The Supreme Court announced the unusual step of soliciting amicus curiae briefs from anyone who might wish to file one in the case of Orientale v. Jennings, an auto accident matter summarized here. The Court heard oral argument in that case on October 9, 2018 and yesterday published an Order dated November 1, 2018.
In that Order, the Court requested supplemental briefing from the parties and from amicus New Jersey Association for Justice, to be submitted simultaneously on December 10, 2018, on the following issues:
1) Should both parties have the right to object to a trial court’s additur, or should only the defendant have that right?
2) Should both parties have the right to object to a trial court’s remittitur, or should only the plaintiff have that right?
3) In additur, should the court set the damages amount as the lowest amount reasonably supported by the record, or a reasonable amount supported by the record?
4) In remittitur, should the court set the damages amount as the highest amount reasonably supported by the record, or a reasonable amount supported by the record?
The Order then “invites additional motions for leave to participate as amicus curiae to file a brief” regarding those issues. Any such motion must be accompanied by the proposed amicus brief on the merits and must be filed by December 17, 2018. The parties must respond by January 7, 2019. The Court will determine at a later date whether proceedings other than the supplemental briefing, such as reargument, will occur.