Protecting Whistleblowers & The Injured

Charles C. Goetsch

  • Partner


New Haven, CT





Charles C. Goetsch has over 35 years’ experience helping injured railroad workers recover under the FELA and prosecuting retaliation against employees who have blown the whistle on fraud or unsafe conditions. He has tried over 60 federal jury trials and argued over a dozen federal appeals, including a landmark case before the United States Supreme Court. 

In a published decision upholding the first FRSA jury verdict in the nation, United States District Judge Janet Bond Arterton recognized Attorney Goetsch's "nationally recognized specialization in train law" and "exceptional performance in being the first attorney to try a FRSA case to a successful verdict," and stated for the record: "Attorney Goetsch is undeniably a leading specialist in the law governing railroad employees' rights, and his longstanding and highly developed practice makes him more efficient, creative, and effective for his railroad employee clients than an attorney of similar trial experience in federal litigation but without the benefits of his specialization." Barati v. Metro North Railroad Co., 2013 WL-1296484 (D.Conn. 2013).

Well over a dozen of his cases have resulted in multi-million dollar verdicts or settlements, and he created the leading resources for FRSA matters, the Train Law Blog and the "Rail Whistleblower Resources" library page at

He is listed as a SuperLawyer in the field of Plaintiff Employment Law. Charlie has offices in New York City and Washington D.C. as well as New Haven, Connecticut.

Areas Of Practice

  • Railroad Injuries FELA 25%
  • Whistleblower Retaliation 25%
  • False Claims Act and qui tam 50%

Bar Admissions

  • New York
  • Connecticut
  • District of Columbia
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals District of Columbia Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 2nd Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 3rd Circuit
  • U.S. District Court District of Connecticut
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of New York


  • Harvard University Law School, Cambridge, Massachusetts
    • LL.M., Master of Law(s) - 00/1977
  • University of Connecticut School of Law, Hartford, Connecticut
    • J.D., Doctor of Jurisprudence - 00/1976
    • Honors: Editor, University of Connecticut Law Review
  • Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island
    • B.A., Bachelor of Arts - 00/1973
    • Honors: magna cum laude
    • Honors: Phi Beta Kappa

Published Works

  • Essays on Simeon E. Baldwin, 1981
  • Introduction to Symposium on the New Federalism 56 Connecticut Bar Journal 186, 1982
  • Parody as Free Speech The Replacement of the Fair Use Doctrine By First Amendment , Protection3 Western New England Law Review 39, 1980
  • Remembering a Wondrous Wale, New York Times, Sunday Edition, May 18, 1986
  • A History of the New Haven Federal Courthouse, 59 Connecticut Bar Journal , 380, 1985
  • (ed.), The Autobiography of Thomas L. Chadbourne, 1985
  • The Future of Legal Formalism, 24 American Journal of Legal History 221, 1980
  • Dying Declarations: Connecticut Common Law and the New Federal Rules of Evidence, 50 Connecticut Bar Journal 201, 1975
  • Comment, Conservation Restrictions: A Survey, 8 Connecticut Law Review 383, 1976
  • A History of the First One Hundred Years of the Connecticut Association: 1875-1975, 49 Connecticut Bar Journal 201, 1975
  • The Immigrant and America: Assimilation of a German Family, 42 Annals of Iowa 15-27, 114-25, 1973

Representative Cases

  • Metro-North Commuter R.R. v. Buckley, 521 U.S. 424, 1997, U.S. Supreme Court
  • Millea v. Metro-North Rail Road, 2011 U.S. App. LEXIS 16354, 2011, 2nd Circuit
  • Araujo v. New Jersey Transit Rail, 708 F.3d 152 , 2013, 3rd Circuit
  • Barati v. Metro North Rail Road, 2013 WL 1192622 , 2013, D. Conn.
  • Schneider v. National R.R. Passenger Corp., 854 F.2d 14, 1988, C.A.2 (Conn.), 1988103766
  • Nairn v. National R.R. Passenger Corp., 837 F.2d 565, 1988, C.A.2 (Conn.), 1988013023
  • DeChico v. Metro-North Commuter R.R., 758 F.2d 856, 1985, C.A.2 (Conn.), 1985117479
  • Farley v. Metro-North Commuter R.R., 865 F.2d 33, 1989, C.A.2 (N.Y.), 1989007678
  • Brady v. National R.R. Passenger Corp., 714 F.Supp. 601, 1989, D.Conn., 1989091306

Representative Clients

  • IBEW - Railroad Division
  • Qui Tam Relators
  • Whistleblowers
  • Injured Railroad Workers

Classes / Seminars

  • Faculty, "Second Circuit Practice & Procedures: Doing It Right," , Connecticut Bar Association CLE Program, , 1998
  • Faculty, "Civil Federal Practice Seminar," , Connecticut Bar Association Annual Meeting, 1996

Honors And Awards

  • American Bar Foundation Fellow in Legal History
  • Visiting Scholar, Yale Law School
  • Selected as a SuperLawyer in the field of Plaintiff Employment Law
  • Nationally Recognized Specialization in Train Law, District Judge Janet Bond Arterton

Professional Associations And Memberships

  • Taxpayers Against Fraud
  • National Employment Lawyers Association
  • Connecticut Employment Lawyers Association
  • Academy of Rail Labor Attorneys, 1985 to Present
  • Connecticut Bar Association
  • American Bar Association
  • American Bar Foundation Fellow
  • Connecticut Bar Association, Chairman, Federal Practice Section, 1990 to 1993
  • Civil Justice Advisory Group for District of Connecticut, Chairman, 1991 to 1993
  • International Academy of Trial Lawyers
  • The Second Circuit Committee on History and Commemorative Events, Member (appointed by Chief Judge), 1995 to 1997
  • Legal History Committee, Connecticut Bar Association, Chairman, 1996 to 2006
  • Connecticut Bar Journal, Editor-at-Large, 1985 to 1995

Past Employment Positions

  • Law Clerk, United States Circuit Court Judge Leonard P. Moore, 1979 to 1980
  • Law Clerk, United States District Judge Ellen Bree Burns, 1978 to 1979

Pro Bono Activities

  • President, Thimble Islands Ferry District, 2011 to Present
  • Coordinator, Metro North Railroad Labor Coalition, 1983 to 2003
  • Trustee, Hopkins School, New Haven, Connecticut, 1994 to 2004
  • Elected Member, Board Selectmen, Town of Woodbridge, CT, 1997 to 2001


  • English