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Vol. 4, No. 224 — November 22, 1996 STATE COURT CASES ATTORNEY/CLIENT 04-1-0609 In the Matter of John P. Doyle, An Attorney at Law, Supreme Ct. (23 pp.) Six-month suspension is warranted in case where attorney represented several members of the same family in the preparation of various documents, his actions constituting a conflict of interest and gross neglect. In addition, attorney’s conduct in purchasing property from one of the family members constituted both a conflict of interest and a prohibited business transaction. FAMILY LAW 20-2-0610 Scott v. Scott, App. Div. (7 pp.) Court finds no abuse in discretion in the challenged aspects of amended final divorce judgment when considered in the context of the parties current financial situation. NEGLIGENCE — INVITEES 31-2-0611 DiSario v. Lanzetta, App. Div. (4 pp.) Plaintiff’s actions — in stepping on ladder when she had been asked by homeowner to merely put cleaning implements on the ladder — exceeded the scope of her invitation, whether it be social or business, and summary judgment dismissing her complaint for injuries sustained when the ladder collapsed on her is affirmed. NEGLIGENCE — SIDEWALKS — CONVENTS 31-2-0612 Molina v. Church of Most Holy Rosary, App. Div. (4 pp.) Defendant church should have been granted summary judgment in sidewalk negligence case, since convent constitutes residential property, not commercial property, and therefore defendant had no duty to maintain the abutting sidewalk and is not liable for plaintiff’s injuries. PARTNERSHIPS 02-2-0613 West Mountain Associates, etc., et al. v. McDonald, App. Div. (6 pp.) Since defendant’s partnership status ceased upon his filing of bankruptcy, at which time the partnership was statutorily dissolved pursuant to N.J.S.A. 42:1-31(5), his only remaining interest was his entitlement to receive whatever capital remained after payment of partnership liabilities through dissolution and wind up, and his subsequent purchase of trustee’s interest did not revive the partnership. Defendant failed to satisfy his burden of proving that the wind-up partner’s acts were improper, and approval of the final accounting is affirmed. TAXATION 35-2-0614 Birkenholtz, et al. v. Skaperdas, et al., App. Div. (4 pp.) Judgment of Tax Court is affirmed, holding that plaintiffs are personally liable for the unpaid sales and use taxes of a corporation in which they were officers, directors, and shareholders. Although the Tax Court considered and applied the factors set forth in Cooperstein v. Div. of Taxation, 13 N.J. Tax 68 (Tax 1993), aff’d., 14 N.J. Tax 192 (App. Div. 1994), the court need not decide whether those factors have retroactive application since, from the evidence presented, the court is satisfied that plaintiffs had a duty to act wholly apart from the Cooperstein factors. [Approved for publication Nov. 22, 1996.] FEDERAL COURT CASES BANKING 06-7-0615 Resolution Trust Corp., etc. v. Moskowitz, et al., U.S. Dist. Ct. (12 pp.) In a case where the FDIC argues that failed bank’s losses with respect to certain properties were proximately caused by appraiser’s negligent appraisals, upon which bank auditors and federal and state regulators relied, appraiser’s motion for summary judgment must be denied since more than one inference could be drawn from the evidence proffered, and the court is unable to conclude at this stage of the litigation that the appraisals were not a proximate cause of the bank’s losses. [Filed Nov. 9, 1996.] CIVIL RIGHTS 46-7-0616 Storm v. Woodbridge Twp., et al., U.S. Dist. Ct. (12 pp.) (1) Since court overlooked specific allegations against police lieutenant in plaintiff’s civil rights complaint — alleging that the lieutenant improperly issued an arrest warrant — plaintiff’s motion for reconsideration of the dismissal of that lieutenant is granted and the dismissal is vacated. (2) Since the second amended complaint is a hybrid between a complaint, a summary judgment brief, and an evidentiary certification, and it would be virtually impossible for the defendants to respond, and the court denies plaintiff’s motion to amend. [Filed Nov. 8, 1996.] CONTRACTS 11-7-0617 Rothschild, etc. v. Smithfield Packing Co., Inc., et al., U.S. Dist. Ct. (14 pp.) In broker’s case against meat company and dog food company — alleging that the defendants had agreed to deal strictly through the plaintiff and breached those agreements when they began to deal directly with one another — (1) case against parent corporation defendant is dismissed since no facts are alleged which would justify piercing the corporate veil, (2) the breach of contract claim cannot be decided on motion to dismiss since the parameters of the alleged contract are too ambiguous, (3) further discovery is required into the nature of the agency and brokerage relationships before the breach of these claims can be ruled upon, and (4) plaintiff has sufficiently pled facts supporting fraud and conspiracy claims sufficient to withstand defendant’s motion to dismiss. [Filed Nov. 12, 1996.] INSURANCE — SUBROGATION 23-7-0618 Jorge, et al. v. Travelers Indemnity Co., et al. v. Home Ins. Co., et al., U.S. Dist. Ct. (13 pp.) Because the court finds that the insurance policy — under which payment was made to satisfy judgment against casino — provides for subrogation, and that the insurer which made that payment did not act as a volunteer, the insurer is entitled to subrogation either under a conventional or equitable subrogation theory, and defendants’ motions for summary judgment — alleging that payment of the judgment was voluntary, thereby depriving the insurer of the right to seek subrogation — are denied. [Filed Nov. 8, 1996.] CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE — HABEAS CORPUS 14-7-0619 Love v. Morton, et al., U.S. Dist. Ct. (26 pp.) Because petitioner’s first trial was terminated without his consent and without manifest necessity — due to judge’s mother-in-law’s unexpected death — the court grants his petition for a writ of habeas corpus based on the fact that his retrial violated the Double Jeopardy Clause of the Fifth Amendment. [Filed Nov. 12, 1996.] —END— A Daily Reporter of New Jersey Court Decisions THIS WEEK IN THE … A female attorney at a top New Jersey firm is reprimanded for wearing pants to the office. Although other top firms say such apparel is generally OK, some women wonder whether it will hurting their careers. See page 1 of the Nov. 25 Law Journal.

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