Joseph W. Grather

“I like trial practice and, in particular, eminent domain valuation practice because it takes me to different parts of the State and allows me to meet a wide variety of property owners, all the while allowing me to fight the good fight in the court arena.”

Joseph Grather works diligently and knowledgeably to win favorable results for his clients, defending them against the most awesome power of government-the power of eminent domain. He successfully manages the difficult and time-consuming process clients face in eminent domain cases, communicating clearly and frequently and allowing the client to focus on their business and other pursuits.

A former Seton Hall Law School adjunct professor, Mr. Grather publishes articles on eminent domain and other issues, and has participated in a number of reported eminent domain cases.

Representative Cases »

In a Department of Transportation [DOT] total taking of automobile service garage business, Mr. Grather assisted the client from the beginning of the case, which involved a complicated relocation, and ultimately helped win a jury verdict award of $1.2 million, more than doubling the State’s initial offer.

In a DOT partial taking of a property improved with highway strip center, DOT replaced twelve front parking spaces with twelve rear parking spaces, and argued that was a total cure of any damages. However, Mr. Grather helped demonstrate otherwise, and the jury awarded his client over $200,000 for the inferior rear parking.

Mr. Grather has successfully defended clients against attempts by municipalities to declare their properties “blighted” and taken by condemnation in behalf of politically-connected redevelopers. He has recently been involved in challenges to blight designations in towns such as Newark, South Brunswick, Cranford and Woodbridge.

Bar Admission »
  • New Jersey, 1999
  • U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey, 2003
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 2003
Professional Involvment »
  • Appointed by the New Jersey Supreme Court to be a member of the District XA Ethics Committee (2010 – present)
  • New Jersey State Bar Association, Member
  • Morris County Bar Association, Member
Noteworthy »
  • Law Clerk, Hon. Virginia A. Long, Presiding Judge, Appellate Division, Superior Court of New Jersey, 1998-1999
  • Selected for inclusion on the New Jersey Super Lawyers list published by Thomson Reuters in the field of eminent domain law
Reported Opinions »

Mr. Grather has played a key role in a number of reported cases including:

  • Township of Piscataway v. South Washington Ave., LLC, 400 N.J. Super. 358 (App. Div. 2008)
  • City of Asbury Park v. Asbury Towers, 388 N.J. Super. 1 (App. Div. 2006)
  • Infinity Broadcast Corp. v. NJ Meadowlands Commission, 377 N.J. Super. 209 (App. Div. 2005);
  • New York SMSA v. Board of Adjustment Township of Weehawken, 370 N.J. Super. 319 (App. Div. 2004);
  • DGR Company v. State, Department of Treasury, 361 N.J. Super. 467 (App. Div. 2003).
Publications »

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