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Barry A. Kozyra Spoke On “Expungement Of New Jersey Criminal Records And What The Law Can Do For You”, A Program For Veterans At The East Orange Veterans Administration Medical Center On June 29, 2016

June 29, 2016

On Wednesday, June 29, 2016, Barry A. Kozyra appeared as the featured speaker on "Expungement of New Jersey Criminal Records and What The Law Can Do for YOU", a program offered for Veterans at the East Orange Veterans Administration Medical Center, East Orange, New Jersey. The program featured a review of the expungement laws including the types of offenses that can be expunged and respective waiting periods, a discussion about the expungement process from filing the initial petition to serving an Order of Expungement and what information you need to obtain to file a petition, and a detailed explanation of the forms used by petitioners and the Court in the expungement process. Mr. Kozyra took questions from those attending at the conclusion of his talk. Please contact Barry A.(...)

Premises Liability – The Limited Duty Of Care Owed To Social Guests

June 1, 2016

Michael J. Rankin reports a recent case where the Court granted the Defendants' motion to dismiss the complaint brought by their neighbor for injuries she sustained when she fell on or about Defendants' residential property while walking to Defendants' home. Specifically, Plaintiff argued that Defendants' vehicle was blocking the sidewalk, forcing her to walk around it, and causing her to slip and fall on snow and ice. Plaintiff suffered a fractured wrist which necessitated surgery. Following the incident, the Police instructed the Defendants to move the car that was blocking the sidewalk. The Court found the Plaintiff to be a "social guest" on Defendants' property and therefore, Defendants owed her only a limited duty of care, i.e., an obligation to warn of a known dangerous(...)

The Legal Arbitration Clause In New Jersey Revisited

May 10, 2016

Michael J. Rankin reports a recent case where New Jersey's Appellate Division knocked down a litigant's attempt to scale back a New Jersey Supreme Court decision that deemed arbitration agreements unenforceable if they do not clearly and unmistakably warn the signor about surrendering his/her litigation rights. The plaintiff in the case entered into a debt adjustment contract with defendant to negotiate a settlement with and satisfy the outstanding debts due to plaintiff's creditors. The contract included an arbitration clause directing that any dispute or claim relating to the agreement or defendant's services would be resolved by binding arbitration. Plaintiff initiated an action alleging, amongst other things, that defendant did not perform as agreed under the agreement and(...)

Consumer Protection Treble Damages And Reimbursement Of Attorneys’ Fees And Costs Awarded Against A Builder For Violating New Jersey’s Consumer Fraud Act

March 22, 2016

Michael J. Rankin reports a recent case dealing with a builder's omission of material facts in the sale of new homes and whether the omission was a violation of New Jersey's Consumer Fraud Act ("CFA"). The builder in this case designed and promoted homes with two car garages in a new development. The Plaintiffs ended up purchasing model homes in the development. However, after the closing, the Plaintiffs discovered that a platform and steps impaired the ability to fit a car into the left garage bay of their respective homes. Plaintiffs brought suit against the builder and prevailed on their claims under the CFA. The trial court found that the builder knew of the problem but knowingly omitted this material fact during their disclosures to Plaintiffs and awarded damages, which(...)

Premises Liability – A Business Owner’s Duty To Preserve Surveillance Video

February 10, 2016

Michael J. Rankin reports a recent case dealing with whether a defendant business owner's destruction of video surveillance constituted spoliation or fraudulent concealment of evidence. Plaintiff alleged that she tripped and fell resulting in injuries while shopping at a supermarket. Plaintiff initiated her action against the supermarket one year after her accident. During the discovery period of her lawsuit, she requested that the supermarket produce any photos or videos depicting her accident. The supermarket responded that it was not currently in possession of any such items. However, during the deposition of the supermarket's assistant store manager, it was revealed that potentially relevant surveillance video previously existed, but had been taped over. Plaintiff filed a(...)