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New Jersey


Statutes of Limitations (NEW JERSEY)

Personal Injury - 2 yrs. [N.J.S.A. 2A:14-2]

Wrongful Death - 2 yrs. [N.J.S.A. 2A:31-3]

Med Mal - 2 yrs. (after death) [N.J.S.A. 2A:14-2]

Property Damage - 6 yrs. [N.J.S.A. 2A:14-1]

Contracts (Written and Oral) - 6 yrs. [N.J.S.A. 2A:14-1]

Contracts for Sale (goods) and Breach of Warranty - 4 yrs. (from tender of delivery) [N.J.S.A. 12A:2-725]


Statute of limitations runs when injured party possesses actual or constructive knowledge of that state of facts which may equate in law with a cause of action, and basis of such a cause of action is constituted solely by the material facts of the case [Baird v. American Medical Optics, 713 A.2d 1019 (N.J. 1998)]




Statutes of Repose (NEW JERSEY)

Products - None.

Construction of Real Property - 10 yrs. [N.J.S.A. 2A:14-1.1]

Claims Against Public/Gov. Entities (NOTE: “Sovereign Immunity” Limitations May Apply) (NEW JERSEY)

Against Public Entities - Claim must be presented within 90 days and may file suit 6 mos. after notice (2-yr statute of limitations applies) [N.J.S.A. 59:8-8]

Against State - Notice for breach of contract (express or implied) within 90 days, may file suit 90 days after the notice (statute of limitation is 2 yrs. of accrual of claim or within 1 yr. after completion of contract, whichever comes later) [N.J.S.A. 59:13-5]




Comparative Negligence (NEW JERSEY)

Modified comparative (damages are diminished in proportion to Plaintiff’s fault, but Plaintiff cannot recover if he is 51% at fault) [N.J.S.A. 2A:15-5.1]




Made Whole Doctrine (MWD) (NEW JERSEY)

Recognized/applied.  In absence of express terms in automobile collision policy to contrary, Insured must be made whole before Insurer may recover anything from him or from third party under its right of subrogation, and there may be recovery against insured or third parties only if cause is just and enforcement is justified. Equity principles apply even when subrogation is based on contract, except as modified by specific provisions in contract. [Providence Washington Ins. Co. v. Hogges, 171 A.2d 120 (N.J. 1961)]




Economic Loss Doctrine (ELD) (Assuming No Injury to Person or Damage to “Other Property”) (NEW JERSEY)

Recognized/applied.  Consumer may not bring an action in negligence and strict liability for economic losses arising from purchase of a defective product [Alloway v. General Marine Industries, L.P., 695 A.2d 264 (N.J. 1997)].  If damage to product is purely economic, and parties are of relatively equal bargaining power, their contractual agreement and allocation of risk contemplated therein should govern, even if damage occurred in sudden and calamitous manner [Naporano Iron & Metal Co. v. American Crane Corp., 79 F.Supp.2d 494(D.N.J. 1999)]


ELD is also codified in the NJ Products Liability Act.  “Product liability action” means any claim or action brought by a claimant for harm caused by a product.  But “Harm” is defined as physical damage to property, other than to the product itself [N.J.S.A. 2A:58C-1].


However, economic losses are recoverable when they are natural and probable consequences of Defendant’s negligence if they were reasonably to be anticipated in view of Defendant’s capacity to have foreseen that the particular Plaintiff (or identifiable class of Plaintiffs) was demonstrably within the risk created by Defendant’s negligence [People Exp. Airlines, Inc. v. Consolidated Rail Corp., 495 A.2d 107 (N.J. 1985)].  Also, consumer Plaintiffs may assert strict liability causes of action when they suffer only economic loss as result of defective product [Easling v. Glen-Gery Corp., 804 F.Supp. 585 (D. N.J. 1992)]




Certificate/Affidavit Of Merit Requirements (Claims Against Licensed Professionals) (NEW JERSEY)

In any action for damages an alleged act of malpractice or negligence by a licensed person in his profession or occupation, Plaintiff must provide each Defendant with an affidavit of an appropriate licensed person that there exists a reasonable probability that the care, skill or knowledge exercised or exhibited in the treatment, practice or work that is the subject of the complaint, fell outside acceptable professional or occupational standards or treatment practices [N.J.S.A. 2A:53A-27].  The definition of a “licensed person” includes architects, engineers, and land surveyors [N.J.S.A. 2A:53A-26].




Landlord/Tenant Subrogation (NEW JERSEY)

Subrogation allowed.  If Landlord has a claim against Tenant, existence of insurance obtained by Landlord, paid by Landlord and for benefit of Landlord does not exculpate Tenant from consequences of negligent conduct, absent express agreement to that effect  [Zoppi v. Traurig, 598 A.2d 19 (N.J. Super.1990)]




Reimbursement of Deductible(s) (NEW JERSEY)

Auto - Pro rata. Net recovery is the total recovery less Insurer’s allocated loss adjustment expenses attributable to such recovery.  The formula for computing net recovery and Insured’s share of recovery:


Insured’s Share  =  (Deductible ÷ Total Loss) × (Total recovery – Allocated loss adjustment expenses)


Unless Insurer returns its Insured’s full deductible, Insured must attempt to effect full recovery in clear liability

Cases.  If Insurer elects not to pursue its subrogation claim where the probability of recovery exists, Insurer shall so notify Insured in writing within 60 days after it has paid the claim, except that the notification must be given at least 30 days prior to the running of any applicable statute of limitations.  If Insurer does not notify Insured and the statute of limitations or period required for notice or claim has expired, Insurer must remit to Insured the full amount of the deductible.


Property - No law available.





Med Pay - No subrogation allowed and/or no such coverage available. 


PIP - Recovery allowed under limited circumstances.  Recovery allowed from Tortfeasor if: (1) Tortfeasor was not required to have PIP under NJ law; or (2) Torfeasor was required to have PIP under NJ law and failed to do so.


Automobiles (not livery) and Motor Buses are required to carry PIP.  While most commercial vehicle are not required to carry PIP, some are required. 


Statute of limitation is 2 yrs. from the date the claim was filed.  All disputes are usually resolved by way of arbitration.





Liability of Parents (NEW JERSEY)

$5,000 for malicious or willful damage to any property of railroad, street railway, traction railway or autobus public utility [N.J.S.A. 2A:53A-16].  Liable for damage to school property [N.J.S.A. 18A:37-3].




Joint Liability (NEW JERSEY)

Several liability if Defendant is less than 60% at fault (Plaintiff can recover from each Defendant only that Defendant’s share of liability).  Joint and several liability if Defendant is 60% of more at fault (Plaintiff may recover all damages from any Defendant regardless of Defendant’s individual share of liability). [N.J.S.A. § 2A:15-5.3]




Independent Cause of Action for Evidence Spoliation (NEW JERSEY)

New Jersey does not recognize a separate tort action for intentional spoliation.  However, New Jersey recognizes a tort action for fraudulent concealment of evidence (at least against a party in the case) [Rosenblit v. Zimmerman, 166 N.J. 391 (N.J. 2001)]




Conflicts of Law (NEW JERSEY)

Torts - New Jersey will not apply the “place of wrong” rule if there is important governmental interest of another state involved [D’Orio v. West Jersey Health Systems, 797 F. Supp 371 (D. N.J. 1992)].  Contracts - Traditional rule of “place where the contract was entered into” does not apply; rather, the rule is the more flexible governmental interest analysis, which focuses on a determination about which state has the most significant connections with the litigation and the parties. [Filenet Corp. v.Chubb Corp., 735 A.2d 1203 (N.J. Super. Ct. Law. Div. 1997)]

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