New Jersey State Bar Association - The voluntary Bar Association of New Jersey, serving members since 1899.

Capitol Report

October 1, 2012

 

This is a status report on recently passed and pending legislation, regulations, gubernatorial nominations and/or appointments of interest to lawyers. The report may also include information about appearances of NJSBA representatives before legislative committees, and the involvement of the NJSBA as amicus in appellate court matters. The government affairs department of the association compiles the report. Following each bill number is the sponsor’s name, the NJSBA position, if any, bill description and status. Full and previous versions of the Capitol Report with links to related text are available online at www.njsba.com.

 

NJSBA Action in Trenton

A-2652 (Eustace) (NJSBA supports) Bans charging workers' compensation claimants for medical expenses; gives Division of Workers' Compensation sole jurisdiction over work-related medical claims. On Sept. 20, Arthur Kravitz, Esq., of Stark & Stark, testified on behalf of the Workers’ Compensation Committee before the Senate Labor Committee in support of S-2022/A-2652, which was drafted by the Workers’ Compensation Section. S-2022 and S-1926 were combined with A-2652, which was released from the Senate Labor Committee and is awaiting Senate vote. 

 

S-1213 (Van Drew) (NJSBA opposes) Establishes a real property assessment demonstration program. On Sept. 20, Jeffrey Gradone, Esq., of Archer & Greiner, testified on behalf of the Taxation Section before the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee in opposition to S-1213/A-1591, which was released from the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee and is awaiting Senate vote. 

 

PENDING LEGISLATION

 

Banking Law

S-2144 (Gill) Repeals and replaces Chapters 1 and 7 of the Uniform Commercial Code and revises various additional provisions of the code. On Sept. 20, the bill was released from the Senate Commerce Committee with amendments, and is awaiting Senate vote.

 

Criminal Law

S-380 (Allen) Enacts the Jessica Lunsford Act; imposes a mandatory term of 25 years to life for aggravated sexual assault against a child under the age of 13. On Sept. 20, the bill was released from the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee with amendments and is awaiting Senate vote.

 

 

Elder Law

A353 (Gusciora)/ S-1796 (Turner) Establishes the Naturally Occurring Retirement Community pilot program; appropriates $250,000. On Sept. 20, the bill was released from the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee with amendments, and is awaiting Senate vote.


Family Law

S-2177 (Madden) Creates the New Jersey Security and Financial Empowerment Act to assist victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. On Sept. 20, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee.

 

S-2186 (Weinberg) (NJSBA opposes) Permits the use of electronic communication in child custody arrangements that include parenting time. On Sept. 20, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.


Health Law

A-1888 (Milam) Allows for license suspension or revocation of certain healthcare professionals and medical waste facilities, generators, and transporters for willful illegal or improper medical waste disposal. On Sept. 20, the bill was released from the Senate Commerce Committee and is awaiting Senate vote.

 

Municipal Court Practice

S-2169 (Turner) (NJSBA supports with amendments) / A-3096 (Gusciora) (support with amendments) Establishes a conditional dismissal program in municipal court; alters eligibility requirements and increases fees for existing conditional discharge and supervisory treatment programs. On Sept. 20, the bill was released from the Senate

Budget and Appropriations Committee and is awaiting Senate vote.

 

Workers’ Compensation

S-1469 (Madden) Provides surviving spouses of certain fire and police personnel who die in line of duty with workers' compensation for the entire period of survivorship. On Sept. 20, the bill was released from the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee and is awaiting Senate vote.  

 

The following is the final part of the special edition series of the Capitol Report summarizing the progress of NJSBA priority legislation since the beginning of the current legislative session.

 

 

 

 

CHILD WELFARE


S-634 (PDF) (Kean)/A-1977 (PDF) (McKeon) (NJSBA opposes) Prohibits good faith allegations of child abuse from being used against the accuser in a child custody proceeding; makes it a disorderly persons offense to file a false allegation of child abuse. The NJSBA opposes this bill because we are concerned it has the potential to be abused by litigants in child custody cases. We believe it should be within a court’s discretion to determine how allegations of child abuse should be used against the accuser in a child custody proceeding. In addition, we are opposed to having the Division of Youth and Family Services (DYFS) serve as the trier of fact on whether a child abuse allegation is false, whereby the accuser can then be charged with a disorderly persons offense. It should be the courts, not DYFS, that adjudicates these factual issues.

Status:
Both bills are pending review in the Senate Judiciary Committee and Assembly Judiciary Committees, respectively.

 

TAXATION

                            

S-804 (PDF) (Kyrillos)/A-2731 (PDF) (Diegnan) (NJSBA supports with amendments) Increases the filing threshold for the New Jersey estate tax to $1,000,000. The NJSBA supports this bill but has suggested some contextual changes because, as written, the bill does not achieve any increase in the New Jersey estate tax exemption and would deny practitioners and their clients the ability to fund a $1,000,000 credit shelter or bypass trust because it utilizes the term "gross estate" rather than "taxable estate."


Status: Both bills are pending review in the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee and Assembly Judiciary Committee, respectively.

 


WORKERS’ COMPENSATION

 

S-1926 (PDF) (Greenstein)/S-2022 (PDF) (Madden)/A-2652 (PDF) (Eustace) (NJSBA supports) (NJSBA-drafted) Bans charging workers' compensation claimants for medical expenses; gives the Division of Workers' Compensation sole jurisdiction over work-related medical claims. The NJSBA supports this legislation, which would clarify that authorized medical providers should not be billing injured workers beyond the payments that those medical providers are receiving from the insurance carrier/respondent.

 

Status: Please see above under “Action in Trenton.”