Dexter R. Hamilton


Dexter handles complex litigation matters for major corporations, governmental organizations, and nonprofit entities. He is an experienced trial attorney and practices in the areas of commercial litigation, construction litigation, product liability, and toxic tort litigation. In the past several years, he has tried cases to verdict, including commercial matters and catastrophic injury cases. He has been lead counsel in complex matters in state and federal courts across the country.

Dexter serves as outside general counsel for a health system and advises the organization in a variety of matters, including litigation, labor and employment, compliance, contracts, internal investigations, and corporate governance.

Dexter is a member of the Widener University Board of Trustees. He also participates in a number of civic and community activities. He is General Counsel for the African American Chamber of Commerce of PA, NJ, DE. He serves as a Judge Pro Tempore for the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, where he presides at settlement conferences. He is a member of The Historical Society of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and a member of the board of the Lawyers Club of Philadelphia. Previously, Dexter served on the board of directors of the Bethesda Project, an organization that serves the chronically homeless and was appointed by the Mayor of Philadelphia to the Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations.

He earned his J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School in 1987, where he was the recipient of the Civil Trial Advocacy Award and was elected an officer of his graduating class. He earned his B.A., magna cum laude from Widener University in 1983, where he was recognized as the most outstanding student in political science. He is admitted to practice in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.




Dexter Hamilton Appointed to the Philadelphia Police Foundation Board of Directors

September 26, 2023

Dexter Hamilton, a member of the firm’s Commercial Litigation Department, has been appointed to the Philadelphia Police Foundation board of directors.

Cozen O’Connor Team Secures Motion for Nonsuit

February 05, 2013

Jeffrey Weil, Dexter Hamilton and a team of Cozen O’Connor litigators successfully defended a mid-sized, regional law firm and one of its senior corporate partners in a legal malpractice case brought in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas. The case involved an underlying business transaction that went bad. Our law firm clients had represented a closely held corporation whose stock was sold to a publicly traded company.

Dexter Hamilton presents on “Distracted Driving On Company Time: A Risk Manager’s Nightmare” in recent Risk & Insurance Magazine Webinar

August 10, 2010

Dexter Hamilton, Cozen O’Connor member resident in the Philadelphia office, gave a presentation for a Risk & Insurance Magazine Webinar on July 14th, which was sponsored by Zurich Services Corporation. Dexter’s presentation covered the legal issues associated with employees getting into motor vehicle accidents on company time due to distracted driving caused by talking or texting on a cell phone while driving.


Pennsylvania Water Law: Contamination Incidents and Liability [American Water Works Association]

October 31, 2014

In an article titled “Pennsylvania Water Law: Contamination Incidents and Liability,” Dexter Hamilton, a member of Cozen O’Connor’s Commercial Litigation Department, Michael Klein, co-chair of the firm’s Energy & Utilities Industry team, and Thomas Leonard, an associate in the Commercial Litigation Department, address recent water contamination incidents and the inevitable legal actions that follow.

Zero-tolerance v. hands-free: What should be your cell phone policy? [InsideCounsel]

September 29, 2014

In an article titled, "Zero-tolerance v. hands-free: What should be your cell phone policy," Dexter Hamilton, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Commercial Litigation Department and Thomas Leonard, an associate in the Commercial Litigation Department, compare the two major policy frameworks governing the use of cell phones by employees while driving: zero-tolerance and hands-free. Each approach has positive aspects, but neither can guarantee that a company will not be held liable for an employee’s distracted driving accident.

Employer Liability for Distracted Driving: A Concern That Will Not Go Away [InsideCounsel]

July 09, 2014

In an article published in InsideCounsel, Dexter Hamilton and Thomas Leonard, attorneys in Cozen O’Connor’s Commercial Litigation Department, discuss distracted driving and the potential impact on employers. Despite the risk and possible financial consequences, distracted driving is likely to continue. The proliferation of personal electronic devices (which are referred to collectively as “cell phones”) has placed fierce pressure on businesses to always be available for both internal and external communication. The quest to remain competitive, the emergence of a younger work force that expects to be connected at all times, and the growing use of technology to facilitate working from remote locations force employers to grapple with cell phone use policies and enforcement.

PA Supreme Court Allows Certain Mesothelioma Claimants to Sue Their Employer [Litigation Alert]

December 16, 2013

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court recently issued a ground-breaking decision that could potentially expose employers to a wave of new lawsuits by former employees suffering from mesothelioma. In its November 22, 2013 opinion in the case Tooey v. AK Steel Corp., the court ruled that the Commonwealth’s Workers’ Compensation Act (the WCA) does not apply to claims based on occupational disease that otherwise would fall within the law’s ambit but does not manifest until after 300 weeks following the termination of a worker’s employment. Significantly, because the WCA does not apply to these claims, workers who develop mesothelioma can now sue their former employers in tort, unlike other workers whose claims fall under the Act and who can only proceed against their employers for worker’s compensation benefits.

What to Do When an HR Employee Sues [Workforce Management]

July 01, 2007

What to Do When an HR Employee Sues - Workforce Management - When an HR staffer alleges employment discrimination, it’s automatically a different kind of claim. Here’s how to proceed when the claimant is someone who is likely to know damaging,
embarrassing or unflattering information about the company—and might be willing to use it to
bolster a case. It’s not all bad news, however. Sometimes it’s easier to deal with an HR claimant.a

Events & Seminars

Past Events

Hot Tips in Litigation

April 23, 2023 - Hershey, PA

Benchmarking for Success

February 07, 2022 - Philadelphia, Pa.

Bench-Bar & Annual Conference

October 11, 2019 - Atlantic City, New Jersey


  • University of Pennsylvania Law School, J.D.
  • Widener University, B.A.
  • New Jersey
  • Pennsylvania
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • U.S. District Court -- Eastern District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. District Court -- Middle District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. District Court -- New Jersey
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • American Bar Association
  • Barristers Association of Philadelphia
  • Pennsylvania Bar Association
  • Philadelphia Bar Association
  • Philadelphia Bar Association, Co-Chair of the Federal Courts Committee
  • Philadelphia Police Foundation, Board of Directors