Law Office Of Paul DePetris
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How to file a New Jersey Law Division Complaint FAQs

INTRODUCTION
Read below to learn more about this topic.  Or, to receive a no cost phone consultation, call Mr. DePetris at 609-714-2020 or send him an email.  Warning – this article does not necessarily include every New Jersey court rule, code or law 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or forms on this website are the latest versions, that they lack typographical errors or that they have not changed, repealed or superseded by other laws.  Before taking any action, read all applicable federal and state source law and case law and consult with an attorney.  Court addresses, hours of operation, deadlines and directions may change so check with the court in advance of mailing documents to court or going there!  Some of the webpages on this site don’t apply to all types of New Jersey cases, since there are different rules for different case types!


HOW TO FILE A NEW JERSEY LAW DIVISION COMPLAINT FAQS


WHAT IS A NEW JERSEY LAW DIVISION COMPLAINT?
To know how to file a New Jersey Law Division Complaint, you must understand what a New Jersey Law Division lawsuit actually is.   A New Jersey Law Division complaint, also called a New Jersey Law Division lawsuit is a type of civil lawsuit filed in the New Jersey Law Division, Civil Part for any amount of damages or certain other kinds of relief.   A  New Jersey Law Division complaint is not a letter – it is a document with serious consequences, since ignoring the lawsuit could result in the entry of a money judgment against a defendant and thereafter, collection activity against a defendant and the reduction of their credit score.   A New Jersey Law Division lawsuit begins when a person or business or their Attorney prepares and files a lawsuit and pays the court a filing fee.  If someone is being sued in the lawsuit, the New Jersey Law Division complaint states that they are a defendant to the lawsuit.   


WHAT IS A NEW JERSEY LAW DIVISION SUMMONS?  
To know how to file a New Jersey Law Division Complaint, you must understand what a New Jersey Law Division summons is.  Many people mistakenly believe that a New Jersey Law Division summons is a New Jersey lawsuit.   However, a New Jersey Law Division summons is not a New Jersey lawsuit at all.  Instead, a New Jersey Law Division summons is a court document that “summons” a defendant to file an answer in a particular court in a New Jersey Law Division lawsuit.  The New Jersey Law Division summons is prepared by a plaintiff or their attorney and may state the date on which the complaint was served on the defendant.  This is the date used to figure out how much time a defendant has to file a New Jersey Law Division answer.  If a defendant sued in a New Jersey Law Division lawsuit, they have 35 days following service of the complaint to file an answer.


HOW ARE NEW JERSEY LAW DIVISION SUMMONSES AND COMPLAINTS NORMALLY GIVEN TO DEFENDANTS?
Normally, complaints are served by a process server – a person who actually gives the defendant or a member of their household or employee or representative of the defendant business a lawsuit.  However, there are sometimes exceptions to this procedure that an attorney may have to explain to you. 


WHERE ARE LAW DIVISION COMPLAINTS FILED?
To know how to file a New Jersey Law Division Complaint, you must understand in where to file the complaint.   A New Jersey Law Division lawsuit may usually be filed in the county where one or more defendants reside or have a business address or where the facts about the case took place.  However, there are sometimes exceptions to this procedure that an attorney may have to explain to you.   Each county has its own Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division clerk’s office.  Here are the addresses of the Superior Court Clerk’s Offices: 


Atlantic County 
Civil Case Management Office Atlantic County Civil Courthouse 1201 Bacharach Blvd. 
Atlantic City, NJ 08401 
609-345-6700 


Bergen County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Bergen County Justice Center 
10 Main St., Room 415 Hackensack, NJ 07601 201-527-2601 


Burlington County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Burlington County Courts 
Facility, 1st Floor 
49 Rancocas Road 
Mt. Holly, NJ 08060 
609-518-2815 


Camden County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Hall of Justice 
101 S. 5th St., 
Suite 11 0(with fee) 
Suite 150 (no fee) 
Camden, NJ 08103-4001 
856-379-2202 


Cape May County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Cape May Court House 
DN-203 Central Mail Room 
9 N. Main Street 
Cape May Court House, NJ 08210 
609-463-6514 


Cumberland County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Cumberland County Courthouse 
60 West Broad Street Bridgeton, NJ 08302 856-453-4330 


Essex County 
Civil Customer Service 
Hall of Records, Room 201 
465 Dr. Martin Luther King Blvd. Newark, NJ 07102 
973-693-5529 


Gloucester County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Attn: Intake 
First Floor, Court House 
1 N. Broad St. Woodbury, NJ 08069 
856-853-3392 


Hudson County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Brennan Courthouse 
583 Newark Ave. 
Jersey City, NJ 07306 
201-217-5162, 5163 


Hunterdon County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Hunterdon County Justice Center 
65 Park Ave. 
Flemington, NJ 08822 
908-237-5820 


Mercer County 
Civil Division Case Management Office 
Mercer County Civil Courts Building 
175 S. Broad St., 
P.O. Box 8068 Trenton, NJ 08650-0068 
609-571-4460 


Middlesex County 
Civil Division Management Office Middlesex County Courthouse 
2nd Floor Tower 
56 Paterson Street 
P. O. Box 2633 
New Brunswick, NJ 08903-2633 732-519-3200 


Monmouth County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Monmouth County Courthouse 
P.O. Box 1269 
Freehold, NJ 07728-1269 
732-677-4240 


Morris County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Morris County Courthouse 
P.O. Box 910 
Morristown, NJ 07963-0910 973-656-4110 


Ocean County 
Superior Court Civil Intake 
118 Washington Street, Room 121 P. O. Box 2191 
Toms River, NJ 08754-219 1 732-929-2016 


Passaic County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Passaic County Courthouse 
77 Hamilton St. 
Paterson, NJ 07505 
973-247-8176 


Salem County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Salem County Courthouse 
92 Market Street 
Salem, NJ 08079 
856-935-7510 x8213 


Somerset County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Somerset County Courthouse 
40 N. Bridge St., P.O. Box 3000 Somerville, NJ 08876-1262 908-231-7054 
Sussex County 


Sussex County Judicial Center 
43-47 High St. Newton, NJ 07860 
973-579-0918 


Union County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Union County Courthouse 
2 Broad St., 1st Floor Elizabeth, NJ 07207 
Case Management (Room 107) Assignment (Room 105) 908-659-4810 


Warren County 
Civil Division Case Management Office Warren County Courthouse 
413 Second St. 
Belvidere, NJ 07823 
908-475-6140 


HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO FILE A NEW JERSEY LAW DIVISION COMPLAINT?
To file a New Jersey Law Division complaint, you must understand the filing fees to file the complaint.  The following is a list of New Jersey Law Division complaint filing fees:
Complaint $200.00
Answer, Answer with Crossclaim, Motion (if first paper),
Amended Answer Adding new Defendant $135.00
Answer with Counterclaim or 3rd Party Complaint $200.00
Third Party Complaint or Counterclaim (after answer filed) $65.00
Motion (Pre and Post Judgment) $30.00
Motion for withdrawal of $100 but less than $1,000 $35.00
Motion for withdrawal of $1000 or more $40.00
Transfer Case From Superior Court (Civil Part only) to Special Civil Part $15.00
Security Deposit for Cost (per Defendant or as Order reads) $200.00
Entering Judgment on Bond and Warrant (in lieu of fee required in
N.J.S.A. 22A:2-6) $15.00
Recording Other Instruments $5.00
HOW DO I FILE A NEW JERSEY LAW DIVISION COMPLAINT? 
To file a New Jersey Law Division complaint, you prepare a written complaint and filing it by either visiting the New Jersey Superior Courthouse or appropriate Court Finance Office in the county where you intend to file the New Jersey Law Division complaint – all of which are located in the county seat of the appropriate county -- or by sending the necessary court paperwork to the appropriate county office of the New Jersey Law Division.  You must pay a fee to file your New Jersey Law Division complaint.   The New Jersey Law Division complaint fees could change, so it is important that you check with the court as to the appropriate fee when you are actually ready to file your papers.  Only persons age 18 or older are able to file a New Jersey Law Division complaint for themselves (minors must file a lawsuit through their parent or guardian).  There are specific rules about where to file New Jersey Law Division complaints, which depend on various considerations.  


CAN I RELY ON NEW JERSEY LAW DIVISION COURT FORMS FOR MY COMPLAINT?
New Jersey Law Division complaint forms are available at the appropriate office of the New Jersey Law Division and via the worldwide web.  However, neither New Jersey Law Division complaint forms, websites nor advice from court personnel are good substitutes for legal services.  Each case has its own particular legal issues and therefore, its own challenges.  It is extremely important that you prepare your lawsuit very carefully and make sure that you include in the document a detailed list of all factual and legal reasons why you may have a right to win your complaint without necessarily telling every single thing about your case.   Failure to properly prepare and file a New Jersey Law Division complaint often results in people losing their case.  It is very common for people to file inadequate or incorrect New Jersey Law Division complaints that result in the New Jersey Law Division complaints or answers to New Jersey Law Division Lawsuits being rejected by the court or being dismissed by the court after filing and before or after trial because of procedural deficiencies.  


WHAT DOES THE TERM “PRO SE” MEAN IN A CASE?
To understand how to file a New Jersey Law Division Complaint, you must understand your position before the court when you file an answer.  If you are not represented by a Lawyer in a New Jersey case, you are called a “pro se litigant”.  When you are a pro se litigant, you must always keep in mind that the court is not there to tell you what to do and when to do it!   The court only notifies you of some dates and deadlines but not necessarily all of them.  Answering a New Jersey Law Division complaint is only one of many tasks you may have to perform before you get to trial!


DO I AUTOMATICALLY GET A JURY TRIAL OF MY CASE?
To understand how to file a New Jersey Law Division Complaint, you must understand the difference between a nonjury and jury trials.  Some trials are nonjury trials, meaning that only a judge decides the Plaintiff trial.  If you file the proper paperwork, you may demand a jury trial – which is usually a trial by 6 jurors.  However, jury trials are much more complex than nonjury trials and usually require much more preparation, including extensive court paperwork.  Even if you don’t ask for a jury, the New Jersey Law Division lawsuit may ask for a jury trial.


WHAT HAPPENS AFTER I FILE MY NEW JERSEY LAW DIVISION COMPLAINT? 
To file a New Jersey Law Division complaint, you should understand what happens after you file it.  If your paperwork is correct, the court will accept your filing fee.  Next you shall have to prepare a New Jersey summons and arrange for a process server to actually serve the complaint, such as a county sheriff and pay necessary service fees.  


WHAT IF A DEFENDANT IGNORES THE NEW JERSEY LAW DIVISION SUMMONS AND COMPLAINT?
Answering a New Jersey Law Division lawsuit should be done to avoid serious negative consequences to the defendant.   If the defendant fails to file a New Jersey Law Division answer in time, the court clerk may enter a default against the defendant at the request of the plaintiff or counterclaimant (whoever sued the defendant).  Thereafter, the plaintiff or their Attorney may prepare and file court paperwork asking the New Jersey Law Division court to enter a default judgment against the defendant.   If the default judgment is entered, it is usually very difficult to undo the damage to the defendant.   If the defendant ignores a default judgment, the following may happen to the defendant:
the defendant may be forced to answer detailed questions about the location and value of the defendant’s savings, personal property and bank accounts
the defendant may be forced to appear for a deposition (a question and answer session conducted under oath) during which an attorney will ask the defendant questions about the location and value of the defendant’s savings, personal property and bank accounts
the defendant’s bank account may be frozen and money in it turned over to the Plaintiff 
some of the defendant’s wages may be taken from the defendant and turned over to Plaintiff 
the defendant’s personal property may be seized by the sheriff and sold to satisfy the Plaintiff judgment
a New Jersey lien may be put against a house the defendant own
the defendant’s credit score may be affected or reduced
Often people wait until their bank account is frozen or until their wages are attached to take action – at that point it is difficult and sometimes too late or very difficult to do anything to successfully stop the Plaintiff debt collection efforts.  It is not uncommon for the New Jersey Law Division court to refuse to help such latecomers from taking issue with Plaintiff’s debt collection efforts.


WHAT HAPPENS AFTER I FILE MY COMPLAINT? 
To file a New Jersey Law Division complaint, you should understand what happens after you file it.  If your paperwork is correct, the court will accept your filing fee.  Next you shall have to prepare a New Jersey summons and arrange for a process server to actually serve the complaint, such as a county sheriff and pay necessary service fees.  If the process server successfully serves the New Jersey Law Division summons complaint, the defendant has 35 days from service of the complaint to file and serve on you a written answer to the complaint.  For each defendant, you must get proof of service – an affidavit of service – from the process server and file it with the court to show that the defendant was actually served.  If the defendant fails to timely file an answer, you may file papers to get a default against the defendant and thereafter you may file detailed paperwork with the court asking the court to enter a default judgment, usually for a specific sum of money.   If the complaint is answered, you may be countersued by one or more defendants, requiring you to file an answer to the countersuit.  If the complaint is answered, the parties may engage in fact finding called discovery.   Many people ignore this step which often leads to their being unprepared for trial.   After discovery, if your complaint is not dismissed – which often happens when people ignore discovery or when their complaint is poorly written or there is no evidence admissible in court to prove the complaint’s allegations – an arbitration hearing and/or trial is scheduled.  On the date of your arbitration or trial, you must appear at court in the proper courtroom.    Usually, many cases are heard on the day that your case is called for trial and it is not uncommon for many people to wait in a single courtroom for their case to be called.  You must be on time to avoid losing your case!  It is best to arrive early to court, since it is not unusual for the courtroom’s seats to fill up quickly!   After an arbitration or trial, you may have to file more paperwork with the court.


WHY SHOULD YOU CONDISER AFFORDABLE NEW JERSEY LAW DIVISION COMPLAINT HELP?
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 help from an experienced New Jersey Law Division lawyer!  Many Jersey pro se parties make the mistake of not consulting a lawyer before filing New Jersey Law Division court papers only to later learn that they made serious mistakes that could cause them to lose their case.  New Jersey employees cannot give you “free” legal advice and a 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.  Working at the New Jersey Court as a non-judge is not the same as practicing law.   New Jersey Law Division complaint help is available to pro se litigants representing themselves in New Jersey Law Division cases.   A Law Division lawsuit starts with the filing of a complaint.   To be effective, a complaint must be prepared properly.  The complaint must contain specific information and failure to include that information may prevent you from recovering all the damages to which you may be entitled under New Jersey law or federal law.  Many pro se plaintiffs handwrite a pro se complaint using court forms and leave out requests for damages or other relief to which the pro se plaintiff is entitled or leave out important legal claims.  Also, pro se plaintiffs sometimes ask for things in their handwritten pro se complaint or form complaint to which they are not legally entitled – which could land them in trouble with the court.  Sanctions are available to defendants who face improper complaints.   In addition, it is not uncommon for court clerks to reject pro se complaints because the pro se complaints do not comply with court rules.   New Jersey Law Division complaint help by an affordable New Jersey Law Division attorney can make certain that your complaint is prepared correctly the first time.  Get New Jersey Law Division complaint help from an experienced New Jersey Law Division lawyer.   By using such services, you shall make sure your complaint includes all: (a) claims – “causes of action” – that you are able to raise against the defendants and that you have a legal and factual basis to bring against the defendants; and (b) requests for relief – types of damages or “help” from the court - to which you might be entitled against the defendants. Failing to include all proper claims and requests for relief in your complaint may doom your case to failure! If you want to sue a person or business in court and you need help preparing New Jersey Law Division court papers, get a quote to have the papers for you for a one time flat fee by an attorney. After you pay the fee and submit the necessary information to the attorney, the New Jersey Law Division court papers shall be typed up and sent to you for you to file.  New Jersey Law Division complaint help may only be a phone call away.  Let the Law Office of Paul DePetris help you with your case.  You do not always have to pay expensive legal fees to get legal help.  To receive a no cost phone consultation about affordable New Jersey Law Division complaint help, call Mr. DePetris at 609-714-2020 or send an email to Mr. DePetris. 


NEED NEW JERSEY LAW DIVISION COMPLAINT HELP?
Consider New Jersey Law Division complaint help before you file a lawsuit yourself!  Handling your 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 New Jersey lawyer!  Let the Law Office of Paul DePetris help you with your case.  Not all cases require you to pay expensive legal fees to get legal help.  Many pro se plaintiffs make the mistake of not consulting a New Jersey lawyer before filing a New Jersey Law Division complaint only to later learn that they made serious mistakes that could cause them to lose their case.  Let the Law Office of Paul DePetris give you the New Jersey Law Division complaint help you need.  
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