In the latest acquisition of a construction law practice in the region, midsize law firm Moritt Hock & Hamroff has added all six attorneys from Long Island firm Goldberg & Connolly.
The attorneys from Goldberg & Connolly, founded more than 60 years ago, joined 71-attorney Moritt Hock & Hamroff on Monday in its Garden City office. The new hires include partners Henry Goldberg and Michael Hogan; counsel Brian Craig and Craig Nisnewitz; and associates Stephen Brodsky and Andreas Koudellou, as well as six staff members, said Marc Hamroff, managing partner of Moritt Hock.
Goldberg, who was his firm’s managing partner, will now chair Moritt Hock’s construction law practice. With the attorneys’ move to Moritt Hock, Goldberg & Connolly will close, Hamroff said.
The move marks at least the second construction law acquisition in the last two months involving Long Island firms. In August, eight attorneys from 500-lawyer Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin jumped to 135-attorney Kaufman Dolowich Voluck, based in Long Island. That group represents building and property owners, general contractors, subcontractors and others in construction site accident matters.
Hamroff said he’s seen a growing demand for the practice area, citing continued construction activity in the New York City area and surrounding counties. Demand can also increase under an economic downturn, such as if contractors lose financing or projects are delayed, prompting claims and disputes, Hamroff said.
President Donald Trump’s interest in an infrastructure project could also spur business, he said.
“If the president’s agenda with infrastructure materializes, that will be another feather in the cap that will help the construction sector, and we want to be ready for that if that happens,” Hamroff said.
The group from Goldberg & Connolly represents private contractors working in areas such as electrical, plumbing, mechanical and cement, in major New York City area public construction projects in various stages, from planning, procurement, bidding, and construction through claims and disputes. Goldberg is general counsel to the Construction Management Association of America, as well as to the Subcontractors Trade Association.
The small firm has represented clients in big infrastructure projects such as the Robert F. Kennedy Triborough, Queensborough, Tappan Zee, Verrazano and Willis Avenue bridges, as well as school, court, hospital, military and environmental projects.
While Moritt Hock had related practices in secured lending and creditor rights involving the construction industry, it did not have a core construction practice representing contractors, Hamroff said.
Hamroff had been seeking out the practice for the past two years because Moritt Hock continued to run across matters where the expertise was needed, he said. “It’s a very specialized area. In construction, some of the questions are so particular and specialized, in how you make claims, who the claims are against, that you don’t know what you are missing if you are not experienced in this area,” Hamroff said. “We were staying away from the work because we know how specialized the area is.”
The group’s clients are moving over to Moritt Hock, Hamroff said, declining to provide revenue estimates for the business. “They had a substantial practice that we’re excited to have,” both for the business they bring and their expertise that can support the firm’s other practices, he said.
Meanwhile, Goldberg had a need for a broader practice to offer tax, litigation and real estate services to support clients, Hamroff said.
For Moritt Hock, with offices in Manhattan and Long Island, it’s the firm’s second small firm acquisition this year. This summer, it absorbed the three-attorney practice of Morgenthau & Greenes, which focused on business transactions, branding and licensing, private equity and real estate law.