Standard of Review
An Appellate Law Blog

Court Dismisses DASNY’s Breach of Warranty Claim Against General Contractor

By Jim Digiulio on 11/21/2017


November 20, 2017 – In a written Opinion and Order, the Commercial Division of the Supreme Court of New York for the County of Albany dismissed a Complaint for breach of warranty of future performance filed by the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York (“DASNY”) against a general contractor.  Had DASNY prevailed in applying the predominantly UCC concept to save its otherwise untimely construction contract claim, the potential exposure of warranty claims to contractors performing work in New York would be endless.  Greg Trif of O’Toole Scrivo represented the prevailing general contractor.


Robert C. Scrivo Obtains Unprecedented Dismissal of US DOJ Indictment

By Jim Digiulio on 11/17/2017

November 17, 2017 – O’Toole Scrivo partner Robert C. Scrivo has successfully obtained the dismissal of a United States Department of Justice indictment charging a former president of a publicly-traded chemical company with conspiracy to violate the Sherman Act.  The DOJ handed down the indictment in February 2016 and charged Scrivo’s client with restraining trade of aluminum sulfate through market allocation and price fixing.  The matter was scheduled to be tried in the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey in January 2018.  The firm congratulates Robert in obtaining this exceptional result.


App. Div. Affirms Local Government Power to Enact Stricter Public Smoking Regulations

By Jim Digiulio on 11/16/2017


November 16, 2017 – In a published opinion, the Appellate Division affirmed the dismissal of a challenge to a local smoking ordinance that is stricter than the New Jersey Smoke Free Air Act.  The plaintiffs tried to strike down the ordinance by arguing that the Smoke Free Air Act prohibits municipalities from enacting greater restrictions than the State law.  Had the plaintiffs prevailed, local public smoking ordinances more restrictive than the State law likely would have come under attack.  The Appellate Division’s published opinion puts this question to rest and allows local governments to enact stricter public smoking regulations as they deem best for their community.



By Jim Digiulio on 11/06/2017


On November 10, 2017, Managing Partner Thomas P. Scrivo will be speaking at a special NJSBA/NJICLE showcase presentation featuring Bob Woodward.  Woodward will share with audiences on how Watergate forever altered the nature of the Presidency, politics, and journalism.   The program will include a round table discussion with some of New Jersey’s leading legal experts and journalists, including the Hon. Travis L. Francis, A.J.S.C. (Ret.), Thomas J. Cafferty, Esq. of Gibbons P.C., Paula Saha, Director of Communications at the NJSBA, and Charles Stile, Columnist at The Bergen Record.  (more…)


By Jim Digiulio on 10/31/2017


October 31, 2017 – O’Toole Scrivo partner Juan Fernandez successfully obtained a “No Cause” verdict on behalf of a client following an eight-week jury trial in the Superior Court of New Jersey.  The plaintiff in this high-exposure, multimillion-dollar employment case alleged various claims, including sexual assault and retaliation.  Despite the challenging and complex nature of the case, Juan ultimately prevailed for the client when the jury unanimously dismissed all claims after four days of deliberation.



By Jim Digiulio on 10/25/2017


On October 20, 2017, O’Toole Scrivo partners Gary Van Lieu and Joshua S. Lichtenstein participated in the second annual New Jersey Asbestos Litigation Conference offered by NJICLE.  The program, which was coordinated by Kevin J. O’Toole and co-moderated by Gary Van Lieu, featured a panel of speakers that included the Honorable Ana C. Viscomi, J.S.C., the statewide asbestos litigation Judge, Special Master Agatha N. Dzikiewicz, Esq., Joshua Lichtenstein, and other leading practitioners in the area of asbestos litigation.  The program provided critical and practical information for lawyers practicing in asbestos and other toxic tort litigation in New Jersey.


O’Toole Scrivo Attorneys to Participate in MCBA’s Legalpalooza

By Jim Digiulio on 10/24/2017


Managing Partner, Thomas P. Scrivo, will be speaking with Attorney General Christopher S. Porrino, the Honorable Robert J. Brennan, P.J.Ch., and Frederick W. Alworth of Gibbons P.C. at a CLE program entitled “Crisis Management: Views from the Bench, Law Enforcement, and the Bar.”  This program will be moderated by Lawrence S. Cutalo of O’Toole Scrivo and is one several other CLE programs featured at the Morris County Bar Association’s Legalpalooza on November 2, 2017.  For more information and to register, please click here.



By Jim Digiulio on 10/13/2017


On October 10, 2017, O’Toole Scrivo Managing Partners Kevin J. O’Toole and Thomas P. Scrivo moderated a CLE program entitled, “The Art of Early Resolution with the Right Retired Judge as Mediator,” at the offices of Crum & Forster in Morristown, New Jersey.  The program featured several former members of the New Jersey Judiciary and Joseph M. Morris, III, Esq., Vice President, Liability Claims, at Crum & Forster.  With nearly 300 people in attendance both live and remotely across the country, the program provided practitioners and insurance-industry executives with a comprehensive overview of the mediation process and strategies for a successful, early resolution of complex matters.



By Jim Digiulio on 10/09/2017


On October 5, 2017, Seton Hall University School of Law invited its alumni Kevin J. O’Toole and Thomas P. Scrivo as guest speakers.  Kevin and Tom shared their unique career paths, practical aspects of the law, and their experiences in public service with law students in Professor Denis McLaughlin’s Civil Procedure and Evidence classes.  (more…)


By Jim Digiulio on 09/12/2017


On September 7, 2017, O’Toole Scrivo hosted a wine tasting event for the New Jersey Women Lawyers Association, Young Lawyers Division.  Jessica Carroll, who is Of Counsel at O’Toole Scrivo and is one of the co-chairs of the Young Lawyers Division, organized the event.  The event provided an introduction into professional tasting techniques by sampling various wines from around the world guided by an education on how to make meal selections based on each wine’s tasting notes.  (more…)


By Jim Digiulio on 09/06/2017


On September 8, 2017, Managing Partners Kevin J. O’Toole and Thomas P. Scrivo will be speaking at NJICLE’s special program entitled, “Legal & Ethical Considerations When Navigating Corporate Negotiations & Investigations.”  This CLE program will address ethical issues and dilemmas that may arise during corporation negotiations and investigations for both in-house and outside counsel. (more…)


By Jim Digiulio on 08/21/2017


Cedar Grove, New Jersey – August 21, 2017, O’Toole Scrivo is pleased to announce the addition of Andrew Gimigliano who joins the Firm as Of Counsel.  (more…)


By Jim Digiulio on 08/11/2017


On August 4, 2017, O’Toole Scrivo attorneys presented a CLE program in Boston entitled, “Ethical Challenges with the Tri-Partite Relationship.”  This interactive CLE provided clients with a comprehensive discussion on the many different ethical dilemmas facing insurers, their insureds, and counsel. (more…)

Attys Tapped For Top Leadership Posts At Port Authority

By Jim Digiulio on 08/02/2017


Law360, Clifton, N.J. (August 1, 2017, 2:39 PM EDT) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday that two lawyers will assume the top leadership posts at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, tapping their respective appointees to steer the transportation agency’s efforts amid major infrastructure projects in the region. (more…)

Governor Christie And Governor Cuomo Announce New Leadership At The Port Authority

By Jim Digiulio on 08/01/2017


August 1, 2017

Trenton, NJ – Governor Chris Christie and Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the appointments of Kevin O’Toole as Chairman of the Board of Commissioners and Rick Cotton as Executive Director of the Port Authority of New York and Jersey.


Christie Names O’Toole Scrivo Attorney As Chief Counsel

By Jim Digiulio on 07/14/2017

Law360, Clifton, N.J. (July 13, 2017, 7:02 PM EDT) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has tapped James DiGiulio of O’Toole Scrivo Fernandez Weiner Van Lieu LLC to be his new chief counsel, ending the short-lived tenure of another attorney who has been named a state Superior Court judge, the governor’s office said Thursday.


U.S. Congressman Josh Gottheimer Honors Managing Partner Kevin J. O’Toole

By Jim Digiulio on 07/13/2017


July 13, 2017 – U.S. Representative Josh Gottheimer honored Kevin O’Toole’s distinguished career in the New Jersey legislature and his retirement as New Jersey Senator.  Speaking on the House floor today, Congressman Gottheimer commended O’Toole’s service as a legislator, stating, “[Kevin O’Toole] has been a true leader on business growth and streamlining regulations to attract companies to [New Jersey] . . . .  I applaud the high value that Kevin has importantly placed on constituent service throughout his career as a legislator — a key and essential priority for any public servant.  Kevin has worked across the aisle with Republicans and Democrats alike — a practice that is essential in this time of gridlock.  As Kevin departs the Senate, we wish him all the best . . . .” (more…)

Christie Brings Back Staff Lawyer to Be Chief Counsel

By Jim Digiulio on 07/13/2017


Michael Booth, New Jersey Law Journal

Gov. Chris Christie has turned to another insider to serve as his top legal adviser through the last six months of his final term in office.

Christie announced Thursday that he has named James DiGiulio, his former senior counsel, as chief counsel.

For DiGiulio, it is a return to the administration after a brief stint in private practice. Until recently he was with the Cedar Grove firm O’Toole Scrivo, headed by Republican state Sen. Kevin O’Toole and former Christie chief counsel Thomas Scrivo. (more…)

Governor Christie Announces Senior Staff Change – Names Former Senior Counsel to Take on Chief Counsel Role

By Jim Digiulio on 07/13/2017

Trenton, NJ – Governor Chris Christie today announced the appointment of James DiGiulio as Chief Counsel. DiGiulio is an attorney at the Cedar Grove law firm of O’Toole Scrivo, Fernandez Weiner Van Lieu, LLC, and he previously served as a Senior Counsel in the Governor’s Office.

DiGiulio will replace Chief Counsel Gregory Acquaviva, who is assuming his new role as a Superior Court judge, a position to which he was nominated by Governor Christie and approved by the state Senate.


Managing Partner Thomas P. Scrivo Elected as a Life Fellow by the American Bar Foundation

By Jim Digiulio on 07/06/2017


Cedar Grove, NJ – The Firm is proud to announce that the American Bar Foundation (“ABF”) has elected Managing Partner Thomas P. Scrivo as a Life Fellow.  According to the ABF, “the Fellows is an honorary organization of attorneys, judges, law faculty, and legal scholars whose public and private careers have demonstrated outstanding dedication to the welfare of their communities and to the highest principles of the legal profession.”  Notably, membership in the Fellows is limited to one percent of lawyers licensed to practice in each jurisdiction.  Members are nominated by their peers and elected by the Board of the ABF.



By Jim Digiulio on 07/05/2017


Cedar Grove, NJ – Managing Partner Kevin J. O’Toole was invited as a guest speaker at the Law & Justice Institute at Fordham University School of Law.  The Law & Justice Institute is an intensive five-week program for rising ninth graders run by Legal Outreach, an organization working with urban youth from underserved communities in New York City for the last thirty years.  Students participating in the program have the opportunity to meet various distinguished leaders in the legal community, as well as learn about our judicial system and careers in law.  Kevin shared with students today his personal path to success and the importance of striving for academic excellence.


Managing Partner Kevin J. O’Toole to Serve a Six-Year Term on the Port Authority Board of Commissioners

By Jim Digiulio on 07/03/2017


Cedar Grove, NJ – Longtime lawmaker Kevin J. O’Toole has officially joined The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey’s Board of Commissioners following his nomination to the position by Governor Chris Christie and his confirmation by the New Jersey State Senate.  Effective July 2, 2017, O’Toole will serve a six-year term on the Board, succeeding outgoing Commissioner Pat Schuber.


O’Toole Scrivo Attorneys Present Seminars In New York and Chicago

By Jim Digiulio on 06/20/2017


Today, O’Toole Scrivo, in conjunction with Perrin Conferences, is presenting three seminars to national insurance clients, industry leaders and attorneys on cutting edge and complicated legal and ethical issues.


Co. Says Judges Back Claims In ‘Mafia-Style’ RICO Suit

By Jim Digiulio on 05/03/2017


Law360, New York (May 2, 2017, 6:47 PM EDT) — A collections company alleging a New Jersey law firm is running a “Mafia-style” operation of filing consumer protection class actions primarily to generate attorneys’ fees has blasted the firm’s request for attorney sanctions, arguing that its racketeering theory is backed up by two federal judges.


Lawrence S. Cutalo Named “New Leader of the Bar” by NJ Law Journal

By Jim Digiulio on 04/27/2017

Arguably the Law Journal’s most important recognition, New Leaders of the Bar endeavors to identify attorneys representing the future of the legal profession in New Jersey.


Juan C. Fernandez Appointed to NJ State Ethics Commission by Governor Chris Christie

By Jim Digiulio on 04/27/2017


Trenton, NJ – Governor Chris Christie has appointed O’Toole Scrivo partner, Juan C. Fernandez, to the State Ethics Commission (“Commission”).

The Commission has the power to undertake investigations and hold hearings regarding alleged violations of New Jersey’s Conflicts Law. The Commission also issues advisory opinions concerning whether a given set of facts and circumstances would, in the Commission’s opinion, constitute possible violations of the Conflicts Law or any code, rules or regulations promulgated pursuant thereto.


Proud to Announce the Formation of O’Toole Scrivo

By Jim Digiulio on 03/20/2017

We are proud to announce the formation of O’Toole Scrivo.  A mid-sized law firm with a unique set of skills in litigation and government regulation.

OToole Scrivo Announcement

Senate Approves O’Toole to Go to the Port Authority

By Jim Digiulio on 03/13/2017

The Senate as a whole today voted in favor of state Senator Kevin O’Toole to go to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey as a commissioner.

Only state Senator Ray Lesniak (D-20) opposed the nomination.

“They have not supported equal pay for airport workers,” Lesniak said of the port, who could not extract O’Toole’s support for pay raises to bring them into line with those airport workers in New York.

The nomination passed 33-1.


Anthony D. Capasso Selected to 2016 New York Metro Super Lawyers and 2016 New Jersey Super Lawyers Rising Stars Lists

By Bryan King on 01/11/2016


Justice at Stake

By Bryan King on 05/17/2013

A frank discussion about the threats facing the independence and the integrity of the New Jersey Judiciary and its impact on our practices and our clients.


Fallout from Japan: A Foreseeable, Yet Unforeseen, Catastrophe? – Some Lessons for the United States

By Bryan King on 03/16/2012