Law Office Of Paul DePetris
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New Jersey class action court rules

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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 .

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of the statutes, rules, codes, files or forms, that they lack typographical errors or that they have not been amended, repealed or superseded by other federal or state law.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this database may include laws that: (1) never became operable due to unmet conditions; (2) expired; (3) were repealed or amended; (4) were declared void by a court of law; (5) or are otherwise invalid.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.

2013 NEW JERESY CONSUMER FRAUD CLASS ACTION COURT RULES

RULE 4:32. Class Actions
4:32-1. Requirements for Maintaining Class Action
 (a) General Prerequisites to a Class Action. One or more members of a class may sue or be sued as representative parties on behalf of all only if (1) the class is so numerous that joinder of all members is impracticable, (2) there are questions of law or fact common to the class, (3) the claims or defenses of the representative parties are typical of the claims or defenses of the class, and (4) the representative parties will fairly and adequately protect the interests of the class.
 (b) Class Actions Maintainable. An action may be maintained as a class action if the prerequisites of paragraph (a) are satisfied, and in addition:
• (1) the prosecution of separate actions by or against individual members of the class would create a risk either of :
• (A) inconsistent or varying adjudications with respect to individual members of the class that would establish incompatible standards of conduct for the party opposing the class, or
• (B) adjudications with respect to individual members of the class that would as a practical matter be dispositive of the interests of the other members not parties to the adjudications or substantially impair or impede their ability to protect their interests; or
• (2) the party opposing the class has acted or refused to act on grounds generally applicable to the class, thereby making appropriate final injunctive relief or corresponding declaratory relief with respect to the class as a whole; or
• (3) the court finds that the questions of law or fact common to the members of the class predominate over any questions affecting only individual members, and that a class action is superior to other available methods for the fair and efficient adjudication of the controversy. The factors pertinent to the findings include:
• (A) the interest of members of the class in individually controlling the prosecution or defense of separate actions;
• (B) the extent and nature of any litigation concerning the controversy already commenced by or against members of the class;
• (C) the desirability or undesirability in concentrating the litigation of the claims in the particular forum; and
• (D) the difficulties likely to be encountered in the management of a class action.
Note: Source - R.R. 4:36-1; paragraphs (b)(1) and (b)(3) amended July 27, 2006 to be effective September 1, 2006.
4:32-2. Determining by Order Whether to Certify a Class Action; Appointing Class Counsel; Notice and Membership in the Class; Multiple Classes and Subclasses
 (a) Order Determining Maintainability; Certifying Class. When a person sues or is sued as a representative of a class, the court shall, at an early practicable time, determine by order whether to certify the action as a class action. An order certifying a class action shall define the class and the class claims, issues or defenses, and shall appoint class counsel in accordance with paragraph (g) of this rule. The order may be altered or amended prior to the entry of final judgment.
 (b) Notice.
• (1) If a class is certified pursuant to R. 4:32-1(b)(1) or (b)(2), the court may direct appropriate notice to the class.
• (2) If a class is certified pursuant to R. 4:32-1(b)(3), the court shall direct to the members of the class the best notice practicable under the circumstances, consistent with the due process of law. The notice shall state the following in concise, clear and easily understood language:
• (A) the nature of the action;
• (B) the definition of the class certified;
• (C) the class claims, issues or defenses;
• (D) that a class member may enter an appearance through counsel if the member so desires;
• (E) that the court will exclude from the class any member who requests exclusion, stating when and how members may elect to be excluded; and
• (F) the binding effect of a class judgment on class members pursuant to paragraph (c) of this rule.
• (3) The cost of notice may be assessed against any party present before the court, or may be allocated among parties present before the court, pending final disposition of the cause.
 (c) Judgment. The judgment in an action maintained as a class action under R. 4:32-1(b)(1) or (b)(2), whether or not favorable to the class, shall include and describe those whom the court finds to be members of the class. The judgment in an action maintained as a class action under R. 4:32-1(b)(3), whether or not favorable to the class, shall, to the extent practicable under the circumstances, consistent with due process of law, describe the class and specify those who have been excluded from the class. In any class action, the judgment may, consistent with due process of law, confer benefits upon a fluid class, whose members may be, but need not have been members of the class in suit.
 (d) Partial Class Actions; Subdivided Classes. If appropriate, an action may be brought or maintained as a class action with respect to particular issues. A class may also be divided into subclasses and each subclass treated as a class, and the provisions of this rule shall then be construed and applied accordingly.
 (e) Settlement, Voluntary Dismissal, or Compromise.
• (1)(A) The court shall approve any settlement, voluntary dismissal, or compromise of the claims, issues, or defenses of a certified class.
• (B) The court shall direct notice in a reasonable manner to all class members who would be bound by a proposed settlement, voluntary dismissal, or compromise.
• (C) The court may approve a settlement, voluntary dismissal, or compromise that would bind class members only after a hearing and on finding that the settlement, voluntary dismissal, or compromise is fair, reasonable, and adequate.
• (2) The parties seeking approval of a settlement, voluntary dismissal, or compromise under this rule shall file a statement identifying any agreement made in connection with the proposed settlement, voluntary dismissal, or compromise.
• (3) In an action previously certified as a class action under R. 4:32-1(b)(3), the court may refuse to approve a settlement unless it affords a new opportunity to request exclusion to individual class members who had an earlier opportunity to request exclusion but did not do so.
• (4) (4) Any class member may object to a proposed settlement, voluntary dismissal, or compromise that requires court approval under paragraph (e)(1)(A) of this rule. An objection made under this paragraph may be withdrawn only with the court's approval.
 (f) Orders in Conduct of Actions. In the conduct of actions to which this rule applies, the court may make appropriate orders:
• (1) determining the course of proceedings or prescribing measures to prevent undue repetition or complication in the presentation of evidence or argument;
• (2) requiring, for the protection of the members of the class or otherwise for the fair conduct of the action, that notice be given to some or all of the members of the class in such manner as the court may direct of (A) any step in the action, (B) the proposed extent of the judgment, or (C) the opportunity of members to signify whether they consider the representation fair and adequate, to intervene and present claims or defenses, or otherwise to come into the action;
• (3) imposing conditions on the representative parties or on intervenors;
• (4) requiring that the pleadings be amended to eliminate therefrom allegations as to representation of absent persons, and that the action proceed accordingly;
• (5) dealing with similar procedural matters.
These orders may be combined with an order under R. 4:32-2(a) and may be altered or amended as may be desirable from time to time.
 (g) Class Counsel.
• (1) Appointing Class Counsel.
• (A) Unless a statute provides otherwise, a court that certifies a class must appoint class counsel.
• (B) An attorney appointed to serve as class counsel must fairly and adequately represent the interests of the class.
• (C) In appointing class counsel, the court must consider: (i) the work counsel has done in identifying or investigating potential claims in the action; (ii) counsel's experience in handling class actions, other complex litigation, and claims of the type asserted in the action; (iii) counsel's knowledge of the applicable law, and (iv) the resources counsel will commit to representing the class.
The court also may consider any other matter pertinent to counsel's ability to represent fairly and adequately the interest of the class and may direct potential class counsel to provide information on any subject pertinent to the appointment and to the proposed terms for attorney fees and nontaxable costs. The court may make further orders in connection with the appointment.
• (2) Appointment Procedure.
• (A) The court may designate interim counsel to act on behalf of the putative class before determining whether to certify the action as a class action.
• (B) When there is one applicant for appointment as class counsel, the court may appoint that applicant only if the applicant is adequate under this rule. If more than one adequate applicant seeks appointment as class counsel, the court must appoint the applicant best able to represent the interests of the class.
• (C) The order appointing class counsel may include provisions about the award of attorney fees or nontaxable costs under paragraph (h) of this rule.
 (h) Attorney's Fees and Litigation Expenses. In an action certified as a class action, an application for the award of attorney's fees and litigation expenses, if fees and costs are authorized by law, rule, or the parties' agreement, shall be made in accordance with R. 4:42-9. Notice of the motion shall be served on all parties. A motion by class counsel shall be directed to class members in a reasonable manner. A party from whom payment is sought as well as any class member may object to the motion.
Note: Effective September 8, 1969; paragraphs (b) and (c) amended November 27, 1974 to be effective April 1, 1975; paragraph (b) amended July 13, 1994 to be effective September 1, 1994; caption amended, paragraphs (a) and (d) caption and text amended, paragraph (b) amended, former R. 4:32-4 deleted and readopted as amended as new paragraph (e), former R. 4:32-3 deleted and adopted as reformatted as new paragraph (f), and new paragraphs (g) and (h) adopted July 27, 2006 to be effective September 1, 2006, paragraph (a) amended October 9, 2007, to be effective immediately; paragraph (e)(4) amended July 9, 2008 to be effective September 1, 2008; paragraph (h) caption and text amended July 23, 2010 to be effective September 1, 2010.
4:32-3. Derivative Action by Shareholders
In an action brought to enforce a secondary right on the part of one or more shareholders in an association, incorporated or unincorporated, because the association refuses to enforce rights which may properly be asserted by it, the complaint shall be verified and allege that the plaintiff was a shareholder at the time of the transaction complained of, or that the share thereafter devolved by operation of law. The complaint shall also set forth with particularity the efforts of the plaintiff to secure from the managing directors or trustees and, if necessary, from the shareholders such action as is desired, and the reasons for the failure to obtain such action or the reasons for not making such effort. Immediately on filing the complaint and issuing the summons, the plaintiff shall give such notice of the pendency and object of the action to the other shareholders as the court by order directs. The derivative action may not be maintained if it appears that the plaintiff does not fairly represent the interests of the shareholders or members similarly situated in enforcing the right of the corporation or association. Rule 4:32-2(e) ("Settlement, Voluntary Dismissal, or Compromise") is applicable to actions brought under this rule.
Note: Source - R.R. 4:36-2; adopted as R. 4:32-5 effective September 8, 1969; amended July 13, 1994 to be effective September 1, 1994; redesignated as R. 4:32-3 and amended July 27, 2006 to be effective September 1, 2006.
[ 4:32-3. Orders in Conduct of Actions ] [Deleted]
Note: R. 4:32-3 deleted, with text reformatted and reallocated to R. 4:32-2(f), and former R. 4:32-5 amended and redesignated as R. 4:32-3, July 27, 2006 to be effective September 1, 2006.
[ 4:32-4. Dismissal or Compromise ] [Deleted]
Note: Source - R.R. 4:36-3; adopted as R. 4:32-4 effective September 8, 1969; R. 4:32-4 deleted, with text incorporated in R. 4:32-2(e) July 27, 2006 to be effective September 1, 2006.
[4:32-5. Derivative Action by Shareholders] [Deleted]
Note: Source-R.R. 4:36-2; amended July 13, 1994 to be effective September 1, 1994, redesignated as R. 4:32-3 and amended July 27, 2006 to be effective September 1, 2006

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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