J. Charles Gerbron, Jr. is a dynamic attorney who represents businesses, developers, non-profits, and individuals on a variety of litigation, corporate, and land use-related matters. As a trial attorney, Charlie is an experienced practitioner and skilled courtroom advocate who has successfully represented clients in the courts of common pleas of Chester, Philadelphia, Montgomery, Delaware, Bucks, and Berks County, as well as in Federal Court. His trial litigation practice regularly involves corporate litigation, complex commercial litigation, land use litigation, real estate litigation, and construction litigation, among other practice areas.
As a zoning and land use attorney, Charlie regularly represents clients before municipal boards of supervisors/commissioners, planning commissions, and zoning hearing boards. He is frequently retained by developers, businesses, non-profits, and individuals to assist them in obtaining approvals, relief under applicable zoning and land development ordinances, and challenging the validity of zoning ordinances on procedural and substantive grounds.
Charlie’s appellate practice is focused primarily on land use, zoning, corporate, complex commercial, real estate, and construction-related litigation in Pennsylvania’s Commonwealth Court, Superior Court, and Supreme Court. His experience, expertise, and enthusiasm for the practice area make him a formidable appellate advocate.
Charlie joined MacElree Harvey in 2012 and was elected partner in 2018. Before joining MacElree Harvey, Charlie served as an appellate prosecutor in the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office, where he gained extensive experience litigating before the Pennsylvania Superior and Supreme courts. Charlie has also litigated civil rights and labor and employment matters in the federal courts.
Notable Recent Representations
Zoning & Land Use Litigation
- Successfully represented a developer in challenging the procedural validity of an amendment to a zoning ordinance.
- Successfully represented a developer in obtaining the necessary zoning and land development approvals for a 55+ community.
- Successfully represented an independent school in obtaining zoning and land development approvals for a new STEM/STEAM center and outdoor instruction area.
- Successfully represented a large agricultural supply company in obtaining extensive zoning relief to construct a cutting-edge composting operation.
- Successfully represented a biotech firm that produces and distributes environmentally friendly products in obtaining a variance under local zoning ordinances to construct a critical addition to the facility.
Charlie also regularly leads representations involving variances, special exceptions, conditional uses, zoning officer determinations and notices of violation, development rights, conservation easements and other zoning and land use related matters.
- Successfully represented a large electrical subcontractor in a multi-claim, multi-action dispute with the owner and general contractor of a multi-million dollar casino project.
- Successfully represented a developer-owner in a multi-million dollar mechanics’ lien and breach of contract dispute.
- Successfully litigated construction defect disputes on behalf of general contractors, subcontractors, and owners.
- Successfully represented a builder-developer against allegations of defective stormwater management facilities.
- Successfully represented an owner in a dispute over charges pursuant to a commercial construction agreement.
Charlie also regularly leads representations concerning construction defects, payment disputes, mechnics liens, and subcontractor-contractor disputes.
- Successfully represented a managing member in a dispute among members of a limited liability company.
- Successfully represented a corporation following a books and records demand.
- Successfully litigated a partnership dispute.
- Successfully represented a minority shareholder in a “freeze-out” dispute.
- Successfully represented a construction material supplier in a shareholder dispute.
Real Estate Litigation
- Successfully represented a builder-developer in a dispute with a bank concerning a multi-million suburban development.
- Successfully represented a landowner in obtaining an injunction to ensure continued access to property after threats by an adjacent landowner to block access.
- Successfully represented a general contractor in an easement and boundary dispute with an adjacent landowner.
- Successfully represented a homeowners’ association in a dispute with an association member involving violations of restrictive covenants and claims under the Fair Housing Act.
- Successfully represented a homeowner in a dispute with a homeowners’ association motivated by bias as demonstrated by selective enforcements of restrictive covenants.
Charlie also regularly leads representations involving easements, boundary disputes, adverse possession and prescriptive easement claims, agreement of sale termination and deposit disputes, claims of misrepresentation or non-disclosure in the sale of real property, homeowners’ association disputes, and stormwater litigation.
Complex Commercial Litigation
- Successfully represented a financier involved a loan-procurement dispute that included allegations of fraud, misrepresentation, and deceptive acts.
- Successfully represented a food service provider in a complex breach of contract dispute.
- Successfully represented a produce cooperative in a contract and payment dispute with members.
- Successfully represented a produce grower involved in a complex contractual dispute with a partner-grower and produce purchaser.
- Successfully represented a produce grower involved in a payment dispute with a produce purchaser implicating the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act (PACA).
- Chester County Bar Association (Chair of Real Estate Law Section)
- Pennsylvania Bar Association
- Trustee, Upland Country Day School
- Director, Kennett Symphony of Chester County
- Member, Historic Kennett Square Economic Development Task Force
- Lawrenceville School Invitational Ice Hockey Tournament Committee
- 26 MacElree Harvey Attorneys Named 2019 Top Lawyers by Main Line Today
- MacElree Harvey Attorneys Named to 2019 Pennsylvania Super Lawyers List
- 23 Attorneys Named Main Line Today’s Top Lawyers 2018
- J. Charles Gerbron, Jr. Selected as Partner
- Real Estate Case Law Update: J. Charles Gerbron, Jr. to present at the Chester County Bar Association
- Thirteen MacElree Harvey Attorneys Recognized in 2017 Edition of Pennsylvania Super Lawyers
- MacElree Harvey Attorneys named 2016 Top Lawyers by Main Line Today Magazine
- J. Charles Gerbron, Jr. Chairs Chester County Bar Association’s Real Estate Section
- Waters of the United States: Oppressive Overstep or Duplicative Regulation?
- Not All Debts Are Created Equal