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Smith & Messina, LLP

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Charles A. Messina, Esq.

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Attorney Charles A. Messina is a Buffalo native who has lived, studied, and worked in the Western New York area all of his life. Growing up in Hamburg and Boston in the Southtowns, Charles also resided in Tonawanda for nearly 10 years and is intimately familiar with both the Northtowns and Southtowns. He has devoted his legal practice to matrimonial and family law and has established a reputation as a knowledgeable resource and effective advocate for his clients in all matters of divorce, child custody and family court proceedings. 

Prior to law school, Mr. Messina served Western New York for approximately 8 years as a paramedic and obtained a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from D'Youville College in 2001. He is a Registered Nurse and has represented numerous clients in EMS, Nursing, Emergency Services, Fire Services and Law Enforcement over the years. Mr. Messina received his Juris Doctor in June of 2004 from SUNY at Buffalo Law School and was admitted to practice in the Courts of the State of New York on March 3, 2005 after sitting for the New York State Bar Exam.

Following his graduation from UB, Charles initially concentrated in criminal law and served as an intern at the Erie County District Attorney's Office, after which he settled into divorce and family law as an associate attorney at the highly-acclaimed Buffalo law firm of Offermann, Cassano, Greco, Slisz & Adams, LLP. During his five years with the firm, Charles trained directly under trial lawyers Tom Cassano and Joan Adams, both of whom are Fellows of the prestigious American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers and well respected by the Western New York Matrimonial Bar.

Practice Areas

  • Divorce
  • Child Custody
  • Personal Injury
  • Modification of Prior Judgments/Orders
  • Visitation Rights
  • Relocation


  • State University of New York, Buffalo School of Law, Buffalo, New York
    • J.D. - 2004
    • Honors: Elected to The Order of Barristers, 2004
    • Honors: Treasurer of Jessup International Moot Court Board, 2004
    • Honors: Robert Connelly Trial Technique Award, 2003
    • Major: Criminal Law
  • D'Youville College
    • B.S. - 2001
    • Honors: cum laude
    • Major: Nursing

Bar Admissions

  • New York, 2005
  • U.S. District Court Western District of New York, 2005
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court Western District of New York, 2005

Representative Cases

  • In re Klem, 362 B.R. 585, Feb 06, 2007, Bankr.W.D.N.Y.
  • Amy D. v. David D, 825 N.Y.S.2d 328, 4 Dept.. Nov 17, 2006
  • Johnson v. Johnson, 891 N.Y.S.2d 848, 2009, App Div 4th Dept
  • Demjanenko v. Demjanenko, 913 N.Y.S.2d 844, 2010, App Div 4th Dept

Professional Associations

  • New York State Bar Association, Family Law Section, Member
  • Erie County Bar Association, Member, Matrimonial and Family Law Committee
  • Erie County Bar Association, Member, CLE Advisory Committee


  • Super Lawyers for Upstate New York

Classes & Seminars

  • Matrimonial Agreements, New York State Bar Association at Basic Matrimonial Practice Seminar, 2007 to Present
  • Presenter, Case Law Updates, Erie County Bar Association on Statutory, 2006 to Present
  • Divorce 101, Seminar, 2011 to Present

Past Positions

  • Offermann, Cassano, Greco, Slisz & Adams, LLP, Associate Attorney, 2005 to 2009
  • Offermann, Cassano, Greco, Slisz & Adams, LLP, Law Clerk, 2004 to 2005
  • Law Offices of Sliwa & Lane, Law Clerk, 2002 to 2004
  • Erie County District Attorney's Office, Summer Intern, 2002 to 2002