Michael L. Bloch

Counsel

EDUCATION

  • Harvard Law School, J.D. 2005
  • cum laude
  • Wesleyan University, B.A. 2000
  • cum laude

CLERKSHIPS

  • Hon. Diane P. Wood, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • Hon. Helen G. Berrigan, U.S. District Court for the District of Louisiana

FELLOWSHIPS, LEADERSHIP & RECOGNITIONS

  • Faculty Member, Harvard Law School’s Trial Advocacy Workshop (2019)
  • Prison Legal Assistance Project, Harvard Law School
  • Research Assistant for Professors Philip Heymann and Margo Schlanger, Harvard Law School
  • Winner, Ames Moot Court Team Competition, Harvard Law School
  • Best Brief Award, Ames Moot Court Competition
  • Best Brief Award, First-Year Ames Moot Court Competition
  • Skirm Prize for Best Writing Project in Government Department, Wesleyan University
  • Parker Prize for Excellence in Public Speaking, Wesleyan University
  • Founder and Captain, Wesleyan Mock Trial Team
  • Teaching Assistant for American Constitutional Law, Wesleyan University
  • Teaching Assistant for Probability and Statistics, Wesleyan University

BAR AND COURT ADMISSIONS

  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
  • Washington, D.C.
  • New York

Michael Bloch is Counsel at Kaplan Hecker & Fink. Michael is an experienced trial attorney who spent over seven years as a public defender at the Bronx Defenders and three years as a litigation associate at Williams & Connolly LLP before joining Kaplan Hecker.

Michael’s practice focuses on white collar matters and public interest litigation, including leveraging his significant trial experience in some of the country’s highest-profile civil rights cases. In one prominent example, Michael is helping to lead a groundbreaking lawsuit against the neo-Nazis and white supremacists who organized the racial- and religious-based violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, in the summer of 2017. Filed on behalf of a group of plaintiffs who were adversely impacted by the hatred-fueled violence of that day, the lawsuit seeks to hold the organizers of the “Unite the Right” rally accountable for their actions under the Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871.

At Bronx Defenders, Michael represented hundreds of clients charged with criminal matters at all stages of litigation.  He has tried more than a dozen felony and misdemeanor cases to verdict and earned an acquittal or dismissal of all criminal charges in all but one case. In the past four years, he has tried seven cases to jury verdict – as lead counsel on five of them – and earned a full acquittal on all of them. Most recently, Michael secured an acquittal for his client after a five-week attempted murder trial, involving over fifteen government witnesses and an array of forensic evidence. For the past two years, Michael was a supervisor in the Criminal Defense Practice, counseling a team of five to eight felony-certified attorneys on criminal matters from arrest through trial. Michael was also a member of the Homicide Practice Group, and previously served as a supervisor of the Investigations Practice, training and overseeing the team of Bronx Defenders investigators. Michael has conducted numerous trainings on trial advocacy and criminal defense investigations.

Prior to working as a public defender, Michael worked for three years at Williams & Connolly LLP in Washington, D.C., primarily in the areas of commercial litigation and legal malpractice defense.

“I am thrilled to re-enter private practice at Kaplan Hecker & Fink. The exceptional lawyers at the firm have quickly built a top-tier litigation boutique that takes on the most important and critical matters while working to uphold the rights and protections the law provides to all.”

Michael graduated cum laude from Harvard Law School, where he represented clients charged with crimes in Roxbury District Court as part of the Criminal Justice Institute, and he worked with the NAACP representing a client in post-conviction proceedings as part of the Death Penalty Clinic. He was also a member of the winning team in the Ames Moot Court competition. After law school, Michael served as a law clerk to the Honorable Chief Judge Helen Ginger Berrigan on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana and subsequently to the Honorable Diane P. Wood on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

Michael graduated cum laude from Wesleyan University with a B.A. in Government.  Before law school, he worked as a criminal defense investigator with the Public Defender Service in Washington, D.C. 

He is currently a member of the New York City Bar Association’s Criminal Justice Operations Committee. In the past year, his writings on criminal justice matters have appeared in the New York Times and USA Today.

Read about Michael L. Bloch in our Newsroom

Published on: May 15, 2020

“Reconceptualizing the Role of Violence in our Criminal Justice System” - Program Recap and Takeaways

By Michael Bloch, Counsel, Kaplan Hecker & Fink LLP, and Member, Criminal Justice Operations Committee and Mass Incarceration Task Force
Published on: May 6, 2020

Opinion: Police impunity and social distancing arrests

Twitter is aflame once again with harrowing images of the latest beatings of New Yorkers of color by police officers abusing their authority. Unfortunately, like the officers involved in countless... Read More
Published on: January 17, 2020

New York Politicians Are Using Anti-Semitic Attacks to Scare People About Bail Reform

Plus: We debunk four big myths about setting people free before their trials.