641 Lexington Ave.
New York, NY 10022
|Phone: (212) 319-4000
Fax: (212) 753-4530
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Michael is the founding and managing principal of Hiller, PC. He has built a career on fighting for his clients against large institutions, multi-national corporations, and state and local governments. And he has enjoyed extraordinary success.
In 2010, Michael was named to the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, two of the most prestigious groups of trial lawyers in the United States. Membership to these organizations is limited to attorneys who have won million and multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements. Fewer than 1% of U.S. lawyers have been accepted as members.
Designated a Super Lawyer Every Year Since 2009
Michael has been named a Super Lawyer for the New York Metropolitan Area by Super Lawyers Magazine, a Thomson Reuters publication, every year since 2009. As reflected on its website, “Super Lawyers” is a listing of outstanding lawyers who have attained an extraordinary degree of peer recognition for their professional achievements. For selection as a Super Lawyer, Michael and his career were evaluated by a series of research panels and industry professionals. This recognition reflects the outstanding results Michael has obtained in each area of his practice over the course of his career.
Land-Use, Zoning and Preservation Lawyer
In land use, zoning, and preservation law, Michael has taken on many of New York’s most powerful developers and institutions in New York City. And he has beaten them. Some of Michael’s more notable accomplishments include:
- preventing construction of condominiums atop the historic Hopper-Gibson House, the last, intact shelter-point of the Underground Railroad in Manhattan;
- halting a Metropolitan Museum plan to expand further into Central Park;
- stopping the conversion of the landmark First Church of Christ, Scientist into luxury residences;
- blocking a plan to remove rare Carnegie-Steel book-stacks and millions of volumes of research materials from New York Public Library;
- preserving the last-of-its-kind, landmark tower clock at 346 Broadway; and
- obtaining the first ruling in New York that the Landmarks Preservation Commission is barred from permanently closing off interior landmarks from the public.
Michael also stopped multiple other construction projects based upon land-use, zoning, and environmental violations in Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx and Staten Island.
Michael Hiller to Receive Grassroots Preservation Award for 2017
In recognition of his achievements on behalf of community groups, neighborhoods, environmental organizations and preservationists, the Historic Districts Council has decided to confer Michael with the Grassroots Preservation Award for 2017.
The Largest Disability Insurance Verdict Ever
In the field of insurance law, Michael set the record in New York State in 2001 for the largest disability insurance verdict ever, and was the first lawyer in New York to obtain a verdict for bad faith denial of disability insurance benefits. In 2005, Michael pioneered the use of the RICO statute to prosecute claims for fraud and other misconduct by disability and other insurance carriers. Additional results include:
- A $1,190,000 settlement from Lloyds of London in the matter styled Green v. Combined Life Ins.
- A $850,000 settlement on behalf of a disabled policyholder in a RICO action;
- Obtained reinstatement of disability benefits in the amount of $20,000 per month for a man suffering from Alzheimer’s and Fronto-temporal Dementia;
- Required Standard Insurance to place a stock analyst, suffering from Meniere’s Disease, “on benefit,” resulting in monthly payments of more than $16,000 a month;
- Required a general liability insurance company to defend a woman in a personal injury lawsuit and to pay her attorney’s fees after wrongful disclaimer of coverage;
New York Commercial Litigation Lawyer
Michael has also enjoyed tremendous success in business and commercial litigation. He regularly handles cases involving breach of contract, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty and other business torts. But Michael is particularly well known among lawyers for handling business litigations commonly referred to as “business divorces.” His successes in this area include:
- Successful prosecution and settlement of a lawsuit arising out of the break-up of a software development business
- Successful prosecution and settlement of law-firm partner freeze out
- Successful prosecution and settlement of a shareholder litigation to prevent the sale of substantially all corporate assets
- Successful defense of a bad-faith litigation brought by a shareholder who attempted to leverage her position against her ex-husband in a custody dispute
Michael has also established himself as one of New York’s most impressive transactional lawyers. Among his many clients are the world’s largest nutrition and health coaching school, international apparel companies, and smaller businesses. Most recently, Michael represented a founding member of an up-and-coming news-gathering dot.com against his fellow shareholders who were attempting to exclude him and dilute his interests. Under circumstances that tracked those depicted in the film “The Social Network,” Michael prevented dilution, obtained his client’s reinstatement to his position as a founding shareholder and assisted in the company’s conversion to a C corporation in anticipation of a multi-million dollar private equity deal.
In addition to his work at Hiller, PC, Michael is:
- a Mediator for the New York State Supreme Court, Commercial Division
- an Arbitrator for the New York City Civil Court
- an Adjunct Professor of Law at John Jay College of Criminal Justice where he taught Criminal and Constitutional Law for eight years
Michael attended Union College (Schenectady, New York) where he graduated with Honors. A member of the Delphic Honor Society and the Dean’s List, Michael played wing forward for the College Rugby team and also served as Student Body President until he graduated in 1988. Following his graduation from Union, Michael attended American University, Washington College of Law (Washington, DC), where he graduated cum laude and was a member of the National Moot Court Team. While attending law school, Michael worked at night as a professional musician in clubs throughout Washington, DC, Virginia and Maryland.
Areas of Practice:
Litigation Mediation & Arbitration Insurance (Policyholders only) Business & Corporate Land-Use, Zoning and Environmental Litigation (Opposition Work Only) and Executive Compensation Law.
|New York, 1992
U.S. District Court Southern District of New York, 1993
U.S. District Court Eastern District of New York, 1993
New Jersey, 1999
U.S. Court of Appeals 2nd Circuit, 1999
|American University, Washington College of Law,
Juris Doctor Degree, cum laude (1991)
National Moot Court Team
Union College, Schenectady, NY USA,
B.A. History with High Honors and Distinction
Delphic Honor Society