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Early October 2018 brought a legislative victory for US musicians in the form of the Music Modernization Act. The new law makes multiple changes to US copyright law, including: Revising the current Section 115 mechanical license to allow blanket licenses for digital music providers as well as authorizing the Register of Copyrights to designate a mechanical licensing collective to administer the license and distribute collected royalties. Extending remedies for copyright infringement for pre-1972 sound recordings; and Allowing producers to receive sound recording royalties under the section 114 statutory license directly from Sound Exchange via a letter ...
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The Supreme Court scheduled three regional hearings to elicit testimony on why older, minor municipal court complaints pending for more than 15 years should not be dismissed. Administrative Order 01-2018, docketed as PAS-L-3211-18, was issued on the heels of a report prepared by the Supreme Court Committee on Municipal Court Operations, Fines and Fees released on July 17 to address the efficiency of municipal courts.  Among a number of recommendations is the development of a process to dismiss old complaints, taking into account the seriousness of the offense charged, the age of the case, and other relevant factors. The Administrative Office of the Courts ...
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The New Jersey State Bar Association’s educational arm has been named a winner once again, and multiple times. The New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education (NJICLE)’s Environmental law Section 2017 Environmental Law Forum received the American Bar Association’s Environment, Energy, and Resources Program of the Year Award. In addition, NJICLE was named the New Jersey Law Journal’s first place winner in two categories: New Jersey-Based CLE Provider and CLE Provider – online. Volunteers Michele Glass of Cole Schotz and Laurie Sands of Riker Danzig Scherer Hyland & Perretti have been leading the planning for the Environmental Law Forum for the ...
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Survivors of sex trafficking. Taliban targets whose lives are in danger after supporting U.S. missions in Afghanistan. Immigrant and refugee children. Low-income New Jerseyans facing consumer issues, divorce, bankruptcy and eviction. Thanks to the recipients of this year’s New Jersey State Bar Association Pro Bono Awards, these individuals—from some of society’s most vulnerable and underserved populations—have been able to face their legal challenges with a professional advocate by their side. The New Jersey State Bar Association (NJSBA) will celebrate the important work of pro bono attorneys at the annual Pro bono Conference on Oct. 24. The evening program ...
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​The owners of the HeismanWatch website have been sued by the Heisman Trophy Trust for alleged IP violations. The Trust alleges that the podcast's use of the Heisman trademark on its website, podcast, and other social media sites is a violation of the Trust's trademark rights. The suit also claims that the original trophy is under copyright protection by the Trust, and therefore can't be displayed online without their consent. The defendant has not yet filed its answer, but most likely they will rely on fair use as a defense. A copy of the complaint can be found here .​ For more information, see: https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr-esq/lawsuit-claim ...
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The following piece was published in this month's New Jersey Lawyer, which focuses on cannabis. Access to New Jersey Lawyer is a benefit for all members. You can see the entire issue by clicking here. (login required) By Ruth A. Rauls and Gillian A. Cooper  A New Jersey federal court recently held in Daniel Cotto, Jr. v. Ardagh Glass Packaging, Inc., et al., that an employer did not discriminate against an employee on the basis of a disability when it refused to waive a drug-testing requirement as an accommodation for the employee’s medical marijuana use. 1 This case goes against the recent trend where courts have permitted employees who use medical marijuana ...
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Workers’ comp bill on Senate budget agenda this week   The Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee is set to vote on a bill that would provide cost-of-living adjustments (COLA) in weekly workers’ compensation benefits for certain workers this week. The first iteration of S-1967 (Sweeney)/A-3635 (Jasey) was introduced in 2008 and was vetoed by then-Governor Chris Christie in 2014. The New Jersey State Bar Association urged amendments to the bill to preserve the reverse offset provision that would permit the reduction of the benefit by one who is also receiving Social Security disability benefits. The bill would apply only to workers who were totally ...
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Editor’s Note: The following is NJSBA President John E. Keefe Jr.'s column in the October edition of New Jersey Lawyer. This month's magazine focuses on the subject of cannabis, and is available to members here (login required) . I have had tremendous mentors. My first and enduring mentor, whose guidance I still rely upon, is my dad, John Keefe. To me he is Mickey Mantle.  I am fortunate that other big hitters have also played a role in my career.  Morris Brown was a guy who was a partner when I first started out trying cases at Wilentz Goldman and Spitzer. He was just a gentleman who was never afraid or hesitant to teach in the most genuine way ...
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Happy fall. There is so much going on right now.   In October alone, there are dozens of terrific CLE courses to get you up to speed on the latest developments in the law and there are special events like a reception for Chancery judges, the Pro Bono Conference, the Professional Lawyer of the Year lunch, and the annual Open House. We hope to see you find some time to get to the New Jersey Law Center to connect with colleagues and say hi.  October is also LGBT History Month and in this edition of Sidebar, we feature a conversation with Celeste Fiore, who is chair of the LGBT Rights Section.  Celeste was just named to the Insider NJ LGBT Power List ...
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Several major cybersecurity threats have reemerged in recent weeks. The NJSBA shares the following to help you familiarize yourself with these threats since knowledge is the best form of protection we have. USB Drives First, IT advisors have recommended that you don't attempt to open found USB drives. It's an easy way for hackers to gain access to personal and professional data. Officials have reported that hackers have been driving to corporate buildings and dropping high-end USB drives in public spaces and parking lots. Unfortunately, these drives can be loaded with invisible malware, and plugging them in triggers a program that detects every keyboard ...
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Municipal Court Operations, Fines and Fees The NJSBA offered a number of comments to the Supreme Court on its Report of the Supreme Court Committee on Municipal Court Operations, Fines and Fees . It lauded the Supreme Court for addressing the issue in light of the association’s own Report on Judicial Independence in the Municipal Courts last year, specifically the fact that the Supreme Court incorporated many of the association’s own recommendations. It offered additional comments, including recommendations to:  Explore alternatives to incarceration in addition to alternatives to license suspension. Extend a proposed policy limiting the issuance ...
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The New Jersey Commission on Professionalism in the Law will recognize 34 attorneys from across the state with Professional Lawyer of the Year Awards at a luncheon Oct. 11 at the Pines Manor in Edison. The commission is a cooperative effort of the New Jersey State Bar Association, the state and federal Judiciary, and New Jersey’s three law schools. The initiative’s goal is to highlight the values that have historically made the practice of law a distinguished profession, and instill public respect for judges and the justice system. The award winners are lawyers who are respected by their colleagues for their character, competence and exemplary professional ...
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October Calendar of Events

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Receptions, Gatherings and Special Events   17 th Annual Chancery Judges Reception Wednesday, Oct. 3 | 6 p.m. New Jersey Law Center, New Brunswick Sponsored by the Equity Jurisprudence Committee All are invited to meet and greet New Jersey’s chancery judges.   Shredding Party Saturday, Oct. 6 | 9 a.m. New Jersey Law Center, New Brunswick Get rid of all your unneeded paperwork.   Reception Honoring Diverse Judges Wednesday, Oct. 10 | 6 p.m. New Jersey Law Center, New Brunswick Sponsored by the Diversity Committee Featuring the presentation of the Justice Thurgood Marshall Award to ...
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The Senate Judiciary Committee voted out a bill that would overhaul New Jersey’s driving while intoxicated (DWI) penalties to focus more on the use of interlock devices and less on license suspensions. The New Jersey State Bar Association has voiced concerns about similar bills and is closely monitoring this proposal, which was heavily revised from the legislation that was introduced.  “This bill would move New Jersey away from driver’s license suspensions as the default penalty for offenders charged with drunken driving in favor of the use of ignition interlock devices,” said Senator Nicholas Scutari, a prime sponsor of S-824 and chair of the Senate ...
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From honoring diverse judges, to recognizing the epitome of professionalism, to giving back to society, NJSBA members say the line-up of October signature programs are some of the most important the fall has to offer. Hope to see you there. 17th Annual Chancery Judges Reception Wednesday, Oct. 3 | 6 p.m. New Jersey Law Center, New Brunswick Join the Equity Jurisprudence Committee in welcoming the chancery judges and their law clerks to the new term. $50 per person | Free for judges and their law clerks Register here _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ 17th Annual Reception ...
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By Chris Stock LEAP is a NJSBA sponsor. Chris Stock is the CEO of LEAP, USA. Let’s go back in time for a minute... It’s 2001. The small law firm is a booming business on the main street of suburbia. The partner is a key business person in the local community. Years of hard work have allowed the small law firm to gain many long standing loyal clients in the local area. Walking into the office you can hear the hum of a server, whirring away under the receptionist’s desk. The family lawyer walks out of their office and calls out to the receptionist to restart the server so that he can access his emails. All staff share one email address. The server restarts ...
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Assembly Judiciary Committee oks NJSBA bill to end double taxation of fees A bill that would end the practice of taxing attorneys’ fees awarded in civil rights and employment discrimination and retaliation cases was unanimously voted out of the Assembly Judiciary Committee last week. S-784 (Sarlo)/A-3614 (Burzichelli) was drafted by the NJSBA’s Labor and Employment Law Section, which seeks the same treatment for attorneys’ fees as the federal tax law. The federal law only taxes the receiving entity for the portion of the recovery. New Jersey tax law requires that it tax both the attorney or the law firm that receives the fees from a recovery and the ...
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It is a basic tenet of contract law that oral contracts, or “handshake deals”, are just as enforceable as written contracts. However, it is also a basic tenet that one should never enter a long-term agreement based on an oral contract. Over time, parties to a contract may forget, misremember, or just plain lie, as to what they thought the agreement covered. However, these handshake deals are how most Hollywood lawyers enter agreements with their clients. Now, thanks to Johnny Depp, there’s another reason to avoid these handshake deals. Depp is seeking a full refund of the estimated $30 million he has paid in commission over the years to his attorney based ...
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The following is an article from the most recent edition of New Jersey Family Lawyer . For more information on joining a section, email [email protected] by Sandra Starr Uretsky and Cassie Murphy Lawyers are consistently called upon to adapt to changes impacting their practice. These changes may result from modifications to substantive New Jersey law (such as the amendments to the alimony statute made in Sept. 2014); legal procedure and practice (as occurs every year with amendments to the Court Rules); and societal standards and norms (such as the drastic reduction in homemaking and the rise of women in the workforce). In the modern era, the constant ...
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Editor’s note: The NJSBA argued in a trio of amicus cases on Sept. 12. This is the first installment of coverage. An upcoming edition of the Capitol Report will dive into the arguments made before the New Jersey Supreme Court in State v. Eileen Cassidy and Amanda Kernahan v. Home Warranty Administrator of Florida, Inc. and Choice Home Warranty. A hot Appellate Division bench last week questioned the propriety of the treatment of inheritance tax transfers made in contemplation of death. In Estate of Mary Van Riper v. NJ Division of Taxation , Docket No. 8196-2916, the Appellate Division will consider whether the inheritance tax imposed on the entire value ...
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