A selection of the need-to-know civil justice news for the week of February 25-March 3.


Big Numbers You Should Know From Christie’s Final N.J. Budget Proposal

Samantha Marcus | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

$35.6 billion, total revenues

$35.5 billion, total proposed spending

$493 million, reserves

$9.2 billion, school aid

$2.5 billion, public pensions

$125 million, health care cuts

$25 million, charity care

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In Litigation, Sometimes All It Takes Is Saying ‘Sorry’

John Council | Texas Lawyer

When East Texas plaintiff lawyer Jim Parsons learned that a trucking company was willing to pay $1.6 million to end his client’s tort case, he got the defendants to agree to something else that’s exceedingly rare in modern civil litigation: a sincere personal apology. Apologies are unusual in tort cases for a variety reasons, chief among them that defendants are loath to offer anything more than broad condolences to a plaintiff that has sued them for fear of admitting liability. But in the right set of circumstances, an apology is all it takes for a defendant to end a civil dispute amicably.

Read more.


Buyer Beware, No Buyer’s Remorse in New Jersey

Michelle Yeary | Drug & Device Law Blog

We’ve talked a fair amount about forum shopping on this blog. Forum shopping is largely in the control of plaintiffs’ counsel because they, within reason, get to choose where to file their clients’ lawsuits… But what about when plaintiff’s choice of forum doesn’t turn out like he/she hoped? Should they get a do-over? A mulligan? A second chance? We don’t think so and neither did the court in Zarilli v. Johnson & Johnson…

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The Ascendency of Accessibility: Surge in Website Lawsuits Continues

Matthew P. Horvitz and Timothy H. Watkins | Retail Law Advisor Blog

The proliferation of accessibility lawsuits under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) has not abated. It is well-documented that ADA-related litigation increased by 37% from 2015 to 2016, which is symptomatic of long-term trends. Growth is fueled in part by litigants’ increased focus on internet-based technologies, including websites and mobile applications. This trend is unlikely to wane in the near future, especially given the continued expansion in e-commerce and internet-enabled applications that retailers, hospitality providers, and other commercial enterprises rely on for advertising, customer engagement, and sales growth.

 Read more.


Chief Counsel Scrivo Leaving Christie Administration; To Chair EDA, Form New Law Firm

Eric Strauss | NJBIZ

Thomas Scrivo, Gov. Chris Christie’s chief counsel, will be the new chairman of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority, Christie announced Thursday. Scrivo is also stepping down as the governor’s chief counsel to return to private practice.

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JPMorgan Software Does in Seconds What Took Lawyers 360,000 Hours

Hugh Son | Bloomberg

At JPMorgan Chase & Co., a learning machine is parsing financial deals that once kept legal teams busy for thousands of hours. The program, called COIN, for Contract Intelligence, does the mind-numbing job of interpreting commercial-loan agreements that, until the project went online in June, consumed 360,000 hours of work each year by lawyers and loan officers. The software reviews documents in seconds, is less error-prone and never asks for vacation.

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