Arnett Blake and his girlfriend, Cindy Edwards, attended a party at a community center. Defendant, Blake’s ex-girlfriend, also attended the party. While in the bathroom, Edwards encountered defendant “making rude comments about her.” While Edwards was still in the bathroom, defendant exited the bathroom, approached Blake, and said “I should F— your girlfriend up.” Later.. read more →

Jay Jason Chatarpau, Esq., a New Jersey employment discrimination attorney, represented Rameena Khan in a lawsuit claiming that her employer, Rite Aid stores, among others, discriminated against her on the basis of age, race, sex, ethnicity or national origin, in violation of the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination. Hon. Christine A. Farrington, J.S.C., presided over a.. read more →

New Jersey appellate court ruled that an anonymous online commenter must reveal his or her identity to members of a church who claim the commenter defamed them. Mauro v. Intellectual Freedom Foundation, Docket No. A-0004-15T2 (App. Div., February 26, 2016) Plaintiffs were members of the World Mission Society Church of God (WMS). WMS was founded in.. read more →

In a recent blog post, I wrote about Steven Gursten, a Michigan blogging lawyer who published a blog post in 2014 about Dr. Rosalind Griffin, a Michigan psychiatrist who testified as a medical expert for the defense in various personal injury cases Gursten filed. Attorney Gursten claimed that Dr. Griffin was one of the “notorious”.. read more →

Readers of this blog know that applicants for public benefits often appeal the decisions made by the various administrative agencies involved in providing benefits. Applicants appeal for various reasons, usually based on the outright denial of benefits or an award of fewer benefits than anticipated. The appeals are considered and decided by administrative law judges.. read more →

Two recent cases are vivid reminders that blogging can be dangerous. Bloggers are being found legally accountable and financially liable for their online postings. The take-away is clear: bloggers, beware: what you write can get you sued, or disbarred. Blogger Found Liable for $600,000 in Defamation Case  A libel lawsuit was filed in Georgia by.. read more →

A Florida appeals court upheld a judgment of $350,000 in a lawsuit filed by a lawyer against her former client alleging defamation based on negative reviews of the lawyer posted on the internet by the former client. Blake v. Giustibelli, __ So.3d __ (Fla. 4th DCA, No. 4D14-3231, 1/6/2016), 2016 WL _______. Florida Attorney Ann-Marie.. read more →

In this case, an Ocean County judge ruled that litigants in domestic violence cases who want to introduce evidence contained on their cell phones, such as texts, emails, social media messages, or audio/visual evidence, must first provide such evidence to the court and the adversary in tangible form, such as on a printout or a.. read more →

In a case of first impression, the New Jersey court of appeals held that websites have the right to protect the identities of readers who post comments related to public events. Diane Trawinsky v. John Doe, Docket No. A-0312-14T1 (App. Div., June 3, 2015) Plaintiff, Diane Trawinski, is the wife of former Elmwood Park borough.. read more →

In May 2010, Anthony Douglas Elonis’s wife of nearly seven years left him, taking with her their two young children. Elonis was an active user of the social networking web site Facebook. After his family left him, Elonis began “listening to more violent music” and posting on Facebook self-styled “rap” lyrics inspired by the music… read more →

On March 10, 2015, the New York County Lawyers Association (“NYCLA”) weighed in on the ethics of using the social media website “LinkedIn” for professional self-promotion by lawyers. Formal Opinion 748 addresses the ethical implications of LinkedIn profiles. Specifically, the opinion addresses (1) whether a LinkedIn Profile is considered “Attorney Advertising,” (2) when it is.. read more →

A California appeals court held that a trial court’s order directing a trial attorney to remove posts from her law firm website touting her successes constituted an unlawful prior restraint on the trial attorney’s constitutional right to free speech. Christie Steiner v. Superior Court of Santa Barbara County, 2d Civil No. B235347 (Super. Ct. No… read more →

In an interesting case of first impression, the New Jersey Appellate Division held that the sender of a text message can potentially be liable if an accident is caused by texting if the sender of the text knew or had special reason to know that the recipient would view the text while driving and thus.. read more →

New Jersey appeals court reversed a final restraining order entered in a domestic violence lawsuit, holding that “excessive texting” from one divorced parent to the other does not necessarily amount to harassment. L.M.F. v. J.A.F.,Jr.,  Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division, Docket No. A-0121-10T3, approved for publication. The parties married in 1989 and divorced.. read more →

In a decision that could have a big impact on all bloggers in New Jersey, a New Jersey trial judge ruled a self-declared “citizen watchdog” blogger has the same legal protections as a professional journalist. In re January 11, 2013 Subpoena by the Grand Jury of Union County, New Jersey, Prosecutor’s Docket No. 12 – 0001. Plaintiff,.. read more →

Social media websites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn often contain an enormous amount of highly personal information. Lawyers frequently mine social media websites for relevant evidence to be utilized in court when users of social media are involved in lawsuits. In general, information contained in social media websites is not protected by legal privilege or.. read more →

New veterans are going online to find camaraderie or get their questions answered. Some websites utilized by new veterans follow: Community of Veterans: http://iava.communityofveterans.org Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America: http://iava.org TakingPoint: http://www.takingpoint.com Veterans Aid: http://www.veteranaid.org/ Veterans of Foreign Wars: http://www.vfw.org VFW Post 1: http://www.vfwpost1.org American Legion: http://www.legion.org Department of Veterans Affairs: http://www.va.gov VA MyHealtheVet:.. read more →

  Several weeks ago, on Sunday, November 20th, I was a guest on The Caring Generation, a radio show airing on 630 KHOW-AM, a Talk Radio Station broadcasting from Denver, Colorado, and on the internet. The show is hosted by Pamela D. Wilson, who identified herself as the “Care Navigator.” The Caring Generation is about.. read more →

Lawrence Toppin was a juror in a criminal trial in Bergen County. Jury selection took 6 days. As part of voir dire questioning, the Court asked the jurors whether they could abide by his direction to limit their consideration only to those facts which “are from the testimony and exhibits introduced at the trial. You.. read more →

Plaintiff husband and his wife were involved in divorce proceedings. In connection with those proceedings, plaintiff’s wife hired defendants, Innovative Investigations, Inc., and its principal Richard P. Leonard, to investigate plaintiff’s suspected infidelities. In the course of the investigation, defendant Leonard suggested to plaintiff’s wife that she place a GPS device on a family vehicle.. read more →

Several interesting lawyer ethics opinions and cases were published recently in New Jersey and other states. 1.       In Opinion 43 issued on June 28, 2011 by the New Jersey Supreme Court Committee on Attorney Advertising, the Committee considered a grievance filed against fifteen (15) New Jersey attorneys who participated in an internet company which owned.. read more →

The N.J. Supreme Court held that a self-described journalist who posted comments on an Internet message board is not entitled to the protection of New Jersey’s Shield Law, a state statute that allows news reporters to protect the confidentiality of sources and news or information gathered during the course of their work. Too Much Media,.. read more →

W.J.A. v. D.A., Docket No. A-0762-09T3; (Appellate Division, September 27, 2010) is a defamation case based upon statements posted on a website. After plaintiff’s complaint was dismissed and plaintiff appealed, the Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division, determined that Internet postings that accuse one of engaging in sexual misconduct are the type of defamatory.. read more →

A new ethics opinion by the American Bar Association, Formal Opinion 10-457 (Lawyer Websites), identifies some of the ethical obligations that lawyers should address in considering the content and features of their websites. The major recommendations which I culled from the ethics opinion follow: (1) Information about Lawyers, their Law Firm, or their Clients. No.. read more →

A case recently decided by the Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division, continues the line of cases decided in New Jersey defining the privacy rights of users of the Internet. In Juzwiak v. John/Jane Doe a.k.a. “Josh Hartnett,” a.k.a. Jharthat@yahoo.com (App. Div., August 3, 2010), plaintiff, a tenured teacher, began receiving harassing email messages.. read more →