5 Tips and Tricks on Being Deposed

So, your deposition has been noticed. Even if you have nerves of steel, being deposed can still be an incredibly stressful and nerve-wracking experience. Here are some tips on how to keep your cool and get through your deposition without breaking (too much of) a sweat.

Author: Andrea Mackaronis

The “Faker Defense” Revisited: The New Jersey Supreme Court Weighs In

In June 2018, I wrote, “The Erosion of the Faker Defense,” about the New Jersey Appellate Division’s decision in Rodriguez v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 449 N.J. Super. 577 (App. Div. 2017). That blog focused on the issue of defense experts’ use of certain terms of art to relate a plaintiff’s medical condition to something other than the accident in question.

Author: Frank Kontely | Practice Area: General Liability

Be a Boy Scout! 5 Steps to Take to Prepare for Separation or Divorce

I was never a boy scout (or a girl scout, for that matter). But I wish that I had been! They learn how to be self-sufficient, how to care for the environment, and how to be of service. But most of all, boy scouts are renowned for their preparedness. This preparation allows them to think ahead, be cool under pressure, and adapt in times of adversity. These are the same attributes that you want to have when contemplating a divorce.

Author: Andrea Mackaronis | Practice Area: Family Law, Separation

New Jersey Attorney General’s Office Will Now Investigate All Police Shootings that Result in the Suspect’s Death

On January 30, 2019, Governor Murphy signed a new law into effect (S1036), which was originally introduced into our New Jersey Senate on January 16, 2018. This law requires the Attorney General’s Office to handle the investigation and prosecution of crimes involving the deaths of individuals by law enforcement officers while acting in their official capacity.

Author: Michael Colacci | Practice Area: Civil Rights Litigation, Municipal Litigation, Municipal Practice

Scope of Employment: Driving to and from Work in the Modern Era

Generally, an employee who is “going to” or “coming from" his or her place of employment is not considered to be acting within the scope of employment. Most jurisdictions apply this general rule that an employee who is driving his or her personal vehicle to and from their workplace is not within the scope of employment for the purpose of imposing vicarious liability on the employer.

Author: Joseph Marabondo | Practice Area: General Liability

New Jersey Supreme Court: More than 20,000 DWI Convictions are Tainted

On November 13th, 2018, the Supreme Court of New Jersey ruled that 20,667 DWI convictions in the state were tainted by an improperly calibrated breathalyzer test. The case of State v. Eileen Cassidy, centered around the misconduct by former New Jersey Police Sergeant Marc W. Dennis, who allegedly skipped a required step in the recalibrating of breathalyzer devices and then falsified records to conceal his conduct.

Author: William McGuinn | Practice Area: DWI-DUI

Litigation Privilege Protects N.J. Law Firm from Defamation Claim

Not all personal injury cases involve physical or psychological damages. There are also tort claims involving alleged injuries to a person's reputation or character, such as defamation, libel, and slander. But proving such injuries requires more than showing a defendant made a false statement that impugned the plaintiff's reputation. Indeed, even in the case of allegedly false statements, a defendant may cite one or more legal privileges to escape potential civil liability.

Author: Joseph Leone | Practice Area: Plaintiff's Personal Injury

N.J. Supreme Court Clarifies Scope of “Self-Critical Analysis” Privilege in Medical Malpractice Cases

New Jersey's Patient Safety Act (PSA) was enacted to encourage confidential reporting of “adverse events” by healthcare facilities in order to reduce medical errors. To further this goal, the PSA created a legal “self-critical analysis” (SCA) privilege for health care facilities...

Author: Robert Banas | Practice Area: Professional Liability & Malpractice Defense, Health Care Law

Birthright Citizenship

Can the President of the United States abolish birthright citizenship by an executive order? As a person who was not born in this country and who is about to have a child, this question hits close to home.

Author: Julio Navarro | Practice Area: Immigration Law

Appellate Division Holds That Just Registering to Do Business Equates to Consenting to Be Sued in Pennsylvania

In late June, the Pennsylvania Appellate Division decided Webb-Benjamin, LLC v. Int’l Rug Grp., LLC, 2018 Pa. Super. Lexis 742. The petition for re-hearing was denied in late August, and no Petition for Allowance to Appeal has been filed before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.

Author: Jason Boudwin, Daniel Kuszmerski | Practice Area: Environmental & Toxic Tort, Products Liability

New Jersey's Proposed “Insurance Fair Conduct Act” Could Affect Insurers and Policyholders

Since the 1990s, the New Jersey Supreme Court has recognized a common-law claim for bad faith denials of insurance coverage. Subsequent attempts to establish a statutory bad faith claim in New Jersey have failed. However, a bill currently pending before the state legislature would create a statutory cause of action for bad faith in New Jersey. Under the proposed legislation, known as the “New Jersey Insurance Fair Conduct Act,” an insurer's potential liability for bad-faith denials would be si

Author: Juliann Alicino | Practice Area: Insurance Coverage & Bad Faith Litigation

N.J. Senate Passes Bill to Ban Employment Non-Disclosure Agreements

The #MeToo movement sparked in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein sexual assault allegations has led policymakers to reconsider the propriety of non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) in employment contracts. Many employers seek NDAs as a condition of settling sexual harassment and other employment discrimination cases. But critics charge such agreements only serve to silence victims and protect companies from public scrutiny of their employment practices. | Practice Area: Labor & Employment Law

Is New Jersey Now a “Daubert” Jurisdiction?

Since the New Jersey Supreme Court its issued its decision in 1991 in Rubanick vs. Whitco Chemical Corp., 125 N.J. 421 (1991), New Jersey has had an open-door for toxic tort cases asserting novel claims testing new theories of liability. The Rubanick decision, which is often referred to as the “Junk Science Case”, allowed creative attorneys to file and pursue unique causes of action claiming that exposure to toxic tort substances led to a variety of health maladies.

Author: Marc Gaffrey | Practice Area: Environmental & Toxic Tort

N.J. Supreme Court Will Review Auto Dealership’s Liability for Fatal Drunk Driving Accident

Recently, the New Jersey Supreme Court agreed to review a case involving an insurance company's denial of coverage for a 2010 drunk driving accident that killed a police officer and yielded a multi-million dollar wrongful death judgment. An intermediate appellate court previously ruled in favor of the insurance company. But the Supreme Court's decision to grant review suggests the police officer's estate may still have some hope to collect on their judgment.

Author: Joseph Leone | Practice Area: Automobile Liability, Criminal Defense

4 Questions Every Divorced Parent Should Ask Before Their Child Goes Back to School

As New Jersey children head back to school, many recently divorced parents may be struggling to adjust their routine now that they are no longer living together as a family. And even when the divorce itself was resolved with a minimum of acrimony, there are often issues that arise in the back-to-school context that parents failed to previously consider. With that in mind, here are a few pieces of advice for parents looking to help their child start the new school year on the right foot.

Author: Jessica Mazur | Practice Area: Family Law

Will Pennsylvania Finally Consistently Apply the Fair Share Act to All Asbestos/Strict Liability Matters?

On July 31, 2018, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court granted the plaintiff’s Petition for Appeal, in the case of Roverano v. John Crane, Inc., 177 A.3d 892 (Pa. Sup. Ct. 2017), where the Pennsylvania Superior Court (Appellate Division) ruled that Pennsylvania’s Fair Share Act, 42 Pa.C.S. § 7102, applies to strict liability actions alleging asbestos-related disease.

Author: Jason Boudwin, Daniel Kuszmerski | Practice Area: Environmental & Toxic Tort, Asbestos

N.J. Supreme Court Declines to Reconsider Ethics Opinion Banning Lawyers from Online Legal Service Plans

The New Jersey Supreme Court recently declined to review a formal ethics opinion related to attorney participation in online legal services. Specifically, a group of three New Jersey State Bar committees said attorneys licensed in New Jersey may not be involved with “non-lawyer, corporately owned services that offer legal services to the public.” A group called Consumers for a Responsive Legal System asked the Supreme Court to reverse this opinion, but the justices denied the petition.

Author: Joseph Leone | Practice Area: Legal Malpractice Defense

What Does the “Work-Product Privilege” Protect?

In all New Jersey civil litigation, a party is normally entitled to obtain discovery of non-privileged documents held by the other party. However, the attorney-client privilege protects any communications between a party and their own lawyer from discovery. There is also a related, yet distinct privilege for “work product” created in anticipation of litigation.

Author: Joseph Marabondo | Practice Area: General Liability

N.J. Special Master Concludes 20,000 DWI Convictions Based on Unreliable Breath Tests

Last September we discussed a stunning development in New Jersey DWI law. Prosecutors charged a New Jersey State Trooper with failing to follow established protocols for calibrating the Alcotest 7110 MKIII-C devices used to test a DWI suspect's blood-alcohol content. More egregiously, prosecutors alleged the Trooper falsely certified that he had followed the protocols.

Author: William McGuinn | Practice Area: DWI-DUI

New Jersey Equal Pay Act to Take Effect on July 1

All New Jersey employers need to be aware of the recent passage of the Diane B. Allen Equal Pay Act, which has been described as one of the strongest “equal pay” laws in the country. The Act, signed into law by Gov. Phil Murphy in April, takes effect on July 1 and requires employers to take certain steps to ensure they are not paying similarly situated employees differently based on sex, race, or other protected employee characteristics.

Author: Jennifer Passannante, Kenneth Cesta | Practice Area: Labor & Employment Law

The Erosion of the “Faker” Defense?

In personal-injury trials, defense counsel question plaintiffs’ credibility in various ways.  Where applicable, one method is by offering evidence of a plaintiff’s symptom magnification, exaggerations or malingering – euphemisms for simply faking it.  However, a New Jersey Appellate Division decision, Rodriguez v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 449 N.J. Super. 577 (App. Div. 2017), has limited the use of such evidence.  The Rodriguez case has been granted certification to the New Jersey Supreme Court. 

Author: Frank Kontely | Practice Area: General Liability

MYSTERY SOLVED: The New Jersey Supreme Court Declares Phantom John Doe Driver Can Be Placed on the Verdict Sheet for Apportionment of Fault at the Time of Trial

In the past, identified defendants drew the shorter straw when it came to involvement of culpable but unidentified tortfeasor, such as operators of phantom vehicles. The courts would not allow the identified defendant to request the jury to apportion fault with a John Doe defendant, which usually meant the identified defendant was the only defendant listed on the jury verdict sheet and was left holding the bag at the time of verdict.

Author: Frank Caruso, John Burns | Practice Area: General Liability

New Jersey Court Considers Whether State Anti-Discrimination Laws Cover “Telecommuting” Employees Outside the State

Employment discrimination has been in the headlines during the past several months. And although New Jersey has long had strict laws banning sex discrimination in the workplace, it is still unclear how these rules apply to non-traditional work arrangements like telecommuting. After all, thanks to computers and smartphones, many employees can work for a New Jersey-based employer from any state. But are those employees entitled to the protections of the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD

Author: Jennifer Passannante | Practice Area: Labor & Employment Law, Policies & Procedures

What’s the Difference Between a Fault and No-Fault Divorce?

In order to get a divorce, New Jersey requires that a divorce-seeking petitioner show grounds for the divorce, or explain the reason for which the divorce is being sought. In this blog, our family law attorneys provide an overview of fault versus no-fault divorce and what you need to do if you’re seeking dissolution of marriage.

Author: Brian McFadden-DiNicola, Andrea Mackaronis, Jessica Mazur | Practice Area: Family Law, Separation

New Jersey Finalizes First of its Kind Pharmaceutical Gift Ban to Physicians; New Administration Considering Changes

After publication and hearing in October 2017, a final Administrative Rule related to contracts and payments entered into with physicians by drug companies took effect on January 15, 2018. Under the new arrangement, physicians are not able to accept any financial benefit, that does not advance disease or treatment education. In this blog, Ryan Jones discusses the how this rule, being the first of its kind in the U.S., will impact the future of Health Care and Transactional Law.

Author: Ryan Jones | Practice Area: Health Care Law, Transactional / Business

After the Storm: What your business needs to know about clearing snow and ice

A storm-in-progress defense means a commercial landowner will not be responsible for a slip-and-fall accident as a result of the accumulation of snow or ice from sidewalks, walkways, driveways, and parking lots, until a reasonable period after the storm ends. In this blog, Frank Caruso discusses 5 factors that are used to determine whether or not it is reasonable for commercial landowners to shovel or salt walkways, and how much time they have to do so.

Author: Frank Caruso | Practice Area: General Liability

Divorce and Taxes: How the new tax bill will impact alimony, child support, and prenuptial agreements in New Jersey

It’s no secret that most of the divorce complaints in New Jersey are resolved via settlement. However, the tax bill which was recently passed and signed by the President is poised to shake the foundations of the practice. In this blog, Andrea Mackaronis shares what couples, separated and divorced, need to know before the new tax bill kicks in.

Author: Andrea Mackaronis | Practice Area: Family Law, Pre-nuptial Agreements, Mediation, Arbitration, and Alternatives to Litigation, Child Support, Collaborative Law, Equitable Distribution of Assets and Liabilities, Separation

New Department of Labor Release on Unpaid Interns - Legal or Not?

Jennifer Passannante analyzes the new "primary beneficiary" test adopted by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) which clarifies when interns and students working at for-profit employers will be considered employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), thereby entitling them to compensation. Find out the facts behind the DOL's recently implemented "Internship Programs under the Fair Labor Standards Act".

Author: Jennifer Passannante | Practice Area: Labor & Employment Law, Employment Agreements, Policies & Procedures

Climate Change in the Current Climate

In this blog, Amie Kalac takes a look at a trending area of law regarding private actions against parties allegedly responsible for climate change. Amie discusses the legal and political conditions in the U.S. surrounding climate change and the evolving impact of the Trump administration on climate change policy and law.

Author: Amie Kalac | Practice Area: Environmental & Toxic Tort, Asbestos, National Counsel, Toxic Torts, Litigation & Compliance / Enforcement

The Sharks are Circling: How a Design Professional Can Protect Its Work in the Digital Age

The technological revolution of the last quarter century has connected the world in ways unimaginable by facilitating the free-and-easy dissemination of information. In this blog, Sean Ryan breaks down a recent case which illustrates the importance of registering the work and the substantial benefits that emanate from federal copyright protections.

Author: Sean Ryan | Practice Area: Architects & Engineers, Design Defects/Errors & Omissions, Risk Management

Appellate Court Confirms that Agreements to Arbitrate Law Against Discrimination Claims are Enforceable

A recent New Jersey Appellate Division decision has confirmed that agreements between employees and employers to arbitrate discrimination or retaliation claims can be enforced, thereby barring employees from bringing such a lawsuit in civil court. In this blog, Aron Mandel reviews the recent decision and discusses why the employment agreement was found favorable by the court.

Author: Aron Mandel | Practice Area: Labor & Employment Law, Defamation of Character, Discrimination in the Workplace, Employer Insurance Coverage, Harassment in the Workplace, Hiring & Firing of Employees, Policies & Procedures, Employment Agreements

Whistleblowers Can’t Just Play the Blame Game

Leslie S. Park discusses a recent New Jersey Appellate Division decision that makes clear that general reference of a law, policy or regulation may not be enough to support a claim under CEPA. Learn about how plaintiffs can support a viable CEPA claim and how this relates to the conduct or action causing the complaint.

Author: Leslie Park | Practice Area: Labor & Employment Law, Harassment in the Workplace, Hiring & Firing of Employees, Policies & Procedures, Public Employers and Employees, Discrimination in the Workplace

In Case You Missed It – NJ Superior Court Tackles Transgender Child’s Name Change in a Case of First Impression

In the recent matter of Sacklow v. Betts, the New Jersey Supreme Court was presented with Ms. Sacklow's application to change the name of her transgender child. The matter was decided on March 17, 2017, when the Court found the name change would be in the child’s best interests. In this blog, Andrea Mackaronis breaks down the list of factors that were created and considered by the Court in the decision that will pave the future of transgender youth in New Jersey.

Author: Andrea Mackaronis | Practice Area: Family Law, Alimony, Spousal Support, and Separate Maintenance, Child Custody & Parenting Time, Child Support, Equitable Distribution of Assets and Liabilities, Collaborative Law, Mediation, Arbitration, and Alternatives to Litigation, Pre-nuptial Agreements

Back to School Tips for Divorced Parents

Transitions are always difficult for divorcing or divorced families, as new schedules and obligations can disrupt mutually agreed-upon rules and practices. Just like summer break, the start of the school year can create issues and questions for parents who are separated or divorced. Jessica N. Mazur covers the main concerns for divorced parents and gives tips on how to make the school year run smoothly.

Author: Jessica Mazur | Practice Area: Family Law, Separation, Child Custody & Parenting Time, Child Support, Equitable Distribution of Assets and Liabilities, Pre-nuptial Agreements, Collaborative Law

The Shielding of Documents Under New Jersey's Patient Safety Act

It is critical for health care facilities to understand the Patient Safety Act (PSA) and its regulations so that they can ensure that their documents and communications related to post-incident investigations are privileged. In this blog, Sharon Flynn breaks down the PSA and reveals what health care facilities can do to minimize the risk of exposing internal documents in court.

Author: Sharon Flynn | Practice Area: Health Care Law, Health Care Facilities, Professional Liability & Malpractice Defense

"I'm taking the dog.": 7 Reasons Why Engaged Couples Should Sign Prenuptial Agreements

We all remember the scene in Legally Blonde when Elle Woods helps her manicurist, Paulette, take back her dog from her less-than-charming ex husband. Making the painful decision as to who gets the dog after a divorce doesn’t have to be your responsibility. Property, inheritance, even ownership of the antique bedframe, can all be listed in a Prenuptial Agreement which helps preserve each partner’s expectations and immediately prevents surprises if a divorce should arise.

Author: Jessica Mazur, Brian McFadden-DiNicola, Andrea Mackaronis | Practice Area: Family Law, Pre-nuptial Agreements

Splitting Custody & Moving? Interstate Relocation Cases are Changing in New Jersey.

The New Jersey Supreme Court did a very rare thing on Tuesday, August 8, 2017, which will have a significant effect on all interstate relocation cases in New Jersey. In the case of Bisbing v. Bisbing, the New Jersey Supreme Court found adequate reason to stray from the stare decisis principle and reset the standards for interstate relocation cases.

Author: Brian McFadden-DiNicola | Practice Area: Family Law, Child Custody & Parenting Time

Opportunities for Composition in Brief Writing: Gain Every Advantage for your Client

Legal writing is one of the most discussed topics in the practice of law, yet there are additional tools available for effective advocacy that the average attorney may be unaware. Attorney Mark Bonavitacola shares tips for brief drafting, local briefing requirements and the best way to showcase your knowledge and defend your client.

Author: Mark Bonavitacola | Practice Area: Construction Law, Design Defects/Errors & Omissions, Architects & Engineers, Construction Delay Claims, Construction Defect, Risk Management

The Resistance Against Avvo's Client-Linking Services Spreads to New Jersey

New Jersey joins a number of States in banning attorneys’ participation in Avvo’s programs which require attorneys to pay “marketing fees.” In this blog, Joseph V. Leone and Samantha R. Catanese examine the Joint Opinion issued by New Jersey Supreme Court prohibiting New Jersey attorneys from participating in the Avvo client-linking legal service.

Author: Joseph Leone, Samantha Catanese | Practice Area: Construction Law, Premises Liability, Trucking & Transportation, Plaintiff's Personal Injury, Legal Malpractice Defense, Criminal Defense, DWI-DUI, Transactional / Business, Governmental Law, Real Estate Tax, Commercial Real Estate, Corporate Law & Transactions

A New Consideration in Litigating Automobile Negligence Actions: Recoverability of Medical Expenses that Exceed PIP Coverage Limits

New Jersey has a new consideration in litigating automobile negligence actions: recoverability of medical expenses that exceed PIP coverage limits. In this blog, Sarah Buckley discusses how this decision increases the value of cases in situations where a plaintiff may have chosen a smaller amount of PIP coverage but has sustained serious injuries as a result of a motor vehicle accident.

Author: Sarah Buckley | Practice Area: Insurance Coverage & Bad Faith Litigation, Automobile Liability, General Liability

The Roof Over Your Head Should Cover More Than Just You

Roof warranties often protect owners from issues encountered during warranty periods. In this blog, attorney Peter K. Oliver divulges three, need to know contract clauses to look for when replacing your roof, and offers an insightful look at Tesla's solar roof warranties, a product that is set to enter the market June 2017. If your roof fails to cover you, you should know what your roof warranty covers.

Author: Peter Oliver | Practice Area: Construction Law, Construction Defect, Design Defects/Errors & Omissions, Risk Management

You've Been Served: on Facebook?

In the age of social media, tortious conduct can easily arise between people in different states. What recourse does a litigant have when they are seeking to obtain jurisdiction over someone who has harmed or wronged them from another state and is not able to be served in New Jersey? Find out how out of state service via Facebook can satisfy the court.

Author: Juliann Alicino | Practice Area: General Liability

Appealing NJ Municipal Court DWI Convictions May Stay Your License Suspension

When a defendant is convicted of driving while intoxicated (DWI) in New Jersey, the municipal court is required to suspend that defendant’s driver’s license. If a defendant chooses to appeal their conviction, their attorney will often request a stay of the license suspension. Based upon the Court’s ruling in Robertson, defense attorneys should have relatively easy time obtaining a stay of their client’s license suspension while an appeal from municipal court to the Law Division is pending.

Author: William McGuinn | Practice Area: Criminal Defense, DWI-DUI

Planning for Summer Parenting Time During a Divorce

For children, summer is traditionally a time for school break, summer camp, pool trips, and family vacations. Unfortunately, for children whose parents are going through a divorce, summer can also mean fighting parents and a poorly planned vacation. In this blog, Attorney Brian McFadden-DiNicola shares tips to help divorcing couples ensure fond summer memories for their children.

Author: Brian McFadden-DiNicola | Practice Area: Family Law, Child Custody & Parenting Time

Watch Your Step! Elevator Accidents Require Prior Notice of their Dangerous Conditions.

Elevators are a common source of liability for commercial properties and the parties who own, operate and maintain those properties. The failure to properly inspect and care for elevators can lead to liability for all those involved with their use. The liability analysis imposed by our courts is fact sensitive. General legal principals of premise liability apply requiring a demonstration of actual or constructive notice of the dangerous condition to impose liability.

Author: Joseph Leone | Practice Area: Premises Liability

Digital Discrimination: How Online Job Applications May Subject Employers to Legal Action

The job market and application process are increasingly being driven by digital job platforms such as Monster, Indeed, and CareerBuilder, in addition to employers’ own company websites. While perhaps increasing efficiency, these online application platforms also raise unique legal considerations which may potentially increase employers’ exposure to claims of unlawful discrimination.

Author: Salvatore Mautone | Practice Area: Labor & Employment Law

You Finally Decided Upon Divorce. Could a Collaborative Approach Work Best for You?

We are in the midst of what some family attorneys refer to as “divorce season,” which marks a spike in divorce filings in the couple of months following the holidays. Divorce is often portrayed in the media as a melodramatic and scary experience. While divorce is a significant legal event, it does not necessarily have to be overemotional and daunting. Collaborative divorce is an approach that gives

Author: Sarah Buckley | Practice Area: Family Law

Rooted in Precedent and Simultaneously Unprecedented: President Trump’s Executive Action on Immigration

In an informative blog article on the recent updates to Immigration under the Trump Administration, Julio Navarro with our Immigration Department notes the instances in which section 1182(f) of the INA of 1952 was invoked to bar a certain class of persons from entering the country. Within the context of this statute, Mr. Navarro demonstrates that while President Trump’s order is rooted in precedent, it is simultaneously unprecedented.

Author: Julio Navarro | Practice Area: Immigration Law

Roberts, Neumann and the Broad Scope of the New Jersey Charitable Immunity Act.

Every organization, whether a “non-profit” or “for profit”, is open to liability on any number of acts or omissions. However, where a for profit can pass these costs on to consumers, non-profits of all types often cannot. This means non-profits are forced to divert the limited funds they have away from their mission and into the pockets of insurers. A clear trend in the decisions of New Jersey’s Courts has developed in an attempt to remedy this harsh reality.

Author: Joseph Fuirita | Practice Area: General Liability

Pre-Existing Conditions: Burden Shifting and the Apportionment of Damages

In some medical malpractice matters, there appears to be a great deal of confusion amongst jurors in understanding when and how the burden of proof shifts in cases concerning pre-existing conditions and diseases. Here is a blog article, written by Sharon Flynn with our Health Care Law Group, on what the plaintiff's burden of proof is and when that shifts to the defense.

Author: Sharon Flynn | Practice Area: Health Care Law

Tis the Season – To Avoid Religious Discrimination and Harassment in the Office

During the Holiday Season, with decorations, events, and parties being omnipresent, it is easy to see how employers may be faced with a situation where an employee may feel discriminated against or harassed based on their religion or where there are issues with an employee’s religious expression or desire to opt out of holiday festivities. To that end, employers can protect themselves by following a few general guidelines.

Author: Timothy Koch | Practice Area: Labor & Employment Law

AVVO’s “Fixed Fee Limited Scope” Platform Presents Ethical Violations

AVVO, a for-profit website which connects clients with attorneys, has been under scrutiny by state bar associations’ ethics boards for a service they provide – “Fixed Fee Limited Scope (FFLS)” – that allows clients to obtain “limited scope” legal representation at a fixed-fee set by AVVO. The platform raises some serious issues, but the primary ethical concern surrounds fee-sharing with non-lawyers. The prohibition against such agreements has been a constant in the legal world, but in an ever

Author: Joseph Leone, Samantha Catanese | Practice Area: Legal Malpractice Defense

Self-Driving Cars: What Do They Mean for the Automobile Insurance Industry?

With advancements in the automobile industry, like self-driving, or even semi-autonomous cars from companies like Telsa, Apple, and Google, many questions arise, including what happens when an injured driver pursues a claim against another for alleged negligence. New Jersey and a number of other states are ahead of the curve with their adoption of a system of laws commonly known as Personal Injury Protection (“PIP”) or simply “no-fault insurance".

Author: Shannon Dobel | Practice Area: Automobile Liability

No “Fraud” Required for Consumer Fraud Act Violations

Nearly every lawsuit against a contractor includes claim of Consumer Fraud Act violations, but although the Act punishes the typical fraudulent behavior such as “bait and switch” of materials, most contractors fall victim to the minor, technical violations. To make matters worse, these allegations are generally not covered by insurance.

Author: Edward Ryan | Practice Area: General Liability

Let’s Be Clear: The Importance of Language in Mandatory Arbitration Clauses

Arbitration, a widely known and used alternative dispute resolution (ADR) process, is often favored by parties who are seeking to avoid traditional litigation in New Jersey’s court system, and the Court has held arbitration clauses to a high standard. However, the Court has also made it clear that if mandatory arbitration clauses do not clearly advise parties that they are waiving their right to a trial by jury, those clauses will be held unenforceable.

Author: Nicole Tracy | Practice Area: Commercial Litigation

How Are You Impacted by the Amended Alimony Statute in Terms of Cohabitation?

The amended alimony statute, N.J.S.A. 2A:34-23, was enacted on September 10, 2014, and we are now starting to see cases come down the appellate pipeline that give some guidance to the lower courts with respect to how the amended statute is to be interpreted. This blog article speaks to the recent unpublished case Robitzski v. Robitzski which addresses cohabitation.

Author: Jessica Mazur | Practice Area: Family Law

A Poor Attitude Can Find an Employer at the “Core” of an Employee’s Sexual Harassment Claim

The New Jersey Supreme Court recently overturned a decision of a lower Court that prevented testimony alleging a Mayor ordered an after-the-fact cover-up of sexual harassment in a city employee’s suit alleging discrimination. In doing so, the Court may have signaled its approval of an expanded scope of analysis to allow examination of an employer’s corporate attitude and culture before allowing defenses based on the creation and enforcement of anti-discrimination policies.

Author: Aron Mandel | Practice Area: Labor & Employment Law

Thousands of New Jersey DWI Convictions Could Be Tainted – Is Yours One of Them?

On September 20, 2016, Sergeant Marc Dennis, a former coordinator with the State Police Alcohol Drug Testing Unit, was charged in relation to his role in to the recalibration of breathalyzers. The New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice has advised court administrators that over 20,000 Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) cases could be subject to challenge.

Author: Joseph Leone, William McGuinn | Practice Area: DWI-DUI, Criminal Defense

Why Client Communication Should be a Standard Practice

According to the New Jersey Rules of Professional Conduct, “a lawyer shall keep a client reasonably informed about the status of a matter and promptly comply with reasonable requests for information.” RPC 1.4(b). Not only is regular communication with the client mandatory, but it is also just good practice.

Author: Joseph Petrillo | Practice Area: Construction Law, Administrative & Regulatory Violations, Construction Defect, Architects & Engineers, Construction Delay Claims, Construction Site Accidents, Consumer Fraud, Design & Software Copyright, Design Defects/Errors & Omissions, Environmental & Toxic Mold, Indemnification & Coverage, Public Bidding & Bid Protests, Pre-Claim Assistance, Risk Management, School Construction

Will the New Jersey Supreme Court’s elimination of an employment contract provision lead to the same in other types of contracts?

Rodriguez v. Raymours Furniture Co. Inc.: Will the New Jersey Supreme Court’s elimination of an employment contract provision reducing the 2-year statute of limitations in contracts to 6 months lead to an elimination of provisions in other types of contracts?

Author: Frank Caruso | Practice Area: Automobile Liability, General Liability, Insurance Coverage & Bad Faith Litigation, Construction Site Accidents, Indemnification & Coverage

Work Visas: Why a Dual Intent Visa May Be Better For Your Company.

Most foreign citizens who want to live permanently in the United States obtain immigrant visas. There are family based immigrant visas, employment based immigrant visas, special immigrant based visas, and diversity based immigrant visas. However, another way for foreign citizens to gain permanent residence in the United States is through a dual intent non-immigrant visa.

Author: Jason Gosnell | Practice Area: Immigration Law, Environmental & Toxic Tort, Litigation & Compliance / Enforcement, Appellate Practice, Corporate Law & Transactions

Why Prenuptial (and Premarital and Antenuptial) Agreements are for EVERYONE [1]

I have had a lot of friends and acquaintances over the years who discuss prenuptial agreements as if they are offensive. These naysayers do not dare broach the subject with their significant other because they think that it would be rude, or that it implies that there is no trust in the longevity of the relationship. Why on earth would you be uncomfortable discussing ANYTHING with your soon-to-be spouse?

Author: Andrea Mackaronis | Practice Area: Family Law, Pre-nuptial Agreements

I’ve Been Sued For a Car Accident. What Do I Do?

Many times, accidents are just that—accidents. But you may find yourself in the situation where you’re being sued by another person for injuries they claim you caused. It’s not a situation many would choose to be in. However, there are steps that you can take early on in order to make the process a little smoother.

Author: Kathryn Suchman | Practice Area: Automobile Liability

How To Win Your Divorce in 3 Easy Steps

Well, not exactly. There is really no such thing as winning or losing in a divorce case - and if anything, both parties lose, because a marriage and family are often falling apart. The real goal of a divorce, in my opinion, is to mitigate damage and stop the bleeding. I am referring to the damage that befalls your children and the wasting of marital assets due to protracted litigation.

Author: Andrea Mackaronis | Practice Area: Family Law

A Police Officer Must Give You the Opportunity to Produce Your Credentials

The New Jersey Supreme Court recently considered the circumstances under which a law enforcement officer may legally obtain a driver’s registration and insurance information without requesting permission or allowing the driver the opportunity to retrieve themselves in the case of State v. Keaton. The facts surrounding this decision involve the actions of a New Jersey State Trooper who responded to a one vehicle accident on I-295. When he arrived, he found a black sedan overturned in the medi

Author: William McGuinn | Practice Area: Criminal Defense

What Kind of Car Insurance Should I Have?

You have seen the commercials advertising savings and low rates, but do you know the kind of coverage you really should have? The least expensive option may save you a few dollars every month, but that minimum coverage may not fully protect you—or your assets—if you’re at fault for causing an accident. When choosing your auto insurance, take a look beyond the monthly premium and you can better protect yourself for the long-run.

Author: Kathryn Suchman | Practice Area: Automobile Liability