Just How Far Must You Go To Serve A Lawsuit Upon a Defendant (Part 3 of a 3 Part Series)

HNW Business Litigation

By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright, a Freehold, NJ Trial & Litigation Attorney In Parts 1 and 2 of this blog post, I discussed the appeal of a tax sale foreclosure action and the court’s legal analysis.  Read on for the outcome of the case. Here, plaintiff contends it properly served defendant pursuant to Rule 4:4-5(a)(2) by mailing the summons and complaint to defendant’s address, but such rule provides a party may be served by mail as long as the serving party adheres to Rule 4:4-4(b)(1)(C). But the court said that in order for the kind of service plaintiff endeavored to effectuate here to be effective, plaintiff first had to attempt personal service in accordance with …

Yes, You Can Use Facebook to Serve a Lawsuit on an Out of State Defendant…Sometimes (Part 2 of a 2-Part Series)

HNW Additional Practice Areas, Business Litigation

By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright a Freehold Township, Monmouth County New Jersey Trial and Litigation Attorney Part 1 of this series described a recent case where Facebook was used to serve in a trial litigation matter. The Court Decision The issue presented here is whether the court is able to assert personal jurisdiction over defendant by virtue of the service of the lawsuit by Facebook. As a preliminary matter, the addresses that plaintiffs allege are defendants are out of State. A court cannot assert jurisdiction over an out-of-state defendant unless such defendant has engaged in contact with the home state of a plaintiff. An out-of-state activity constitutes a contact with the home state for the …

Just How Far Must You Go To Serve A Lawsuit Upon a Defendant (Part 2 of a 3 Part Series)

HNW Business Litigation

By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright, a Freehold, NJ Trial & Litigation Attorney Part 1 of this blog series discussed the appeal of a tax sale foreclosure action. On appeal, defendant contends the trial court erred when it denied its motion. Defendant argued the judgment was void because it was not served with the complaint. Court’s Legal Analysis Rule 4:50-1(d) provides the court may relieve a party from a final judgment if it is void. “The decision whether to grant such a motion is left to the sound discretion of the trial court.” However, “a default judgment will be considered void when a substantial deviation from service of process rules has occurred, casting reasonable doubt on …

Did You Know That a Court Appointed Receiver Cannot Be Held Personally Liable When He or She Screws Up a Business?

HNW Business Law, Business Litigation, Corporations

By Fredrick P. Niemann of Hanlon, Niemann & Wright, a Freehold Township, Monmouth County, New Jersey Business & Corporation Law Attorney In a recent case, a Court appointed receiver was sued over the actions they allegedly took during their tenure administrating rental property.  Plaintiff’s case was dismissed because the United States Supreme Court has ruled that legal “action(s) against a Court appointed receiver are (in essence) actions against the receivership, and/or the funds in the hands of the receiver, and  his or her decisions regarding contracts, deficiencies, and claims of  negligence are official and in nature, not personal and are therefore immune.  As a request, judgments against him or her as a receiver are payable only from the funds in …

Yes, You Can Use Facebook to Serve a Lawsuit on an Out of State Defendant…Sometimes (Part 1 of a 2-Part Series)

HNW Additional Practice Areas, Business Litigation

By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright a Freehold Township, Monmouth County New Jersey Trial and Litigation Attorney Look how Facebook is now being used… in trial litigation.  Let’s look at a recent case. The Plaintiffs instituted a lawsuit to enjoin a defendant from holding himself out as the father of their son, Z.A. , to enjoin the defendant from contacting the adoptive plaintiffs and Z.A., and to compel defendant to remove information pertaining to Z.A. allegedly published online. Plaintiffs are Z.A.’s adoptive parents. Z.A.’s biological father of record is J.P. Background Plaintiffs charged that the defendant is a “complete stranger” to them, and they have not had any contact with him prior to the events that …

Just How Far Must You Go To Serve A Lawsuit Upon a Defendant (Part 1 of a 3 Part Series)

HNW Business Litigation

By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright, a Freehold Township, Monmouth County NJ Trial & Litigation Attorney To start a lawsuit you must serve your complaint (a litigation term that means you “list of allegations and claims against another”) upon the defendant. The law says you must personally serve your complaint upon the defendant (meaning hand it to him/her it). But what happens if you can’t find the defendant to serve your complaint? Read this case to find out. In this tax sale foreclosure action, the defendant appealed from a trial court judge’s order denying its motion to discharge the final judgment against it on the ground it had not been served with the complaint in accordance …

Yes, you can use Facebook to serve a lawsuit on an out of state Defendant…Sometimes

HNW Business Litigation

By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright, a Freehold, NJ Lawsuit and Litigation Attorney Plaintiffs instituted this action to enjoin defendant from holding himself out as the father of their son, Z.A. to enjoin defendant from contracting plaintiffs and Z.A., and to compel defendant to remove information pertaining to Z.A. that he has allegedly published online. Plaintiffs are Z.A.’s adoptive parents. Z.A.’s biological father of record is J.P. Plaintiffs indicate that defendant is a “complete stranger” to them, and they have not had any contact with him prior to the events that gave rise to this litigation. Plaintiffs alleged that defendant initiated contact with their family by locating K.A.’s Facebook profile and sending him a friend request, …

When is a Lawsuit Frivolous Enough to Get A Court to Award Attorney Fees in New Jersey?

HNW Business Litigation

By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright, a Freehold, NJ Defense Against Frivolous Lawsuit Attorney Every time a person gets sued, they think to themselves: I didn’t do anything wrong!  Why am I getting sued?  Nobody likes having to go to court.  Most times, people think the litigation they are being dragged through is frivolous, and unjust.  Even if they successfully defend themselves, they seek attorney fees for their costs to defend.  Recovering legal fees and Court costs can be tough. Unless allowed by statute or court rule, the winner in a case does not automatically get his or her legal fees for winning.  Today, we will be talking about a case that discusses an area where …

Admitting Documents Into Evidence in a Small Claims Case Without Producing the Author

HNW Business Litigation

By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright, a Freehold, NJ Business Litigation Attorney What is the legal standard and analysis required of a trial court in a small claims case when asked to admit a hearsay document into evidence? N.J.R.E. 101(a)(2)(A) permits relaxation of the Rules of Evidence in small claims matters “to admit relevant and trustworthy evidence in the interest of justice.” There is a series of published cases which hold that “the fact that hearsay evidence is proffered does not automatically require its exclusion. The test is relevance and trustworthiness.” A judge in a small claims case is “required to consider the evidence and make a determination of its admissibility based on its trustworthiness and …

Online Business Reputation and Defamation Cases: Part 5 ON APPEAL

HNW Business Law, Business Litigation, Partnerships and LLCs, Shareholder

By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright, a Freehold, NJ Business Litigation Attorney In this 5 part series, I have discussed a case involving a business that claimed defamation against negative online reviews believed to have been made by the defendant to retaliate as their landlord-tenant relationship dissolved. Early on we discussed how the reviews were tied back to the defendant and how they were relevant to the plaintiff’s claims. In Part 4 we learned that the court ruled in favor of the defendant. In this final piece of our series, I will discuss the appeal of the court’s decision. On appeal the court came to the conclusion that the erroneous wholesale exclusion of the Yelp evidence …