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The Honorable Joseph Covello is a partner with the firm and concentrates primarily in the areas of appellate and state court practice, civil and commercial litigation and alternative dispute resolution.
With over thirty-eight years of experience, divided between the private practice of law and a distinguished judicial career which culminated in his appointments by the Governor, first as an Associate Justice of the Appellate Division, Second Judicial Department, and ultimately to the Second Department’s constitutional bench, Judge Covello brings to Quatela Chimeri his extensive experience litigating and presiding over a wide array of civil disputes including complex commercial, contract, business, matrimonial, employment, medical/professional malpractice, personal injury, municipal and financial matters, as well as substantial mediation and arbitration experience.
Prior to his appointment to the Appellate Division, Judge Covello served five years as a trial judge in Nassau County Supreme Court, with one year concurrently on the Appellate Term for the Ninth and Tenth Judicial Districts, and as a trial judge in Nassau County District Court.
Before taking the bench, Judge Covello spent fourteen years in the private practice of law with well-respected firms. While in private practice, Judge Covello was associate lead counsel in the celebrated case of In Re: Agent Orange, and served as counsel to both the Nassau County Police Indemnification Review Board and the Town of Oyster Bay Zoning Board of Appeals.
Since leaving the bench in 2011, Judge Covello has become one of the most highly regarded and successful neutrals in New York.
He was repeatedly voted a “Best Individual Arbitrator” by lawyers and claims professionals in New York Law Journal surveys.
Judge Covello’s commitment to service commenced long before his legal career. A veteran of the United States Army, he was selected for and served in the U.S. Army Presidential Honor Guard in Arlington, Virginia. Following his military service, Judge Covello attended The State University of New York at Buffalo, where he graduated magna cum laude and was a member of Phi Beta Kappa. Judge Covello received his law degree from Hofstra University School of Law, and has been honored with its George M. Estabrook Alumni Association’s Distinguished Service Award.
A leader in service to the profession and the community, Judge Covello is a past president of the Columbian Lawyers Association and the Nassau Lawyers Association of Long Island. In addition, Judge Covello served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Hofstra University School of Law teaching, among other classes, advanced appellate advocacy.
Judge Covello has received numerous awards for his exemplary public and professional service, including the Distinguished Service Award from the Columbian Lawyers Association, The New York State Bar Association Award for Recognition, The Long Beach Lawyers Association Man of the Year Award and The Fraternal Order of Court Officers’ Honorable Edward J. Hart Jr. Memorial Award.
Recognized for his outstanding reputation, Judge Covello was appointed to and served four years on the New York State Joint Commission on Public Ethics, an independent monitor that investigates and maintains integrity in state government.
Judge Covello serves as a Special Master to the Appellate Division conducting C.A.M.P. (Civil Appeals Management Program) conferences. Additionally, chosen as a select member of A.D.A.M. (Appellate Division Arbitrators and Mediators), a prestigious arbitration and mediation panel comprised of nine of the retired Appellate Division and Court of Appeal judges, Judge Covello provides a new and innovative approach to commercial arbitration and mediation services in New York.
Finally, Judge Covello is a distinguished member of Resolute Systems (a nationwide provider of ADR services) and consistently ranks in the top 10 as a mediator/arbitrator.