Hon. Denis Butler See Rating Details

Supreme Court (Civil)
Queens County
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Attorney Average Rating:   2.1 - 20 rating(s)
Non-Attorney Average Rating:   1.0 - 2 rating(s)
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Only items marked with (*) are averaged into the displayed overall rating.


General Rating Criteria

* Temperament (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
* Scholarship (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
* Industriousness (1=Not at all industrious,10=Highly industrious)
* Ability to Handle Complex Litigation (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
* Punctuality (1=Chronically Late,10=Always on Time)
* General Ability to Handle Pre-Trial Matters (1=Not all Able, 10=Extremely Able)
* General Ability as a Trial Judge (1=Not all Able, 10=Extremely Able)
Flexibility In Scheduling (1=Completely Inflexible,10=Very Flexible)


Criminal Rating Criteria (if applicable)

* Evenhandedness in Criminal Litigation (1=Demonstrates Bias,10=Entirely Evenhanded)
General Inclination Regarding Bail (1=Pro-Defense,10=Pro-Government)
Involvement in Plea Discussions (1=Not at all Involved, 10=Very Involved)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases Pretrial Stage (1=Pro-prosecution,10=Pro-defense)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases Trial Stage (1=Pro-prosecution,10=Pro-defense)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases Sentencing Stage (1=Pro-prosecution,10=Pro-defense)


Civil Rating Criteria (if applicable)

* Evenhandedness in Civil Litigation (1=Not at all Evenhanded,10=Entirely Evenhanded)
Involvement in Settlement Discussions (1=Not at all Involved,10=Very Involved)
General Inclination (1=Pro-defendant, 10=Pro-plaintiff)
Comments




What others have said about Hon. Denis Butler


Comments


Criminal Defense Lawyer

Comment #: NY5223
Rating:Not Rated
Comments:
He is just a disgrace to the bench.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY5159
Rating:2.3
Comments:
I had a motion for summary judgment on a claim for a violation of Labor Law 240(1) denied where a client fell three stories from a scaffold collapse and sustained a compound femur fracture. Judge Butler denied the motion on the grounds that an issue of fact existed as to whether the plaintiff's accident was a gravity-related occurrence.

Court Staff

Comment #: NY5068
Rating:1.0
Comments:
Judge Denis Butler flies off the handle with regularity, and has a tendency to make patently untrue statements. He has claimed that he could be sued for decisions, and has told several lawyers that all law clerks are "on the take." He yells at his colleagues and staff, and sorely needs some practice in anger management. The only reason that Judge Butler has his job is because his father was a reasonable, well-respected member of the Democratic Party.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY4404
Rating:Not Rated
Comments:
He is ok for about 15 minutes. Then he loses it. I dread ever going in his part. His law secretary is a great guy. Deal with him whenever possible.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY3905
Rating:3.6
Comments:
He means well. He does care. The problem, however, and this a big ne, is his temper. He flies off the handle over nothing. He is very very reluctant to make a ruling. His courtroom staff and law clerk are terrific, but be very careful. when you are in front of him. Read his rules e second you are assigned, follow them, to the letter, know what you are talking about, do not bs him, give in when you know you are likely wrong or pushing the envelope...it will make a very tough situation much easier. Good luck! You will need it. Again, however, unlike many others in that building, he does care.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY3655
Rating:1.4
Comments:
his entire work experience was as law clerks to sitting judges. anyone who wants to be a trial level judge should be required to have some experience as a practicing lawyer first. you cannot learn and appreciate the pressure on a practitioner through osmosis.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY3431
Rating:1.0
Comments:
The fact that this man is a judge is a travesty. He spoke to me like he was a deity. This man is essentially a caricature of a dirty judge. He called me up to the bench on the premise that he didn't want to "embarrass" me and then proceeded to tell me that he knew opposing counsel well, that opposing counsel was an excellent man and attorney, and that he believed anything opposing counsel said and therefore so should I. Thanks for letting me know who's side you're on! Then he deferred judgment on my request to the Court...to opposing counsel. It was a sad and public display of judicial bias. Rude, arrogant, and openly biased - he should not be on the bench!

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY3314
Rating:2.0
Comments:
Justice Butler is fast on the track to be more notorious than Hart and Ritholtz combined. He is short on patience and quick on temper. He loves being a Judge and expects all the honors and courtesies that traditionally go with that but without returning any respect to the attorneys that grace his courtroom. He has no concern of attorneys time and often keeps attorneys unnecessary long in his court room. Sometimes he acts like he's your friend or he is doing you a favor, but more often then not you get stuck in his courtroom for hours; and if you dare leave, you will get a mouthful when you return.

Litigant

Comment #: NY3189
Rating:Not Rated
Comments:
OVER ALL A VERY BAD PERSON

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY3165
Rating:1.0
Comments:
A horrible human being. He acts like the whole world owes him. He ignors the law, do whatever he pleases on the bench. He is truely a disgrace to the Judicial system.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY2979
Rating:1.5
Comments:
An utter embarrassment to the bar and to the bench. Completely disrespectful to counsel and litigants. In one calendar call I saw him berate an attorney covering for another attorney due to a death in his family. Butler did not care and directed that the grieving attorney appear that morning. He wasted 10 minutes belittling an attorney who missed the first calendar call and another 15 minutes attacking a pro se for not using exhibit tabs in her papers (as per his rules).

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY2917
Rating:1.3
Comments:
This man is a disgrace to the practice of law. He is unashamedly biased, disrespectful and he bias and judgment is so skewed [redacted]. I am embarrassed that a man like this who disrespects counsel and defendants is actually on the bench. [redacted]

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY2674
Rating:1.0
Comments:
horrible all around

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY2319
Rating:1.0
Comments:
This Judge has a terrible demeanor which he uses to cover up his lack of knowledge of the law. He has no patience, treats attorneys with no respect, does not listen and even refused to go on the record when I asked him to make a record of an improper ruling he was going to make. He even refused to let me explain why he was wrong and basically threatened me. In one word, he is unfit.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY1866
Rating:1.0
Comments:
This guy is just bad news. He will belittle you, lie on the record about off the record conversation and go after you for no reason. The trick to dealing with this guy, I think, is to stand up to him and make sure you have a court reporter there at all times. He will threaten to make grievances and to do other nasty things to attorneys. Butler will back down when he is forced to. Brute force and an even temperament is what works with this guy.

He has no business being on the bench, and I wish OCA would do something about it. But this is the same OCA that let Justice Diane Lebedeff retire at a Supreme Court Justice's salary after her shameful ethical decisions that were made in New York Supreme.

Queens has some really great judges. Agate, Taylor, Elliot, Golia (both), Markey, Strauss, Siegel, to give you some examples.

This guy is an example of why we need a merit system for Supreme Court Justices.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY1547
Rating:1.8
Comments:
This Justice is not shy about expressing his own personal bias in the courtroom. He actually told one attorney that she should drop her case, because he knows the other attorney, and the attorney has been "voluntarily dismissing cases" if they "don't have a leg to stand on." Maybe the judge should look at the law laid out in the defendant's papers, before making such a determination. It seems like he would rather get rid of a case than rule on the merits, or bother knowing the law.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY1290
Rating:4.8
Comments:
This Justice's motion calendar is a disaster. We waited one day until 1:30 for a 9:30 calendar call and then we were told we could come back in an hour or the motion had to be adjourned. All this for a SJ motion that both sides agreed to have submitted for a decision. Basically wasted an entire day for nothing.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY1244
Rating:2.8
Comments:
He has the extremely strange procedure of accepting only the moving papers on motions. He actually reads them; the problem being that the movant gets to says anything he wants and to frame every issue. Belittles counsel who are operating in good faith. A terrible judge for a young lawyer.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY1208
Rating:2.3
Comments:
I appeared before this guy on a matter involving a Chinese defendant who demanded a translator.

On trial day, Butler instructed all counsel that we were on for trial and we were not to leave the courtroom. I went between the double exit doors to phone my office that I was proceeding to trial. Butler reprimanded me on the record at the start of the case for leaving the courtroom against his orders.

My client, the plaintiff, was upset that I was being reprimanded on his case.

Butler gave every advantage to the pro se Chinese defendant with translator. Butler delayed start of trial to allow the translator to arrive. When Butler learned during testimony from the defendant that he had a PhD in biology from a London based University and was fluent in English, Butler did not let up on giving advantages to the defendant.

Butler has no idea how to respond to objections practice.

When it was time to adjourn the trial, Butler refused to take into account my available dates. I had to hire substitute counsel to cover cases I otherwise would have been able to cover.

You want to practice in front of this?

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY621
Rating:1.3
Comments:
Without a doubt, this man is not fit to be on the bench. Mean, arrogant and stupid are the first words that come to mind. He should be arbitrating disputes in a biker bar, not a court of law.
He lies on the record about off-the-record discussions. He just makes stuff up. I was fortunate that my case settled for the policy limits after opening statement. Neither my opponent nor I wanted to litigate before this judge.

Court Staff

Comment #: NY619
Rating:1.0
Comments:
Many individuals have expressed to me that this judge is desperately in need of psychiatric help. I concur.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY375
Rating:9.0
Comments:
I've won in front of him and lost in front of him, but either way I've always gotten a fair deal. You win or lose based on the merits of your case. He is always impartial.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: NY137
Rating:1.0
Comments:
Insulting, disrespectful and belittiling to everyone who appears before him. A disgrace to the bench