year 2016 Dennis A. Estis Best Lawyers Lawyer of the Year 2014 Dennis A. Estis Best Lawyers Lawyer of the Year 2013 Dennis A. Estis Best Lawyers Lawyer of the Year 2010


A description of the standard or methodology on which the accolades are based can be found
HERE. No aspect of this advertisement has been approved by the Supreme Court of New Jersey.