Law Office Of Paul DePetris
paul@newjerseylemon.com

New Jersey Bad Faith Claim Facts

Read below to learn more about this topic.

Or, to receive a no cost phone consultation about what the Law Office of Paul DePetris might be able to do for you, call Mr. DePetris at 609-714-2020 or send an email to Mr. DePetris at paul@newjerseylemon.com.

The information in this article is only for New Jersey Law Division, Civil Part cases and not for other New Jersey court cases, such as those in New Jersey Special Civil Court, New Jersey Small Claims Court or New Jersey Chancery Court!!! Do not use this article if you have a New Jersey Special Civil Court, New Jersey Small Claims Court or New Jersey Chancery Court case!!! Also, no website is a substitute for competent advice from a New Jersey lawyer!

Warning – this article does not necessarily include each and every New Jersey court rule that may apply to your New Jersey case! The Law Office of Paul DePetris does not guarantee that the statutes, rules, codes, files or forms on this website are the latest versions of the statutes, rules, codes, files or forms, that they lack typographical errors or that they have not been amended, repealed or superseded by other federal or state law. The New Jersey Statutes, United States Statutes, New Jersey Administrative Code and Federal Code in this database are not annotated. Accordingly, this database may include laws that: (1) never became operable due to unmet conditions; (2) expired; (3) were repealed or amended; (4) were declared void by a court of law; (5) or are otherwise invalid. Further, effective dates of the laws are not necessarily included in the database. Accordingly, you should not rely upon the statutes, rules, codes, files or forms on this website contained in this database for any purpose and before taking any legal measures, you instead should read all applicable federal and state source law and case law and consult with an attorney for any changes in the laws. Be certain to cross reference all applicable rules before preparing, filing or serving any papers!!! For example, Special Civil Part Rules often cross reference other rules – rules that apply to Special Civil Part Cases as well as to other types of civil cases not being heard in Special Civil Part.

WHAT IS THE NEW JERSEY DUTY OF GOOD FAITH AND FAIR DEALING IN NEW JERSEY CONTRACTS?
In addition to the express terms of a New Jersey contract, New Jersey contract law provides that every New Jersey contract contains an implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing. This means that, even though not specifically stated in the New Jersey contract, it is implied or understood that the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and the New Jersey contract case defendant to the New Jersey contract must act in good faith and deal fairly with the other party in performing or enforcing the terms of the New Jersey contract.

HOW DOES A NEW JERSEY CONTRACT CASE DEFENDANT COMMIT BAD FAITH OR VIOLATE THE NEW JERSEY COVENANT OF GOOD FAITH AND FAIR DEALING?
To act in good faith and deal fairly, a New Jersey contract case defendant must act in a way that is honest and faithful to the agreed purposes of the New Jersey contract and consistent with the reasonable expectations of the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and New Jersey contract case defendant. A New Jersey contract case defendant must not act in bad faith, dishonestly, or with improper motive to destroy or injure the right of the other party to receive the benefits or reasonable expectations of the New Jersey contract. There can be no New Jersey breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing unless the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and New Jersey contract case defendant have a New Jersey contract. Additionally, the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing may not override an expressly granted right under the New Jersey contract. For example, an implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing may not override an express provision in the New Jersey contract giving one party the right to terminate the New Jersey contract and the party’s motive in terminating the New Jersey contract under such circumstances may be irrelevant. A New Jersey contract case defendant must still, however, act in good faith in the performance of the New Jersey contract until the termination actually takes place. Thus, even though the New Jersey contract case defendant complies with the express New Jersey contract term entitling him to terminate the New Jersey contract, the New Jersey contract case defendant may still be in breach of the New Jersey covenant of good faith and fair dealing if he fails to act in good faith and deal fairly until the New Jersey contract is actually terminated. There are many forms of conduct that might constitute a violation of good faith and fair dealing, but each case is fact-sensitive. The New Jersey contract case defendant, as the dominant party, has an even greater obligation than the New Jersey contract case plaintiff to act in good faith; the New Jersey contract case defendant must not put technical encumbrances or hidden pitfalls in the way of New Jersey contract case plaintiffs that would undermine the New Jersey contract case plaintiffs’ reasonable expectations.

HOW DOES A NEW JERSEY CONTRACT CASE PLAINTIFF PROVE A NEW JERSEY BAD FAITH LAWSUIT OR NEW JERSEY VIOLATION OF THE COVENANT OF GOOD FAITH AND FAIR DEALING LAWSUIT?
For a New Jersey court to find that there has been a New Jersey breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, the New Jersey contract case plaintiff must prove that the New Jersey contract case defendant, with no legitimate purpose: 1) acted with bad motives or intentions or engaged in deception or evasion in the performance of New Jersey contract; and 2) by such conduct, denied the New Jersey contract case plaintiff of the bargain initially intended by the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and New Jersey contract case defendant. To prevail on the New Jersey bad faith lawsuit, the New Jersey contract case plaintiff must prove each of the following three elements by a preponderance of the evidence: First, the New Jersey contract case plaintiff must prove that some type of New Jersey contract existed between the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and New Jersey contract case defendant. There can be no breach of the New Jersey covenant of good faith and fair dealing unless the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and New Jersey contract case defendant have a New Jersey contract. Second, the New Jersey contract case plaintiff must prove that the New Jersey contract case defendant acted in bad faith with the purpose of depriving the New Jersey contract case plaintiff of rights or benefits under the New Jersey contract. Third, the New Jersey contract case plaintiff must prove that the New Jersey contract case defendant’s conduct caused the New Jersey contract case plaintiff to suffer injury, damage, loss or harm.

WAS THERE A NEW JERSEY CONTRACT BETWEEN THE NEW JERSEY CONTRACT CASE PLAINTIFF AND NEW JERSEY CONTRACT CASE DEFENDANT?
The New Jersey court must first determine whether some type of New Jersey contract existed between the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and the New Jersey contract case defendant. A New Jersey contract may be expressed or implied or may be a mixture of the two. An express New Jersey contract is one in which the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and New Jersey contract case defendant have shown their agreement by words. Express New Jersey contracts include those in which the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and New Jersey contract case defendant have orally stated the terms to each other or have placed the terms in writing. An implied New Jersey contract is one in which the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and New Jersey contract case defendant show their agreement by conduct. For example, if someone provides services to another under circumstances that do not support the idea that they were donated or free, New Jersey contract law implies an obligation to pay the reasonable value of services. Thus, an implied New Jersey contract is an agreement inferred from the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and New Jersey contract case defendant’s conduct or from the circumstances surrounding their relationship. In other words, a New Jersey contract case defendant may be obligated to pay for services rendered for New Jersey contract case defendant by New Jersey contract case plaintiff if the circumstances are such that New Jersey contract case plaintiff reasonably expected New Jersey contract case defendant to compensate New Jersey contract case plaintiff and if a reasonable person in New Jersey contract case defendant’s position would know that New Jersey contract case plaintiff was performing the services expecting that New Jersey contract case defendant would pay for them. There are 5 essential elements to a valid New Jersey contract:

1. mutuality of assent;
2. legal capacity of the parties;
3. valuable consideration;
4. legality of subject matter; and
5. a writing.

Under the requirement of mutuality of assent, for New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants to enter into a New Jersey contract, a meeting of the minds must take place between the New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants. The mutuality of assent must be real and not the result of mistake, misrepresentation, New Jersey legal fraud, New Jersey consumer fraud, duress or undue influence. Since, a New Jersey breach of contract is never presumed; rather, the burden of establishing a New Jersey breach of contract rests with the New Jersey plaintiff or New Jersey defendant asserting the New Jersey breach. A New Jersey contract is an exchange of promises and thus is the result of a “bargain,” an “exchange of equivalents.” An enforceable bilateral New Jersey agreement requires an offer, an acceptance, consideration and a meeting of the minds upon all the essential terms of the New Jersey agreement. To have a valid New Jersey contract, there must be a meeting of the minds, as a New Jersey contract does not come into being unless the New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants agree to the same terms. Thus, an enforceable contract only results from the New Jersey plaintiffs’ and New Jersey defendants’ agreeing upon essential terms and manifesting an intention to be bound by those terms and where the New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants do not agree to one or more essential terms, the New Jersey agreement may be unenforceable. Indeed, it is fundamental that the essential element to the valid consummation of a New Jersey contract is a meeting of the minds of the New Jersey contracting parties. Thus, doubt or difference between the New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants to an alleged contract is normally incompatible with the claim that the New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants agreement to terms. If the contemplated agreement is to be bilateral, the offeror and offeree alike must express agreement as to every term of the New Jersey contract. The offerror does this in the offer; the offeree must do it in his acceptance. When interpreting a New Jersey contract, it is not the real intent that controls but rather the intent expressed or apparent in the writing. Further, normally it is not the New Jersey court’s role to make a new contract or to supply any material stipulations or conditions which contravene the New Jersey agreements of the New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants. The mere fact that a New Jersey contract is somewhat harsh or unfair in its operation does not excuse the performance of same and the New Jersey court cannot create contractual obligations that are not based on the expressed intention of the New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants. Indeed, the New Jersey court will not normally rewrite the New Jersey agreement to provide the protection which a New Jersey plaintiff or New Jersey defendant failed to obtain for themselves. Instead, the judicial function of the New Jersey court is normally to enforce the New Jersey contract as it is written. Moreover, where the New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants are experienced businesspeople, courts generally should not tinker with a finely drawn and precise contract entered into by experienced business people that regulates their financial affairs. Also, equitable relief is not normally available merely because enforcement of the New Jersey contract causes hardship to one of the New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants. Thus, if a New Jersey contract contains ambiguous or doubtful terms, the New Jersey contract is generally construed against its drafter. The interpretation of a New Jersey contract is often a legal question for the New Jersey court rather than for a New Jersey jury.

ARE NEW JERSEY ORAL CONTRACTS ENFORCEABLE IN A NEW JERSEY COURT?
An oral contract for goods or services between businesses may be enforceable in a New Jersey Court, especially if there is proof that the terms of the New Jersey contract were sufficiently definite and that the New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants agreed to be bound to the oral agreement. While there does exist a statute of frauds in New Jersey that requires that certain contracts be in writing, in certain situations, it can be overcome.

DID THE NEW JERSEY CONTRACT CASE DEFENDANT ACT IN BAD FAITH WITH THE INTENT TO DEPRIVE THE NEW JERSEY CONTRACT CASE PLAINTIFF OF RIGHTS OR BENEFITS UNDER THE NEW JERSEY CONTRACT?
If the New Jersey contract case defendant finds that a New Jersey contract existed between the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and New Jersey contract case defendant, the New Jersey court must then determine whether the New Jersey contract case defendant violated the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing. As to this element, the New Jersey court must decide whether the New Jersey contract case defendant acted with bad faith to interfere with the New Jersey contract case plaintiff’s right to receive the benefits of the New Jersey contract. Proof of bad motive or intention is essential to a claim that the New Jersey contract case defendant has violated the New Jersey covenant of good faith and fair dealing. In considering what constitutes bad faith, the New Jersey court should consider a number of factors, including the expectations of the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and New Jersey contract case defendant and the purposes for which the New Jersey contract was made. The New Jersey court should also consider the level of sophistication between the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and New Jersey contract case defendant, whether the New Jersey contract case plaintiff and New Jersey contract case defendant had equal or unequal bargaining power, and whether the New Jersey contract case defendant’s action involved the exercise of discretion. Keep in mind, however, that bad faith is not established by simply showing that the New Jersey contract case defendant’s motive for his/her actions did not consider the best interests of the New Jersey contract case plaintiff. New Jersey contract law does not require parties to behave thoughtfully, charitably or unselfishly toward each other. In order for the New Jersey contract case plaintiff to prevail on his/her claim, the New Jersey court must specifically find that bad faith motivated the New Jersey contract case defendant’s actions. A New Jersey contract case defendant who acts in good faith on an honest, but mistaken, belief that the New Jersey contract case defendant’s actions were justified has not breached the New Jersey covenant of good faith and fair dealing.

DID THE NEW JERSEY CONTRACT CASE DEFENDANT’S CONDUCT CAUSED THE NEW JERSEY CONTRACT CASE PLAINTIFF TO SUFFER INJURY, DAMAGE, LOSS OR HARM?
The New Jersey contract case plaintiff must also prove that because of the New Jersey contract case defendant’s actions, the New Jersey contract case plaintiff was unable to realize the benefits of the New Jersey contract.

SUMMARY OF PROOFS REQUIRED TO WIN A NEW JERSEY BAD FAITH LAWSUIT OR NEW JERSEY VIOLATION OF THE COVENANT OF GOOD FAITH AND FAIR DEALING LAWSUIT
if the New Jersey contract case defendant finds that the New Jersey contract case plaintiff has proven by a preponderance of the evidence: (1) the existence of some type of New Jersey contract; (2) that the New Jersey contract case defendant, although acting consistent with the New Jersey contract’s terms, acted in bad faith with the intent to deprive the New Jersey contract case plaintiff of his/her reasonable expectations under the New Jersey contract; and (3) the New Jersey contract case plaintiff sustained injury or loss as a result of such action, then the New Jersey court must find for the New Jersey contract case plaintiff.

NEED HELP WITH YOUR NEW JERSEY CASE?
Handling your New Jersey case wrong from the beginning may only cost you more money and time in the end!! Do it right the first time by seeking legal advice from a competent New Jersey lawyer!
Let the Law Office of Paul DePetris help you with your New Jersey case. Not all New Jersey cases require you to pay expensive legal fees to get legal help.

WHY SHOULD NEW JERSEY PRO SE PLAINTIFFS AND NEW JERSEY PRO SE DEFENDANTS SEEK HELP FROM A NEW JERSEY LAWYER?
Handling your New Jersey case wrong from the beginning may only cost you more money and time in the end!! Do it right the first time by seeking legal advice from a competent New Jersey lawyer!
Many New Jersey pro se plaintiffs and New Jersey pro se defendants make the mistake of not consulting a New Jersey lawyer before filing New Jersey Court papers only to later learn that the New Jersey pro se plaintiffs and New Jersey pro se defendants made serious mistakes that could cause them to lose their New Jersey case. Let the Law Office of Paul DePetris help you with your New Jersey case.

CAN I RELY ON NEW JERSEY COURT PERSONNEL FOR LEGAL ADVICE?
New Jersey Court employees cannot give you “free” legal advice and a New Jersey Court judge may refuse to let you claim that you were right in taking an action (or in deciding not to take action) because you relied on advice from such employees. Most New Jersey Court employees are not trained New Jersey attorneys and therefore, they may not know what advice to give you. Working at the New Jersey Court as a non-judge is not the same as practicing law.

CAN I RELY ON NEW JERSEY COURT FORMS PROVIDED BY THE NEW JERSEY COURT?
The New Jersey Court usually provides certain types of New Jersey Court legal forms to the public and those forms are often very helpful. However, beware relying on New Jersey Court forms provided by the New Jersey Court – the New Jersey Court forms are often deceptively simple, while New Jersey cases often are much more complex than they first appear to be. There is simply no substitute for a competent New Jersey attorney licensed to practice law in New Jersey who has experience handling New Jersey cases. New Jersey Court forms don’t talk and New Jersey Court forms and their directions rarely, if ever, cover every possible situation, set of facts or legal issue that may arise in a New Jersey case. Each New Jersey case has its own particular legal issues and therefore, its own challenges. If you can afford a competent New Jersey attorney, it is best to have the New Jersey attorney prepare your New Jersey Court paperwork for you.

CAN I HANDLE A NEW JERSEY CASE MYSELF?
Many New Jersey pro se plaintiffs and New Jersey pro se defendants can and do successfully handle New Jersey cases, from filing the first paperwork to the collection of a New Jersey Court judgment. However, many other New Jersey pro se plaintiffs and New Jersey pro se defendants also make mistakes that lead to the dismissal of their New Jersey cases or that result in the entry of a New Jersey Court money judgment against them. The greater the money at stake, the greater the reason to consider using the services of a competent attorney licensed to practice law in New Jersey to handle part or all of the New Jersey case. The following are reasons to use an attorney to handle part or all of your New Jersey case:
• New Jersey Court fees often change
• New Jersey Court rules often change
• New Jersey Court employees cannot give you “free” legal advice and a New Jersey Court judge may refuse to let you claim that you were right in taking an action (or in deciding not to take action) because you relied on advice from such employees
• New Jersey Court forms available on websites may not cover every situation you may face in Court
• each New Jersey case has its own particular legal issues and therefore, its own challenges
• it is very common for New Jersey pro se plaintiffs and New Jersey pro se defendants to file inadequate or incorrect New Jersey Court complaints that result in the New Jersey Court complaints or answers to New Jersey Court complaints being rejected by the New Jersey Court or being dismissed by the New Jersey Court after filing and before or after trial because of procedural deficiencies.
• it is not uncommon for judges to get very frustrated by an unrepresented party’s lack of preparation or ignorance of the facts or law of the New Jersey case.
• a Court has the power to punish unprepared New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants, such as by throwing their New Jersey case out of Court or limiting what they can present at the New Jersey Court trial.
• New Jersey has many published cases, laws, regulations, Court rules and rules of evidence that can be very tricky to understand and that can be used to prevent you from doing much of what you want to do at the New Jersey Court trial.
• it is very common for Courts to refuse to allow a party to use or refer to documents or items at the New Jersey Court trial that the person themselves never prepared. Often New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants stumble into New Jersey Court with a video, photograph, bill or affidavit or other form of written statement, thinking they are going to use it as proof that they lost money or that they are not responsible for someone else’s damages, only to have a New Jersey Court judge tell the New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants that it is not going to even consider such items or documents.
• without the proper preparation, items and documents may never be considered by the New Jersey Court. Also, if there are any legal issues to be dealt with at the New Jersey Court trial, you must be prepared to argue them, which may require you to refer to Court rules, evidence rules, laws, regulations or published cases.
• you cannot show up at the New Jersey Court expecting the judge hearing your New Jersey case to explain Court rules, evidence rules, Court procedure or the details of the law that applies to your New Jersey case. The judge hearing your New Jersey case is not permitted to give you legal advice.

It is important to remember that even if you have an attorney, you could lose your New Jersey case. Hiring an attorney to handle part or all of your New Jersey case does not guarantee your success. However, it may provide what is needed to win your New Jersey case or to avoid certain mistakes.

DOES THE LAW OFFICE OF PAUL DEPETRIS HAVE EXPERIENCE HANDLING NEW JERSEY CASES?
Yes. Paul DePetris has performed the following tasks:
• handled New Jersey cases for plaintiffs and defendants across New Jersey, from Bergen County New Jersey to Cumberland County New Jersey, including representations of individuals, small businesses and large corporations.
• settled New Jersey cases for plaintiffs and defendants across New Jersey.
• reviewed many New Jersey Court settlement agreements.
• enforced many New Jersey Court settlement agreements.
• provided New Jersey pro se plaintiffs and New Jersey pro se defendants with New Jersey Court legal advice and prepared New Jersey Court legal forms
• prepared and filed many New Jersey Court complaints
• tried New Jersey Court jury trials
• mediated many New Jersey cases
• argued New Jersey Court motions
• handled New Jersey Court proof hearings
• handled New Jersey Court post judgment collection proceedings

Mr. DePetris has appeared before the Superior Court of New Jersey in the following counties:
• Atlantic County New Jersey Court
• Bergen County New Jersey Court
• Burlington County New Jersey Court
• Camden County New Jersey Court
• Cape May County New Jersey Court
• Cumberland County New Jersey Court
• Essex County New Jersey Court
• Gloucester County New Jersey Court
• Hudson County New Jersey Court
• Mercer County New Jersey Court
• Middlesex County New Jersey Court
• Monmouth County New Jersey Court
• Morris County New Jersey Court
• Ocean County New Jersey Court
• Passaic County New Jersey Court
• Salem County New Jersey Court
• Somerset County New Jersey Court
• Sussex County New Jersey Court
• Union County New Jersey Court
• Warren County New Jersey Court

IN WHAT NEW JERSEY COUNTIES WILL THE LAW OFFICE OF PAUL DEPETRIS HANDLE NEW JERSEY CASES?
The Law Office of Paul DePetris offers to handle and help individuals and businesses with New Jersey Court Claims cases in North, Central and Southern New Jersey, including cases in the following New Jersey counties:
• Atlantic County New Jersey Court
• Bergen County New Jersey Court
• Burlington County New Jersey Court
• Camden County New Jersey Court
• Cape May County New Jersey Court
• Cumberland County New Jersey Court
• Essex County New Jersey Court
• Gloucester County New Jersey Court
• Hudson County New Jersey Court
• Mercer County New Jersey Court
• Middlesex County New Jersey Court
• Monmouth County New Jersey Court
• Morris County New Jersey Court
• Ocean County New Jersey Court
• Passaic County New Jersey Court
• Salem County New Jersey Court
• Somerset County New Jersey Court
• Sussex County New Jersey Court
• Union County New Jersey Court
• Warren County New Jersey Court

WHAT IF I DON’T HAVE ENOUGH MONEY TO HIRE AN ATTORNEY TO HANDLE MY NEW JERSEY CASE FROM BEGINNING TO END?
In many situations, the Law Office of Paul DePetris offers alternatives to handling New Jersey cases for an hourly fee, such as by offering to handle your New Jersey case up to trial for a fixed fee or to help you handle your New Jersey case by yourself. Such flexible methods may allow you to keep the amount legal fees you spend on your New Jersey case to a fixed sum, while providing you the help you need to handle your New Jersey case. For a no obligation phone consultation about what the Firm might be able to do for you, call Mr. DePetris at 609-714-2020 or send an email to Mr. DePetris.
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