Norris McLaughlin

  • Nov 04, 2019Norris McLaughlin Named Best Estate Planning Attorneys by The Morning Call

    Law firm Norris McLaughlin, P.A., is proud to be voted “Best Attorney/Estate Planning” by The Morning Call readers for the 2019 Readers’ Choice. The 16th annual Readers’ Choice Showcase was hosted on November 2 at Artsquest Center in Bethlehem.

    “We are honored to be voted by our clients and friends as ‘Best Attorney/Estate Planning.’ It is truly a pleasure to see the impact our attorneys make within our local communities,” said John N. Vanarthos, Chairman of the firm.

    About the Estate Planning & Administration Attorneys

    The Norris McLaughlin estate planning & administration attorneys have vast experience in all aspects of state, federal and international tax law, with an emphasis on the planning and administration of trusts and estates. The goal is to assure that assets pass to the intended beneficiaries at as little cost as possible, including minimizing state and federal tax burdens which may require the use of sophisticated and creative planning techniques.

    In many complex matters, especially those involving high-assets, Norris McLaughlin has the advantage of being able to work with attorneys from other practice areas including those with experience in litigation, corporate, tax, real estate, immigration, matrimonial, family, elder care, and special needs law.

    About Norris McLaughlin

    The individuals and families Norris McLaughlin counsels benefit from the same personal attention, human touch, and unwavering confidentiality that distinguish the services provided to corporate clients. The attorneys’ combination of experience and diligence is invaluable in helping individuals navigate through transitional periods and difficult life events. The firm is there for clients when they are changing careers and planning for the future of their family. Norris McLaughlin handles complex and sophisticated tax matters, including the negotiating and structuring of employment and severance agreements and the planning and administration of trusts and estates, to preserve a lifetime of hard work and achievement. Similarly, the firm handles sensitive matters, like divorce and white-collar criminal allegations, with the utmost care and consideration for the personal and financial well-being of the individual and their family. The attorneys at Norris McLaughlin successfully resolve matters to the satisfaction of our clients by applying our decades of experience, with special attention to the personal needs of each individual.

    In response to the changing needs of clients and the business community, Norris McLaughlin merged in 2009 with Tallman, Hudders & Sorrentino, the largest independent commercial firm in the Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania. Since then, the firm has continued to grow, remembering its culture and values, and keeping its footprint in the Lehigh Valley for over 100 years. Norris McLaughlin and its attorneys have historically been committed to the Lehigh Valley community, where may attorneys, clients, and staff live and do business – to make them better places to live, work, and play. The firm’s attorneys hold prominent leadership positions in various organizations throughout the Lehigh Valley, and many have been honored for the work they do in the community.

    Posted in: Estate Planning & Administration, News | Tags: ,

  • Nov 01, 2019Norris McLaughlin Recognized in U.S. News – Best Lawyers® Best Law Firms For 10th Consecutive Year

    Law firm Norris McLaughlin, P.A., is proud to announce that it has been selected for inclusion in 12 practice areas in the “2020 Best Law Firms” rankings by U.S. News Media Group and Best Lawyers. This marks the 10th consecutive year the firm has earned Metropolitan First-Tier rankings in New Jersey. The firm’s full listing of First Tier rankings is as follows:

    • Arbitration
    • Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law
    • Commercial Litigation
    • Energy Law
    • Environmental Law
    • Family Law Mediation
    • Litigation – Bankruptcy
    • Litigation – Construction
    • Litigation –- Environmental
    • Mediation
    • Product Liability Litigation – Defendants
    • Trusts & Estates Law

    “It’s an honor for the firm to be highly ranked in multiple, diverse practice areas. We are proud of our client relationships and it’s especially rewarding to earn this recognition based largely on their feedback,” said John N. Vanarthos, Chairman of the firm.

    About Best Law Firms

    From the start, the mission of Best Law Firms has been to help guide referring lawyers and clients – from the country’s largest companies needing corporate legal advice to individuals needing a divorce or a will – issues with bet-the-company implications or potentially life-changing results respectively. The U.S. News – Best Lawyers® “Best Law Firms” rankings are based on a rigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations, peer review from leading attorneys in their fields, and review of additional information provided by law firms as part of the formal submission process. A full listing is posted online at

    About Norris McLaughlin

    Norris McLaughlin has been serving the New Jersey community and New York metropolitan area since 1953. Once a humble two-man practice on Main Street in Somerville, Norris McLaughlin has become the largest firm in Somerset County and one of the top 20 firms in New Jersey. Throughout its growth, the firm remembers its culture and values. Norris McLaughlin has remained a firm committed to client service, its community, and its employees. The firm and its attorneys have historically been committed to the communities where clients live and do business.

    Clients value a personal level of care, therefore the firm strives for deep, meaningful, people-first relationships with each one. With many of its attorneys selected as The Best Lawyers In America each year, in addition to its active repertoire of speaking engagements and legal publications, Norris McLaughlin possesses large-firm talent in a small-firm setting that allows its attorneys to provide service and value to their clients on a personal level. It is the firm’s goal to accommodate the needs of every client through the use of experience, strategic planning, and common courtesy.

    Norris McLaughlin is a full-service, mid-sized regional law firm of 130+ attorneys with main offices located in Bridgewater, NJ; New York, NY; and Allentown, PA.  For more information, including a full practice area listing and attorney biographies, please visit

    Posted in: Alternative Dispute Resolution, Bankruptcy & Creditors' Rights, Construction Law, Environmental, Estate Planning & Administration, Litigation, Matrimonial & Family Law, News, Products Liability Defense, Solar Energy | Tags: , ,

  • Aug 15, 2019Three Norris McLaughlin Attorneys Named 2020 Best Lawyers® “Lawyers of the Year” in Woodbridge Area

    Three lawyers from law firm Norris McLaughlin, P.A., were recently selected by The Best Lawyers in America© as 2020 “Lawyers of the Year” in the Woodbridge, New Jersey, Metro Area.

    Best Lawyers® designates a select group of individuals as “Lawyers of the Year” in high-profile specialties in large legal communities.  Only a single lawyer in each specialty in each Metropolitan Area is honored as the “Lawyer of the Year.” Best Lawyers compiles its lists of outstanding attorneys by conducting exhaustive peer-review surveys in which thousands of leading lawyers confidentially evaluate their professional peers. Those honored as “Lawyers of the Year” have received particularly high ratings in the surveys by earning high levels of respect among their peers for their abilities, professionalism, and integrity.

    The firm’s 2020 Best Lawyers “Lawyers of the Year” include Martha N. Donovan for Litigation – Environmental, Morris S. Bauer for Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law, and William A. Dreier for Arbitration.

    Donovan, a Member of the firm and Co-Chair of its Environmental Law Practice Group, devotes her practice to environmental law and complex litigation with an emphasis on the defense of environmental property damage claims. She also has considerable experience working on related insurance coverage matters. She has authored articles and has made presentations to various trade groups and associations on issues ranging from lender liability under Superfund to the availability of insurance coverage for various aspects of business-related accidents. Donovan is a member of the New Jersey State and American Bar Associations and the Society of Women Environmental Professionals. She has been selected for inclusion on the list of Super Lawyers® and Best Lawyers® for many years, named in Who’s Who Legal, and ranked as Band 1 in Chambers. A resident of West Windsor, Donovan earned her J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law and her B.A. in Chemistry from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College, now Randolph College.

    Bauer, a Member of the firm, is a member of its Bankruptcy & Creditors’ Rights Group. He represents debtors, creditors’ committees, financial institutions, landlords, and trade creditors in Chapter 11 proceedings of publicly and closely-held corporations, limited liability companies, and partnerships. Bauer is a member of the New Jersey State Bar Association (Debtor/Creditor Section), the American Bar Association, the Pennsylvania Bar Association, the American Bankruptcy Institute, and the Turnaround Management Association. A resident of Long Valley, he earned his J.D. from Hofstra University School of Law and his B.S. from Dickinson College.

    Judge Dreier, Of Counsel to the firm, focuses his practice in the areas of mediation and arbitration. He frequently lectures, mediates, and arbitrates substantial Chancery and other disputes. In 2009, he was selected as the namesake and the first recipient of the William A. Dreier Award, now given annually by the Products Liability and Toxic Tort Section of the New Jersey State Bar Association (NJSBA) to attorneys and jurists for excellence in and advancement of product liability and toxic tort law in New Jersey. That same year, he was designated ADR Practitioner of the Year by the NJSBA Dispute Resolution Section.  In 2008, Judge Dreier was awarded the prestigious Medal of Honor, the highest award for an attorney, by the New Jersey State Bar Foundation for his professional excellence, as demonstrated by his accomplishments in the law and service to the profession and community throughout his career. In 2015, he was given the New Jersey Law Journal’s Lifetime Achievement Award for his service to the profession. Judge Dreier has published numerous articles on ADR, products liability, and other subjects, in addition to 380 published judicial opinions. He frequently lectures throughout New Jersey and nationally on products liability and ADR. Before joining Norris McLaughlin, Judge Dreier was a trial judge in the New Jersey Superior Court from 1973 to 1983, served in the Appellate Division from 1983 to 1994, and was a Presiding Judge from 1994 to 1998. A resident of Warren, he received his J.D. from Columbia Law School and his B.S. from The Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

    Best Lawyers has published their list for over three decades, earning the respect of the profession, the media, and the public as the most reliable, unbiased source of legal referrals. Its first international list was published in 2006 and since then has grown to provide lists in over 75 countries.

    Posted in: Alternative Dispute Resolution, Bankruptcy & Creditors' Rights, Environmental, Martha N. Donovan, Morris S. Bauer, News, William A. Dreier | Tags: , , ,

  • Jul 11, 2019Norris McLaughlin and Attorneys Karolina Dehnhard and Shana Siegel Nominated for Best of Essex 2019

    The law firm Norris McLaughlin, P.A., is pleased to announce its nomination in the Suburban Essex Readers’ Choice Contest, “Best of Essex 2019,” in the Professional Services: Law Firms category.  Karolina A. Dehnhard, a Member of the firm and Chair of its New Jersey Matrimonial & Family Law Practice Group, and Shana Siegel, a Member of the firm and Chair of its Elder Care & Special Needs Law Practice Group, have also been nominated in the Professional Services: Family Law and Professional Services: Elder Law categories respectively.

    The “Best of Essex” contest has been an annual tradition for local, independently-owned businesses since 2008.  The website allows consumers to find the best local shops, services, and dining options year-round.  This year’s contest supports CASA of Essex in their mission to “Help Foster Children in Essex County Find Safe Homes.”  Every vote cast will benefit the cause.  For more information and to vote, please visit

    Dehnhard, based in the firm’s Short Hills office, devotes her practice to matrimonial law including divorce, prenuptial agreements, child custody, parenting time, alimony, child support, and domestic violence issues.  She assists with complex financial issues, including valuation of businesses both domestically and abroad; international custody rights; the impact of immigration status on divorcing spouses and their children; enforcement of foreign divorce decrees; and the complexities of alimony rights and post-judgment cohabitation.

    Dehnhard has appeared on TV shows and news programs and published articles on family law topics in numerous print publications, including North Jersey Woman Magazine, Industry Magazine, VUENJ, and various Polish publications.  In addition, she co-authored a chapter in “Understanding the Legal Issues Surrounding Same-Sex Marriage.”  She is also the co-host of two radio shows, “The Law Matters” on WMTR Radio and “There’s Always a Way Out,” hosted in Polish, on Radio RAMPA.

    Dehnhard has been a featured presenter at numerous women in business events on topics including women protecting their assets, becoming the CEO of your home, planning for the future, and promoting financial awareness before and during a divorce.  She has also taken part in U.S. delegations to Ireland, Cuba, and Spain, to develop international business relations among women in business.  Dehnhard was recognized by the Trade and Investment Section of the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland for her influence and leadership in integrating women-owned businesses in both Poland and the United States.  In 2018, Dehnhard launched the Polish-American Chamber of Commerce, North-East, covering Maine to Florida, to create business opportunities for both American and Polish businesses.  She is also the Ambassador of the Leading Women Entrepreneurs Short Hills Leadership Lounge, a platform dedicated to the advancement of women globally.

    Named to the “Top Women in Law” in 2018 by the New Jersey Law Journal, Dehnhard was also recognized in 2016 as one of the “Top 25 Leading Intrapreneurs in New Jersey.” She has been selected as a “Rising Star” by New Jersey Super Lawyers® and received the 2018 Leadership Award presented by the Multiple Sclerosis Association of America, a charity she has supported for more than a decade.

    Dehnhard received her J.D. from New York Law School in 2009, and her B.A./M.A. in Psychology from the College of St. Elizabeth in 1999. Before entering private practice, Dehnhard clerked for the Honorable Rosemary E. Ramsay, J.S.C., in Morris County Superior Court, Family Part and Civil Part. While in law school, she interned for the Honorable Michael Ambrecht, J.S.C., in the Supreme Court, Criminal Part, Manhattan, and the Honorable Raymond T. Lyons, United States Bankruptcy Judge for the District of New Jersey.

    Siegel, based in the firm’s Montclair office, concentrates her practice on elder law, focusing on representing seniors, individuals with special needs, and their families in connection with life care planning, public benefits, trust and estate planning, and long-term care advocacy. As one of the few Certified Elder Law Attorneys (CELA) in northern New Jersey to be certified by the National Elder Law Foundation (NELF), Shana has extensive experience in probate and estate administration, asset preservation, supplemental and special needs trusts, planning for disability, guardianship and estate litigation, resident rights, health care decision making, Medicare, Medicaid, and health insurance appeals.

    Prior to joining Norris McLaughlin, Siegel was with WanderPolo & Siegel for over 10 years, five of which were as principal.  She has been involved in health and long-term care issues for over 25 years, recently named a 2019 Essex County Top Lawyer in Elder Law by Morris/Essex Health & Life.

    Siegel is a member of the New Jersey Women Lawyers Association, the State Bar Elder Law Section, and the Life Care Planning Law Firms Association.  She is a past president of the New Jersey Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA), where she regularly met with legislators and government officials on behalf of the Elder Law Bar and their clients. In 2015, she was invited to join NAELA’s prestigious Council of Advanced Practitioners (CAP).

    Siegel earned her J.D. from Georgetown University, with honors, in 1994 and her B.A. from Barnard College, with honors, in 1989.

    Posted in: Elder Care & Special Needs Law, Karolina A. Dehnhard, Matrimonial & Family Law, News, Shana Siegel | Tags: , , , , , , ,

  • Jun 25, 2019Norris McLaughlin Achieves Global Cybersecurity Standard

    Norris McLaughlin, P.A., a Bridgewater-based law firm, today announced that it has successfully reached the international cybersecurity standards for law firms set by Meritas, the global alliance of independent business law firms. Norris McLaughlin is a member of Meritas and, in order to retain membership in good standing, is required to self-report their compliance with the Meritas Cybersecurity Standards for keeping client data and information secure.

    The standards define 10 essential cybersecurity requirements that the 182 Meritas member firms and future members of the organization are expected to meet. As part of the process, Norris McLaughlin completed an assessment of cybersecurity best practices and readiness to take its practices to the next level, implemented cybersecurity enhancements in key areas to respond to ever-changing online risks, and underwent a compliance review against the Meritas standards. To successfully meet the standards, Norris McLaughlin has information security, risk assessments, technical and physical safeguards, employee training, third-party risk management, and business continuity plans in place, along with a breach response process. As part of its Meritas membership renewal, Norris McLaughlin will regularly complete a cybersecurity assessment to maintain its level of security for safeguarding information.

    “It’s important to proactively incorporate best practices, especially when it comes to cybersecurity, which is the paramount concern of people and companies when they generate sensitive legal information,” said John N. Vanarthos, Chairman of the firm. “We work with our Meritas partner firms across the world on behalf of clients who have needs in other regions. Having a global quality benchmark is important in maintaining the highest levels of consistency.”

    Meritas is the only law firm alliance with an established and comprehensive means of monitoring the quality of its member firms—a process that saves clients time validating law firm credentials and experience. Meritas membership is selective and by invitation only. Meritas has published more information on how a law firm keeps information secure.

    About Norris McLaughlin

    Once a humble two-man practice, Norris McLaughlin has remained a firm committed to client service, their communities, and their employees – from two attorneys to 125 attorneys. The firm has been named a Best Place to Work. Many of its attorneys hold prominent leadership positions in various organizations throughout the areas they serve and many have been honored for the work they do in the community.

    The firm is a full-service, mid-sized, regional law firm that serves the legal needs of businesses and families in the New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania areas, and is uniquely positioned to represent middle-market companies, Fortune 500 corporations, and individuals.

    About Meritas

    Founded in 1990, Meritas is an international alliance of commercial law firms working across jurisdictions to provide clients the best of both worlds: a local legal partner with full-service capabilities and the cost efficiency and personal attention unmatched by mega law firms. Each member law firm is required to adhere to rigorous and specific service standards on a regular basis. Headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Meritas has member firms in 245 global markets totaling more than 7,000 lawyers. To find a Meritas law firm or for more information, visit or call +1-612-339-8680.

    Posted in: John N. Vanarthos, News | Tags: , , , , ,

  • May 31, 2019Norris McLaughlin Celebrates 10th Anniversary of Merger

    The law firm of Norris McLaughlin, P.A., is celebrating its 10th anniversary of merging with Tallman Hudders & Sorrentino, the largest independent commercial firm in the Lehigh Valley, tracing its roots there over 100 years. The two firms merged on June 1, 2009, to expand their services and footprint, responding to the changing needs of the firm’s clients and business community. At the time, Norris McLaughlin was home to two offices in New Jersey and New York.

    Since the merger, the firm has outperformed itself on a year-over-year basis and has continued to expand with the opening of new offices in Easton and Pennsburg, Pennsylvania, and satellite offices in Short Hills and Montclair, New Jersey. The New York office is also planning to relocate to the heart of Times Square early next year.

    “In 2009, both firms were in the midst of a strategic planning process to address the increasingly sophisticated legal needs of their clients and found exactly what they were looking for in each other. Now, a decade later, we look back on the wisdom of that decision and we celebrate the success we have achieved together as a stronger, fully integrated organization” said John N. Vanarthos, Chairman of the firm. “Yet, the success which we have achieved through the hard work and dedication of our talented attorneys and staff over the last ten years is really just a first step. We feel the best is yet to come.”

    Once a humble two-man practice, Norris McLaughlin has remained a firm committed to client service, their communities, and their employees – from two attorneys to 125 attorneys. The firm has been named a Best Place to Work in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, and many of their attorneys have held prominent leadership positions in various organizations throughout the areas they serve, and many of them have been honored for the work they do in the community.

    The firm is a full-service, mid-sized, regional law firm that serves the legal needs of businesses and families in the New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York areas, and is uniquely positioned to represent middle-market companies, Fortune 500 corporations, and individuals.

    Posted in: News | Tags:

  • May 17, 2019Norris McLaughlin Opens Easton Office

    The law firm Norris McLaughlin, P.A., is pleased to announce it has expanded into Easton, Pennsylvania, with an office located at 205 South Seventh Street. The office boasts a convenient location across from the Easton Courthouse.

    This location will also be home to the firm’s title service, ABE Settlement Services, LLC. ABE offers a full range of title and settlement services delivered by highly experienced and knowledgeable professionals, skilled in handling all aspects of residential and commercial real estate and mortgage lending.

    “The opening of our new office in Easton, where many of our clients reside and do business, is a direct reflection of the firm’s continued growth, and allows us the opportunity to efficiently serve our clients throughout the Lehigh Valley,” said John N. Vanarthos, Chairman of the firm.

    Norris McLaughlin is a full-service, mid-sized, regional law firm that serves the legal needs of businesses and families in the New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania areas, uniquely positioned to represent middle-market companies, Fortune 500 corporations, and individuals since 1953.

    Posted in: Business Law, John N. Vanarthos, News | Tags: , , , , , , ,