Stephen James Murphy

Stephen James Murphy

Trial Attorney at Block O'Toole & Murphy
  • Construction Law, Personal Injury
  • New Jersey, New York
Claimed Lawyer Profile

Stephen J. Murphy joined the firm Block & O'Toole in early 2005 after a successful and rewarding career as a homicide prosecutor working in the Brooklyn District Attorney's Office under Charles J. Hynes. Mr. Murphy is a lawyer that is best known for his work in the courtroom, now focusing on serious construction accidents and catastrophic personal injury trial work. Mr. Murphy handles a wide range of cases including labor law and construction accidents, wrongful death, premises liability, tractor trailer collisions, medical malpractice and motor vehicle cases. Mr. Murphy was recently featured on Fox News Radio as one of "America's Premier Trial Lawyers" and has been named a "New York Super Lawyer" recognizing him as one of the top 5% of lawyers practicing in his field.

With just six years in civil practice, Mr. Murphy already has an extremely impressive body of work, regularly returning verdicts and settlements in excess of a million dollars. Mr. Murphy is an attorney that members of the bar frequently consult with on trial matters and refer their most significant cases to. Mr. Murphy, along with his colleague Daniel O'Toole, persuaded a Suffolk County jury to return a record-setting verdict of $32,756,156 on behalf of a 60 year-old man in a traumatic brain injury case. The verdict, covered extensively by the local media, is the largest negligence verdict ever in Long Island and was featured in a cable television documentary entitled "The Good Samaritan." In addition, the result was also recognized by the New York Law Journal as the second highest negligence verdict in New York State for 2007 and one of the top 100 verdicts in 2007 for the entire United States. Recently, Mr. Murphy and his colleague David Scher, successfully negotiated a $5,500,000 settlement for an injured electrician that sustained a traumatic brain injury after falling from an extension ladder. In 2008, Mr. Murphy also successfully negotiated a $15,500,000 settlement on behalf of an injured client. In recognition of his achievements, he was named a partner in July 2008 and the firm name was then changed to Block O'Toole & Murphy. Recently, Mr. Murphy has been published in The New York Law Journal in a column concerning construction accident cases.

Mr. Murphy began his legal career working as an Assistant District Attorney. He honed his skills in the criminal courtrooms in Brooklyn, prosecuting violent crimes. Mr. Murphy earned a reputation from the judiciary and his colleagues as a tough, but fair, prosecutor. In early 2002, District Attorney Hynes appointed Mr. Murphy to his elite Homicide Bureau. Mr. Murphy, the youngest member of Brooklyn's Homicide Bureau at the time, successfully handled several high profile cases, including double and triple murders, arson homicides, gang murders and brutal murders of innocent children.

In July 2003, Mr. Murphy traveled to Sarajevo on behalf of the United States Justice Department to assist in the implementation of a new justice system in post-war Bosnia & Herzegovina. While there, Mr. Murphy, and two Federal District Court judges from California, were responsible for trial advocacy training for the newly appointed attorneys and judges in the region.

Mr. Murphy is an adjunct professor of law at the St. John's University School of law. He teaches trial advocacy and lectures on criminal and civil trial practice and evidence. Mr. Murphy also serves as an instructor for their nationally regarded trial advocacy program. His students have won national championships in trial competitions in five of the last seven years.

In 2011, Mr. Murphy was appointed to the New York County Democratic Judicial Screening Panel. Mr. Murphy has also appeared on Court TV, Fox Radio and Sirius/XM Satellite Radio as a guest host offering expert legal commentary.

Mr. Murphy is a proud member of the St. Jude Children's Hospital fundraising team. He also is a dedicated supporter of the Frances Pope Memorial Foundation, an important charity that assists families with a child that has been diagnosed with a pediatric disease such as leukemia and cancer. Mr. Murphy was a recipient of the "2010 Man of the Year Award" by The Frances Pope Memorial Foundation for his efforts on behalf of children with cancer.


Recent Results:

$32,756,156 Jury Verdict in Suffolk County for a 60 year-old man that sustained a traumatic brain injury.
$15,500,000 Settlement for an injured client in a pedestrian knockdown case
$5,500,000 Settlement just before jury selection for an injured electrician that sustained a traumatic brain injury after falling from an extension ladder.
$3,231,000 Settlement against a Bronx slumlord on behalf of an infant that was burned with hot water while bathing in her home.
$3,100,000 for a plumber that sustained spine injuries while working in a trench at a construction site.
$2,750,000 Settlement for a 57 Year-Old female pedestrian that sustained a neck injury after being struck by a van.
$2,250,000 Settlement just before trial for an injured coca-cola worker that sustained a back injury while making a delivery at a prominent French restaurant.
$2,200,000 Settlement just before trial for an injured sanitation worker that sustained a fractured leg while working that required surgery and a skin graft.
$2,005,000 Settlement in a "reckless disregard" case against an ambulance company.
$2,000,000 Settlement in a case against The City of New York for a client that required spine surgery.
$1,941,000 Jury Verdict in a spine surgery case in Kings County.
$1,823,000 Jury Verdict in a non-surgical disc bulge case in Kings County. His client, a surgeon, missed a total of one day of work.
$1,750,000 Settlement for a Suffolk County woman that sustained a back injury in an accident with a bus.
$1,650,000 Settlement for a family in a wrongful death action due to the negligence of a building owner in a deadly fire.
$1,500,000 Settlement in a case against The City of New York for a 57 Year-Old woman that sustained back and leg injuries after being knocked down by an unmarked police car while crossing the street.
$1,500,000 Settlement for a Bronx man that fell down a flight of stairs sustaining neck and back injuries.
$1,475,000 Settlement for a hospital employee that was injured on the job.
$1,450,000 and $924,000 Settlements in two concurrent causation cases in Queens County.
$1,400,000 Settlement in Queens just before summations for an injured carpenter that lost the tips of his fingers in a construction accident.
$1,350,000 Settlement before trial on a trucking accident in Queens County.
$1,350,000 Settlement for a Construction Laborer that had two tips of his fingers from his dominant hand amputated in a construction site accident.
$1,350,000 Settlement on the eve of trial for a construction laborer that fell off a roof, fracturing his arm and a bone in his pelvis. The trial was venued in Rockland County.
$1,325,000 Settlement just before trial for a carpenter at a construction project who fell from a ladder that was on top of a rolling scaffold, sustaining lower back and knee injuries.
$1,250,000 Settlement just before summations in a Bronx trial on behalf of a bicycle messenger that sustained leg and knee injuries in an accident.
$1,220,000 Settlement for a truck driver that sustained an elbow injury and aggravated a long-standing back injury just before trial in a Nassau County tractor trailer accident.
$1,200,000 Settlement for a laborer that lost the tips of four toes in a construction site accident.
$1,200,000 for a 54 Year-Old female in Nassau County that exacerbated neck and back injuries requiring surgery.
$1,200,000 for a 50 Year-Old female that aggravated a prior neck injury in an auto accident.
$1,175,000 Settlement on the eve of trial for a woman with long standing and preexisting cervical herniations. The victim was struck by unsafely stacked products in a large supermarket.
$1,150,000 Settlement for a laborer that sustained a facial laceration while working with an unsafe saw.
$1,000,000 Settlement for a Suffolk County female that underwent a neck surgery after a motor vehicle accident.
$1,000,000 Settlement following a Jury Verdict in the Bronx for a 14 year-old that had arthroscopic knee surgery after an accident.
$1,000,000 Settlement (the entire insurance policy) for a 36 year-old man that sustained lung damage during a fire that took place in his apartment. The suit was brought against the landlord for illegally removing the fire escape 4 months before the fire occurred.

Mr. Murphy is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University, where he played varsity football. He then went on to attend the St. John's University School of law where he graduated magna cum laude in 1997. He was ranked in the top 3% of his class and received several academic honors.


Member of the Board of Directors, New York State Trial Lawyers Association
Past Co-Chairman, New York State Trial Lawyers Association Partnership for Justice
President of the Brooklyn Manhattan Trial Lawyers Association
Member, The Brehon Society
Panelist, New York County Democratic Judicial Screening Panel
Bar Admissions

New York State
Eastern District of New York (Federal Court)
Southern District of New York (Federal Court)
New Jersey

Practice Areas
  • Construction Law
  • Personal Injury
  • Free Consultation
  • Contingent Fees
Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
New Jersey
New York
Federal Circuit
Professional Experience
Block O'Toole & Murphy
- Current
Adjunct Professor of Law
St. John's University School of Law
- Current
Associate/Trial Attorney
Block & O'Toole
Senior Homicide Prosecutor
Kings County District Attorney's Office
St. John's University School of Law
J.D. / Law (1997)
Honors: Graduated with Honors Magna Cum Laude
Johns Hopkins University
B.A. / Political Science
Man of the Year
Frances Pope Memorial Foundation
Professional Associations
New York County Democratic Judicial Screening Committee
- Current
New York State Trial Lawyer's Association
Board of Director
- Current
The Brehon Law Society
- Current
Manhattan Trial Lawyer's Association
- Current
New York State Bar # 2860583
- Current
Websites & Blogs
Contact & Map
1 Penn Plaza
Suite 5315
New York, NY 10119
Telephone: (212) 736-5300