New clients email us evenings and weekends go to www.njlaws.com/ContactKenV.htmKenneth Mr. Vercammen was included in the 2017 “Super Lawyers” list published by Thomson Reuters.

Kenneth Vercammen is a Middlesex County trial attorney who has published 130 articles in national and New Jersey publications on litigation topics. He was awarded the NJ State State Bar Municipal Court Practitioner of the Year. He lectures for the Bar and handles litigation matters. He is Past Chair of the ABA Tort & Insurance Committee,GP on Personal Injury and was a speaker at the ABA Annual Meeting attended by 10,000 attorneys and professionals. To schedule a confidential consultation, email us at VercammenAppointments@NJlaws.com, call or

visit Website www.njlaws.com

Kenneth Vercammen & Associates, P.C.

2053 Woodbridge Avenue - Edison, NJ 08817

(732) 572-0500

Monday, October 29, 2012

FRANCIS NATHANIEL CLARK VS. DENISE LOCKWOOD CLARK A-1147-11T1


FRANCIS NATHANIEL CLARK VS. DENISE LOCKWOOD CLARK
A-1147-11T1
We reversed the trial court's award of alimony, holding
defendant's long-term scheme to embezzle more than $345,000 from
the joint marital business while serving as the business's
bookkeeper, led to plaintiff's fault-based claim for divorce,
caused more than a mere economic impact upon the marital assets,
and demonstrated the rare case of egregious fault justifying
consideration of whether defendant's marital misconduct obviated
an award of alimony.

In the Matter of The Parentage of a Child By T.J.S. and A.L.S.,


In the Matter of The Parentage of a Child By T.J.S.
and A.L.S., h/w (A-130-10; 067805)
The judgment of the Appellate Division is affirmed by
an equally divided Court. Absent adoption, the Act
does not recognize an infertile wife as the legal
mother of her husband’s biological child born to a
gestational carrier. The Act does no violate the
right to equal protection under Article I, paragraph I
of the New Jersey Constitution because the
distinctions drawn between an infertile husband and an
infertile wife are grounded in actual reproductive and
biological differences, which the Legislature may
consider in defining alternative means of creating
parenthood.  10-24-12 

Thursday, October 18, 2012

NEW JERSEY DIVISION OF YOUTH AND FAMILY SERVICES VS. L.J.D.IN THE MATTER OF THE GUARDIANSHIP OF A.T.D., A MINOR A-5896-10T3


NEW JERSEY DIVISION OF YOUTH AND FAMILY SERVICES VS.
          L.J.D.IN THE MATTER OF THE GUARDIANSHIP OF A.T.D., A
          MINOR
          A-5896-10T3
We examine a young mother's challenges to a judgment of guardianship terminating her parental rights. Appellant was fourteen when her son was born and she was a child in the custody of the Division of Youth and Family Services, now known as the Division of Child Protection and Permanency. Appellant's placement required her child to be placed in the Division's custody.
Significant is Appellant's challenge that the Division failed to extend reasonable efforts to provide services to aid correction of circumstances necessitating her child's placement. Claiming her age caused the child's removal, appellant suggests the Division must continue services that previously were unsuccessful because of her youth.
In making the required fact-sensitive review of whether the services extended were reasonable, we believe the Division's burden, in this exceptional instance, is a heightened one, dictated by the special circumstance posed by a child-parent's young age. We conclude the Division's efforts must include satisfactory services to aid the development of the child- parent's maturation and necessary skills to adequately parent his or her child. The balancing test considers, on the one hand, the child-parent's abilities, motivations, capabilities and other familial resources to reach this goal, and, on the other hand, the infant's need for achieving stability and permanency within a reasonable time period. 10-17-12  

LEE HOAGLAND AND DENISE HOAGLAND v. CITY OF LONG BRANCH A-0538-11T2/A-1583-11T2


LEE HOAGLAND AND DENISE HOAGLAND v. CITY OF LONG BRANCH
          A-0538-11T2/A-1583-11T2(CONSOLIDATED)
In this case, we consider whether plaintiffs, who had been the subject of eminent domain actions the municipality later abandoned, could recover compensation over and above the litigation expenses they were paid under N.J.S.A. 20:3-35. We hold that, because the municipality followed all the statutory requirements in bringing and later abandoning the actions, there was no "temporary taking" of plaintiffs' properties under the Eminent Domain Act, N.J.S.A. 20:3-1 to -50. We also reject
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plaintiffs' contention that a temporary taking occurred when the trial judge found the municipality had the authority to take possession of their properties. Finally, we hold that a taking did not occur under general constitutional principles. We therefore affirm the trial court's grant of summary judgment to the municipality. 

Sunday, October 14, 2012

DEUTSCHE BANK TRUST COMPANY AMERICAS, F/K/A BANKER’S TRUST COMPANY, AS TRUSTEE VS. YONY R. ANGELES A-2522-11T1


DEUTSCHE BANK TRUST COMPANY AMERICAS, F/K/A BANKER’S TRUST COMPANY, AS TRUSTEE VS. YONY R. ANGELES A-2522-11T1
Defendant in this foreclosure case cited our decision in Deutsche Bank National Trust Co. v. Mitchell, 422 N.J. Super. 214 (App. Div. 2011), in support of his challenge to the Chancery judge's refusal to allow him to raise the issue of standing based on a late assignment of mortgage. We affirmed, holding that defendant, who did not contest the foreclosure, waited too long to raise the issue of standing. He raised the issue for the first time more than three years after default on the mortgage, and after entry of final judgment, mediation, sheriff's sale, and hardship stay of eviction. 10-11-12 

WILLIAM C. BUCHANAN VS. JEFFREY LEONARD, ESQ. AND MORGAN, MELHUISH, MONAGHAN, ARVIDSON, ABRUTYN & LISOWSKI, ESQS., A PARTNERSHIP A-2243-11T4


WILLIAM C. BUCHANAN VS. JEFFREY LEONARD, ESQ. AND
          MORGAN, MELHUISH, MONAGHAN, ARVIDSON, ABRUTYN &
          LISOWSKI, ESQS., A PARTNERSHIP
          A-2243-11T4
The litigation privilege does not preclude a client from asserting a legal malpractice claim against the attorney who represented him in a prior malpractice action where the attorney provided the client's insurance carrier a memo seeking settlement authorization, in which the attorney stated the client had committed a criminal act, thereby allegedly causing the carrier to withdraw coverage. 10-09-12  

NATURAL MEDICAL, INC., ET AL. VS. NEW JERSEY DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND SENIOR SERVICES, ET AL. A-3406-10T1


NATURAL MEDICAL, INC., ET AL. VS. NEW JERSEY
          DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND SENIOR SERVICES, ET AL.
          A-3406-10T1
We hold that the Department of Health did not act arbitrarily, unreasonably or in contravention of the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act, N.J.S.A. 24:6I-1 to
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-16 (Act), in limiting the initial permitting to the statutorily-mandated minimum of six alternate treatment centers (ATCs) to cultivate and distribute marijuana. The Act further requires that the first six ATCs are to be operated by non- profit entities. Appellants, a for-profit corporation and its principal, did not have an unqualified right to apply for permits to operate ATCs and to have their applications processed and evaluated irrespective of need. 10-04-12  

NEW JERSEY DIVISION OF YOUTH AND FAMILY SERVICES VS. S.N.W. IN THE MATTER OF A.W. AND E.W. A-0504-11T4


 NEW JERSEY DIVISION OF YOUTH AND FAMILY SERVICES  VS.
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S.N.W.
IN THE MATTER OF A.W. AND E.W.
A-0504-11T4
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The mere fact that a parent appeared inebriated is not necessarily determinative of whether that parent was providing a minimum degree of care. As a result, the court vacated an order based solely on a determination that the parent had abused or neglected her twenty-month old and five-month old children by appearing inebriated. The court concluded that the trial judge failed to determine the parent's degree of culpability, particularly in light of uncertainty about whether the parent had exceeded the prescribed amount of Xanax she was then taking and whether that circumstance prevented her from being able to provide a minimum degree of care. 10-02-12 

GASKILL VS. CITI MORTGAGE A-5832-10T2


GASKILL VS. CITI MORTGAGE
          A-5832-10T2
     Plaintiffs sought to cancel a judgment obtained prior to
filing a petition in bankruptcy pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2A:16-49.1.
Although the judgment creditor had not levied on the real
property owned by plaintiffs prior to the bankruptcy filing and
the judgment was eligible for cancellation, plaintiffs had
failed to list the judgment creditor or the judgment in their
petition.  Therefore, the judgment creditor had no knowledge of
the bankruptcy filing or the discharge in bankruptcy and no
opportunity to enforce its judgment post-discharge and before
plaintiffs filed their complaint to cancel the judgment.  We
held that the motion judge properly tolled the period in which
the judgment creditor could seek to enforce its judgment until
one year following conclusion of this litigation.  We reasoned
that the statutory remedy provided by N.J.S.A. 2A:16-49.1
assumes knowledge by the judgment creditor of the bankruptcy
proceedings and the discharge in bankruptcy.  Here, it was
undisputed that the judgment creditor had no knowledge of the
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bankruptcy proceeding before plaintiffs filed to cancel the
judgment. 
09-28-12  

KELLY RAMOS VS. HERBERT FLOWERS, ET AL. A-4910-10T3


KELLY RAMOS VS. HERBERT FLOWERS, ET AL.
          A-4910-10T3
Plaintiff, who asserts that he was in the process of filming a documentary about gang activity in a public area, filed suit against the police officer whom he alleges ordered him to stop filming, claiming that the officer violated his free-speech rights under Article I, paragraphs 6 and 18 of the New Jersey Constitution, as well as the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. He brought the suit under the New Jersey Civil Rights Act, N.J.S.A. 10:6-1 to -2. The Law Division granted defendant's motion for summary judgment and dismissed the complaint, finding that qualified immunity barred the free-speech claims. We reversed.
We determined that the affirmative defense of qualified immunity is available in actions brought under the Civil Rights Act, just as it is in actions brought under 42 U.S.C.A. § 1983. However, as is the case with § 1983, it is only applicable to claims for money damages and does not apply to injunctive relief.
We further determined that the motion judge erred in applying the defense on summary judgment because the alleged actions of defendant, taken in the light most favorable to
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plaintiff, violated plaintiff's free-speech rights, which we held were well-established at the time of the incidents that gave rise to plaintiff's claims. Under those circumstances, qualified immunity is not applicable.
We remanded claims involving allegations of an unlawful arrest for further consideration and the articulation of reasons for the dismissal of those claims. 09-21-12  

KATHERINE MILNE VS. ROBERT GOLDENBERG A-4062-10T4


KATHERINE MILNE VS. ROBERT GOLDENBERG
          A-4062-10T4/A-4319-10T4/A-4594-10T4 (CONSOLIDATED)
In this matrimonial matter the parties raised several challenges to four Family Part orders. Two significant issues warrant publication of our opinion. First, we examined the scope of the hearing regarding a report by a guardian ad litem (GAL) as required by Rule 5:8B. The trial judge limited the evidentiary hearing to examination, including cross-examination, of the GAL, after rejecting plaintiff's request to testify and allow an adjournment to obtain an expert opinion. We determined the trial judge employed too restrictive an interpretation of Rule 5:8B, and clarified the parties' ability to contest the facts presented by a GAL.
Second, we reversed as error the trial court's appointment of a parenting coordinator (PC) without conforming to the Supreme Court Guidelines implementing the PC Pilot Program as he believed the Guidelines applied only to pilot counties, which did not include Essex County. We held that although parties to a matrimonial dispute may agree to accept defined obligations regarding use of a PC, which do not violate the public policy of this State, any Family Part judge ordering the appointment of a PC must comply with the Supreme Court's established Guidelines. 09-12-12  

BARBARA GONZALEZ, ET AL. VS. STATE OF NEW JERSEY APPORTIONMENT COMMISSION, ET AL. A-0747-11T4


BARBARA GONZALEZ, ET AL. VS. STATE OF NEW JERSEY
          APPORTIONMENT COMMISSION, ET AL.
          A-0747-11T4; A-0869-11T4(CONSOLIDATED)
     In this appeal, we affirm the order dismissing a complaint
filed by numerous individuals and groups challenging the
legislative reapportionment map approved by the State of New
Jersey Apportionment Commission. 
09-10-12  

JOHN MULLEN AND HOWARD LEVINE VS. THE IPPOLITO CORPORATION, ET AL. A-5823-10T3


JOHN MULLEN AND HOWARD LEVINE VS. THE IPPOLITO
          CORPORATION, ET AL.
A-5823-10T3
          Plaintiffs, the owners of a single-family house
adjacent to a preexisting nonconforming motel, filed an action
in lieu of prerogative writs seeking mandamus relief against the
Borough of Point Pleasant Beach and its zoning, construction,
and dune protection officials.  Plaintiffs claimed that, over a
period of years, the municipal defendants ignored their numerous
complaints that the motel was expanding its physical footprint
and intensifying its business operations, all in violation of
municipal zoning and dune protection ordinances.
     The trial court granted the municipal defendants' motion
for summary judgment finding that plaintiffs' complaint was
untimely under Rule 4:69-6a, and for failure to exhaust
administrative remedies under Rule 4:69-5.  Relying on Garrou v.
Teaneck Tryon Co., 11 N.J. 294 (1953), we now reverse and hold
the trial court should not have dismissed plaintiffs' complaint
against the municipal defendants. 
09-10-12  

D.W. v. R.W. (A-4-11;


D.W. v. R.W. (A-4-11; 068214)
          Neither the trial court nor the Appellate Division
          referenced the applicable statutory provision,
          N.J.S.A. 9:17-48, which addresses the circumstances
          that warrant an order of genetic testing when
          parentage is in doubt.  Even under the most generous
          view of the facts from Mark or Diane’s perspective,
          there is an absence of good cause to deny genetic
          testing. 
10-10-12  

New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection v. Ofra Dimant (A-2-11


New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection v.
          Ofra Dimant (A-2-11; 067993)
          To obtain damages under the Spill Act, the DEP must
          demonstrate, by a preponderance of the evidence, a
          reasonable connection between the discharge, the
          discharger, and the contamination at the damaged site.
          The proofs failed to establish a sufficient nexus
          between the groundwater contamination and Sue’s
          discharge during its operation. 
9-26-12   

Steven J. Winters v. North Hudson Regional Fire and Rescue, et al. (A-45/46/47-10;


 Steven J. Winters v. North Hudson Regional Fire and
          Rescue, et al. (A-45/46/47-10; 066968)
          When an employee and employer engage the system of
          public employee discipline established by law and the
          employee raises a claim that employer retaliation at
          least partially motivated the decision to bring the
          charge or the level of discipline sought, both the
          employee and employer must live with the outcome,
          including its potential preclusive effect on related
          employment-discrimination litigation as a matter of
          the equitable application of estoppel principles.
9-13-12