When I learned about condemnation and eminent domain through a passing reference in law school, I didn’t fully grasp how upsetting a taking can be to someone facing the loss of their property.  In representing property owners and fighting to assure that they receive the just compensation to which they are constitutionally entitled, I’ve come to understand that every taking of private property is a unique and highly personal matter.

Mr. Reilly concentrates his practice in civil litigation, with a particular concentration in condemnation and eminent domain matters. His representation of property owners and public entities in this area includes challenges to government takings of private property, commission hearings and jury trials to determine just compensation, allocation hearings and inverse condemnation.  He has briefed and argued before the Appellate Division and Supreme Court of New Jersey, and has briefed before the United States Supreme Court, on condemnation matters.

Mr. Reilly’s litigation experience also encompasses other real estate matters, including prerogative writ challenges to redevelopment area designations and plans, local commercial property tax appeals, environmental cost recovery and contribution actions, commercial landlord-tenant disputes, environmental insurance coverage matters, construction litigation, consumer fraud claims and quiet title actions. He has counseled and represented clients in jury and non-jury trials, at administrative hearings, and in appeals.

Mr. Reilly is certified by the New Jersey Supreme Court as a Civil Trial Attorney. Prior to entering private practice, he served for sixteen years as a New Jersey Deputy Attorney General with the New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety.

Honors & Awards

  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© (a trademark of Woodward/White, Inc.) in the Eminent Domain and Condemnation practice area (2009 – present); selected by Best Lawyers® (a trademark of Woodward/White, Inc.) as Woodbridge "Lawyer of the Year" in Eminent Domain and Condemnation Law (2014)
  • Listed in New Jersey Super Lawyers (a Thompson Reuters business) in the Eminent Domain practice area (2010 – present)
  • Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Rated AV® Preeminent (a trademark of Internet Brands, Inc.) (1998 – present)

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

  • Successfully represented the property owners of approximately two acres of vacant land in Middlesex County in a condemnation action before the Superior Court of New Jersey. The property owners’ had valued the property at $1.6 million for residential use or $3.11 million for commercial use. Prior to the trial, the NJ Department of Transportation had valued the property at $490,000, but during the six day jury trial, the State increased its valuation to $640,000. After considering the testimony of six expert witnesses, the jury returned a verdict which awarded the property owners $1.9 million.
  • Settled, at time of trial, the issue of just compensation on behalf of a property owner for $10 million, inclusive of interest and as if environmentally remediated, when the government’s value position at trial would have been $5.1 million.
  • Successfully tried to conclusion before jury a consumer fraud act claim resulting in treble damages and attorney fees.
  • Tried to conclusion a successful challenge to a municipal redevelopment area designation and redevelopment plan in Edison, NJ.
  • Successfully challenged governmental taking for failure to conduct bona fide negotiations with recovery of attorney fees in Rahway, NJ.
  • Reported cases include State, by Com’r of Transp. v. SirisState v. Hess Realty Corp.; Housing Auth. v. Suydam Investors.

Uniquely NJ

  • Member, New Jersey State Bar Association; Land Use Law Section
  • Affiliate Member, Appraisal Institute - Metro New Jersey Chapter
  • Corporate Secretary and Trustee, The Frances Foundation for Kids Fighting Cancer Inc., a non-profit organization
  • Testified before the environmental committees of both houses of the New Jersey State Legislature in 2006, on behalf of the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP), concerning important legislation affecting condemned property undergoing environmental remediation
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More Activities & Experience

  • Member, American Bar Association; Section of Litigation

Presentations & Speaking Engagements

Publications & Alerts

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Departments

Education

University of Notre Dame Law School, J.D., 1977

Seton Hall University, B.A. magna cum laude, 1974

Bar Admissions

  • New Jersey, 1977
  • U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey, 1977
  • United States Supreme Court, 1989

John J. Reilly Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rated AV Preeminent John J. Reilly Listed in Best Lawyers John J. Reilly Best Lawyers Lawyer of the Year 2014

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.