Business Law and Litigation

New Jersey’s Business Court Continues to Evolve with Its Own Court Rules

In 2015 our New Jersey Supreme Court created a new path for business disputes and commercial litigation. The Complex Business Litigation Program (CBLP) was instituted throughout the trial division of the court system.  The CBLP required each county to appoint a “business judge” to supervise, manage and adjudicate commercial and business cases, as well as...
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New Jersey Supreme Court Sets Higher Standards For Expert Opinions

On August 1, 2018 in an important decision on the scope of expert opinions, the New Jersey Supreme Court excluded plaintiff’s expert testimony in a mass tort case alleging that the pharmaceutical giant Hoffmann-La Roche’s anti-acne drug Accutane led to development of Crohn’s disease. The case is entitled: In Re: Accutane Litigation. The unanimous ruling...
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Insurance Awareness: Every Company Needs to Know What It Is Insured For

Business insurance is an integral part of any game plan for a company’s success.  It helps to limit financial liabilities such as lengthy and costly litigations, and also provides avenues for recovery in the event of an unforeseen property loss.  However, business insurance will only work if it is properly designed, effectively implemented and constantly...
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Arbitration May Be Required in Auto Service Contracts or Extended Warranty Agreements

Recently, the New Jersey Appellate Court has upheld as valid an arbitration provision in an automobile service contract case which emanated from Burlington County, New Jersey.  It involved a purchaser of a used Ford F-250, with a separate service contract from a warranty company from Pennsylvania covering repairs for 180 days or 7,500 miles (Signor...
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Supreme Court Decides Individualized Arbitration Enforceable

Yesterday, the United States Supreme Court decided Epic System Corporation v. Lewis and two other companion cases Ernst & Young LLP, et al. v. Morris, et al. and National Labor Relations Board v. Murphy Oil USA, Inc. et. al. holding that contracts between an employer and an employee which provide for individualized arbitration proceedings...
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When performing the contract isn’t enough: lessons in the doctrine of good faith and fair dealing

Under ordinary contract law, all the parties’ obligations to each other will exist within the four corners of the agreement, pursuant to their “freedom to contract.” However, implied in every contract is a duty of good faith and fair dealing, both in the performance of the contract and in its enforcement. It’s a strange way...
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Do New Jersey Courts Hate Arbitration Clauses?

Arbitration clauses are often used by businesses as part of their comprehensive risk management program. Properly employed, they are enforceable and lead to quick and cost-effective resolutions of disputes with business partners and customers. Improperly employed, or used under abusive circumstances, their use can result in exactly what the clauses were used to avoid -...
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Is Your Exculpatory Clause Worth the Paper it’s Written on?

Today, in an unpublished decision, a New Jersey appellate court held that an overbroad exculpatory clause contained in a fitness services agreement was unenforceable. For those who don’t know or who otherwise live under a rock, exculpatory clauses are everywhere. I signed one basically every time my kids went to a birthday party. Businesses use...
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New Jersey Supreme Court Delivers Possible Death-Knell for TCCWNA Class Actions

Since around 2011, New Jersey businesses such as self-storage facilities, fitness centers and furniture stores have faced an ever-growing number of class-action complaints under the Truth in Consumer Contract, Warranty and Notice Act (TCCWNA) seeking statutory penalties of $100 per customer and attorneys’ fees. The typical case demanded that every customer that entered into a...
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