Badge - Rated by Super Lawyers Victor A. Rotolo
Badge - Rated by Super Lawyers Anthony P. Kearns third
Badge - Million Dollar Advocates Forum
Badge - Multi Million Dollar Advocates Forums
Badge - New Jersey Supreme Court Certified Attorney
Badge - New Jersey's Best Lawyers For Families 2018
Badge - AV Preeminent Victor A. Rotolo 2024
Badge - Client Champion Gold 2024
Badge - Hunterdon County Chamber of Commerce
Badge - Top 100 The National Trial Lawyers
Please click Award & Selection Criteria & Methodology for information regarding the specific criteria used for selection of each of the above awards.

Criminal vs. Civil

The attorneys at Kearns Rotolo Law handle both civil matters and criminal matters. Anthony Kearns and Victor Rotolo are experienced trial attorneys prepared to provide you with legal counsel from the moment you are charged through trial, if necessary. Whether dealing with minor criminal offenses or more serious criminal charges, Messrs. Kearns, Rotolo and the other attorneys at Kearns Rotolo Law will provide the representation you need to protect your rights.

Anthony P. Kearns, III, Former Two-Term Hunterdon County Prosecutor

Anthony Kearns has experience working on both sides of the criminal justice systems and has garnered statewide recognition as a criminal defense attorney. He is the only Hunterdon County prosecutor to date to have been appointed to that position for two terms, giving him the distinction of being Hunterdon County’s longest serving prosecutor. This experience afforded Mr. Kearns unique insight into how the State prepares and prosecutes criminal cases, which he now uses to mount skilled and powerful defense of the charges against his clients.

Mr. Kearns was chosen for membership to the National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Trial Lawyers in 2024, an invitation-only professional organization composed of the premier trial lawyers from each state or region who meet precise qualifications as civil plaintiff and/or criminal defense trial lawyers.

Victor A. Rotolo, Trial Attorney with More Than Four Decades of Experience

Victor Rotolo, a former officer with the Elizabeth, NJ Police Department, has 40-plus years’ experience as a practicing trial attorney in the State of New Jersey. During this time, he has represented thousands of clients in all stages of litigation throughout the courts of New Jersey and has successfully argued cases before the New Jersey Supreme Court as well.

New Jersey Super Lawyers List

Super Lawyers BadgeAnthony P. Kearns and Victor A. Rotolo have been included on the List of New Jersey Super Lawyers for 2024. Mr. Rotolo has been included on this list since 2006 marking this his nineteenth consecutive year of inclusion. This is Mr. Kearns first year of selection. The list of New Jersey Super Lawyers is generated by the Thomson Reuters organization which employs the following methodology and set of standards to compile the list each year. Super Lawyers Selection Methodology [No aspect of this advertisement has been approved by the Supreme Court.]

Martindale-Hubbell Rating

AV Preeminent BadgeBoth Anthony P. Kearns and Victor A. Rotolo have achieved the highest rating of “AV” by Martindale-Hubbell, the oldest nationally recognized legal reference company in the country. Martindale-Hubbell employs the following methodology and set standards to determine ratings. Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings Methodology[No aspect of the advertisement has been approved by the Supreme Court.]

Certified Civil Trial Attorney

Certified Civil Trial Attorney BadgeVictor A. Rotolo is certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as a Civil Trial Attorney.

"A certified attorney is more than just an attorney who specializes in a particular area of law. A New Jersey attorney who is certified by the Supreme Court as a civil trial attorney must have:

  • been a member in good standing of the New Jersey bar for over 5 years
  • demonstrated a substantial level of experience in civil trial law
  • been favorably evaluated by other attorneys and judges familiar with his or her work
  • taken and passed a written examination in civil trial law."

Source: Supreme Court of New Jersey, Board on Attorney Certification, Brochure on Certified Civil Trial Attorney. See Rule 1:39: Specialty Certification of Attorneys.

Civil versus Criminal – Understanding the Differences

While we deal with these different types of cases on a daily basis, we realize that quite often our clients may not understand the differences between a civil matter versus a criminal matter. Below we provide a brief explanation of some of the key differences between a civil and criminal matter which may be useful. If, after reading the information you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact our law office to speak with one of our attorneys

A harmful act committed against our society is referred to as a crime and falls under the jurisdiction of the Criminal Justice System. Criminal offenses are accusations of a crime against our society in general and as a whole. In contrast, civil cases mainly involve disputes between people or entities (i.e., a corporation).

There are other key differences between a criminal and civil case. Some key differences noted are as follows:

Commencement: A civil case begins with a claim by a plaintiff (a person or entity such as a corporation or the government) against a defendant (the person failing to carry out a legal duty owed to the plaintiff).Commencement: A criminal case begins when the harmful act is committed. A victim of a criminal act is not responsible for initiating a case against the accused. The government, either federal or state, will prosecute an accused criminal.
Parties: There is a plaintiff(s) and defendant(s) which are also referred to as ‘parties’ or ‘litigants.’Parties: The government prosecutes the case through the United States Attorney's Office (federal crimes) or the New Jersey’s attorney's office (state crimes).
Outcome: Courts order the defendant to fulfill a duty or to make compensation for harm done or possibly both.Outcome: A person that is found guilty of committing a crime receives a sentence, and the sentence may be in the form of
  1. a monetary fine or restitution to the victim ordered by the courts, and/or
  2. loss of liberty or supervision.
Purpose: The purpose of civilian law is to make sure that rights under the Constitution or under Federal or State Law are protected.Purpose: The purposes of criminal law are to protect and to serve.
  • to express public morality (when the public decides the law by what is right or wrong depending on the community)
  • to teach sociable boundaries (when the criminal is punished to be taught a lesson)
Attorneys Fees: Each party pays directly for his/her attorney fees although sometimes the payment of legal fees is included in the Court’s rulingAttorneys Fees: Our Federal and State taxes pay for the prosecuting attorney’s salary (and the entire office); most times the accused pays for his/her legal fees, however, a court-appointed attorney is used when the accused cannot pay legal fees
Examples: contract disputes between parties, sexual harassment suits, accidents.Examples: murder, assault, rape, sexual abuse, theft, robbery, burglary, fraud.

If you or a loved one is accused of committing a crime, call the experienced attorneys at Kearns Rotolo Law. Messrs. Kearns and Rotolo and their team work to defend you regarding the criminal charges you may be facing.

Call Kearns Rotolo Law today - (908) 534-7900.

Victor Rotolo successfully argues before the NJ Supreme Court in a case of constitutional import, in which the Court ruled that a DUI conviction cannot be used in any later DUI case for sentencing purposes if, (1) the individual plead or was found guilty, and (2) the individual was not advised of his/her right to counsel and, as to indigent individuals, the right to assigned counsel.

What Our Clients are Saying

I was very proud to be represented by Tony and felt secure at a time I needed a compass to head out of a difficult bind. Confidence in your counsel and a sense of security in understanding how best to proceed are important reasons to consider Anthony Kearns and his team of outstanding lawyers.

- Lynn

Tony was excellent! He was knowledgeable, responsive and on-time. His experience as a County Prosecutor definitely helped our case as he knows how the legal system works and how to navigate. I highly recommend Tony and his office.

- Matt

Thankfully I found Kearns Rotolo Law and I had a wonderful experience working with Charles Rifici on a difficult divorce/child custody issue. I am so grateful for all the work and guidance he provided. He always took his time and diligently went through all my options with me so I could make the decisions that benefitted my family and I. I will be forever thankful for the top notch services he provided.

- Cinthya

In March of 2022 I contacted Kearns Rotolo Law Firm with an urgent problem, Mr. Kearns and Mr. Rotolo contacted me immediately to give me hope as to rectify my problem. The end result was Mr Kearns was able to solve my issue through extreme professionalism, I am very grateful I found Kearns Rotolo Law firm and I would recommend their law firm to anyone that has a less extreme problem or a more complex problem, I am very grateful for their services.

- Bill

I met with Mr. Kearns yesterday about a devastating situation affecting our family. Mr. Kearns and his entire staff made us feel extremely comfortable and showed our family a compassionate side that gave us comfort in the most uncomfortable of situations. Thank you very much. God Bless.

- Christian