Ethan A. Levin-Epstein (ret.)

Retired Partner

ethan levin-epstein 2020


After practicing law for over 50 years, Ethan Levin-Epstein retired on March 31, 2023. He would have celebrated his 32nd anniversary with Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti in May 2023. He remains a close friend of the firm and can be contacted through our office.

Ethan was an accomplished Federal and State criminal lawyer who tried over 30 jury trials to verdict for the prosecution and the defense. He was designated a Super Lawyer and listed since 1999 in the attorney peer-reviewed publication Best Lawyers in America in the categories of criminal law, white-collar criminal defense, and the representation of individuals in discrimination and employment cases.

Before joining Garrison, Levin-Epstein in 1991, Ethan spent 14 years as a federal and state prosecutor, culminating in his appointment as First Assistant United States Attorney in the District of Connecticut. Before that, he served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Eastern District of New York (in Brooklyn) and as an Assistant District Attorney in the Rackets Bureau of the New York District Attorney’s Office (in Manhattan). He also served as a Legal Advisor to the Police Commissioner of the New York City Police Department.

In the criminal defense arena, Ethan successfully tried cases and negotiated favorable dispositions for his clients in federal and state cases, resulting in outright declinations of criminal prosecution or agreements by prosecutors to defer criminal prosecution. In addition, he represented clients who were targets, subjects, and witnesses in federal grand jury and state investigations into such diverse allegations as mail and wire fraud, securities fraud, antitrust violations, health care fraud, tax fraud, money laundering, bribery, violation of the Hobbs Act (extortion under color of official right), Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO), false statements, perjury, obstruction of justice, violation of foreign export statutes, and conspiracy to commit these and numerous other offenses.

In his extensive work on behalf of employees, Ethan successfully negotiated numerous settlements for clients with claims for wrongful discharge; discrimination based on age, gender, pregnancy, disability and perceived disability, and sexual orientation; sexual harassment; and benefits under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). He also successfully prosecuted arbitrations for breach of employment contracts.

Ethan’s experience in criminal law enhanced his ability to effectively represent individuals in their employment matters. Given the potential overlap between the two fields, especially where clients faced situations that implicated both, Ethan’s dual experience proved invaluable.

Ethan served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at the Brooklyn and University of Bridgeport (now Quinnipiac) Law Schools, where he taught advanced courses in Trial Advocacy and Federal Criminal Jurisprudence. He was a Visiting Lecturer of Constitutional Law at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs and was a frequent speaker at professional and government-sponsored seminars and in-service training programs. Ethan was a featured speaker and presenter at the National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA) Annual Conventions, the American Bar Association’s Section of Labor and Employment Law, and the F.B.I. Academy at Quantico, Virginia.

Ethan was a member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL), the Connecticut Criminal Defense Lawyers Association (CCDLA), the Federal Bar Council (on which he served as a Trustee), and the Connecticut Bar Association, in which he served as Co-Chair of its Federal Practice Section. He also served as Chair of the Section’s Criminal Practice Sub-Committee and as a Member of the CBA’s Criminal Practice Section, the National Employment Lawyers Association, and the Connecticut Employment Lawyers Association.

Ethan was admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and the U.S. District Courts in the District of Connecticut, the Eastern and Southern Districts of New York, and the Northern District of Florida. He was a member of the Bar of the States of Connecticut and New York and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Ethan is proud to say his most fulfilling achievements include his years at the Garrison Firm, where clients and colleagues alike were treated with respect, empathy, and personal attention rarely seen elsewhere. Although he now enjoys more time with his family – including his wife of 45 years, Susan, and their four grandchildren – and playing at tennis, he misses being in the office every day.

Representative Matters

  • United States v. Ern Len
    In this ten-week multi-defendant money laundering and conspiracy criminal jury trial, Ethan was successful in obtaining an acquittal for his client.
  • United States v. Lundwall
    An executive of a Fortune 50 corporation was charged with obstruction of justice and conspiracy to obstruct justice for allegedly destroying and concealing documents that pertained to a private race discrimination case against the company. It was reportedly the first time this theory had been used to prosecute for criminal obstruction of justice. Ethan was successful in obtaining an acquittal for his client. The case received extensive media coverage, including in the New York Times.
  • Nano v. Competitive Technologies, Inc.
    In this complex labor arbitration, which took over a year to litigate, Ethan successfully obtained and confirmed a judgment in excess of $750,000 for his client, the former CEO of a medical technology company.

Client Experiences

I highly recommend working with Ethan Levin-Epstein. His professionalism is remarkable along with his knowledge of the law. He was very detail oriented, explained the process clearly, and he resolved our situation confidently and proactively. — A.K. North Granby, CT

I would like to highly recommend the services of Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald and Pirrotti, P.C., especially Ethan Levin-Epstein. After more than twenty-five years of exemplary teaching, I was accused of Title IX infractions by an irate student. Seriously affected by the pandemic and stressed by her personal situation, she chose to lash out, and I was the victim. Ethan offered me the legal advice and direction I required to prevail, all while providing me with the counsel and emotional support I desperately needed during this trying time. While I knew I was innocent, proving it when falsely accused turned out to be a lengthy and harrowing task. When reviewing the events, Ethan was quick to zero in on the aspects that would eventually unravel the student’s misrepresentations. During the hearing, he systematically challenged the various witness statements, eventually exposing the truth. I don’t know if I would have prevailed without the representation of Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald, and Pirrotti, P.C. I would highly recommend their services to anyone dealing with workplace injustice. — T.S. Hartford, CT

I was represented by Ethan Levin-Epstein in connection with a very complex case regarding potentially very serious Federal charges against me by the United States Department of Justice. As I write this today, it is only because of Ethan’s forty- plus years or experience, his expertise and outstanding knowledge as a criminal lawyer that the Department of Justice was persuaded not to prosecute me at all. Ethan worked tirelessly with the prosecutors at the Department of Justice until they agreed to decline prosecution of me. I could not have obtained this very positive result without Ethan’s skill and ability. I strongly urge anyone with potential or pending criminal charges, whether on a State or Federal level, to contact Ethan, as I highly recommend him. By retaining Ethan to represent you, you will not only be represented by an expert attorney, but a highly respected attorney. When I thought the sun would no longer shine, Ethan made the sun shine again for me. I will be forever grateful to him. — P.M., Oakville, CT

I was fortunate enough to work with Ethan Levin-Epstein through a difficult and tumultuous period in my personal and professional life. He is very knowledgeable in his area of expertise. This in addition to his wisdom and composure greatly aided in keeping me focused and grounded as we pursued a settlement with my former non-cooperative employer. This was a stressful time for me and my family. Attorney Levin-Epstein was instrumental in getting us through this with the bonus of obtaining a positive outcome. — S.L.

I just wanted to say a sincere thanks to Ethan Levin-Epstein, Amanda DeMatteis, Jonathan Margolis, Christine McGuire, and all the other staff at Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti, P.C. who assisted on my sexual discrimination/wrongful termination lawsuit. Ethan, as the lead attorney on my case, it was reassuring to observe how personally you took my case. You, Amanda and Jonathan were a formidable team of attorneys and it never mattered which of you I was dealing with, I always felt that I was in good hands. I never felt like just another case-file. The three of you knew the facts of my case almost as well as I did. In fact, there were a few times that Amanda’s recollection of the details of my lawsuit exceeded my own! Thank you again for all your efforts in achieving a settlement with my former employer. In addition to your excellent legal skills and professionalism, you are all genuinely good and caring individuals. It was a pleasure working with you all on my case. — S.W.

Three years ago I committed a federal criminal offense which I have regretted ever since. I needed a lawyer desperately and thank God that I was referred to Ethan Levin-Epstein. I was facing jail and felt the weight of the world on my shoulders. I felt hopeless with nowhere to turn. Ethan was very understanding and very diligent in helping me to understand my situation. He explained all the issues to me and my family and listened to all our concerns. He understood those concerns and my case and helped me to understand my options. He helped me to make the right decisions for me. The case took two years to resolve. Ethan met with me many times and really got to know me. He worked tirelessly for me. The big day finally arrived and the probation office recommended that I receive a jail sentence that (due to Ethan’s work) was much lower than the sentencing “guidelines” range of 24 to 30 months. Ethan was still not satisfied. What happened in court on the day I was sentenced will forever live in my heart and soul. Ethan pleaded my case as though I was his brother. He made sure the judge knew who I really was. As a result, I was placed on probation and not sent to jail. I will forever be indebted to Ethan for taking my case so personally and for becoming my friend. I recommend him and his firm without qualification. — M.R., Cheshire, CT

Ethan defended me in the largest municipal corruption trial in the history of the State of Connecticut. His years as a US Attorney benefited me tremendously. Not only did Ethan demonstrate his vast knowledge of criminal law, but he keenly positioned me with respect to the 12 other people/businesses indicted in the same federal investigation. From the outset, Ethan worked tirelessly on my behalf and masterfully reduced my degree of culpability in the eyes of the government. Ultimately, the combination of his experience, knowledge of the law and his astute understanding of the system prevented me from going to federal prison. Thanks to Ethan I was able to remain home with my wife and children and move on with my life while most of the other defendants received prison sentences. — F.S., Fairfield, CT

Ethan Levin-Epstein has twice provided superior legal representation for me. During my career I had the experience of being represented by major law firms and Ethan is second to none. He was available to provide legal advice and support for my case 24/7 by phone, email and in person. Ethan developed a very successful legal strategy for my case and researched the case law to support each position. He prepared every detail of my case to ensure success and his hard work in preparation was a key factor in our legal victory. I am pleased to recommend Ethan to anyone considering legal representation as you could not make a better choice. — J.N., Fort White, FL

When my small business came under federal investigation, I was faced with a federal indictment, possible jail time, and large fines. Even the investigation itself threatened to put us out of business after 35 years. I had no idea what we’d done wrong. I am so grateful that my attorney recommended Ethan Levin-Epstein. Proving my innocence to the Feds seemed like an insurmountable task, but Ethan’s knowledge of the law and skill was the key to halting the witch hunt. Ethan saved my life. — R.D., Higganum, CT

Ethan’s legal expertise, empathy, and unwavering professionalism and perseverance brought closure to what was a very discouraging situation for my family. He guided me through the long process, while counseling me on each and every step, so I could make informed decisions about my case. Ethan and his firm are the leaders in employment law, which is what I knew I needed when I made the very difficult life decision to take legal action against a former employer. — C.Y., Middlebury, CT

Ethan Levin-Epstein represented me during a most painful and challenging crisis in my personal and professional life. Seeing me within 24 hours of being referred, his support and advocacy, wisdom and clarity not only resulted in a favorable negotiated outcome for me and for my family, but gave me peace of mind and the courage to recover. I am very grateful to have met Ethan and his team and would refer anyone in need to this haven. — C.L., Guilford, CT

I cannot fully express how grateful I am to have had Ethan represent me during a very stressful case involving my previous employment. Ethan listened, advised, advocated, and most importantly kept me very well informed throughout entire process. He was always patient with me, especially when I was emotional and asked a lot of questions. I have the utmost confidence and respect for Ethan’s ability as an attorney. Not only did he always look out for my interests; he was always honest discussing strategies and decisions. Thank you, Ethan! — D.M., Hamden, CT

Ethan and his colleagues with whom I had contact were kind, helpful, proactive, and responsive throughout our work together. My wife and I are grateful to them for their expertise, professionalism, wisdom, and thoughtfulness. While Ethan provided excellent legal counsel, his empathetic personal counsel regarding the matter was also invaluable to us. I look forward to working with Ethan in the future on more positive legal needs. — R.T., Middletown, CT

Blog Posts


August 17th, 2023 Every Garrison Law Attorney Named to Best Lawyers for 2024

June 12th, 2023 Garrison Law Celebrates the Retirement of Ethan Levin-Epstein

October 13th, 2022 Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti, P.C. Attorneys Selected as 2022 Super Lawyers

August 18th, 2022 Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti Attorneys Named to Best Lawyers For 2023

August 19th, 2021 Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti Partners Named To Best Lawyers In America for 2022

May 12th, 2021 Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti, P.C. Named Labor & Employment Litigation Department of the Year 2021 by the Connecticut Law Tribune

October 16th, 2020 Five Garrison, Levin-Epstein Partners Selected to Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Employment Lawyers Guide For 2020

October 12th, 2020 Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti Partners Named 2020 Connecticut Super Lawyers

August 20th, 2020 Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti Partners Named to Best Lawyers in America for 2021

November 1st, 2019 Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti, P.C. ranked in 2020 “Best Law Firms”

October 24th, 2019 Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti Attorneys Named 2019 Super Lawyers

August 15th, 2019 Nina T. Pirrotti Named Best Lawyers 2020 “Lawyer of the Year” for Employment Law – Individuals

October 18th, 2018 Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti Attorneys Named 2018 Super Lawyers

August 15th, 2018 Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti Partners Named 2019 Best Lawyers in America

November 10th, 2017 Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti Turns 40

November 1st, 2017 Garrison, Levin-Epstein Receives “Best Law Firm” Honors From U.S. News & World Report

October 27th, 2017 Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti Lawyers Recognized for Their Work

October 1st, 2015 Every Garrison, Levin-Epstein Lawyer Recognized by Super Lawyers

August 18th, 2015 Every Garrison, Levin-Epstein Partner Recognized by Best Lawyers in America

October 27th, 2014 All Five Garrison, Levin-Epstein Partners Selected as Connecticut Super Lawyers (Once Again)

September 8th, 2014 Four Partners Re-Elected to Best Lawyers, Including Two “Lawyers of the Year”

May 13th, 1998 2 in Texaco Case Found Not Guilty

ethan levin-epstein 2020

Ethan Levin-Epstein was a seasoned trial lawyer with over 45 years of experience in criminal law.

AV Rating Martindale-Hubbell 10.0Ethan A Levin-Epstein Best Lawyers Award Badge Super Lawyers lawdragon-500 National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) Connecticut Criminal Defense Lawyers Assn (CCDLA) National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA) Connecticut Employment Lawyers Association The Federal Bar Council Connecticut Bar Association
Client Experiences

During a very difficult employment situation, I was referred to Joe Garrison. Recognizing the volatile and time sensitive nature of my employment situation, Mr. Garrison met with me immediately (on the weekend no less). He listened to the details of my case, was able to think through possible creative solutions to offer the employer, and was responsive to my myriad of questions. He understood my concerns about litigation versus settlement, and he worked to find the best resolution possible. I am grateful to have had his support at a very difficult time. —J.C., New Haven, CT

You will never meet a more knowledgeable and compassionate professional than Steve Fitzgerald. My employment situation was very complex, and Attorney Fitzgerald kept me focused while remaining extremely adept and “thinking on his feet.” Should the need present itself again, I would never seek anyone else’s counsel regarding employment issues. I cannot recommend him highly enough. — J.R., New Haven, CT

Nina Pirrotti provided outstanding legal advice and was trustworthy, dependable, and responsive. From the start, I was confident that her knowledge and experience would obtain favorable results. On a more personal note, I enjoyed working with her and her staff and felt I was included in every part of the process. The dedication, concern, and interest in me as a client was greatly appreciated, and Nina has earned my highest recommendation. — J.H., Monroe, CT

I recently found myself in need of a lawyer in handling a dispute with my former employer. I was fortunate to retain Josh Goodbaum as my legal counsel. His legal skills knowledge and professionalism shone through in every step of the process resulting in a very positive result. I highly recommend Josh if you find yourself in need of legal counsel. — S.R., Guilford, CT

When I go to a lawyer for advice, I am usually anxious, particularly the first meeting. Amanda DeMatteis was clear in describing my options and immediately set me at ease. Realistic assessment is important, and Amanda was clear as to how to set up the case and the direction she felt we should go. I had total confidence in her abilities and knew I was being well represented against a large corporation. More importantly, we were successful! —N.M., Haddam, CT

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