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Tacopina & Seigel

Criminal, Civil Litigation, Corporate

Joseph Tacopina  

Few lawyers have received the level of national acclaim that trial attorney Joseph Tacopina has garnered from media outlets during his career.

The New York Post identified Tacopina as a “top-shelf, high-powered litigator”; GQ Magazine called him “the best-dressed, smoothest-talking, hardest-working criminal defense attorney going”; Fox’s Sean Hannity described him as “one of the greatest defense attorneys of all time”; and The New York Times even noted, “Mr. Tacopina is to the defense bar what Donald Trump is to real estate.”

High praise, but with good reason: Over his than two decades in practice, Tacopina has thrived in the courtroom, trying nearly 100 cases to verdict and representing many high-profile defendants.

“From the beginning I gravitated toward trial work because of what comes with the territory— high stakes and a lot of pressure,” says Tacopina, who focuses on criminal defense and civil litigation. “The work is challenging, but there’s nothing more satisfying to me than having a jury come back in my client’s favor.”

Some of Tacopina’s most well-known cases include representing former New York State Senator Hiram Monserrate, who was acquitted of assaulting his girlfriend. He also achieved an acquittal for a former NYPD officer accused of rape and burglary in a case that garnered international media attention.

“There’s a certain added pressure when you’re handling high-profile matters, but ultimately all the work I do is difficult,” Tacopina says. “With these cases, you have someone’s life in your hands, so you have to be strategic, creative, and thoughtful in how you approach them.”

Among his more recent cases, Tacopina represented Yankees star Alex Rodriguez in his appeal of a 211-game suspension imposed by Major League Baseball for allegedly using performance-enhancing drugs. He is currently representing award-winning reporter Sarah Wallace in her gender discrimination lawsuit against New York’s WABC, and he is also being retained by the Italian government to investigate the wrongful murder conviction of Italian citizen Enrico Forti in Miami.

“The clients I represent are often under siege when they come to me, and because I take personally anything that has been done unfairly to them, I fight for them with everything I have,” Tacopina says. “Simply put, whether I’m representing someone in a civil or a criminal case, my goal is to always work harder than anyone else.”

That philosophy has been Tacopina’s personal credo since his early days as a prosecutor in the Kings County District Attorney’s Office, where he prevailed in 39 of 40 trials. By making it a mainstay of his private practice, he has been able to elevate his firm to a new level in the criminal defense field, earning a number of prestigious awards.

His accolades include an AV Preeminent® rating from Martindale-Hubbell® (the organization’s highest rating for legal ability and ethical standards) and the National Italian American Bar Association’s Man of the Year Award, which was presented to Justice Anthony Scalia the year prior. Additionally, Tacopina has been accepted to The National Trial Lawyers: Top 100 Trial Lawyers, an invitation-only organization comprising the top trial lawyers from each state.

As Don Imus, who Tacopina has counseled on legal matters, observed on his radio show, “Imus in the Morning”: “When you hire Joe Tacopina—it’s over.”

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