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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

S.K. VS. J.H. A-1358-11T2


S.K. VS. J.H. A-1358-11T2

Plaintiff brought this suit pursuant to the Prevention of Domestic Violence Act, N.J.S.A. 2C:25-17 to -35, as a result of being atrociously assaulted by defendant, who, along with
plaintiff, was on a trip to Israel with approximately forty others. In seeking to prove the existence of a "dating relationship," plaintiff was able to show only that, on the
evening of the assault, she and defendant sat together, danced together, and were together for a few hours at the bar. The trial court found a "dating relationship" and entered a final
restraining order.

 In considering defendant's appeal, the court deferred to the trial judge's finding that the parties' interactions constituted a "date" but rejected the argument that this one
date constituted the "dating relationship" required by the Act. Although the Legislature did not expressly define what it meant by a "dating relationship," the court found from the majority of those other states that have defined the term that a "dating relationship" is a romantic social relationship, which is further defined by its frequency and duration but which excludes casual or ordinary fraternization between two individuals in a
business or social context.  As a result of this generally accepted meaning of "dating relationship," the court held that a single date was insufficient and reversed. 06-06-12