Hon. Esther Morgenstern

Judge Morgenstern's Average Overall Review:

2 Stars

Based on 21 reviews

  (347) 401-9208

  Unknown (fax)

  Unknown email address

Judicial offices

  • Justice, Supreme Court, Kings County, Elected, 2006 to 2019
  • Judge, Queens County Integrated Domestic Violence Court, Appointed by Chief Administrative Judge Jonathan Lippman, 2003 to Present
  • Acting Justice, Supreme Court, Queens County, Appointed by Chief Administrative Judge Jonathan Lippman, 2002 to 2005
  • Judge, Civil Court of the City of New York, Elected, 1996 to 2005
  • Acting Justice, Supreme Court, Family Court, Kings County, Appointed by Chief Administrative Judge Jonathan Lippman, 2002 to 2004
  • Judge, Criminal Court, Assigned, 1996 to 2002


  • J.D., Cardozo School of Law, 1984
  • BA, City University of New York, Brooklyn College, 1980

Bar admission

  • NYS, Appellate Division, Second Department, 1985
  • United States District Court, Eastern District, 1985
  • United States District Court, Southern District, 1985
  • United States Supreme Court, 1989

Professional experience

  • NYS Unified Court System, Principal Law Clerk, 1990 to 1995
  • NYS Unified Court System, Associate Law Assistant to Acting Justice, 1988 to 1990
  • NYS Unified Court System, Senior Law Assistant to Acting Justice, 1987 to 1988
  • NYS Unified Court System, Law Assistant to Acting Justice, 1986 to 1987
  • Yisraeli and Yerushalmi, Attorney, 1985 to 1986
  • Torras Greenberg, Law Assistant, 1984 to 1985

Professional and civic activities

  • Trustee, Brooklyn Bar Association, 1995 to 1996
  • Member, Brooklyn Bar Association, 1988 to present
  • President, Brooklyn Womens Bar Association, 1992 to 1993
  • Board of Directors, Brooklyn Women's Bar Association, 1987 to 2001
  • Member, Brooklyn Women's Association, 1986 to present
  • Delegate, New York State Supreme Court Justices Association



4635. attorney (private practice)

I recently had the opportunity to spend a day in Judge Morgenstern's courtroom. I do not have any cases pending in her division. I have practiced law for 25 years, in three states, and appeared before no less than 100 different judges. I have never seen another judge as inefficient, incompetent, inconsiderate, and devoid of compassion as Esther Morgenstern. I don't understand why she's still on the bench.


3577. other

Under the leadership of a corrupt seat of state government like Albany, an inept judiciary hand-picked by highly placed cronies is essential. The less the judge knows about professional practice the better. What matters here is the agenda which brings in money to the state for federal agenda items like domestic violence and child support. Judge Morgenstern breaks the mold for the traditional political hack on the bench. She second guesses parents. She decides case on her own gut feel. Indeed her gut may have more nerve endings than any other part of her. She served as a court attorney for years and was hand picked by Sheldon Silver’s cronies to eviscerate the Brooklyn family for federal money. The domestic violence part is an amalgam of courts sitting in judgment of crimes, divorces and dispositions of non-marital children. Judge Morgenstern lacks any skill in any of these areas and her illogical decisions are a reflection of this. She merely puts into operation Albany’s agenda as her mentors require of her. She removes children from mens’ lives. She imposes a tax (child support) on fathers. She manufactures facts out of thin air and makes them reality by her convoluted and confusing orders. Morgenstern is par for the course as a loyal mutt for a corrupt master. She has to be that way or else she’ll be kicked out of the business of manipulating families as a square peg to fit into her round hole.


680. other

When someone enters the courtroom of Hon. Esther Morgenstern, one will see that the courtroom is quite different from other coutrooms in the State of New York. While most judges carry with them a professional tone and courtesy for those that appear before them, Hon. Morgenstern does not have such professionalism. Her temperament is lacking; she cuts off litigants and Defendants from speaking. She often displays an angry tone to those who are in her presence, something that is not becoming of a Judge who has to act impartial and follow the rule of law. Hon. Morgenstern's writing is like most other Judges, and she is competent in this area. Her judicial decision making process however, is lacking. For example, Defendants are often locked up in her part without a hearing. She tries to limit the record, usually favoring one party in the litigation at the disadvantage of the other. Hon. Morgenstern does not come across as an impartial judge during these instances. While she tends to be a firm Judge who does not take nonsense in her courtroom (often times a good attribute for a Judge to have), her abrasive personality prevents her from leading her IDV part effectively and limits her abilities. Because of this, many attorneys who enter her part do not respect Hon. Morgenstern's leadership as a Judge. Overall: 2/5 Temperament: 1/5 (Hon. Morgenstern's temperament greatly brings her down her abilities as a Judge, which is the primary reason why she received a 2 out of 5 stars as her total score. Her demeanor often comes across as unprofessional and angry. While she tries to be a firm Judge, this is greatly overshadowed by her temperament in the courtroom. Preparedness: 3/5 (Hon. Morgenstern is often prepared, but will angrily deride counsel or witnesses if they give her information she already knows. She lets some attorneys create a record, while often does not allow pro se litigants to speak. Her temperament has an effect on her overall preparedness score.) Knowledge: 2/5 (Hon. Morgenstern is very smart, but she often makes decisions without justifications, which include giving out harsh penalties without a writing or a court order.)


1058. party to case (pro se)

I have never seen such a vulgar display of racisism sexism and bias. She has no self control or objectivity that I have ever seen. She intimidates lawyers for fun and they are scared of her because they know if they stand up to her they will have to see her again in that courtroom, so they dont stand up for themselves or their clients. She can not be removed because she is backed by a powerful Jewish lobby. If by chance you are not a jewish woman you have absolutely no chance of ever getting a fair trial. If you are a minority you have a better chance at meeting God than receiving equality before the law in her courtroom. She destroys families and emotionally destroyes children worst of all. I am told by the clerks her despicable behavior is a result of her own three failed marriages. If you have a case before Morgenstern I fell terrible for you and your family.


3455. party to case (with attorney)

I must agree with every single comment made about this monster above by the prior comment before me, except that she is not smart and she is not punctual at all. She constantly does not know or remember orders she put in place or incidents that would normally affect the case. She makes decisions on kids lives with no regard to the effect it will have on the child. If you know anything about law, you will quickly notice that she allows whatever side she is favoring to submit any questions, testimony, or objections made by the side she's on. She actally isn't sexist because ivr witnessed her belittle, talk down to and totally disrespect mothers as well. She takes acs reports as the basis for many of her decisions as if what they determine in the 10 minute visits they may make can determine anything factual or consistent. She had an in camera with my son and if you didn't know any better would think she was a psychiatrist and been evaluating the child for months, meanwhile it was a 15-20 minute sit down. She doesn't allow the side she is against to speak or sustain most of their objections or anything that may favor their case. She takes hearsay as facts, and holds fact finding hearing for Almost no reason because she doesn't even focus on facts. She tries to intimidate the side she is against into settling for what the other side wants or settle in fear of possibly being arrested or all visits taken from them. I've witnessed 3 different parties give up and withdraw their petition for custody/visitation, each claiming that they are giving up trying to see their kids in her court room because they have been in front of her for multiple years already, followed all her unfair orders and still can't get unsupervised visits and or even sleepovers under her ruling. She makes parents feel as if they are unfit parents abdominal unfortunately some give in to her antics. I myself did not allow her to get me, and I faught and still am fighting 2 1/2 years later and not that I'm proud of it at all and wish my son didn't have to go through the hell she helped him go through (i say helped because the mother had a hand in it and let the judge run wild on our son) But they together alienated my son against the mother as to where now my son doesn't even want to visit his mom., and has refused to even go with mom at all. The judge was aware that the mother put a knife to my son, poked him with it, threatened his life, laughed about it in front of him 10 mins later, and that my son refused to go back to his mother and was staying with me daily against her order But still 2 weeks later granted full custody to mother although we wee in front of her for my petition for an order of protection for my son for the knife incident. Also granted me zero visitation and made several unfair orders after that, even a full stay away for me on my son, although I did absolutely nothing wrong. I'll stop here. She is a horrible judge bottom line. They don't have zero stars, so I have to give 1 star But know she doesn't deserve any at all.


4350. party to case (pro se)

This judge is a monster and not even in disguise. I'm sure that she will burn in an eternal fire in her next life. She awarded my daughter to her dad after i relocated and i came to a visitation agreement with her drug addicted father. Not only is he on drugs but he and his girlfriend both beats my child. My baby can also decribe them having sexual intercourse while she lays in a bed right beside them. This is happening every where and it's gotta stop! We have to kick that beanch from beneath her ass. They make you give a star anyway.


3533. other

She is an evil person my children mom violates every court order she gets, and when I spoke up about it evil morganstern supenend my rights to see my kids.


5702. courthouse employee

Esther Morgenstern is the worst judge I have ever met. She decides when and if someone is guilty and just punishes them, based on non-existential evidence. As a court employee, I have been in many court rooms, and I can find fault with many judges, but none as much as with Morgenstern. The Appelate Division has overruled her many times, which is one of the reasons she was asked to leave Brooklyn Family Court in the early 2000s, and the FBI has investigated her while she was in Queens. Welcome back to Brooklyn, Morgenstern. I feel sorry for the borough.


2517. witness

Stop ordering children to live with abusers , Judge Shame on you


6563. attorney (private practice)

No rhyme nor reason as to how she runs her court, Judge Morgenstern does not accept findings of a court appointed Forensic evaluator, or extensive findings, only to continue to allow the parties to keep adding to their legal fees in litigation. She will not make sound decision based on what is based for the child(ren). She will only be interested if parties have come to agreements. Judge, let's take charge here and be pro-active in decision making, especially when you experience mental health issues or domestic violence of either parent. Do you want to be the Judge that's going to hit the front page of the Daily News for not doing what's best for the child? Start taking control and granting the parent full and legal custody to the deserving parent instead of always prompting to get the non custodian more than visitation, especially when they have been dead beats in the past but show up in your courtroom as the model parent to fool you and your Children's Law Center attorney, that you seems to control. God is watching, it's time to do make your cases shorter and either make attorneys come to an agreement best for the child or for you to make that decision without delaying due process and justice any longer.


3521. other

Judge Morgenstern is a saint. Every lawyer and judge on the bench should learn from her.


4670. party to case (pro se)

She is wonderful


6368. party to case (with attorney)

It has been more than 10 years since I went before Judge Morgenstern in the Queens Superior Court, and I feel most thankful for her understanding of the circumstances regarding domestic violence. My experience with the legal system has been a nightmare, but my opinion of Judge Morgenstern is nothing but positive. I feel gratitude to her for protecting me and my child during a difficult time. Judge Morgenstern (in my opinion) is a strong, dedicated, professional that fights a tough battle in her court room. I can't say enough good things about her.


6813. party to case (with attorney)

My short statement will explain my post clearly DIVORCED 11 YEARS NOW,every so often I Google Judge Morgenstern hoping to read she has been indicted and jailed for crimes from the bench or her obituary.


6775. party to case (pro se)

I agree with every commit as well. I had no justice to my case. My ex husband has manipulated our whole case she cant even see that he was emotionally destroying the fact that Judge Morgenstern was on his side, or she just didnt care about us both as all and wanted to see our family fail. Despite the outcome I still can say that family court is not a good place for families. If you can settle with couseling, family, or private church people I would hope that you have second thoughts. Especially for minorities. In God we trust is right but not her courtroom. God bless her anyway. ZERO STARS!!!


7461. attorney (private practice)

Morgenstern is a Nightmare!! She makes terrible and unfair decisions all around. She should be thrown off the bench and not be able to be a judge anymore!!


7896. party to case (with attorney)

I'm not sure why she's a judge. She lack empathy, she doesn't care about facts, she desensitized to the judicial system primarily around domestic violence. She comes in late, have no care in the world about individual that's in her court. I wish should would retire already.


8006. other

A former law clerk, who came to the bench in 1996, she is overwhelmed by cases she has taken on with the criminal court, divorce, and family courts. That case-load has been increased by taking over the cases of another abusive Judge, Patricia Henry, who thankfully retired in July 2016. One attorney states that Morgenstern “was hand-picked by Sheldon Silver’s cronies to eviscerate Brooklyn’s families for federal money from the Title IV-D program... She is a loyal mutt for a corrupt master.” Morgenstern’s bleached blond hair and arrogant demeanor give her the look of an aging Barbarella on a bad acid trip. A divorcee herself, she takes the bench at a leisurely 11am and speeds through cases taking away children, jailing fathers and imposing impossible conditions as part of orders of protection. She interrupts and derides attorneys, recently scolding one public defender to “grow a pair” when he asked to be relieved from the case. She gives pro se litigants very short thrift – and discriminates viciously against fathers. Trials are a travesty: defense experts are precluded, court favorites are included and decisions take months while children have no contact with one of their parents – almost always their father.


8340. attorney (private practice)

She is a disgrace to every single judge on this planet. She favors certain lawyers One sided. Shame on her There one particular divorce attorney who she favors who is also the scum of the earth. Real money grubbing and heartless.


8926. other

our small family is in the midst right now of dealing with this unreasonable heartless judge. my nephew is trying desparately to see his child without an order of protection that was initiated by an extremely unstable, vindictive angry woman whos lies have been actually entertained by this ruthless judge. there is no mercy shown to a man who has proven his ability and desire to care for his child thru supervised visits that were given an excellent report by his social worker. the most outlandish lies that the childs mother has presented to this judge has been given credence without absolutely no proof of said allegations. from reading these comments about this judges behavior and track record in destroying families and taking children away from their decent hardworking fathers is extremely discouraging and devastating. what hope do we have? our family is in so much pain over this drawn out torture imposed by this judge. how can she not have the interest of the child and be unbiased based on the actual facts of my nephews track record? why is she entertaining the allegations of an unstable woman who is not caring about the repercusions of her childs mental state by trying to seek revenge? why is this judge even still on the bench? from the comments I have read here it sounds like shes not even an upstanding and honorable person who takes pride in her work to help families. I hope eventually our outcome will be positive and fair. that is what we are all counting on.


9122. party to case (with attorney)

I am recently losing custody of my daughter. Her father I posted the order of protection which I had for three years, after he abused me. He committed marriage fraud getting his citizenship from me, committed tax fraud, raped my sister, and abused me (almost killed me) Morgenstern refuses to re-open my trial and goes by how much " stability " he has with his girlfriend- FYI he is still married to me, living in adultery and my child learning from this. Someone sue this judge or give her a heart! I'm going to keep fighting and go to a higher court! God bless me. If anyone has advice please reach out!

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