Picture of Joseph F. Murphy Jr. (1944 - 2022)

Joseph F. Murphy, Jr. (1944 - 2022)

Partner (2011 - 2021)
Judge, Maryland Court of Appeals
(2007 - 2011)
Chief Judge, Maryland Court of Special Appeals (1996 - 2007)

In Memory - Partner

We mourn the loss of our wonderful friend and colleague. Joe was an outstanding lawyer, judge, jurist, and educator who loved his work and was well respected by his colleagues and students.

Joe will be greatly missed by all.


The Honorable Joseph F. Murphy, Jr. retired from the Court of Appeals of Maryland on October 31, 2011 to join Silverman Thompson. His practice focuses on alternative dispute resolution including mediation and arbitration. Judge Murphy also provides appellate and litigation consultation services. Judge Murphy is considered Maryland's foremost expert in appellate advocacy.

Prior to his elevation to the Court of Appeals, Judge Murphy was Chief Judge of the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland, the state's intermediate appellate court. Judge Murphy has authored hundreds of published appellate opinions. He also served as a trial judge on the Circuit Court for Baltimore County from 1984-1993.

Judge Murphy has served as a former Deputy State's Attorney for Baltimore City, as an Assistant State's Attorney, and as a Legal Aid Bureau Staff Attorney.

From 1976 to 1984, Judge Murphy distinguished himself in private practice. Several of his reported cases during that time includeSherman v. State, 288 Md. 636 (1980) and In Re Siegel. 294 Md. 635 (1982); United States v. Stencil, 629 F.2d 984 (4th Cir. 1980); United States v. Morrow, 717 F.2d 800 (3rd Cir. 1983); Silbert v. Ramsey, 301 Md. 96 (1984); Turner v. State, 299 Md. 565 (1984); State v. Hiken, 43 Md. App. 259 (1979); Burrell v. State, 42 Md. App. 130 (1979); United States v. Griffin, 660 F.2d 996 (4th Cir. 1981); United States v. Hadaway, 681 F.2d 214 (4th Cir. 1982); Robertson v. State, 295 Md. 688 (1983); Winters v. State, 301 Md. 214 (1984), Wright v. State, 58 Md. App. 447 (1984).

Judge Murphy's litigation practice concluded in 1984, when he was appointed to the Circuit Court for Baltimore County.

In addition to his active practice at Silverman Thompson, Judge Murphy teaches Evidence at University of Baltimore School of Law and Trial Practice at the University of Maryland School Of Law. He is the author of the Maryland Evidence Handbook.

Professional & Bar Association Memberships

President, J. Dudley Digges Inn of Court
Member Since: 1989-1990

Fellow, Maryland Bar Foundation, Inc.
Member Since: 1984- present

Maryland State Bar Association, Member
Member Since: 1976-present
(criminal pattern jury instructions committee, 1980-; criminal law & practice section council, 1987-, chair, 1987-88; committee on laws, 1988-)

Officer and trustee, Maryland Institute for the Continuing Professional Education of Lawyers (MICPEL)
Member Since: 1984-1988

Elected President of the Maryland Criminal Defense Attorneys Association.
Member Since: 1984

Appointed to the Trial Experience Committee of the United States District Court for the District of Maryland.
Member Since: 1984

Criminal Law Section Council

Government and Judicial Service
  • 2007-2011: Judge, Court of Appeals
  • 1996-2007: Chief Judge of Court of Special Appeals and Chair of the Court of Appeals Standing Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure.
  • 1993: Judge, Court of Special Appeals
  • 1984-1993: Associate Judge of the Circuit Court for Baltimore County
  • 1975-1976: Deputy State's Attorney, Baltimore City
  • 1970-1975: Assistant State's Attorney, Baltimore City
  • Best Lawyers: Lawyer of the Year - 2021
  • Maryland Super Lawyers: 2014 - 2021
  • 2018-2020 Best Lawyers: Mediation/Arbitration
  • 2020 Best Lawyers: Appellate
  • 2012 H. Vernon Eney Endowment Fund Award
  • 2010: Received the University of Maryland School of Law's Benjamin L. Cardin Public Service Award
  • 2008: Received the University of Baltimore School of Law's Charles Hamilton Houston Award
  • 2005: The Honorable Joseph F. Murphy, Jr. Legal Writing Competition Award was established by the Criminal Law Section Council of the M.S.B.A.
  • 2003: Received the Daily Record's Top Leadership in Law Award
  • 2003: Received the Maryland Crime Victims' Resource Center's Maryland Champion for Crime Victims Award
  • 2002: Received the Daniel O'Connell Law Society's Distinguished Service Award
  • 1997: Received the Baltimore County Bar Association's Annual Law Day Award.
  • 1994: Received the Maryland Bar Foundation (second annual) Award for Professional Legal Excellence in the Advancement of Professional Competence.
  • 1992: Appointed (by the President of the Maryland Senate and the Speaker of the Maryland House of Delegates) Chair of The Committee to Revise Article 27.
  • 1990: Received Robert C. Heeney Memorial Award from the Criminal Law Section Council of the Maryland State Bar Association.
  • 1989: Received the highest rating in a lawyers survey of Baltimore (City and County) Circuit Court Judges (Baltimore Magazine. "Judging the Judges," Vol. 82, No. 6, p. 50, June, 1989)
  • 1989: Initiated as an honorable member in the J. Harry LaBrun Chapter of the Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity.
  • 1984: Profiled in a Towson Times cover story, "King In Court," August 8, 1984.
  • 1980: Received an "A.V." rating from Martindale-Hubbell.
  • 1979 and 1983: selected by fellow lawyers for listing in the National Directory of Criminal Lawyers.
  • 1977, 1978 and 1996: received the University of Baltimore Law School Outstanding Part-Time Instructor Award.
Best Lawyers Best Lawyers: Lawyer of the Year
  • "ORAL MOTIONS IN LIMINE" 14 Litigation no. 3, p. 15 (Spring 1988).
  • MARYLAND EVIDENCE HANDBOOK The Michie Company, 1989; (with 1990, 1991 and 1992 Pocket Part Supplements).
  • MARYLAND EVIDENCE HANDBOOK, 2d ed. The Michie Company, 1993 (with 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, and 1998 Pocket Part Supplements).
  • A Tribute to Professor John M Brumbaugh , 55 Md. L. Rev. 522 (1996).
  • A Wistful Farewell to Pink Bugg & Queen Caroline , 26 3 U. Balt. L.F. 27 (Spring 1996).
  • MARYLAND EVIDENCE HANDBOOK, 3rd ed. Lexis Law Publishing, 1999 (with 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009 Pocket Part Supplements)
  • MARYLAND EVIDENCE HANDBOOK, 4th ed. Lexis Law Publishing, 2010 (with 2011 Pocket Part Supplements)