The New Jersey Supreme Court has changed the rules of the game with respect to statute of limitations and choice of law for tort actions. Again. On Jan. 24, in McCarrell v. Hoffmann-La Roche, the court found that Section 142 of the Second Restatement of Conflicts of Law governed statute of limitations choice of law conflicts. This ruling is a significant and outcome- determinative departure from the most-significant-relationship test previously adopted by the court in P.V. ex rel. T.V. v. Camp Jaycee, 197 N.J. 132 (2008), and Cornett v. Johnson & Johnson, 414 N.J. Super. 365 (App. Div. 2010), aff’d as modified, 211 N.J. 362 (2012).
This article discusses: (1) the recent history of the New Jersey Supreme Court’s choice of law jurisprudence in the statute of limitations context; (2) the court’s rationale in the McCarrell case; and (3) why this change in law will undoubtedly overburden the courts and citizens of New Jersey by re-opening the flood gates for lawsuits filed by out of state plaintiffs.
Recent History of Choice of Law Regarding the Statute of Limitations
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