Judge Leonard I. Garth died last week at age 95.  Born in Brooklyn on April 27, 1921, he went to college at Columbia and got his law degree at Harvard.  In between, he served as a lieutenant in the United States Army.  After law school, the future Judge Garth was one of the founders of a law firm in Paterson that has evolved into the Hackensack firm now known as Cole Schotz. read more

Back in May, Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump announced a list of eleven potential nominees to the Supreme Court of the United States.  As discussed here, one of those candidates, Judge Thomas Hardiman, currently sits on the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.  Trump has now offered another ten names.  None of those come from New Jersey or from within the Third Circuit. read more

As discussed here, many veteran lawyers know of Judson v. Peoples Bank & Trust Co. of Westfield, 17 N.J. 67 (1957), as the predecessor to Brill v. Guardian Life Ins. Co., 142 N.J. 520 (1995), on the subject of the standards for summary judgment.  But Judson did not end there.  On this date in 1957, the Supreme Court issued another opinion in that case.  25 N.J. 17 (1957). read more

Tagayun v. AmeriChoice of New Jersey, Inc., ___ N.J. Super. ___ (App. Div. 2016).  As Judge Higbee noted in her opinion for the Appellate Division today, Rule 1:4-8 or N.J.S.A. 2A:15-59.1, which afford sanctions for frivolous litigation, “must both be interpreted strictly against the applicant for an award of fees.”  Sanctions are not warranted whenever “a party is wrong about the law and loses their case.”  Today’s opinion reversed two frivolous litigation sanctions against plaintiffs, under the abuse of discretion standard.  But a third sanction was affirmed. read more

Cuevas v. Wentworth Group, ___ N.J. ___ (2016).  In He v. Miller, 207 N.J. 230 (2011), the Supreme Court addressed issues of remittitur at length and in detail.  Among other things, the Court there “endorsed the use of comparable verdicts in remittitur motions,” as Justice Albin stated in his unanimous opinion today.  But in today’s opinion, the Court announced that “the comparison of supposedly similar verdicts to assess whether a particular damages award is excessive is ultimately a futile exercise that should be abandoned.” Instead, read more

E&J Equities v. Franklin Tp. Bd. of Adj. , ___ N.J. ___ (2016).  Billboards are not everyone’s favorite thing.  Many view them as a blot on the landscape (and not humorous at all, unlike the 1980’s British comedy “Blott on the Landscape“).  Here, after plaintiff had applied to the defendant Board for a variance allowing it to install a digital billboard on its land along I-287, Franklin Township adopted an ordinance that permitted “static” (conventional) billboards in the zone where plaintiff’s property was located, but banned digital billboards in the Township.  The stated bases for the digital billboard ban were aesthetics and public safety, since such billboards were more distracting to drivers than static billboards.  The Board then denied plaintiff’s variance application (actually, plaintiff got a 4-3 margin in its favor, but a supermajority was required in this circumstance, so the result was a denial). read more

The Supreme Court has announced that it has granted review in two cases.  The first matter, Bisbing v. Bisbing, arises out of the Family Part.  The Appellate Divsiion’s decision, reported at 445 N.J. Super. 207 (App. Div. 2016), was discussed here.  The question presented in Bisbing, as phrased by the Supreme Court Clerk’s office, is “Did the trial court err in granting plaintiff’s motion to relocate out of state with the parties’ children?” read more

On this date in 1994, the Supreme Court decided Cox v. Sears Roebuck & Co., 138 N.J. 2 (1994).  This unanimous opinion by Justice Clifford continues to be one of the leading cases on the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, N.J.S.A. 56:8-1 et seq. (“CFA”). read more