Can a commercial landlord be held responsible for injuries on commercial property when the commercial lease expressly requires the commercial tenant to perform certain types of maintenance on the property? A recent New Jersey Supreme Court case says that a commercial property owner is not responsible if someone slips and falls on that commercial property due to snow and ice.
Hoagland Longo's litigation teams have more than 30 years of experience representing insurance carriers and their insureds in a variety of insurance law and coverage matters. The firm has established itself as one of New Jersey’s leading insurance litigation firms, and this reputation is best reflected by our clientele, which consists of numerous preeminent insurance companies in New Jersey and around the country. The litigation teams consist of partners and associates with extensive knowledge and experience who are committed to providing superior client service. With the firm’s sophisticated technology and case management strategies, Hoagland Longo provides an efficient and effective defense to achieve the best possible result– whether through motion practice, settlement, or trial. We are experienced trial lawyers, who have tried a multitude of cases to verdict in the federal and state courts of New Jersey and the tri-state area. We also have extensive experience in litigating matters on appeal. The litigation practice includes numerous attorneys designated as Certified Civil Trial Attorneys by the Supreme Court of New Jersey.Our attorneys are active in professional organizations and trade associations and are familiar with emerging trends and industry issues.
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Governor Murphy Signs Bills into Law Re-Opening the Doors to Excess Medical Expenses at the Time of Trial with Some Limitations
On August 15, 2019, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed Senate Bill S2432, which overrules the New Jersey Supreme Court opinion in the consolidated matters of Haines v. Taft/Little v. Nishimura, in which the Court held that plaintiffs could not seek to board medical expenses at trial as part of their damages for amounts less than the the standard PIP limit of $250,000, even if they selected a minimum PIP limit of $15,000.
Until recently, a homeowner that lost the use of their home due to the negligence of another was limited to seeking the cost of alternate shelter, and could not seek damages for other inconveniences.
Haines v. Taft/Little v. Nishimura: A Spotlight on New Legislation Seeking to Undo the Supreme Court’s Holding on Admissibility and Recovery of Unpaid Medical Expenses
Earlier this year, the New Jersey Supreme Court issued an opinion in the consolidated matters of Haines v. Taft/Little v. Nishimura and held that plaintiffs could not seek to board medical expenses at trial as part of their damages between their selected PIP limit and the standard PIP limit of $250,000.
While there is longstanding precedent that commercial property owners have a duty to use reasonable care to maintain abutting sidewalks in a reasonably safe condition, including the removal of ice and snow, the Appellate Division held in Quiles that such a duty does not require sidewalks to be free of ice and snow while the snow storm is ongoing as it is unreasonable, as a matter of law.
New Jersey Supreme Court Issues its Written Decision in the Consolidated Matters of Haines and Little and Reverses the Appellate Division
Haines v. Taft/Little v. Nishimura: The New Jersey Supreme Court Rules Motor Vehicle Accident Personal Injury Claimants Who Play the Name Your Own Price Insurance Option Get What They Pay For—No Ability to Sue the Tortfeasor for Medical Expenses amounting to less than $250,000.
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.
Generally speaking, a general contractor (“GC”) has had a non-delegable duty to maintain a safe workplace. See Kane v. Hartz Mountain Industries, 278 N.J. Super. 129, 142 (App. Div. 1994). This general rule is also reflected by certain OSHA regulations, with which all employers must comply.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
In the time we live in, technology has evolved, and continues to do so, at a rapid pace. In this blog, we break down what classifies as 'wearable technology', why it is important and how it affects lawyers. Trend or not, it would behoove attorneys to utilize the unique information stored therein to further strengthen their positions.
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 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.
With both a property owner looking to start a project and a contractor hired by a controlling client, it needs to be understood that the property owner’s level of involvement in the project can have serious consequences in the event of a lawsuit.
Appellate Division affirms summary judgment in supermarket slip and fall where Plaintiff failed to establish premises liability by “mode of operation”.
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.
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.
The introduction of smart phones brought distracted driving to an unprecedented level with texting, emails, tweeting, posting, and booking dinner reservations with the tap of a screen. Now, with the soar in popularity of apps like Snapchat and Pokemon Go, it’s arguable that driving just got a lot more dangerous.
While a Pennsylvania resident may be paying higher insurance premiums to avoid the restrictions imposed by the “limited tort” option in their home state, a trip to New Jersey may significantly alter their coverage by operation of the Deemer Statute.
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?
Although the forecast models are still unsure whether Hurricane Joaquin will make a direct hit on our area, it appears certain there will be heavy rainfall causing a significant impact. Did you know that in New Jersey all homeowner’s insurance policies exclude water damage caused by flooding?