Maria DelGaizo Noto

Maria DelGaizo Noto

Matawan, New Jersey

Maria D. Noto is board certified as a criminal trial attorney by the New Jersey Supreme Court. Over the course of her career, she has tried over 200 cases with impressive success, including winning eight out of ten homicide trials.

As a result, Ms. Noto has been named to New Jersey's Super Lawyers list every year since 2005 and has also been named one of New Jersey's Top 50 female Super Lawyers on more than one occasion. She has also been recognized by the Association of Trial Lawyers of America as one of the Top 100 trial lawyers in New Jersey and has received numerous other accolades. She is a past president of the New Jersey Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.

Prior to becoming an attorney, Maria Noto was a teacher for several years. She was able to take the skills she learned as a teacher and use them to "educate" the jury in order to convince them of her client's innocence.

She attended Seton Hall Law School and, while she was in school, worked part-time as a law clerk for the Essex County Prosecutor's Office. That experience has proven to be an invaluable part of her career, as she has truly been able to see both sides of the criminal justice system.

Ms. Noto started her legal career as a law clerk to the Honorable Thomas F. Shebell, Jr., who was then the Assignment Judge for Monmouth County. As Assignment Judge, Judge Shebell decided many civil and criminal motions filed by attorneys. Through this prestigious clerkship, Ms. Noto assisted the court in researching the law and writing Memoranda of Law and gained valuable experience and knowledge in both criminal and civil law.

Upon completing her judicial clerkship, Ms. Noto started her career as a trial attorney with the Essex County Public Defender's Office in Newark, New Jersey. She began her career as a public defender with a string of victories, winning her first 9 cases in a row.

In 1985, Maria went into private practice and was retained to represent one of 21 defendants in the longest federal trial in the history of New Jersey, U.S. v. Accetturo. After a two-year trial, all 21 defendants were found not guilty. That victory has been memorialized by Robert Rudolph in his book The Boys From New Jersey (How the Mob Beat the Feds) and the movie "Find Me guilty." Ms. Noto took to the experience of trying a case for two years with some of the best lawyers in the state of New Jersey, and she has since successfully resolved many federal cases.

In addition to federal cases, Maria also represents people who are accused at both state and municipal levels of the New Jersey court system and has many satisfied clients from every level of the court system. Although her office is centrally located in Matawan, New Jersey, Maria handles cases throughout the state of New Jersey and on a pro hac vice basis in other states.

Having grown up in the inner city of Brooklyn, New York, as the child of hardworking, but poor, immigrant parents, Maria has a strong work ethic coupled with empathy for the wrongly accused and for those who, perhaps, made a mistake or error in judgment and want to resolve it in the best possible way.

Over the years, Ms. Noto has continued to spend about 75 percent of her time representing criminal defendants, but her trial skills are just as valuable in civil cases. Her firm, the Law Firm of Maria D. Noto, P.C., represents clients in a wide variety of civil areas, such as civil rights, personal injury and domestic violence.

Whether it is federal court, state superior court or municipal court, Maria uses her superior legal ability and trial skills to get positive results and treats all of her clients with dignity and respect.


Areas of Practice

  • Criminal
  • State and Federal Criminal Defense
  • DUI, Traffic and Municipal Defense
  • Civil Litigation
  • Civil Rights
  • Domestic Violence & Restraining Orders
  • Personal Injury
  • Negligence Defense
  • White Collar Criminal Defense
  • Traffic Violations
  • Municipal Court Offenses

Certified Legal Specialties

  • Criminal Trial Law, New Jersey Supreme Court

Bar Admissions

  • New Jersey, 1980
  • U.S. District Court District of New Jersey, 1980
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 3rd Circuit, 1988
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 1991


  • Seton Hall University School of Law, Newark, New Jersey
    • J.D. - 1980
    • Honors: Top15%
  • St. Joseph's College, Brooklyn, New York
    • B.A.
    • Honors: New Jersey Teaching Certifications: French and English
    • Major: French and Spanish Education
  • Monmouth University, Long Branch, New Jersey
  • University of Colorado, Denver, Colorado
  • Hunter College, New York City, New York
  • University of Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland


  • "New Jersey Criminal Trial Preparation", New Jersey Institute For Continuing Legal Education, 2005 - 2009
  • "The Heart of The Defender: A Passion for Advocacy", Office of the Public Defender Training Conference, 2004
  • I.C.L.E. Seminar: "Handling Violent Crimes", New Jersey Law Center, 2003
  • I.C.L.E. Skills and Methods Course for New Attorneys, New Jersey Law Center, 2001 - 2002
  • I.C.L.E. Skills & Methods Course, New Jersey Law Center, 1997
  • "How to Reconcile Personal Beliefs with the Practice of Law", Guest Speaker, Interfaith Panel, 2013 - Present
  • Guest Speaker, The Jean Robertson Women Lawyers Scholarship Foundation, Inc., 2005 - 2009
  • “Don't Let Your Client Be Collateral Damage in the War on Drugs”, Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 2003 - Present
  • "Women in the Courtroom, Women on Trial", Panel on Female Litigators, 1992 - Present
  • "Grand Jury Motions", Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, New Jersey Super Saturday Seminar, 1994 - Present
  • Mock Trial, New Jersey Attorney General's Office, 1994 - Present
  • "Direct Examination: Presenting Your Case", Association of Trial Lawyers of America, Annual Boardwalk Seminar, Atlantic City, New Jersey, 1994 - Present
  • "Grand Jury Motions", Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, New Jersey Super Saturday Seminar, 1995 - Present
  • "Powerful Persuasion Through Literature", Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Seminars in the Rockies, 1996 - Present
  • "The Movie as Mentor", Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Seminars in the Rockies, 1997 - Present
  • "Pursuing the Impossible Dream: A Fair Trial in a Child Sex Case", Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, New Jersey Super Saturday Seminar, 1998 - Present
  • "Defense Tactics in Eye Witness Identification", Association of Criminal Lawyers, 1999 - Present
  • “Junking Science and Handling Expert Testimony in Criminal Cases”, Guest Speaker, East Brunswick, New Jersey, 2000 - Present
  • Mock Trial for Grade School Students, Essex County Law Day Program, 1999 - Present
  • “Winning Strategies in Cases Involving Confessions”, Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 2002 - Present
  • “Defense Perspective on Plea Bargaining and Sentencing Under Title 2C”, I.C.L.E. 25th Anniversary of Title 2C of the Criminal Code, 2004 - Present
  • “Evidence 101: The Evidence Rules as Winning Tools”, Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 2004 - Present
  • "Criminal Defense Lawyers Respond to Victims' Rights Advocates", CNBC’s “America After Hours", 1996 - Present
  • "How Can You Represent Those Defendants" (Guest), New Jersey Network’s “Due Process”
  • "Victim Participation in Court Proceedings" (Guest, with Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy), CNBC’s “America After Hours"
  • "Women Professionals in Criminal Defense", CNBC "Women Professionals" Documentary Series, 2013 - Present
  • Interview after Lucchese Trial Acquittals, Pablo Guzman, CBS New York, 1985 - Present

Honors and Awards

  • Selected to New Jersey Super Lawyers List, 2005 - 2016
  • Cover Story, "Noto Bene: Take note—criminal defense attorney Maria DelGaizo Noto is one tough cookie. Don’t believe us? Ask the U.S. government," New Jersey Super Lawyers
  • St. Thomas Moore Society, Seton Hall University School of Law, 2013 - Present
  • Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of American Honorary Society, 2006 - 2007
  • Top 50: 2006 Women New Jersey Super Lawyers
  • Top 50: 2005 Women New Jersey Super Lawyers
  • Elected to Who's Who Among Distinguished Americans of Italian Descent, Italian Tribune News, 2001 - Present
  • Top 100 Trial Lawyers in New Jersey, Association of Trial Lawyers of America
  • Board of Trustees, New Jersey Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers to the Presidency

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • New Jersey Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Elected Trustee (1991); Secretary/Treasurer (1998); Vice President (2002); President (2003-2004)
  • New Jersey Supreme Court Board on Attorney Trial Certification, Criminal Section Chair (1998), Criminal Section Vice-Chair (1997), Board Member (1992)
  • Essex County Bar Association, Appointed Co-Chair (1991)
  • Mental Health Association of New Jersey, Board of Directors, 1997 - Present

Past Employment Positions

  • Noto & Cuba, Esqus., Partner, 1985 - 1991
  • Essex County Public Defender's Office, Assistant Deputy Public Defender, 1981 - 1985
  • Honorable Thomas F. Shebell, Jr., Law Clerk, 1980 - 1981

Pro Bono Activities

  • Essex County Pro Bono Program, 1991 - 1992


  • French
  • Spanish
  • Italian
  • English