The First Amendment’s Impact on New Jersey’s Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights

Posted on July 30th, 2013

            There are instances where an individual’s First Amendment Right to Free Speech may run into conflict with New Jersey’s Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights (“ABR”).  The ABR makes incidents of harassment, bullying and/or intimidation unlawful in certain settings and requires school districts to prevent and punish such incidents.  The question thus becomes, what speech is an example of harassment, bullying and/or intimidation and is such speech otherwise protected under the First Amendment?  This article addresses how, from both a practical and legal standpoint, the ABR can be administered to prevent running afoul of the First Amendment. 

            This article was written by Luanne Peterpaul, Esq. and Michael H. Ansell, Esq. and was originally published in the June 2013 issue of New Jersey Lawyer Magazine, a publication of the New Jersey State Bar Association, and is reprinted here with permission.  

Getting Out of Debt Is Easier Than You Think: Bankruptcy Basics

Posted on July 12th, 2013

Bridget K. Dorney, Esq. wrote an article titled “Getting Out of Debt Is Easier Than You Think: Bankruptcy Basics”, which appears in the July/August 2013 Edition of The Monmouth County Woman publication.  In this article, Ms. Dorney provides insight  on  how someone might go about filing a bankruptcy claim; the differences in Chapter 11 and Chapter 7  and the benefits received from filing a claim.  To read the article in it’s entirety, click here.

Shapiro Prevails Before New Jersey Supreme Court

Posted on July 10th, 2013

Lawrence H. Shapiro, Esq., a Member of Ansell Grimm & Aaron, P.C., representing the Borough of Harvey Cedars achieved a landmark victory before the New Jersey Supreme Court in the case, Borough of Harvey Cedars v. Karan.  By a 5-0 margin, the State’s highest Court overturned rulings by the Superior Court and Appellate Division in holding that evidence of the positive benefits from beach replenishment and dune construction shore protection projects should be considered by a jury in determining just compensation in partial takings cases.  The decision marks a change in the law of the State which previously required a condemnor to demonstrate special benefits were received by a property owner in order to set off damages alleged to have been inflicted on property remaining after a partial taking; something that was never achieved in any reported decision in New Jersey.  The decision in Karan creates a new standard by which such evidence should be presented to a jury.

The Supreme Court decision has been hailed as saving shore protection projects in the State due to the fact that even after Superstorm Sandy, many oceanfront property owners have refused to provide the easements necessary for the construction of protective dune and beach projects to begin, holding out for large payments for their easements.  The Court’s ruling reversed a jury award to the Karan’s of $375,000 for the impact on their oceanfront view from a dune construction and beach replenishment project, and returns the matter to the trial court for a new trial in which the Borough will be able to present evidence of the benefits of the project, which it was previously prevented from doing.

Mr. Shapiro handled all aspects of the case including the jury trial, appeal, application to the Supreme Court and briefing and arguing the merits before that Court.

Read more at NY; or

View Supreme Court Oral Argument video here


Fending Off the Appointment of a Receiver

Posted on July 8th, 2013

Joshua S. Bauchner, Esq. recently published an article in the July 1, 2013 edition of the New Jersey Law Journal entitled “Fending off the Appointment of a Receiver.”  In today’s stressful economic climate, commercial property owners often are the victims of their tenant’s problems.  While a national tenant may file for bankruptcy with the expectation of reorganizing under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code, the landlord is left having to service the mortgage without cash-flow from that tenant or any ability to commence an eviction or related action as a result of the automatic stay.  11 U.S.C. § 362.  Sooner or later (likely sooner) the Landlord’s bank will come calling in the form of a foreclosure action.

While the defaults under the mortgage present their own challenges (the rapid accrual of default interest, late fees, and attorneys’ fees and costs), the likely first step in the foreclosure action will be a Motion to Appoint a Receiver; indeed, this requested relief often is sought contemporaneously with the filing of the foreclosure complaint.  The motion will seek the appointment of a receiver simply to collect rents or, more often these days, to take full managerial and operational control over the property divesting the Landlord of all its rights and interests (though not, title, as of yet).  This article details some defenses the Borrower (née Landlord) can assert to ward off the appointment.  For full article click here

This article was originally published in the July 1, 2013 issue of the New Jersey Law Journal.

The Assignment Clause in an Agreement of Sale: No Party May Assign This Agreement, or Can They?

Posted on June 11th, 2013

No Party May Assign this Agreement. This sentence appears to the untrained eye to be a simple and clear prohibition of an assignment in an agreement of sale. But, like in any legal document, nothing that appears to be simple and clear is simple or clear. Parties with this very clause in their agreement of sale have been permitted to assign all or a portion of their rights or duties thereunder due to a variety of reasons determined by various courts. If an assignment is prohibited in a purchase and sale agreement, can a party assign anyway? Does seller’s consent always have to be reasonable? This article answers those questions and discusses at length varying prohibitive assignment language that appears in a purchase and sale agreement, how such language has been interpreted by courts, and drafting tips for buyers and sellers on what language to use to best meet their needs in the transaction.  To read more about this article by Melanie Scroble, Esq., please click here.

Note: This article was reprinted from the May 2013 issue of ALM Commercial Leasing Law and Strategy, with permission from ALM Law Journal.

AGA Sues National Law Firm Alleging It Violated Former Client’s Rights

Posted on April 24th, 2013

Law360, New York (February 19, 2013, 2:37 PM ET) — A former Ramius Securities LLC manager sued Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP in New York state court on Friday, alleging the law firm disclosed privileged attorney-client communications to make him the fall guy in a Financial Industry Regulatory Authority investigation of the broker-dealer….

Please click here to read the article in its entirety.