Queens Criminal Defense Attorney

It is no coincidence that the office of Stephan Jacob Siegel is located in Kew Gardens, New York directly across the street from the Queens Criminal Courts Building: that is where he has spent most of his professional life protecting the rights of those accused of committing crimes. Click here to view our law blog.

Profile of Attorney Stephan Jacob Siegel, Esq.

I am a criminal defense lawyer practicing in the criminal courts of Queens County and throughout the New York City metropolitan area for more than thirty years.

My first exposure to the Criminal Justice System came working as a summer intern in the offices of the District Attorneys of Queens County and New York County District. Those two summers provided me with an incredible exposure to criminal law. The experiences also taught me that there were limitations as a prosecutor that I was not comfortable with. Accordingly, when I graduated law school I went to work for the Criminal Defense Division of the New York City Legal Aid Society. There, I had the opportunity of handling more than 5,000 criminal matters and trying several hundred cases including about one hundred jury trials. After about five years, I left the Legal Aid Society in 1982 and started my own practice as a single practitioner. In private practice, I have personally handled all aspects of the preparation, investigation, settlement and trial of more than 5,000 matters. While the vast majority of my cases have always been criminal defense matters, I enjoy exposing myself to numerous other areas and have tried a diverse range of cases including: administrative law; common law marriage; copyright infringement; commercial, construction, contract, estate and real property disputes; professional disciplinary matters; and social security disability matters.

Being arrested is one of the most horrible experiences in the world. Your goal is to minimize the direct and collateral consequences of that arrest. To do so, you must choose the lawyer who will put forth the best and strongest defense possible with respect to the facts and circumstances of your case. To help you choose the right lawyer, I must tell you a little bit about the way I view criminal defense and why my background and experience may be what you need to obtain the best possible result. If you hire me, I promise that I will do everything possible to alleviate your suffering while I work tirelessly to obtain the most favorable conclusion to your case. While no lawyer can transform the horror of being a criminal defendant into a pleasant experience, I try as much as possible to reduce your discomfort while I focus on obtaining the best result possible. The lawyer you hire must have extensive experience defending other individuals facing the same charges that you are facing. I have handled more than 10,000 criminal matters and I have litigated at least 1,700 trials in the various professional and pro-bono capacities in which I serve. As your attorney, I will be personally responsible for all aspects of the preparation, investigation and disposition of your case through either trial or plea negotiation. Whether you decide to pursue an acquittal after trial or a negotiated plea, I will do everything possible to guarantee your getting the best result possible.
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Queens Criminal Defense Attorney

Legal Experience

My first legal experience was working in the district attorneys’ offices in Queens and Manhattan during my first two summers of law school. After law school, I gained priceless experience as a staff attorney for the Queens Criminal Defense Division of the Legal Aid Society. There, I was exposed to virtually every crime prosecutable under the various criminal statutes of New York State. I started my own practice in 1982 where the majority of my practice has always been devoted to representing clients charged with criminal offenses. As an attorney, I am proud that I have continuously built and maintained a reputation of dedication, expertise and integrity for more than one-third of a century. I continuously attend continuing legal education courses over and above what is legally mandated so that I can provide the best representation possible.

Criminal Law

Without any reservations, I can truly state that I have extensive experience in every aspect of criminal law including murder, arson, assault, burglary, child pornography, computer crime, battery, drug possession, manufacture, distribution & trafficking, extortion, fraud, intentional and involuntary manslaughter and homicide, internet crime, juvenile offenses, kidnapping, larceny, rape, robbery, sex crimes, shaken baby syndrome, violent crimes of every description and white collar matters including Medicare and Medicaid fraud, embezzlement, racketeering and Ponzi/Madoff schemes.

Criminal Defense Lawyer

Criminal Law Certification

While any lawyer with a license can try any case, most lawyers do not have any special certifications in criminal law. While New York law does not bestow attorney specializations, the New York State County Law mandates that lawyers obtain and maintain special certifications to be authorized to provide indigent criminal defense representation. In addition, my being certified to provide indigent criminal defense with respect to felony and homicide matters, I am proud that I am one of the few lawyers in New York City to be County Law certified to try cases involving murder and post-prison confinement of sexually violent predators.

My pro-bono public work has complemented the work I do as an advocate for my clients. For more than five years, I have served the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York as a Certified Mediator. In the Queens Supreme Court, I have served as a Referee and Receiver for more than 18 years and more recently, as a Fee Dispute Arbitrator and a Grievance Mediator as well. I have been a Small Claims Court Arbitrator in the Queens Civil Court for more than 25 years. From 1984 to 1988, I worked part-time as a Counsel and Legislative Aide in the New York State Assembly, first for the Majority Leader and then for the Speaker of the Assembly. These public service positions have provided me with a more universal perspective than I might otherwise have been able to obtain by sticking exclusively to my work as a criminal defense lawyer.


Clients frequently like to structure their retainers in different fashions. To meet the needs of our clients, we are able to offer three basic types of retainers that I discuss with the client at the initial consultation. Those retainers are a Flat Rate Retainer, a Partial Retainer and an Hourly Retainer. All of these retainers comply with the rules of the Court regarding fees. In addition to each client receiving a written retainer, whether or not it is legally mandated, each client receives a court-mandated statement of client rights and responsibilities. The amount of the initial retainer is based upon the complexity of the matter and how much time is reasonably anticipated to be expended over the course of the specific term of the retainer that the client elects to sign.