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NJSBA, dozens of bar associations speak with unified voice on judicial vacancies

August 1, 2022
For Immediate Release
Contact: Thomas Nobile
732-937-7527 
   
NEW BRUNSWICK – Representing thousands of attorneys across the state, the New Jersey State Bar Association joined with two dozen county and affinity bar associations to adopt resolutions calling for the Governor and Senate to promptly address the catastrophic number of vacancies in New Jersey’s Judiciary. 
    
Speaking with a unified voice, the coalition of the state’s legal organizations said the time to act is now, given that there are over 60 vacancies on the Superior Court, along with an unacceptable three on the Supreme Court, which is set to begin its new court year in less than a month. 
    
“The NJSBA is proud to form a united front with bar associations across the state to ensure the Governor’s Office and the Senate put the judicial crisis at the center of their attention,” NJSBA President Jeralyn L. Lawrence said. “The average New Jersey resident, who trusts in the justice system to resolve their case adequately and timely, will continue to suffer until the Judiciary is restored with a full complement of judges. Today, that trust is compromised. Any further delay is a disservice to the state and its residents.”
    
For decades, the stellar reputation of New Jersey’s courts has been grounded in the independence and integrity of its judges. Yet, the current number of judicial vacancies has created disastrous results, leading some courts to limit the types of matters being heard. The delays in justice have yielded both a human and financial toll on litigants. Postponed criminal matters have left detained defendants in jail well beyond what was intended under New Jersey’s Criminal Justice Reform Act. Personal injury cases that are on hold indefinitely leave injured victims with little recourse. And in divorce trials that are suspended, mother and fathers are unable to enjoy parenting time while their children are caught in the middle of a contested divorce.
    
The ongoing failure to fill these vacancies in a timely manner deprives the Judiciary, the branch of government that most directly serves the residents of the state, of its ability to function as contemplated by the New Jersey Constitution. 
   
The resolutions collectively call upon the Governor and Senate to “promptly act to fulfill their Constitutional duties, specifically that the Senate hold hearings and provide its advice and consent on all nominees and that the Governor continue to nominate candidates to fill all existing vacancies and reappoint all judges who have served the state ably to ensure that our strong and independent Judiciary — the third and co-equal branch of government — is preserved.” 
   
The NJSBA, along with its county and affinity counterparts, remain willing to assist the Governor and the Senate in any capacity to expedite the filling of all existing judicial vacancies. Doing so will ensure that the Judiciary once again functions as a third and co-equal branch of government. 
   
The NJSBA is joined by:
   
American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers – New Jersey Chapter
Asian Pacific American Lawyers Association of New Jersey
Association of Black Women Lawyers of New Jersey
Atlantic County Bar Association
Bergen County Bar Association
Burlington County Bar Association
Camden County Bar Association
Cape May County Bar Association
Cumberland County Bar Association
Essex County Bar Association
Garden State Bar Association
Gloucester County Bar Association
Hispanic Bar Association of New Jersey
Hudson County Bar Association
Hunterdon County Bar Association
Mercer County Bar Association
Middlesex County Bar Association
Monmouth Bar Association
Morris County Bar Association
New Jersey Muslim Lawyers Association
New Jersey Women Lawyers Association
Ocean County Bar Association
Passaic County Bar Association
Salem County Bar Association
Somerset County Bar Association
South Asian Bar Association of New Jersey
Sussex County Bar Association
Union County Bar Association
Warren County Bar Association
 

Contact: NJSBA Communications Department
Tel: 732-937-7527
Email: [email protected]

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