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Newark Litigation and Appeals Law Blog

Could a business transaction be considered legal malpractice?

Business professionals in New Jersey might benefit from understanding whether a business transaction can be considered legal malpractice or not. When a lawyer enters a financial, property or business transaction, the conduct may be considered to be acting with a conflict of interest. This is primarily due to the confidence and trust that the client puts in legal counsel, as well as the training and proficiency involved with obtaining this status.

The protections do not apply to legal fees, but purchases, loans, investment and sales unrelated to the lawyer's practice may qualify for legal malpractice. Lawyers participating in the exchanges of good and services related to their particular practice of law may also be subject to legal malpractice if a conflict of interest is apparent. Lawyers purchasing property from estates they represent may also be found liable for acting on a conflict of interest.

How to handle employment law disputes in New Jersey

Employees are protected by law from racial, sexual and other types of harassment. If an employer violates a protected right, an employee may be entitled to compensation or other forms of relief. Prior to filing a lawsuit, it may be a good idea to work with the employer to determine if a right was violated and what can be done to remedy the issue.

If informal negotiations do not work, it may be time to file a complaint with the government. Ana ffected individual may file a claim at either the state or federal level. After a complaint is filed, the appropriate agency may pursue the case on behalf of the person who filed the claim. For those who plan on filing a private lawsuit in an effort to settle the matter, a claim must first be filed with the appropriate government agency.

What is the proper basis for appealing a criminal conviction?

New Jersey residents may wish to know more about how they can appeal a criminal conviction. Depending on the specific facts of the case, there could be grounds for overturning the verdict.

Because the U.S. court system has a preference for respecting the decisions of a lower court, it can be difficult to overturn those verdicts through appeals. There are only two major types of errors that allow a person to appeal. The first is when the lower court made a clear mistake regarding the law. The second situation is where the evidence shown did not support the final verdict in the trial.

Sexual harassment in the workplace

Workers in New Jersey are legally protected from sexual harassment by supervisors, coworkers and clients at their workplace. Sexual harassment can take many different forms and can be experienced by both men and women. After being sexually harassed, workers should make it clear to the person harassing them that the behavior is unwelcome and unlawful.

Some examples of sexual harassment in the workplace include sexually suggestive behavior, jokes or language. Unwelcome sexual propositions and inappropriate touching could also be considered sexual harassment. If sexually explicit material is displayed around a work environment or intrusive questions are asked about sexual activity, these things could amount to sexual harassment as well.

Resolving disputes in New Jersey

Not every civil case that goes to court has to be resolved by a judge. In many cases, the parties involved in a dispute can take part in mediation or arbitration. This is referred to as alternate dispute resolution. Mediation is an informal and voluntary process that is entered into by all parties to a dispute.

The mediator does not make any type of decisions for the parties. Instead, the mediator guides the conversation along in the hopes of establishing a dialogue. While the process is voluntary, any agreement that is reached through mediation is considered to be a binding agreement. In the event that no agreement is reached, the parties may pursue other types of legal action.

Legal recourse against wrongful termination

Some New Jersey residents may have reason to believe they were wrongfully discharged from their job. When this happens, it may be beneficial to know if the discharge was done within the confines of the law and the employer's termination policy. If not, the employee may have the option of pursuing a wrongful termination suit.

Wrongful termination may occur in any industry, and an employer may offer reasons that are invalid under state and federal laws. If an employee challenges his or her termination and wins, damages may be won. Each situation is different, but damages may include reinstatement, promotion, back pay, certain accommodations, compensatory or punitive damages, and attorney fees.

Understanding employer liability in sexual harassment cases

New Jersey employees may be interested in some information on sexual harassment and what makes an employer liable. Depending on the perpetrator of the harassment and the corrective actions of the employer, the answer may vary.

According to the U.S. Equal Opportunity Employment Commission, sexual harassment at work is defined as uninvited conduct that is sexual in nature or sexual advances that make an employee's work environment hostile or offensive to that employee. The conduct could also intimidate the employee or make performing work-related tasks difficult. Employees are protected against sexual harassment by both federal and state laws. When a company is staffed by less than 15 employees, they are exempt from the federal statute, but state law will still apply.

Housewives star blames conviction on former lawyer

The star of reality show The Real Housewives of New Jersey Teresa Giudice has filed a $5 million lawsuit against her former bankruptcy lawyer. The lawsuit was filed on in the Manhattan Supreme Court and claims that the lawyer committed legal malpractice by failing to prepare Teresa to meet with creditors and the federal Bankruptcy Court trustee, mishandled the filing of the bankruptcy and prepared amendments that were inaccurate.

In 2009, claiming that they were in debt for $11 million, Teresa and her husband filed for bankruptcy. The bankruptcy petition was dropped two years later; however, the filing led to charges that the pair had hidden assets. The couple were convicted of fraud and were sentenced to prison. Teresa was sentenced to serve 15 months, and her husband was sentenced to serve 41 months in prison. Teresa is blaming her legal troubles on her former bankruptcy lawyer.

Helping New Jersey residents determine when to find a lawyer

In certain legal proceedings, it may be necessary to have the assistance of an attorney. While an individual may be able to find certain types of legal information on their own online, there is no guarantee that the information is accurate or relevant. Those who decide to represent themselves in a legal proceeding may file a document after a deadline or file the wrong document altogether.

This could have the effect of degrading that individual's rights under the law. Another good reason to hire a lawyer is because of their experience dealing with legal matters. An attorney may be able to access the information needed to resolve a case faster than it may be resolved if an individual represents him or herself. This may help those dealing with a legal matter to save time and money resolving it. Those who do choose to be represented by a lawyer should be given an estimate of how much such representation may cost ahead of time.

Understanding the differences between criminal and civil lawsuits

New Jersey residents may be interested in information concerning the differences between criminal and civil cases in the United States. While both generally involve a dispute inside a courtroom, they have very different motives, goals and parties.

Criminal cases are generally classified as an attempt to punish actions that are doing harm against society as a whole. These cases are not brought by private parties against the party accused of the crime but rather the government. The names of the parties are the prosecution, represented by the government, and the defendant, who is the person accused of the crime. There does not need to be a victim, such as in a murder case. It could be a drunk driving trial that did not result in harm to anyone, but the government still believes that punishment for the crime would be appropriate.

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