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Carlton S Chen

Business Attorney at West Hartford, CT

5.0   50 reviews
Free consultation Virtual consultation available
Free consultation Virtual consultation available
  • State Years
    Connecticut - CT 35 years
    New York - NY 40 years
  • Licensed for 35 years
    State CT
    Acquired 1988
    Active No misconduct found
  • Licensed for 40 years
    State NY
    Acquired 1983
    Currently Registered No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Carlton

Learn Carlton’s areas of practice.

Practice areas
  1. Business
    Creation and dissolution of for-profit and non-profit entities. Legal issues regarding corporate governance, operations, and dispute resolution involving business partners, vendors, employment, landlord/tenant, and consumer protection.

  2. Employment and labor
    Wrongful termination, executive compensation and employment agreements, employment discrimination, toxic work environment and harassment.

  3. Contracts and agreements
    Drafting and negotiating of all types of contracts and agreements, including partnership, debt, lending, and equipment financing agreements, from simple to the most complex documents and instruments required.

  4. Mergers and acquisitions
    Buying and selling businesses, including franchises.

  5. Intellectual property
    Drafting and negotiating patent, trademark, and intellectual property licensing agreements, and applications for trademarks with the USPTO and copyrights with the US Copyright Office.


Connecticut Law Tribune Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient. Juris Doctor degree from NYU School of Law. Licensed in CT & NY. I primarily represent entrepreneurs, startups, established and early stage companies and provide strategic and practical legal solutions to help leverage their branding, products and technology. I also represent individuals with employment-related issues. My focus is handling employment and business dispute resolutions, buying and selling businesses, formation of joint ventures and strategic alliances, complying with regulations, and technology licensing. At my firm, we also represent clients in bringing and defending lawsuits in Federal and state court. We are ever mindful of providing the best representation and results possible at the most reasonable cost.  


Client's Choice 2023,2022,2021,2020
Client's Choice
2023 2022 2021 + 1 ...
Top Contributor 2023,2022,2021,2020
Top Contributor
2023 2022 2021 + 1 ...

Photos and videos

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Kurien Ouellette LLC
836 Farmington Avenue
Suite 137
West Hartford, CT, 06119


5.0 / 5.0
  50 customer reviews
5 Star
4 Star
3 Star
2 Star
1 Star
Client's Choice 2023
Client's Choice
Client's Choice is an Avvo award granted to attorneys with a significant number of client reviews over 4 stars in a given year.
Posted by Gregory | January 23, 2024
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Wonderfull experience helping me understand copyright law
Atty Chen spent all of the time I needed to help me understand the complexities of my situation and gave me a path going foreword so I good continue doing what I love to do but armed with ways to protect myself from liabilities. He was interesting to listen to but didn’t hamper my need to explain. This is the first time I’ve spoke to an attorney about these matters and feel a lot better for the experience. A definite 5 star experience.
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Response from Carlton Chen January 24, 2024
Thanks for the review, Gregory. I appreciate your recommendation. Please feel free to reach out to me again should you have any legal questions and I'll try to help you as best as I can.
Posted by anonymous | January 20, 2024
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Excellent Service
Atty. Carlton was very helpful with all my questions. He explained all the details that I needed to know. He was also very prompt on returning calls and answering emails, which I can attest, not all lawyers do. He is definitely on my top list to call if I need more legal advice and if I need one to represent me for future business transactions.
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Response from Carlton Chen January 22, 2024
Thank you so much for your review. I'm glad I was able to allay your concerns even though you received correspondence via email from someone who purportedly is a lawyer. I do wish you all the best in 2024 and trust your business will thrive!
Posted by anonymous | November 16, 2023
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Very quick and thorough response on the statue regarding rental deposits
I contacted Mr. Chen with a question related to the return of security deposit as I am looking into suing my landlord. Mr. Chen responded very quickly via email and provided a very detailed response in a manner that was easy to comprehend. He was courteous, knowledgeable, and honest about the options of securing representation for my housing issue case. If I did need an attorney, I would feel comfortable moving forward with Mr. Chen.
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Response from Carlton Chen November 16, 2023
Thank you very much for your kind review. It was my pleasure to assist you in considering your options.
Posted by Douglas | October 9, 2023
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Advice on Podcast and Blog Liability
I have a podcast and a blog and am considering inviting comments from the public. I called Attorney Chen for advice on legal liability should a guest on either the pod or blog violate intellectual property rights. He listened carefully, advised me over the phone on means to protect against legal action, and, then, sent by email a very useful summary that I will keep by my computer. He reviewed some of my podcasts and found nothing of concern. His advice gave me confidence. I will assess my time availability and, if sufficient, will go public well prepared. I recommend Attorney Chen enthusiastically.
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Response from Carlton Chen October 9, 2023
Doug, thank you for your kind endorsement. I'm glad you reached out to me to discuss how as a blogger and podcaster you can proactively take steps to mitigate your risk of content-related claims associated with defamation, copyright infringement, trade disparagement, invasion of privacy, and even plagiarism. Much continued success with your online creativity. Best, Carlton
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Posted by Walter | July 26, 2023
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Great service
I contacted Carlton via Avvo regarding an easement issue, Carlton gave me a free consultation & guided me to the right path I needed even though he referred me to the right professional needed in my case, & didn't make a dollar on me! He reviewed the docs I had to advise me of my obligations & liabilities involved—Great service!
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Response from Carlton Chen July 28, 2023
Thank you, Walter. I'm glad to be of assistance in suggesting how the legal issues you are now facing can be resolved. Nevertheless, please know that having a lawyer involved in drafting or reviewing your contracts can help avoid risks and expensive disputes. Lawyers are trained to write contracts that clearly explain what each party will do and to anticipate problems that might arise.
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Posted by Ryan | June 28, 2023
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Highly recommend Mr. Chen!
Mr. Chen was extremely kind and knowledgeable. He attended to all of my needs and questions about intellectual property as well as responded very quickly. If I have any further questions/ work, best believe I will be returning back to him. I highly recommend him as a lawyer, he has the experience and passion you're looking for!
Response from Carlton Chen June 29, 2023
Thank you, Ryan, for your stellar review. Not every entrepreneur is astute as you regarding IP rights of others.
Posted by anonymous | June 20, 2023
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Thank you Attorney Chen
Attorney Chen helped me with a severance dispute with my employer and because of him I was able to get the severance agreement signed within a matter of days, to the full extent of my satisfaction. During our initial phone conversation he was kind and generous with information and advice. Our call lasted longer than the scheduled time but I was treated with professionalism, kindness and respect and he warmly encouraged me to fight for my right, while maintaining professionalism and without burning any bridges. Like Attorney Chen mentioned, my case would have been otherwise handled on contingency and that would have meant losing as much as half of the payout to legal fees. But Carlton didn't go for that route, he simply taught me some negotiations dos and donts, guided me towards the right direction, and only charged for the agreements he drafted which my employer ultimately signed. Carlton always responded quickly throughout the time we were on this case and even worked on father's day to draft the agreements for me while his family was visiting him - not only that, he also advised me to hold my ground, that I don't have to back down or compromise so easily, all the while handling it with grace. The wisdom and lessons I have learnt throughout this experience is not something that can simply be measured by the money that he helped me get. I can't recommend Attorney Chen highly enough, and if you're considering working with him, do not hesitate, he is excellent.
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Response from Carlton Chen June 21, 2023
Thank so much for your review! It was a pleasure working with you as a client who not only provided me with all of the relevant facts in your case but at the outset provided a detailed chronology of the events that transpired and the communications that were exchanged. From that vantage point, you were a “dream” client to work with. Best wishes for much continued success in your professional career!!
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Posted by anonymous | June 8, 2023
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Responsive, Knowledgeable, Great Personality
Mr. Chen was one of a handful of attorneys who answered my questions in an Avvo post. I consulted with him through email and a video call. Mr. Chen is very easy to talk to, he listens to all of your concerns, asks specific questions, and provides reasonable advice. He exhibited genuine concern for my issue(s). Mr. Chen is an attorney that truly cares. I am unable to move forward with hiring Mr. Chen at this time due to a small list of things I need to do first, but if that is the course of action I need to take I know Mr. Chen will fight for me.
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Response from Carlton Chen June 16, 2023
I was glad to discuss the matter with you and your spouse and review practical tactics and strategies to resolve your legal issues concerning that unscrupulous healthcare provider.
Posted by Naji Chester-Payne | May 5, 2023
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Carlton was very professional with his approach to my situation. He was kind and understanding. He's a great listener. I recommend highly recommend him.
Response from Carlton Chen May 8, 2023
Thank you, Naji, for your 5-star rating and recommendation.
Posted by Steffen | October 28, 2022
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Mr. Chen is the kind of lawyer you want. He lives his profession. Highly recommended!
Mr. Chen is the kind of lawyer you want. He lives his profession. He gave me free initial legal advice and he went the extra mile. You will recognize immediately that he loves what he does and that he really cares and want to help. And he knows his stuff. Great experience.
Response from Carlton Chen October 28, 2022
Steffen, thank you so much for your kind review. Besides being a business lawyer, I've been a C-level executive, a co-founder of startups, an entrepreneur, a business development consultant working with PE and VC firms, and an active angel investor. And beyond individual client service at law firms, I began my legal career at the Federal Trade Commission and served most of my legal career as in-house lawyer. Therefore, it's my pleasure to share my multi-dimensional perspective with you about the pertinent legal questions you raised.
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Posted by Robert | September 19, 2022
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Unusually good attorney - friendly, knowledgeable & confident
I had the good fortune of being introduced to attorney Chen a few weeks ago. I found him to be very personable and pleasant and he provided the direction I needed at the time. It is very encouraging when you get a console from such a professional that you feel much more confident after the initial meeting. He is smart, knowledgeable, and to the point. Which I greatly appreciated! I will be retaining Attorney Chen in the near future and would highly recommend his service.
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Response from Carlton Chen September 21, 2022
Thank you for your unsolicited stellar review. We look forward to zealously representing you.
Posted by Cynthia | September 4, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
My experience with Mr Carlton Chen as my lawyer
Mr Chen is a amazing lawyer very hands on with every task explains everything from start to finish to make you have a clear understanding of what's going on with your situation very helpful with a loving winning spirit I would recommend Mr Chen any day best lawyer I ever encountered and if ever need be I will be using him in future cases......
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Response from Carlton Chen September 21, 2022
Honestly, Cynthia, we couldn't have achieved our successes without your persistence and preparedness. In the first case, the judge granted our motion to dismiss the case on procedural grounds. In the second case, the judge ruled in your favor because the plaintiff failed to prove her case. In the third case, we put up a good fight but just ran out of defenses. Nevertheless, you performed superbly in each of the three trials. Thank you for being credible and reliable whenever called upon to testify and producing quality fact witnesses willing to testify. I couldn't have wished for a better client.
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Posted by Jenora | August 16, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Great Experience
I not only recommend attorney Carlton Chen, but I guarantee once you have used his service you too will look no further. He responds in an extreme timely matter, he is a very knowledge, trustworthy person. There is no other attorney that will work as hard for you. He is a wonderful attorney I could not have been happier and I will never go anywhere else. Carlton achieved the outcome I was looking for. I highly recommend him to anyone who needs sound legal advice.
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Response from Carlton Chen September 16, 2022
Thank you so much for being a valued client. I am so grateful for your trust in me and my law firm team. It is wonderful to hear that we've exceeded your expectations.
Posted by anonymous | July 12, 2022
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
I went on the and Attorney Chen's has been very helpful. I contacted him back in January 2022 with a situation re: negative neighbor and he gave brief advice. I recently reach back out on and Attorney Chen's responded immediately! I would really like to say, "Attorney really did give me great detail advice on the how to, what to do in reference to a case that is in court for negative neighbors. I would Highly recommend Attorney Chen's legal services just based on his precise knowledge, truth and accuracy.
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Response from Carlton Chen July 14, 2022
Sorry to hear about such awful neighbors. However, I was glad to be able to provide you with practical advice and review with you what a judge will look for (stalking as generally defined and fear of one's safety) to grant you as an applicant a civil protective order (CPO).
Posted by David | July 9, 2022
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Free consultation
Mr. Chen was great getting back to me in a timely manner allowing the opportunity to explain my situation. He was gracious enough to give me some advice and kind words.
Response from Carlton Chen July 14, 2022
David, thank you very much for your review. Please let me know how things work out for you. All the best, Carlton
Posted by anonymous | June 7, 2022
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Great advise that'll hopfully pay off!
Carlton Chen was quite forthcoming, thorough, and thoughtful in his consultation. He was always quick to respond to my repeated inquiries and did not shy away from giving me the unvarnished truth. I would recommend anyone to consult with him about your situation.
Response from Carlton Chen June 7, 2022
Thank you for your unsolicited recommendation. I really do appreciate it and am always open to assist those who, like me, are founders of startup businesses and have true entrepreneurial zest! We can do it!!
Posted by Matthew | May 5, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Superb Lawyer
I searched for days for a great lawyer based on reviews from Avvo and decided on Carlton. I am so glad I did!! Carlton works HARD. He responds to emails quickly. I am very happy with my experience. I like to understand the details and talk things through, and Carlton was more than happy to explain everything. I like the direction he took in my case and the class that he displayed in his practice. Superb Lawyer!!!!
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Response from Carlton Chen May 6, 2022
Matthew, thank you so much for your superlatives. It makes me so pleased to have represented wonderful clients such as you and your family members to navigate a difficult and emotional issue. I am glad we reached an exceptional outcome early on with the other party but certainly would have been ready to protect your rights in court, if necessary. Best to you and your family. Carlton
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Posted by Michael | March 19, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
A tremendous help
I hired Mr. Chen to help me fight my unemployment appeal hearing. My former employer appealed my initial hearing even though I won and they did not let me go for good reason. Mr. Chen went above and beyond to help me win my appeal hearing. He put together a great approach and I would highly recommend.
Response from Carlton Chen March 24, 2022
I appreciate your unqualified endorsement of me. This former employer was and continues to be a tenacious adversary. I feel privileged to be representing you. Thank you for your trust in me.
Posted by Eddy | February 24, 2022
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
gave us valuable legal advice
My wife and I wanted to start a business that sells products overseas and we didn't know what permits/licenses required. we searched the internet for weeks and couldn't find any answers until sent me a list of its top lawyers. I posted my queries on avvo and in less than 5 minutes, Mr. Chen was able to give me the answer. Then I decided to ask for a consultation. Mr. Chen gave me the best legal advice and explained everything in detail so I could understand. Mr. Chen is very professional, affable, excellent, caring and he is super easy to talk to. We are looking forward to work with him in the future.
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Response from Carlton Chen February 24, 2022
Wow, Eddy. Thanks so much for your rave review! I look forward to working with you and your wife. To prepare vendor and distribution agreements involving cross-border transactions, it’s prudent for importers to also retain foreign counsel to verify local legal requirements.
Posted by MD | December 29, 2021
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Mr D
You will not find a more attentive, customer service oriented, and respectful attorney. Mr. Chen cares and works hard for people.
Response from Carlton Chen January 7, 2022
Thank you very much for your confidence in me. You articulated what I try to do for every client of mine, which is to be very attentive to every client’s need, provide the most complete and responsive customer service possible, and to show the utmost respect not just to my clients but also everyone that I might encounter in the engagement, including adversaries.
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  • Free Consultation 30 minutes
Payment methods
Cash, Check, Credit Card


AVVO RATING 10.0 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Senior Of Counsel
  • Jia Law Group, P.C., New York Financial District, New York, NY
  • 2022 - Present
  • Attorney at Law
  • Kurien Ouellette LLC, West Hartford, CT
  • 2013 - Present
  • Vice President, General Counsel & Secretary
  • Colt's Manufacturing Company (Colt Firearms)
  • 1996 - 2012
  • General Counsel, Olin Hunt Specialty Products, Inc.
  • Olin Corporation
  • 1989 - 1996
  • Senior Associate
  • Gager Henry & Narkis, Attorneys at Law
  • 1987 - 1989
  • General Attorney
  • Sara Lee Corporation
  • 1982 - 1987
  • Staff Attorney
  • US Federal Trade Commission
  • 1980 - 1982
View all work experience


  • New York University School of Law
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 1980
  • Columbia University
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 1977

Sample of Legal Cases

  • False Claims Act Litigation
  • Case is pending.
  • Municipal Firearms Litigation (MFL)
  • All cases in this "bet-the-farm" MFL were eventually dismissed or withdrawn and, despite great costs to defend, including the payment of legal fees, Colt's Manufacturing Company paid zero damages to the plaintiffs.


  • Connecticut Asian Pacific American Bar Association
  • Member of Advisory Board
  • 2017 - Present
  • Connecticut China Council
  • Member of Board of Directors
  • 2017 - Present
  • Taiyuan Enterprise Union & Taiyuan Entrepreneur Association (Shanxi Province, China)
  • International Counsel (Honorary)
  • 2016 - Present
  • Willow Wood Country Club
  • Chairman, Nominating Committee
  • 2015 - Present
  • Keiretsu Forum Mid Atlantic
  • Founding Member, New York Chapter
  • 2014 - Present
  • Connecticut Bar Association
  • Member of House of Delegates
  • 2014 - 2015
  • Connecticut Asian Pacific American Bar Association
  • Member of Board of Directors
  • 2008 - 2017
  • West Hartford Chamber of Commerce
  • 1st Vice Chairman & various positions
  • 2007 - 2014
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Lifetime Achievement Award
  • Connecticut Law Tribune
  • 2015
  • Impact Award
  • Connecticut Asian Pacific American Bar Association
  • 2012
  • James W. Cooper Life Fellow
  • Connecticut Bar Foundation
  • 2010
  • Excellence in Corporate Practice Award
  • Association of Corporate Counsel
  • 2002
  • Silver Beaver Award
  • Connecticut Yankee Council BSA
  • 2001
View all awards

Speaking Engagements

  • TechStars Hartford - Startup Week
  • The Care and Feeding of Startups: What Angel Investors Want
  • 2020
  • Simple Steps for Starting Your Business, Part 6: Funding Sources/Entrepreneurial Panel
  • Small Business Founders' Experience and Lessons Learned
  • 2019
  • Shandong Province, China SME (Small-Medium Enterprises) Delegation
  • Joint Ventures, Strategic Alliances and Partnerships
  • 2019
  • Emerging Markets in Health Care: Public Ends Private Means
  • Chinese Pharmaceutical Industry Today
  • 2017
  • Non-Profit and Tax-Exempt Organizations
  • How to Start a Non-Profit Organization
  • 2016
  • International Hospital Federation
  • Study Tour: New York: The Gateway to Excellence in Health Care
  • 2016
  • Emerging Markets in Health Care: Public Ends Private Means
  • China: Investing in Emerging Technologies
  • 2016
  • Momentum - UConn Engineering
  • Leveraging Opportunities Through University-Industry Collaboration
  • 2013
  • NDIA Industry Conference
  • Demystifying Intellectual Property and Data Rights: Government and Industry Perspectives
  • 2010
  • International Law Symposium at NAPABA 2010 National Convention
  • Government Offsets and Countertrade in the Asia Pacific
  • 2010
  • ACCA 2002 Annual Meeting
  • Avoiding & Dealing with Class Actions
  • 2002
View all speaking engagements

Attorney endorsements

Received (7)
Given (9)
Endorse Carlton
Landlord or tenant Attorney | Jan 23
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I know Attorney Chen to be a knowledgeable and dedicated lawyer. I endorse him without reservation."
Business Attorney | Feb 04
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. I have been reading his answers and articles for years and have always enjoyed his ability to explain all the issues that a client should be concerned with. His insights have often helped shape the way I view a business or contract situation. I think his careful attention to detail is a rare and valuable quality in an attorney."
Telecommunications Attorney | Dec 19
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Attorney Chen gives sound and reasonable advice on avvo. His answers lead me to conclude he is a very thought attorney. I endorse this lawyer."
Unknown Attorney | Oct 13
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"It is clear from Carlton's responses on AVVO that he is a knowledgeable and capable advocate who cares about his clients. I endorse this attorney."
Business Attorney | Jan 24
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Even though he is new to Avvo, it is immediately obvious that the answers of Mr. Chen are accurate, analytic and customized to the needs of the Avvo askers. The answer of his I just reviewed was "above and beyond". These are exactly the qualities that every client would look for when hiring an attorney."
Corporate and incorporation Attorney | May 13
Relationship: Co-worker
"I've worked with Carlton for years, and he always brings a unique and experienced perspective to the problems at hand. He has an unmatched breadth of knowledge and enthusiasm, and I'm proud to call him my colleague."
Business Attorney | Feb 20
Relationship: Co-worker
"I endorse this lawyer! I have been a colleague of Attorney Chen for more than 7 years. I have found him to be one of the best business attorneys I have been associated with in my more than 30 years of practice. Besides being most knowledgeable in his craft, Carlton is very hard-working, trustworthy and has high integrity-all of which are greatly appreciated by his clients and colleagues alike. Carlton is also a good mentor to both younger associates and experienced attorneys."
View more endorsements
Landlord or tenant
Contracts and agreements
Lawsuits and disputes
Intellectual property
Patent application
Consumer protection
Lawsuits and disputes

Avvo Contributions

Top Contributor 2023
Top Contributor

Carlton earned significant contribution points in 2023.

953 Legal Answers 7 Legal Guides
West Hartford Business Lawyer Carlton S Chen
Carlton S Chen
Business Attorney
West Hartford, CT
Licensed for 40 years
Free Consultation
Virtual consultation available