Most bankruptcies filed in the United States are either under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13. The kind that you file depends on a few criteria, including your income, assets, debts, and your financial goals.
The Appellate Division recently ordered a new trial in an auto accident case involving a Hispanic plaintiff. The court found that defense counsel’s cross-examination of the Colombian-born plaintiff about his citizenship, how long he lived in the United States, and his need for an interpreter could appeal to juror prejudice, inflame certain jurors and distract them from their proper role as evaluators of evidence.
A last will and testament will usually designate an executor to carry out the decedent’s wishes. Upon death, the will is submitted to the county surrogate for probate. At the same time, the executor qualifies and is issued letters testamentary, and then may act on behalf of the estate.
In a recent unreported decision, the Appellate Division upheld the dismissal of a trip and fall complaint arising from an accident on a residential sidewalk. The plaintiff claimed that the homeowner had planted a tree on his property which caused the sidewalk to become raised and buckled, on which the plaintiff tripped and fell. The homeowner admitted the condition of the sidewalk but claimed that he had only planted trees in his backyard. The homeowner did repair the sidewalk, but only after the town issued him a summons for failure to maintain the sidewalk.
When a tenant moves out of an apartment but leaves personal belongings behind, the landlord may not dispose of the property without giving the tenant an opportunity to return to the apartment and remove the belongings. This applies even if the tenant owes rent and even if the tenant was legally evicted by the court.
In New Jersey, a law called the Abandoned Tenant Property Statute requires landlords to give written notice to former tenants if the landlord wants to dispose of property left by the tenants after they have moved out. The notice must state that the landlord considers the property left behind abandoned.
Bankruptcy exemptions protect your property from your creditors.
You have two choices when filing for bankruptcy in New Jersey. When you file you can choose between using the state exemptions or federal exemptions. Determining which set of exemptions to use is a crucial decision. Federal exemptions are usually more favorable.
Attorneys will sometimes file accident lawsuits with a questionable basis, which often comes back to haunt them. A recent unreported Appellate Division decision is instructive.
A woman involved in an automobile collision had the lawsuit threshold (see https://www.middlesexcountyaccidentlawyer.com/what-is-the-lawsuit-threshold/).
She admitted that no part of her body struck the inside of the vehicle, that her parked vehicle was not moved by the impact, and that she told the responding officer that she was not injured and that she did not need an ambulance.The other driver testified that she did not feel any impact and that there was no damage to her car.
As we have often said, the success or failure of a personal injury case will come down to the facts. A recent unreported Appellate Division decision in a slip and fall case makes that clear.
The plaintiff tripped over an uneven sidewalk abutting the defendant homeowners’ property. She alleged that she tripped because of the elevation of the sidewalk slab and the decorative white stones that had spilled on the sidewalk obscuring the elevation of the sidewalk.
(This according to the J. Geils Band song of the same name.) “And may lead to litigation…”
A recent unreported Appellate Division decision involved parties that were romantically involved.
The plaintiff purchased property and built a house. Prior to the closing, the parties executed an agreement in which plaintiff promised to deed the house into both of their names as joint tenants with the right of survivorship and that defendant would have no financial obligations for the home. The parties executed and recorded the deed before they began living in the house.
In merry olde England, the King was the law. Whatever he said went. Eventually, a second branch of law developed around litigants bringing petitions to the King’s Chancellor, seeking exceptions to the King’s laws. This second branch is the precursor of our present day Chancery Division of the New Jersey Superior Court. The Chancellor was considered to be the “keeper of the King’s conscience”.