Practice areas

Construction Litigation: Business, Business/Corporate, Employment & Labor: Employee, Administrative Law, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Intellectual Property

Focus areas

Business Organizations, Contracts, Employment Law – Employee, Intellectual Property Law

Attorney Michael K. De Chiara, a co-founder and senior partner at Zetlin & De Chiara LLP law firm, has established a notable presence in the field of construction law. His practice is primarily centered at the firm’s New York office, where he has dedicated more than 36 years of his legal career to handling a multitude of cases related to construction law and its various facets.

In addition to his extensive construction litigation practice, Mr. Chiara provides valuable counsel to his clients, aiding them in making well-informed decisions concerning their legal matters. Notably, he has served as legal counsel to some of the nation’s most prominent construction, engineering, and architectural firms.

Mr. Chiara holds a unique distinction as the sole private practice construction attorney representing the Federal General Services Administration, successfully defending the organization against claims exceeding $100 million. His impressive clientele also includes the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the United Nations. Currently, he serves as counsel in a high-profile condominium dispute in San Francisco.

His contributions extend to drafting contractor agreements for leading real estate developers in the city, often dealing with budgets surpassing $850 million. Mr. Chiara holds the esteemed position of General Counsel for the American Institute of Architects, as well as for New York State and the American Council of Engineering Companies of New York. He has generously volunteered his time and expertise for numerous historical architectural preservation initiatives.

Acknowledging his outstanding professionalism and dedication, Mr. Chiara has received accolades such as the AIA New York State President’s Citation for Outstanding Service and the March of Dimes’ Thomas E. Diana Spirit of Volunteerism Award. His legal peers have also recognized his excellence through an AV Preeminent peer review rating from Martindale-Hubbell, in addition to consistent recognition by The Best Lawyers in America and numerous other commendations.

Mr. Chiara embarked on his legal career in 1984, holding a Juris Doctor from Vanderbilt University Law School and a license to practice from the New York State Bar Association. He is admitted to practice in New Jersey and before the U.S. District Court for the Northern, Eastern, and Southern Districts of New York.

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