Michael S. Zetlin, a founding partner of Zetlin & De Chiara LLP, is one of the country’s leading construction litigators and contract specialists who also serves as a strategic advisor to clients.
A graduate civil engineer and attorney, Mr. Zetlin has successfully litigated and arbitrated many multi-million dollar construction claims throughout the United States on projects ranging across all markets including institutional, commercial, residential, energy and infrastructure. He has also drafted and negotiated contracts on projects with construction values in the hundreds of millions of dollars within these sectors.
With over 30 years of experience, Mr. Zetlin’s knowledge of the built environment and the issues involved in design, construction, and project management make him a formidable advocate representing national and multi-national firms and a number of the premier owners, developers, design professionals, and contractors in the U.S. and internationally. He also provides legal counsel to private equity firms, hedge funds and lenders for their construction-related ventures.
A fellow of the American College of Construction Lawyers and a member of the National Academy of Construction, Mr. Zetlin holds the notable AV rating from Martindale-Hubbell and is consistently recognized by Chambers USA, The Legal 500 USA Guide, Super Lawyer Magazine, and Best Lawyers of America as a leading litigator in construction law. He has been appointed to the International Who's Who of Construction Lawyers by Who's Who Legal, and was named New York Construction Lawyer of the Year by Best Lawyers of America in 2011. Mr. Zetlin is also a recipient of the Harry B. Rutkins Award for Service to the New York Chapter of AIA. In 2014, he was inducted as a member of the National Academy of Construction, an organization established to recognize industry leaders in engineering and construction and offer this reservoir of expertise as a valuable service to the nation.
He serves as the General Counsel to the New York Building Congress and to the New York Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. An author and lecturer, he is an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University, teaching the graduate program Legal Issues in Building Construction, and is the co-editor of New York Construction Law, the definitive treatise on construction law in New York.