This Week's News

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission building in Washington, D.C.

SEC Charges NJ Lawyer With Creating, Selling Sham Companies

Charles Toutant | May 13, 2016

A New Jersey lawyer and a California stock promoter have been charged by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission with creating a series of shell corporations in order to defraud investors.

Anthony Kennedy.

SCOTUS Ends Term With Blow to Class Action Plaintiffs

By Tony Mauro |

In a 5-4 ruling delivered at its final sitting, the court strictly interpreted deadlines for opting out of ongoing securities litigation.

New Jersey Statehouse in Trenton

NJ Senate Judiciary Committee OKs 14 Judicial Nominees

By Michael Booth |

The New Jersey Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday recommended approval of 13 nominations to the state Superior Court and one nomination to the Office of Administrative Law.

Ex-Corp Counsel Says Newark Fired Him for Objecting to Deal With Developer

By Charles Toutant |

A former corporation counsel for Newark has claimed in a whistleblower suit that he was fired after objecting to terms of a deal between the city and a developer.

New Jersey Assembly Speark Vincent Prieto

NJ Paid Family Leave Expansion Bill Heads to Christie

By Michael Booth |

New Jersey senators on Monday sent a bill to Republican Gov. Christie that, if signed, would greatly expand the state's eight-year-old paid family leave program.

N.J. State Sen. Nia Gill

NJ Senate Approves Bill Barring Questions About Pay History

By Michael Booth |

The New Jersey Senate on Monday gave final legislative approval to a bill that is intended to promote pay equity for women by prohibiting employers from asking prospective employees about their wage histories.

Submit artwork by July 14 to be in the running for sixth annual art show

Deadline for annual foundation art show July 14

Newsletter Roundup

A recap of recently published articles for NJSBA section newsletters

Trustees take action on association business

The NJSBA Board of Trustees voted on a series of measures including a budget, diversity, and comments on rule changes when it met on June 16

CAPITOL REPORT

A report on recent action in Trenton of interest to NJSBA members

Amazon's GC on 'No-Lose' Talent Program in Legal Department

By Jennifer Williams-Alvarez |

Amazon is a participant in the OnRamp Fellowship program for women attorneys who want to re-enter the workforce after time off.

State Ordered to Pay $11.8M for Failure to Accommodate Worker With MS

By Charles Toutant |

A former corrections officer who was forced to retire after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis has secured an $11.8 million jury verdict, including $10 million in punitives, in Mercer County Superior Court.

Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa.

Attorney Drug Ads Draw Criticism, But Little Action After House Hearing

By Cogan Schneier |

Some lawmakers equated the drug ads to political advertisements, which may have a kernel of truth, but lack enough information to make a sound decision.

Robert Mueller.

Mueller Bolsters Russia Teams Appellate Readiness in New Hire

By MARCIA COYLE |

Adam Jed of DOJ’s Civil Division has argued in circuit courts around the country. Special Counsel Robert Mueller III added another appellate specialist to his legal team that is investigating Russia’s interference with the U.S. presidential election last year.

Telemedicine Regulatory Bill Gets Final Legislative OK

By Michael Booth |

The New Jersey Assembly on Thursday gave final legislative approval to a bill that would impose rules and regulations on the growing practice of "telemedicine," where patients remotely receive medical evaluations or counseling from health care providers.

Hiring Misfires Show Need for Tougher Law Firm Vetting

By Scott Flaherty |

In less than a year, Big Law has seen at least three lateral hires go seriously, even criminally, awry.

Sleepless Nights for GCs Caused by Regulations and Crisis Management

By Jennifer Williams-Alvarez |

A new report from ALM Intelligence and Morrison & Foerster shows just what is keeping GCs up at night.

Westminster Choir College, part of Rider University, in Princeton, New Jersey.

Rider Suit Seeks to Prevent Sale of Choir College to Developers

By Charles Toutant |

Rider University is facing a suit over its plans to undo its 1992 merger with Westminster Choir College of Princeton and to sell the music school and its campus.

New Jersey Assembly Speark Vincent Prieto

NJ Assembly Votes to Expand Paid Family Leave Program

By Michael Booth |

The New Jersey Assembly on Thursday passed legislation designed to expand the state's 8-year-old paid family leave program.

Bristol-Myers Squibb

NJ, 'World's Medicine Chest,' May See More Pharma Litigation After 'Bristol-Myers'

By Charles Toutant |

Lawyers handling drug-defect suits say New Jersey courts could see an uptick in volume of pharmaceutical and medical device suits in light of this week's Supreme Court ruling in a California case that narrowed access to jurisdiction for out-of-state plaintiffs.

David L. Adelson, left, Svetlana Ros and David N. Vozza of Norris, McLaughlin & Marcus

Norris McLaughlin Snags Health Care Group From Kern Augustine

By David Gialanella |

Norris, McLaughlin & Marcus, which appears to be in a sort of growth mode of late, has snagged three lawyers from health care boutique Kern Augustine, including its managing partner.

New Jersey Supreme Court Justice Barry T. Albin.

Court Does About-Face on Appellate Review of Evidentiary Rulings

By Michael Booth |

In a rare self-reversal, the New Jersey Supreme Court has overturned its five-year-old ruling that permitted appeals courts judges to use their own judgment in reviewing decisions made by trial judges regarding the admissibility of evidence in criminal trials.

Josh King is the chief legal officer at Avvo Inc.

Avvo, LegalZoom, Rocket Lawyer Declared Off-Limits

By David Gialanella |

A joint opinion by three New Jersey Supreme Court committees has blacklisted three web-based services that match litigants with attorneys.

Mitch Williams

'Wild Thing' Mitch Williams Secures $1.5M Verdict in Case Over Firing From MLB Network

By Charles Toutant |

Former Major League Baseball pitcher Mitch Williams was awarded $1.5 million by a state court jury in Camden Tuesday in his breach of contract suit against MLB Network.

Appellate Division Judge George Leone

Christie Picks 9 for Bench, Appeals Judge Leone for Tenure

By Michael Booth |

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has nominated nine lawyers to various judicial positions, including seven to the Superior Court bench. He also has nominated an appeals court judge for tenure.

Alexander Shalom is Senior Staff Attorney at the ACLU-NJ

ACLU-NJ's Shalom Wins Law Journal's 'Attorney of the Year'

By David Gialanella |

The New Jersey Law Journal, with the help of an outside panel of distinguished members of the legal community, has named Alexander Shalom Attorney of the Year. Shalom's selection from a panel of three finalists was announced Tuesday evening at the Law Journal's Professional Excellence event.

Robert Laurino

With Essex Prosecutor Bound for Bench, First Assistant Takes Over

By Michael Booth |

First Assistant Essex County Prosecutor Robert Laurino has been tapped by Attorney General Christopher Porrino to replace Carolyn Murray as the acting county prosecutor.

Horizon Blue Cross and Blue Shield building, Newark, NJ

Justices Hear Arguments Over Horizon's Omnia Plan

By Michael Booth |

Lawyers squared off before the New Jersey Supreme Court on Tuesday over whether Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield, the state's largest health insurer, can proceed with its planned rollout of its two-tiered Omnia Health Alliance Insurance Plan.

Justices: Data Fields Extracted Email Are Public Records

By Charles Toutant |

The Supreme Court of New Jersey has ruled that individual fields of data from electronically stored public records are subject to disclosure under the Open Public Records Act.

Morristown Medical Center in Morristown, New Jersey

Battle Over Hospitals' Tax Status Heats Up

By David Gialanella |

As speculation proved true that a 2015 Tax Court decision providing for taxation of nonprofit hospitals would result in a wave of litigation, lawmakers are once again trying to solve the problem in Trenton.

Bill to Regulate Home-Sharing Heads to Governor's Desk

By Michael Booth |

The New Jersey Senate on Monday gave final legislative approval to a bill that would impose taxes on the burgeoning home-sharing industry.

Stephanos Bibas

Koch Bros.-Linked Group Runs Ad for Penn Law Prof's 3rd Circuit Nomination

By Max Mitchell |

A nonprofit organization named Concerned Veterans for America has begun running an ad asking readers to call their senators and urge a vote in favor of Stephanos Bibas, a Penn Law professor who was recently nominated to fill a vacancy on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.

The Slants

Supreme Court Rules First Amendment Protects Disparaging Trademarks

By Tony Mauro |

A high-profile trademark fight centered on the Asian-American rock band The Slants ended Monday with a ruling that the Lanham Act’s prohibition against “disparaging” marks violates the First Amendment.

U.S. Supreme Court building.

SCOTUS Narrows Forum-Shopping in Big Pharma Action

By Tony Mauro |

In a win for the corporate defense bar, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday tightened jurisdictional rules that determine where companies can be sued.

New Jersey Assembly Speark Vincent Prieto

Legislators Act on Paid Family Leave Expansion

By Michael Booth |

A committee of the New Jersey Assembly has recommended passage of a bill that would greatly expand the state's 8-year-old paid family leave program.

Newark Liberty International Airport terminal.

Cheers! Bill Would Push Back Last Call at Newark Airport Bars

By Michael Booth |

New Jersey lawmakers may help travelers quench their thirsts in the wee hours of the morning at Newark Liberty International Airport.

Clarkson Fisher Jr.

Appeals Court Rejects Challenge to Client's Consecutive Suits Against Lawyers

By Charles Toutant |

An appeals court has ruled that two consecutive suits by a criminal defendant against his defense attorneys in the same case do not constitute a violation of the entire controversy doctrine.

NJSBA's 7th Annual Diversity Summit Advances Discussion on Fighting Discrimination in Legal Profession and Society

The NJSBA's Diversity Summit attracted more than 130 legal professionals to examine the imprint of blatant bias on the nation 50 years ago and the institutionalized variety that persists today.

State bar magazine focuses on critical topic -- national security vs. civil rights

The recently released June issue of New Jersey Lawyer, the bi-monthly magazine of the NJSBA, takes a close look at an extremely topical subject: national security and civil rights.

CAPITOL REPORT

A round-up of action from Trenton, including NJSBA members offering expertise on municipal court issues.

Credit: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement via Wikimedia Commons.

Sanctuary Cities Bill Moves Ahead in Trenton

By Michael Booth |

New Jersey lawmakers took a step forward Monday on legislation opposing President Trump's immigration policies—which would use state funds to reimburse local governments for federal funds they may lose if they declare themselves sanctuary cities.

Justices to Consider $2M Fee Award Reversal in CEPA Case

By Michael Booth |

The New Jersey Supreme Court has agreed to determine whether Princeton-based Heartland Payment Systems will be allowed to collect more than $2 million in counsel fees after it successfully fought an ex-employee's whistleblower and breach-of-contract lawsuit.

Third Circuit Says Lawyer Must Pay Damages in Undue Influence Case

By Charles Toutant |

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit has ruled that Maplewood attorney John Sogliuzzo is liable for damages for using undue influence to take $391,000 from an elderly relative.

Gov. Chris Christie at the 2015 State of the State address.

Court Rejects OPRA Demand for Christie Campaign Letters

By Michael Booth |

A New Jersey appeals court has ruled that Gov. Chris Christie does not have to turn over correspondence with a nonprofit group that assisted with his unsuccessful presidential bid.

A Look Back at Big Law Advertising From A to ZZZZZ

By Leigh Jones |

Forty years ago this month, the U.S. Supreme Court held that lawyers had a First Amendment right to advertise their services—likely to the dismay of late-night TV viewers everywhere.

Former FBI Director James Comey testifies about his firing by President Donald Trump during a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on June 8, 2017.

The French Have a Word for Comey: 'Fonctionnairisme'

By Law Journal Editorial Board |

The French word "fonctionnairisme" is the bureaucratic culture of doing your job without regard to the politics of those in charge. Former FBI Director James Comey has given us a look at the American version of fonctionnairisme. He is a fonctionnaire clean down to the bone.

prison

Governor Should Sign Racial and Ethnic Impact Statement Bill

By Law Journal Editorial Board |

S-677 would require that a racial and ethnic impact statement be prepared for legislation and new rules that would affect pretrial detention, sentencing, probation, or parole policies concerning adults and juveniles. We urge the governor to sign S-677 without delay.

New Jersey Appellate Division Judge Douglas Fasciale

Comptroller's Grounds for Audit Need No Explaining

By Michael Booth |

The New Jersey Office of the State Comptroller has nearly unfettered authority to conduct random audits of any government agency, and does not have to explain its reasons why it decides to conduct an audit, a state appeals court said in a published decision.

3rd Circuit: Motion to Compel Arbitration Must Take Priority

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

A federal appeals court held that a district judge was wrong to rule on a motion to dismiss before considering whether the dispute had to be resolved through arbitration.

Trust Account Misuse Alone Isn't Money Laundering, Court Says

By David Gialanella |

A disbarred New Jersey lawyer accused of helping himself to large sums of client funds has succeeded in defeating one of the most serious charges against him—and in the process prompted an appeals court to shed some light on how the money laundering statute applies to attorney account misuse.

Noel Hillman

Osteopathic Medicine Antitrust Case Set on Course to NJ Federal Court

By Charles Toutant |

The primary certifying body for osteopathic physicians is set to proceed to discovery in a fraud and antitrust suit in the District of New Jersey after a federal judge in Camden denied the association's motions to dismiss a suit by doctors.

Bill Baroni

Baroni, Convicted in Bridgegate Scheme, Loses NY License

By Michael Booth |

A state appellate panel has indefinitely suspended the law license of William Baroni Jr., a former Port Authority official and one of the key figures behind the Bridgegate scandal that helped crush the presidential hopes of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

U.S. District Judge Joseph Rodriguez

Judge Stiffs Houlihan's Owner in Feds' Tip-Pooling Suit

By Michael Booth |

A federal judge has refused to dismiss a lawsuit filed by the U.S. Department of Labor accusing the operator of 17 Houlihan's restaurants in New Jersey and New York of illegally pocketing portions of servers' and bartenders' tips, and failing to pay them for working overtime.

Association of Corporate Counsel office in Washington, D.C.

New ACC Survey Finds 'Dramatic' Gender Pay Gap for In-House Counsel

By Sue Reisinger |

A new ACC survey indicates that a higher percentage of women than men occupy lower-level categories when it comes to in-house salaries.

U.S. Supreme Court building

Anticipation Builds for Huge SCOTUS Ruling on Forum-Shopping

By Tony Mauro |

Civil litigators and corporate counsel can almost taste victory in Bristol-Myers Squibb v. Superior Court of California, seen as the term's most important case on jurisdiction.

Marc Kasowitz addresses the media on June 8 following the congressional testimony of former FBI Director James Comey

Trump Case Leaves Marc Kasowitz's Law Firm at a Crossroads

By Christine Simmons |

Kasowitz's career-defining undertaking in Washington, D.C., has raised new questions about the trajectory of his New York firm.

Noel Hillman

Judge Trims Claims by Ex-Client Against Archer & Greiner

By Charles Toutant |

A federal judge in Camden has tossed some claims for malpractice and breach of fiduciary duty against Archer & Greiner and two of its lawyers arising from their representation of the former general counsel of a vacation time-share company.

Christie Nominates 5 to Judicial Posts

By Michael Booth |

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Tuesday nominated five lawyers to be judges of the Superior Court, the Office of Administrative Law and the Workers' Compensation Court.

FINRA

Past FINRA Arbitration Bars Claim Against Bressler Amery

By David Gialanella |

An investment adviser's legal malpractice claims against New Jersey firm Bressler, Amery & Ross are precluded by prior arbitration against his employer, a state appeals court has ruled.

Paul Bond and Mark Melodia, with Reed Smith.

Law Firm Apps Designed to Impress Clients—and to Win Them

By Miriam Rozen |

The apps keep coming, but do most clients care?

Assemblyman Herb Conaway, Jr., M.D.

'Telemedicine' Legislation Gaining Traction in New Jersey

By Michael Booth |

New Jersey is one step closer to imposing regulations on the burgeoning practice of "telemedicine," where patients remotely receive medical evaluations or counseling from their health care providers.

Waste Hauler Agrees to $1.2M Settlement in Overtime Suit by Trash Collectors

By Charles Toutant |

A U.S. magistrate judge in Newark has approved a $1.2 million settlement of an overtime suit against Galaxy Recycling of Jersey City on behalf of residential trash collectors who claimed they were denied overtime pay.

Distinguished Leaders

The New Jersey Law Journal's Distinguished Leaders honorees.

Cross-examination: Adding a mindfulness practice to the practice of law

Some attorneys have begun to embrace relaxation techniques, such as meditation and yoga

CAPITOL REPORT

A report on recent action in Trenton of interest to NJSBA members

New Jersey Attorney General Christopher Porrino

NJ Brewery Wholesaler to Pay $2M Fine for Underselling

By Michael Booth |

A New Jersey craft beer wholesaler has agreed to pay $2 million and surrender its license to settle claims of anti-competitive trade practices.

Virginia Long of Fox Rothschild. HANDOUT.

Virginia Long

Rosemarie Arnold

Suit Targeting J. Crew Receipts Threadbare, Judge Says

By Michael Booth |

A federal judge has dismissed a putative class action against clothing company J. Crew Group Inc. claiming the company issued receipts that were too revealing.

Alexander Shalom is Senior Staff Attorney at the ACLU-NJ

Shalom Tackles Bail Reform, Juvenile Justice in Banner Year as ACLU-NJ Counsel

By David Gialanella |

Even in a rapidly developing career, 2016 was a particularly significant year for ACLU-NJ senior counsel Alexander Shalom, including successful representations in the areas of juvenile justice and New Jersey's new bail system.

Thomas Prol a partner with Laddey, Clark & Ryan, LLP.

Prol, Already a 'First,' Proves Effective Bar Leader

By David Gialanella |
Matheu D. Nunn is a Partner with Einhorn, Harris, Ascher, Barbarito & Frost, PC.

At 35, Nunn Becomes a Regular at Supreme Court

By David Gialanella |

Seeing three family cases through to the New Jersey Supreme Court in roughly one year is a remarkable feat by any measure. But Matheu Nunn says an opportunity to make law isn't always good for the client.

New Leaders of the Bar

New Jersey Law Journal's 2017 New Leaders

Motorcyclist Who Lost Leg After Crash Settles for $1.7M in Essex

By David Gialanella |

A man who lost a leg after his motorcycle collided with a delivery van settled his Essex County suit, Bodanski v. Kontos Foods, on May 12 for $1.7 million.

Social Media Ethics Guidance Needed

By Law Journal Editorial Board |

No New Jersey ethics opinion has yet addressed ethics issues in regard to social media. We urge the Supreme Court to assign this matter for consideration to the most appropriate committee.

Justin Walder

Peter Verniero

Peter Verniero

Peter Sprgel, with Flaster Greenberg

Peter Spirgel

Nancy Erika Smith of Smith Mullin.

Nancy Erika Smith

By David Gialanella |
Robert Silverman

Robert Silverman

Ekaterina Schoenefeld

Ekaterina Schoenefeld

Bruce Nagel

Bruce Nagel

David Sorin

David Sorin

Lawrence Jones

Lawrence Jones

Peter Harvey

Peter Harvey

RONALD COLEMAN

Ronald Coleman

Lora Fong, chief diversity officer, New Jersey Attorney General's Office.

Lora Fong

Crystal West Edwards

Patrick Dunican.

Patrick Dunican Jr.

Dena Calo

Dena Calo

New Trial for Ex-Rutgers Prof Convicted of Sexual Abuse

By Michael Booth |

A New Jersey appeals court has ordered a new trial for a former Rutgers University professor now serving prison time for having a sexual relationship with a mentally disabled man related to one of her students.

Jamie Myers

McElroy Deutsch Plants Flag in Florida

By David Gialanella |

McElroy, Deutsch, Mulvaney & Carpenter has expanded into Florida, with the addition of a litigation lateral with whom the firm has a long history.

Federal Judge Susan Wigenton - U.S. District Judge for the District of New Jersey

Doctor Owes $1.87M for Bad Faith Employment Suit, Judge Rules

By Michael Booth |

A federal judge has ordered a Pennsylvania doctor and her husband to pay Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp. $1.87 million in fee sanctions and counterclaim damages in a discrimination lawsuit that was deemed to have been lodged in bad faith.

NJ Supreme Court Justice Faustino J. Fernandez-Vina.

Court Overturns Conviction for Answering Door With Machete

By Michael Booth |

New Jersey residents have the right to walk around their homes and answer the door with a weapon—including those other than firearms—so long as they are not using them in a threatening manner.

Christopher Wray, King & Spalding.

Trump Tweets: King & Spalding Lawyer to Head FBI

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker and Katelyn Polantz |

President Donald Trump tweeted his choice for the new FBI director Wednesday morning – former prosecutor Christopher Wray, now with Atlanta's King & Spalding.

Justice Anne Patterson

Split Court Limits AG's Subpoena Power in Qui Tam Suits

By Michael Booth |

The state Attorney General's Office may not issue administrative subpoenas in qui tam cases after the statutory deadline for government participation has passed, the New Jersey Supreme Court has ruled.

Chipotle

Chipotle Workers Sue for Overtime, Testing Scope of Obama-Era Rule

By Erin Mulvaney |

A federal lawsuit filed Wednesday in New Jersey claims the Obama-era worker-overtime rule is still in effect, despite a federal court's injunction, and companies that decided not to comply are violating federal labor laws.

Emergency medical technician

Civil Immunity for First Responders Gets Committee OK

By Michael Booth |

A New Jersey legislative committee has recommended passage of a bill that would provide immunity from civil damages for first responders who cause property damage during an emergency forced entry.

Richard J. Hughes Justice Complex, seat of the New Jersey Supreme Court.

Constitutionality of Church Grants Fast-Tracked to High Court

By Michael Booth |

The New Jersey Supreme Court has agreed to determine whether a county's policy of giving historic preservation grants to local churches violates state constitutional requirements mandating the separation of church and state.

(l-r) Steven Bradbury, Brian Benczkowski, Carlos Muñiz, and Robert Charrow.

Trump Announces Slate of Big Law Nominees for DOJ, Agency Posts

By Cogan Schneier |

The White House has tapped lawyers from Dechert, Kirkland & Ellis, McGuireWoods and Greenberg Traurig for executive branch roles.

David Mazie of Mazie Slater Katz & Freeman.

Petition Seeks Reinstatement of $166M Award to Abused Youth

By Michael Booth |

The state Supreme Court has been asked to reinstate a $166 million verdict against the state in the case of a child who was severely abused by his father after child-welfare authorities left him in the father's custody.

Jose Fuentes

New Trial Ordered Because Trial Judge Wrongly Green-Lighted Pro Se Criminal Defense

By Charles Toutant |

The Appellate Division has ordered a new trial for a defendant convicted of passing bad checks after finding that the trial judge misapplied the applicable law on self-representation in criminal cases.

Jeanne LoCicero of the ACLU of NJ

In Trenton, Lawyers Protest ICE Arrests at Courthouses

By Michael Booth |

Lawyers and activists protested to New Jersey lawmakers on Monday about the federal government's recent moves to seize and detain undocumented immigrants who appear at the state's courthouses.

U.S. District Judge Kevin McNulty

US Judge Upholds Insurance Exclusion in Child Abuse Civil Case

By Charles Toutant |

An insurance company owed no duty to defend the Montville School District in a suit by an alleged victim of molestation committed by a former teacher, a federal judge in Newark has ruled.

Daring to Inspire

State bar to host program on Saudi women

Giving feedback on court rules

State bar offers insight on proposed court rules

Blog Roll

A look at NJSBA members' blogs

CAPITOL REPORT

Status report provided by the New Jersey State Bar Association: A review of eCourts across the state system

Justice Elana Kagan

Justices' Ruling for Religious-Affiliated Hospitals Threatens Pension Class Actions

By Marcia Coyle |

​The employee retirement plans of religious-affiliated nonprofits are exempt from the protections and requirements of the federal pension law, a unanimous U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Monday. The decision was a blow to multimillion-dollar class actions that seek to hold those plans liable for violating the federal law.

With Gender Identity Rights, the Writing is on the Bathroom Wall

By Law Journal Editorial Board |

It is just a matter of time before the basic right to be treated with dignity and respect without regard to gender identity or sexual orientation will be accepted federal law, as it already is by statute in 19 states.

NJ Courts: Heed Loud-and-Clear Message on Arb Clauses

By Law Journal Editorial Board |

In KindredNursing Centers L.P. v. Clark, the U.S. Supreme Court's "we really mean it" tone must be taken to heart in New Jersey.

N.J. State Sen. Nia Gill

NJ Senate Committee Moves on Pay Equity Bill

By Michael Booth |

A committee of the New Jersey Senate has recommended passage of a bill, aiming to promote pay equity for women, that would bar employers from asking would-be workers about their wage histories.

Zoloft.

Third Circuit Rejects Revival of Zoloft MDL

By Max Mitchell |

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit has rejected attempts to revive 315 scuttled cases against Pfizer over claims that its anxiety medication Zoloft caused birth defects.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

US Chamber Pushes Rule to Expose Litigation Funding

By Amanda Bronstad |

Pointing to a rise in the use of outside financiers in lawsuits, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is petitioning the federal judiciary to adopt a nationwide disclosure requirement for third-party litigation funding.

Tropicana orange juice

Judge Quells Fracas Over Experts in Tropicana 'Natural' MDL

By Charles Toutant |

A federal judge in Newark has denied challenges from plaintiffs' and defense attorneys to expert witnesses who offered opinion evidence on how to verify individual claims and to calculate damages in claims over alleged mislabeling of orange juice.

Gregory Acquaviva

Christie Nominates His Chief Counsel, 6 Others to Bench

By Michael Booth |

Gov. Chris Christie nominated seven—including Gregory Acquaviva, his chief counsel since March—to the Superior Court bench. He also nominated a sitting Superior Court judge and a Tax Court judge for tenure.

Refund Secured in Carmaker's Arbitration Doesn't Foreclose Lemon Law Fee Recovery

By Charles Toutant |

A consumer who is granted a refund for the purchase of her car through the manufacturer's arbitration program may reject that remedy and file a Lemon Law suit for the sole purpose of pursuing a fee award, the Appellate Division ruled Thursday.

U.S. District Judge Michael Shipp of the District of New Jersey

'Defective' Artificial Turf MDL Sent to NJ Judge

By Amanda Bronstad |

U.S. District Judge Michael Shipp in Trenton, presiding over his first MDL, will be handling dozens of claims that FieldTurf USA's astroturf doesn't last its guaranteed life span.

3rd Circ.: Bankruptcy Court Can Grant Leeway in Paying Debts Late

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

In an issue of first impression, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit has ruled that the Bankruptcy Code permits judges to grant a grace period for debtors to make up payment shortfalls in their installment plans to pay off debts.

Injury Plaintiffs May Recoup Medical Expenses Beyond PIP Limit

By Michael Booth |

A New Jersey appeals court ruled Thursday that injured motorists who opted for the $15,000 minimum in personal-injury-protection benefits in their insurance policies may recover medical expenses exceeding that amount.

Despite Jump to $180K for Big Law Associates, Median Salary Stalls

By Karen Sloan |

The median salary earned by first years this year was $135,000—the same number as 2015, according to new data from the National Association for Law Placement.

Michael Shipp

J&J Out, Janssen Still In, as Defendants in False Claims Suit

By Michael Booth |

A federal judge has ruled that a qui tam suit on behalf of more than two dozen states, accusing a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary of off-label marketing of HIV/AIDS drugs, can move ahead in pared-down form.

Reed Smith Launches Space Practice With Dentons Lawyers

By Lizzy McLellan |

Reed Smith has brought on two lawyers from Dentons to lead a new practice area in aviation and aerospace finance and commercial space business, extending a string of recent lateral moves in aviation law.

Seven From LeClairRyan's Health Care Group Head to Lewis Brisbois

By Michael Booth |

Seven lawyers from LeClairRyan's Newark office focused on health care law and insurance defense have jumped to Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith.

Alida Kass of the New Jersey Civil Justice Institute

'Kindred' Case Highlights SCOTUS' Clash With States Over Arbitration

By Charles Toutant |

The U.S. Supreme Court has declared its frustration with state courts that fail to share its views on arbitration, but opinions differ on whether its latest ruling on the subject will compel the New Jersey Supreme Court to change directions. The justices' May 15 decision in "Kindred Nursing Centers v. Clark" was seen as a rebuke to state courts that strike down arbitration agreements. New Jersey's Supreme Court finds itself squarely in the middle of the conflict with a series of decisions limiting application of arbitration clauses in recent years.

Bernards Township, NJ. Wikimedia

Township Agrees to $3.25M Settlement After Initial Rejection of Mosque Application

By Charles Toutant |

Bernards Township has agreed to pay $3.25 million to settle litigation over its denial of an application to build a mosque.

Robert Hicks, left, and Lee Muench, right.

Paternity-Leave Stigma at Law Firms Lifting, Ever So Slowly

By Angela Morris |

Some dads say they're getting more support from their colleagues to take time off. They're also benefiting from an increasing base of other dads at their firms who have forged a path to make paternity leave more mainstream.

6 Nominated to Trial, Workers' Comp, Administrative Courts

By Michael Booth |

Gov. Chris Christie has nominated six to the bench: three for Superior Court, two for the Workers' Compensation Court and one for the Office of Administrative Law.

Judge Keeps Vaccine Cases in US Court

By Max Mitchell |

Plaintiffs suing Merck over its shingles vaccine Zostavax have lost the fight to have their cases heard in state court, after a judge determined one defendants was fraudulently joined.

Will In-House Lawyers Change Patent Strategies Post-'TC Heartland'?

By Jennifer Williams-Alvarez |

With many celebrating the recent TC Heartland decision as a shake-up that may loosen the Eastern District of Texas' grip on patent infringement suits, in-house lawyers are faced with questions around if–and how–patent strategies should change.

President Hille vows commitment to NJSBA members and its mission

NJSBA president looks at year ahead

June Calendar of Events

Upcoming events of interest to NJSBA members

CAPITOL REPORT

A report on recent action in Trenton of interest to NJSBA members