January 17th, 2020 | Written by Diana N. Fredericks, Esq.
Newly passed NJ Senate Bill 3528 has established a process to obtain an expedited judgement of adoption for a spouse or civil union partner of a biological or legal parent of child when both parties are named as parents on the child's birth certificate. The bill was signed into law on January 13, 2020 and becomes effective April 1, 2020.
January 13th, 2020 | Written by Tara A. St. Angelo, Esq.
Lawsuits alleging that websites violate provisions of the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) have spiked in recent years. One review of federal lawsuits estimates that over 2,000 lawsuits alleging ADA violations in websites will be filed in the United States this year, with an estimated 4% in New Jersey1. Although these lawsuits have focused on businesses, municipalities may wind up in the crosshairs.
December 4th, 2019 | Written by Diana N. Fredericks, Esq.
The Sexual Assault Survivor Protection Act (SASPA) was passed into law in November 2015 and enacted in May 2016[i]. This Act provides greater protection to victims of sexual offenses by allowing them to obtain a protective order. You can read the law at N.J.S.A. 2C:14-13 et seq.[ii] New Jersey Rules of Court, Rule 5:7B[iii] addresses SASPA. In November 2019, the Appellate Division of New Jersey, in the case of C.R. v. M.T., Docket No. A-0139-18T4[iv], addressed the issue of an intoxicated victim. The Court indicated that under SASPA, a victim who alleges that voluntary intoxication prevented her from consenting to sexual contact with defendant must prove extremely high level of intoxication, i.e., a "prostration of faculties."
November 1st, 2019 | Written by Diana N. Fredericks, Esq.
Many clients are relieved, for a variety of reasons (stress, financially, emotionally), to be done with their divorce, but the entry of a final judgment of divorce is not necessarily the end of the inquiry. Instead, there are often “to do’s” at the conclusion of a divorce and it is critical that you follow through.
October 15th, 2019 | Written by Diana N. Fredericks, Esq.
In March 2007, the Supreme Court of New Jersey launched a pilot program for parent coordination[i]. That program defines a Parenting Coordinator as “a qualified neutral person appointed by the court, or agreed to by the parties, to facilitate the resolution of day to day parenting issues that frequently arise within the context of family life when parents are separated. The Parenting Coordinator’s goal is to aid parties in monitoring the existing parenting plan, reducing misunderstandings, clarifying priorities, exploring possibilities for compromise and developing methods of communication that promote collaboration in parenting. The Parenting Coordinator’s role is to facilitate decision making between the parties or make such recommendations, as may be appropriate, when the parties are unable to do so.”
October 10th, 2019 | Written by Leslie A. Parikh, Esq.
The Federal Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) determines whether employees are eligible (non-exempt) or exempt from overtime requirements. Generally, the FLSA looks to either an employee’s work responsibilities or rate of pay in order to designate an employee as exempt or non-exempt from overtime. Exempt employees are not eligible for overtime for hours worked in excess of 40 hours per work week. Non-exempt employees must be paid overtime at a rate of time and a half for time worked in excess of 40 hours in any one work week.
On September 24, 2019, the Department of Labor increased the minimum salary threshold for white-collar exemptions, which will go from $450 a week to $684 a week ($35,568 a year). The rule goes into effect January 1, 2020.
August 21st, 2019 | Written by Leslie A. Parikh, Esq.
The New Jersey Wage Theft Act (WTA) is the most recent legislation following on the heels of several other laws significantly impacting New Jersey employers. The legislation was passed on August 6, 2019 and will toughen penalties for an employer’s failure to pay wages owed to workers. The law applies to traditional wage and hour violations such as the failure to pay minimum wage, failure to pay overtime, etc., and it also extends to employee benefits.
August 9th, 2019 | Written by Leslie A. Parikh, Esq.
With the signing of Bill A1094 into law on July 25, 2019, New Jersey has followed in the footsteps of several other states by prohibiting employers from inquiring about job applicants’ prior earning history. The new law goes into effect on January 1, 2020, and pertains not only to wages, but also other employment-related compensation and benefits.
July 12th, 2019 | Written by Leslie A. Parikh, Esq.
In Knick v. Township of Scott, Pa. (No. 17-647), decided June 21, 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court overruled the longstanding precedent set forth in Williamson County v. Hamilton Bank (1985), which required a plaintiff bringing a claim under the Civil Rights Act of 1871 (Section 1983) for unconstitutional taking of private property to first exhaust state and local remedies.
July 9th, 2019 | Written by Leslie A. Parikh, Esq.
New Jersey’s marijuana legislation has been in a constant state of flux for more than a year. Prior to July 2, 2019, New Jersey’s medical marijuana law allowed individuals who received a valid recommendation from a physician to purchase, possess and consume cannabis, but failed to provide any protection for medical marijuana users in the employment arena. In fact, the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act, N.J.S.A. 24:61-1, et seq. (CUMMA), specifically did not require an employer to accommodate a medical marijuana user. That all changed on July 2, 2019, when Governor Phil Murphy signed a bill that expanded the State’s medical marijuana program in significant ways.