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The Risks of Withdrawing a Conditional Offer of Employment Based on Medical Reasons

November 13th, 2017 | Written by Richard P. Cushing, Esq.

The recent unpublished Appellate Division decision of Philip Marchesani v. J.B. Hunt Transportation, Inc., et al., Appellate Division, Docket No. A-4751-15T2 (decided October 31, 2017), illustrates the challenges faced by employers who issue a conditional offer of employment. 

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Military Pensions: How the “Frozen Benefit Rule” Applies in Divorce Cases

November 10th, 2017 | Written by Diana N. Fredericks, Esq.

On December 23, 2016, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA 2017) was signed into law.  This new rule, sometimes referred to as the “Frozen Benefit Rule,” affects the law on military pensions for almost everyone, and also affects equitable distribution of military pensions in divorce cases.  This applies to those still serving who divorce after December 23, 2016. 

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Volunteer Firemen May Not Pursue a Whistleblower Claim Under the Conscientious Employee Protection Act

October 26th, 2017 | Written by Richard P. Cushing, Esq.

Judge Accurso of the Appellate Division recently ruled in the case of Jeffrey Sauter v. Colts Neck Volunteer Fire Company No. 2 that volunteer firemen are not entitled to the protection of the Conscientious Employee Protection Act (CEPA), N.J.S.A. 34:19-1, et seq., because a volunteer firefighter is not an employee of the fire company, even though such volunteers may receive Length of Service Awards Program (LOSAP) benefits and other remuneration.

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Employers: Avoid Comments About Employees’ Religions or Religious Practices

October 23rd, 2017 | Written by Leslie A. Parikh, Esq.

To steer clear of potential issues, employers should follow this plain and simple rule: don’t permit comments about employees’ religions or religious practices in the workplace.

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How Childhood Lessons Are Relevant in a Divorce Case

October 11th, 2017 | Written by William J. Rudnik, Esq.

Anyone who has a child (or once was a child) knows the values and virtues that parents try to instill in their children.  These common values and virtues are typically reinforced by schools, teachers, and religious educators.  Many of these same teachings that we learn in our childhood are applicable for people going through a divorce.  Here are a few examples (in no particular order), based on my experience handing numerous divorce cases:

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Ten Things You Should Never Post on Social Media When Going Through a Divorce

September 26th, 2017 | Written by Diana N. Fredericks, Esq.

The way you conduct yourself on social media websites can often hurt your divorce case.  As a general rule, staying off of social media before, during or after your divorce is a best practice, but if you cannot achieve total abstinence, consider the following tips and things you should never do:

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Are Municipal Fire Companies Subject to the Open Public Records Act?

August 30th, 2017 | Written by Richard P. Cushing, Esq.

Background For a number of years, there have been vexing questions as to whether volunteer fire companies are considered public entities or simply a group of volunteers who get together to fight fires.  The uncertainty arises from the fact that fire companies consist of a group of self-governing individuals who volunteer to fight fires without significant oversight from municipal officials.  Volunteer firemen often raise significant funds for their operation; they independently elect officers, provide for their own training and often purchase significant amounts of their own equipment.  On the other hand, the municipality in which they are located must permit their operation, often makes significant financial contributions, and frequently approves membership.  Many municipalities have ordinances establishing the creation or recognition of volunteer fire departments and those ordinances exercise various levels of control.  In addition, municipalities fund large capital expenditures for heavy fire equipment and make Length of Service Award Program (LOSAP) contributions.  Furthermore, while volunteer fire companies agree to fill the municipal function of firefighting, they also operate as social or fraternal organizations that provide recreational, educational and other benefits to members.

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Out-of-State Relocation Standard in Divorce Cases Changed to “Best Interest” Analysis

August 17th, 2017 | Written by William J. Rudnik, Esq.

In New Jersey, the statute N.J.S.A. 9:2-2 allows a parent to relocate out of state with the parties’ children if the other parent agrees or if the court issues an order allowing the move.  In cases where there is a true shared custody arrangement or equal parenting time, the court would apply a “best interest” analysis, similar to the analysis in deciding custody of children in a divorce case.  In cases where there is a parent who has primary residential custody (parent who has the majority of overnight parenting time), the standard the court applied for the last sixteen years in these relocation cases is set forth in Baures v. Lewis, 167 N.J. 91 (2001).

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Name Change of a Minor in the Twenty-First Century

August 11th, 2017 | Written by Diana N. Fredericks, Esq.

In June 2017, the trial court published an opinion addressing a matter of first impression in the State of New Jersey[i].   Plainitff, the mother of the 16-year-old child, petitioned the Court to allow the parties’ transgendered child to change his name from Veronica to Trevor.

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Court Rules Against Employer for Not Accommodating Employee’s Religious Belief of “Mark of the Beast”

June 28th, 2017 | Written by Leslie A. Parikh, Esq.

Recently, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a near $600,000 award against an employer for failing to accommodate an employee’s religious belief after a biometric hand scanner was installed in the workplace (EEOC v. Consol Energy). The employee claimed that the scanner would label him with the “Mark of the Beast,” contrary to his evangelical Christian religious beliefs.

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