CHRISTOPHER J. BAIONE is a nationally recognized New York City-based 9/11 lawyer and founding partner of Pitta & Baione LLP. Christopher is the only principal of a 9/11 firm who has devoted his entire professional legal career to representing clients before the federal September 11th Victim Compensation Fund. Christopher meets clients in the firm’s Manhattan, Brooklyn, Staten Island, and Albany offices as well as their homes or in hospitals as situations oftentimes require. Super Lawyers recognized Christopher for his success as a top rated 9/11 lawyer in 2018 and 2019, and Avvo has awarded him the Clients Choice Award in 2015 and 2016.
Christopher is a proud New Yorker who was born in Brooklyn and raised in Staten Island. He recalls all too well looking up at the bright work lights atop the Fresh Kills Landfill two miles from his home where the remains of over one thousand 9/11 victims were identified by responders who sifted through debris for months. He remembers his neighbors – active and retired NYPD police officers, FDNY firefighters, and DSNY sanitation workers – returning home from Ground Zero and the Fresh Kills Landfill with clothes covered in dust and eyes that had seen more than their mouths could ever speak.
Years later, Christopher witnessed firsthand the 9/11-toxins exposure epidemic as those same neighbors began developing respiratory illnesses, lung diseases, cancer, and other conditions. He remembers feeling that their plight was eerily similar to that of his namesake, FDNY Lieutenant Christopher J. Baione, who died from cancer attributed to inadequate safety regulations and equipment during the infamous New York Telephone Company Fire. Christopher firmly believes that his clients, like his grandfather, were wronged by the government and that it is now his responsibility to fight for their rights – and for the rights of the entire 9/11 community.
As co-manager of the firm’s September 11th Victim Compensation Fund practice, Christopher determines eligibility, establishes and proves damages, develops strategies to maximize awards, appears at evidentiary hearings, forecasts economic losses, reviews VCF loss calculations, and argues appeals for increased compensation. During his career as a 9/11 lawyer, Christopher has successfully recovered tens of millions of dollars for clients from the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund including $2M for an NYPD Police Officer suffering from disabling brain cancer and $1M for the family of a Local 282 Teamster who suffered from disabling lung cancer.
Christopher regularly lectures to unions and community groups about 9/11 toxins exposure and the various federal 9/11 benefit programs. He has been featured in NBC, the Staten Island Advance, the Chief Leader, LaborPress, 530AM The Mission, 970AM The Answer, World Journal, News India Times, and Sing Tao.
Christopher graduated magna cum laude in cursu honorum from the Peter J. Tobin College of Business at St. John’s University with a degree in finance. While attending college, he worked at international law firm Holland & Knight LLP under the direction and mentorship of Frank G. Sinatra, a government relations attorney and bankruptcy trustee. Christopher earned his Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree from Seton Hall University School of Law where he was awarded a Presidential Scholarship and Public Interest Fellowship. During law school, Christopher interned at the Kings County District Attorney’s Office supporting prosecutors in trial preparation and with New York State Supreme Court Justice Anthony J. Cutrona assisting with courtroom proceedings and pretrial conferences in the Mental Hygiene Court.
- Seton Hall University School of Law, Newark, New Jersey
- J.D., 2013
- St. John’s University, Staten Island, New York
- B.S., Finance, 2009
- New York, 2014
- New Jersey, 2013
- New York Super Lawyers® Rising Stars, 2018-2019
- Avvo Clients’ Choice, 2016
- Avvo Clients’ Choice, 2015
- House Passes Act for 9/11 First Responders, But Future Still Uncertain for Victims, NBC New York, 7/15/2019
- Islanders push for extension of 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund, Staten Island Advance, 2/28/2019
- The Zadroga Act 9/11 Health Compensation Legislation, CUNY TV In Conversation with Michael Stoler, 5/6/2018
- New firm will focus on 9/11 toxin exposure victims, Staten Island Advance, 8/9/2016
- Rupa Bhattacharyya to Speed up 9/11 Claims Processing, News India Times, 8/5/2016
- Zadroga Now Covers COPD, Common Illness For WTC Responders, The Chief Leader, 7/25/2016
- Help For Victims Of 9/11 Exposure On ‘Blue Collar Buzz’, LaborPress, 4/21/2016