When Vinoo Varghese was selected to the Super Lawyers list for the first time in 2015, he’d already developed a reputation as one of New York’s top white-collar criminal defense attorneys.
In nearly 20 years of practice, initially as a prosecutor and for the last 13 years as a criminal defense attorney and founder of Varghese & Associates, P.C., he’s won numerous cases at both the trial level and in the appellate courts. These victories have come against, among others, the IRS and the National Security and Cyber Crimes Section of the Department of Justice, two notoriously difficult opponents. Back in the early 2000s, while a prosecutor, he headed up the “Assault on Police Officers Program,” an investigative unit committed to prosecuting attempted murders of New York police officers.
That’s why his Super Lawyers selection has served to further confirm his ability, to clients as well as other lawyers. Varghese receives the majority of his referrals from his peers and the Super Lawyers selection validates those attorney referrals.
“Super Lawyers is definitely a validation piece,” Varghese says. “There are a few lawyers who scoff at it, but they’re usually not the ones on it. You can’t nominate yourself and for me, it was very important to be recognized by my peers as a Super Lawyers selectee.”
The selection is another feather in his cap, as Varghese has been recognized as a Martindale AV Preeminent Attorney for the past two years and earlier in his career, the New York Law Journal named him to their Rising Stars list. When a top lawyer becomes a Super Lawyers listee, the ability to reach more people expands.
Not that Varghese is unaware of how to reach and stay connected to clients. Prolific on social media, armed with a well-designed website and the personality to succeed on TV just like in the courtroom, Varghese has built up quite a following. Selection to the Super Lawyers list and the reputation building that comes with it become mutually beneficial to someone already adept at leveraging opportunities.
Because of the SuperLawyers.com directory, Varghese has received cases through his selection and referrals from attorneys who have utilized the online directory to find him. Yet, he also backs up those selections by creating more successful work and media opportunities. Varghese is a regular ongoing contributor to major news networks such as Fox, Fox Business, CNN, HLN, CBS and MSNBC. Fighting to make sure that reputation sticks exemplifies how he’s become one of the top five percent of attorneys in the New York area.
“My goal is to have my firm be the first name that people think of when they think of elite criminal defense,” he said.
For a criminal defense attorney, it’s important to have visibility in the community because potential clients don’t expect to need an attorney until they require help. That’s why the firm’s strategy includes having a social media manager on staff to disseminate videos of his weekly media appearances, as well as his case victories, his inclusion on the Super Lawyers list and other accolades. In addition, he sees inclusion on the Super Lawyers directory as a crucial step to reach the right consumers.
It’s like the old proverb, “if a tree falls in the woods, and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?”
“Of course it doesn’t make a sound if there’s no one there to hear it,” Varghese said. “No matter how good a lawyer I am, if people don’t know it, it doesn’t matter.”