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What is it like to deal with insurance adjusters?

So you want to settle you personal injury case?  Well, if you do then you have probably had the unfortunate experience of dealing with an insurance adjuster like this one! Hope you enjoyed this. If you have any need for a lawyer in New Jersey, then please contact us! (p) 973-742-1917

What to do if you slip on ice/snow (Updated)

Updated Oct 30, 2018 Over the years, we worked on a number of cases recently where clients suffered severe fractures after falling on snow and/or ice, and we wanted to take the opportunity to share some tips (Especially with cold weather ahead of us!) First, if you are injured in any accident, it is important

Can I pass a car waiting to make a left turn? (Updated)

Updated Oct 20, 2018 People often ask if they are allowed to pass on the right when another car is waiting to make a left turn. It is common in New Jersey that a vehicle will stop with a left turn signal on and cars will pass on the right. But is this allowed? First,

Warrantless Searches of Cars UPDATED

Updated October 15, 2018 As most people know, the police generally need a warrant if they want to perform a search. However, police often do not need a warrant if they pull over a car, assuming that they have a reason to pull the car over. Once the vehicle is pulled over, police may perform

How much does it cost to fight for custody in New Jersey?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. When two parents break up, it is not uncommon for one of them to file a Complaint with the court and establish a custody and visitation order. Most of the time, the parents can agree with there child will live for the majority of the time. But when they

How do I know if I need a lawyer for a car accident in New Jersey? UPDATED

UPDATED Oct. 7, 2018 After a car accident, many people ask themselves, “Do I need a lawyer?” How does a person know if they need a lawyer after an accident? We have handled countless New Jersey car accident cases – since 1922 – and we discuss below some of things that should tell a person

I was hit in the rear – is the other driver always at fault? UPDATED

UPDATED OCT. 4, 2018 We have been representing people injured in car accidents since 1922 and have seen many rear-end car crashes – too many to count! And here in Passaic County (and the surrounding Essex County and Hudson County), there are no shortages of car accidents. Clients routinely ask if the driver who rear-ended

Can the police question you about your Google searches? UPDATED

Updated Sept. 29 2018 Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. As a New Jersey criminal defense attorney, I am sometimes asked if police can obtain your Google searches and question you about them. Presently in the news, there are a wide range of questions about the NSA and other authorities gathering data online. At the

Advantages of a local attorney and the courts in which we appear

UPDATED SEPT 20, 2018 Why hire a local New Jersey lawyer We are lawyers who pride ourselves in delivering top quality legal services to local New Jersey clients in Passaic County, Bergen County, Essex County, Hudson County, and Union County. We appear very regularly in the Superior Courts in those areas, as well as the

New Jersey Car Insurance and Your Rights: UPDATED

UPDATED Sept 7, 2018 Know your options when you choose automobile insurance. People purchase insurance with the hope that they will never need it. Unfortunately, accidents do happen, so you and your family members should have adequate coverage. Limitation on lawsuit v. no limitation on lawsuit Choose the “No Limitation on Lawsuit Option.” Do not

Insurance Is Not Just About Price

Updated August 29, 2018 After seeing countless commercials featuring friendly reptiles, celebrity spokespeople, enticing cartoons, and other zany characters, you may be under the false impression that shopping for car insurance is all about price. This is very far from true. First, there are several different insurance options, as explained in our article, NJ Insurance

Do I have to pay taxes on a personal injury settlement?

UPDATED AUGUST 22 2018 As New Jersey attorneys who represent those injured in accidents, we are frequently asked, “If I settle my personal injury case, do I have to pay taxes on the settlement?” As New Jersey attorneys, we cannot give anyone tax advice. But generally speaking, a settlement or jury award for damages in

Hiring a Lawyer for a Simple, No Fault Divorce in New Jersey

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Updated August 18, 2018 It is not uncommon that a client contacts me and says that they and their spouse are in agreement that they should get divorced. They ask, how much to get a simple divorce? What is a no fault divorce? We were just married a few

If you text someone while they are driving, it could expose you to a lawsuit

Updated August 13, 2018 Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Texting while driving is a big problem in New Jersey and around the entire country. In New Jersey, the state is passing new laws making stiffer penalties for texting while driving. Certainly, if a driver is distracted while texting and causes a car accident, the

What happens when you agree to split lottery winnings with co-workers?

UPDATED AUGUST 9, 2018 What happens when you agree to split lottery winnings with co-workers?? With the perennial hype surrounding the large lottery jackpots, we, as New Jersey civil attorneys, read an interesting case where six friends and co-workers had agreed to pool their money to buy lottery tickets, with the understanding that they would split

What happens on the first court date, if arrested in New Jersey?

UPDATED AUGUST 6, 2018 One of the first things that most people who are accused of crimes in New Jersey ask us is, “what is going to happen at my first court date?” In most cases, the short answer is: Not all that much. The criminal justice system in New Jersey functions almost nothing like

Can Police Track My Cellphone Without a Warrant?

Related: Criminal Law, No Warrant Required for Facebook Postings, Understanding the Fee for a NJ Criminal Defense Attorney. UPDATED AUGUST 3, 2018 As New Jersey criminal defense attorneys, we are sometimes asked, “can police track my cellphone without a warrant?” Police do all sorts of things in their investigations, but if they are supposed to

Store responsible for surrounding areas that they do not own

Related: Fall-Down Accidents, Personal Injury Practice, Slipping on Snow/Ice. UPDATED JULY 30, 2018 As New Jersey attorneys who represent those injured in fall-down accidents, we are frequently asked who is responsible for fall-down and trip-and-fall accidents outside of a store. Is the store responsible? Is the landlord who owns the shopping center responsible? The basics

Hurt by a Business That Is Now Out of Business?

Updated July 26, 2018 Sometimes there is an injured person – perhaps severely and permanently hurt – who was clearly injured by a business that is now out of business.  As New Jersey personal injury attorneys, we sometimes must deal with situations like these. This is a very difficult situation in some cases, especially when

What to do if you are pulled over?

Updated July 22, 2018 Related: DUI/DWI, Traffic Tickets, Points for New Jersey Traffic Tickets.   As attorneys who represent drivers accused of traffic violations in New Jersey, we are often asked, “what do I say to the cop after he pulls me over?” Here are a few tips to keep in mind if you get

CHECKLIST: Things to do, and not to do, after a car accident

Updated July 21, 2018 Unfortunately, good drivers may be not unable to avoid the negligent actions of others. You should be prepared in the event of an auto accident and take the necessary steps to protect yourself should an accident occur. Here is a checklist of the top ways to protect yourself: REMAIN at the

How New Jersey Car Insurance Companies Rip You Off (by "saving you money")

Related:  Auto Negligence; Insurance is not just about price; Personal injury; No-Fault claims; New Jersey Auto Insurance Buyer’s Guide. UPDATED JULY 19, 2018 Car insurance policies and the laws that govern them are often very important in personal injury cases involving car accidents.  Because of this, we have become very familiar with the auto insurance

Can I get a conditional discharge in New Jersey if I am caught with marijuana?

Updated July 17, 2018 Possession of small amounts of marijuana in New Jersey is illegal, but because of decriminalization certain first time offenders are able to avoid criminal penalties. This can be done by entering a conditional discharge program at the Municipal Court where you are charged. We frequently appear in the various municipal courts

How To: Adjust Your Mirrors to Avoid Blind Spots ( It’s Less obvious than it sounds.)

BY TONY QUIROGA Updated July 10, 2018 For the past few years, various carmakers have been offering blind-spot detection systems for their cars’ side mirrors. Often complex, these systems employ cameras or radar to scan the adjoining lanes for vehicles that may have disappeared from view. The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) published a paper

Medical Bills After an Accident

Updated July 9, 2018 As New Jersey personal injury attorneys, clients frequently ask us about the payment of medical bills after an accident or injury. The answers usually depend on a multitude of factors, including the type of accident and the type of available insurance coverage. In 2012, the NY Times published a great article,

No Warrant Required for Facebook Postings

Updated July 5, 2018 As part of our criminal defense practice, we are often asked “do police need a warrant to search your Facebook page?” Obviously, this is a fairly new issue and there is limited law to give us guidance. But the underlying question is the same as in most questions about warrant requirements

Points for New Jersey Traffic Violations

Updated June 26, 2018 As a New Jersey traffic lawyer, I am often asked by clients how many points they will received from traffic tickets. Before you plead guilty to a traffic violation (either by paying the fine or going to court and formally pleading guilty), you should know how many points you stand to

First Steps in Settling Your Injury Claim

Updated June 14, 2018 There are a number of things you can do in the first few days and weeks after an accident to protect your right to compensation should you want to file an injury claim. Except for filing a formal claim against a government entity, there’s no single step that you absolutely must

Restraining Orders and abuses/shortfalls of the system

Updated June 06, 2018 Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Related: What will happen if I am served with a restraining order; Domestic violence; Harassment/Threats/Stalking. Domestic violence is a very serious matter in New Jersey, as in most states in the U.S. If anyone feels that they are the victim of domestic violence they have

Injured at the gym

Updated June 4, 2018 As part of our robust Personal Injury practice, we represent countless people who are injured in accidents that occur on a business’ property (i.e. premises liability cases). Sometimes, those incidents occur at a gym or a health club and there may be a claim against the owner/operator of the gym facility.

New Jersey Construction Site Injuries: Suing vs. Workers Comp

Updated June 2, 2018 Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Frequently, clients come to us after being injured at or near a construction site. They may have been on the job at the site and were hurt or they may have simply been walking by a construction area and suffered a fall-down injury on a

Am I entitled to worker’s compensation if injured while riding in a van for temporary work?

Let’s say you were injured while riding in a van as a passenger and there is an accident. The van was provided by the temp agency that you work for to transport you and other workers to a warehouse. You need medical treatment and the employer is refusing to provide Workers’ Compensation because they did

How to save lots of money on a divorce in New Jersey

  Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Updated May 22, 2018 Once a couple has decided that it is time to file for divorce, they may have concerns about how much a divorce will cost them. Clients often ask me how expensive a divorce will be and what they can do to save money on

Texting and Driving

Many of our clients are involved in motor vehicle collisions caused by distracted drivers. Texting while driving, is many times, unfortunately, to blame. Here’s a video about a Belgian driving school trying to emphasize the dangers of texting while driving by requiring them to do just that (in a controlled setting).  

How long does it take to get divorced in New Jersey?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. UPDATED MAY 17, 2018 Probably one of the most common questions that I am asked during an initial meeting with a potential divorce client is, “how long will it take until I am divorced?” In fact, I can say with near certainty that 100% of my new divorce clients

What Happens if You Get Hurt at Work and Don’t Have Health Insurance?

UPDATED MAY 9, 2018 Under the law in New Jersey, if you injure yourself at work, your employer must provide medical treatment to cure the effects of that injury. So, if you hurt yourself while at work, report it to somebody in a supervisory position immediately and ask that person to provide you with the

If police ask if they can search my car or house, do I have to let them?

It’s not uncommon for New Jersey police to ask someone if they can search a person’s car, house, bag, etc. and lots of people wonder whether they have to let the police conduct a search. The short and simple answer is that you never have to give an officer permission to conduct a search. And

Leaving child in car potentially gross-negligence and criminal

  UPDATED April 30, 2018 Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. During the warmer months, there was some public debate about the dangers of leaving children alone in a car seat “just for a second”. As we explain below, in New Jersey a parent could be criminally prosecuted for abuse and neglect for leaving a

Do I have to answer a police officer’s questions?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq.  (UPDATED April 26, 2018) On a pretty regular basis, clients come into my office for a criminal matter and I find out later that they likely would never have been criminally charged if they simply declined to talk to the police. And it happens more often than one would

Do I really need a lawyer to get a restraining order in New Jersey?

A lot of people file for a restraining order in New Jersey, and often they ask, “do I really need a lawyer for this?” It’s a legitimate question. In New Jersey, a temporary restraining order is very easy to get. But within the next few weeks, you will be back in court where a hearing

WHO PAYS FOR MEDICAL BILLS IN A MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT?

If you or someone you know had the unfortunate experience of being injured in a motorcycle crash / accident, this question regarding medical bill is sure to arise. In New Jersey, motorcycle riders are required to have insurance. Motorcycle insurance, however, differs from automobile insurance. In a typical automobile / car crash, your own automobile

Will I go to prison if I am charged with a gun crime in New Jersey?

As part of my criminal practice, clients come to me with all kinds of criminal cases, including gun charges. Gun crime is a serious issue nowadays, and of course there is a lot of media attention regarding gun crimes. New Jersey politicians have responded to this by passing some of the strictest gun laws in

Can you collect worker’s compensation if you don’t have a social security number?

One of our worker’s compensation clients recently asked the following question: I have been working for several years without a Social Security Number. Recently, I was injured while working and my boss told me I can not get Workers’ Compensation as I do not have legal status. Is this true? The answer is a simple,

FALL DOWN INJURIES AND ACCIDENTS

If you or someone close to you got injured as a result of a fall on snow or ice, there are some important steps (pun intended) to take. The mere fact that you fell on snow or ice, however, does not necessarily mean that you have a potential personal injury claim. If you are injured

Will Workers’ Compensation pay me my full salary if I miss work after getting hurt on the job?

No, Workers’ Compensation will pay you 70% of your average weekly gross salary and that is only if the Workers’ Compensation doctor keeps you out of work for more than seven (7) days. If you are not out more than seven (7) days or if you see a doctor not authorized, you will, likely, not

Lessons from a contested adoption

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Normally, I write about various topics from my practice with the goal of providing some legal information to the public. But today, I want to take this opportunity to share some lessons that I learned during this very unique case that recently went to trial. The case was about

HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM RAFF & RAFF!

From all of us at Raff & Raff, we wish you and yours, happy holidays and a happy new year. May you have nothing but happiness, health and success in all of your endeavors during the new year. We hope that you have enjoyed the newsletters this year, and if there are any comments, questions,

I was hurt at an office party. Can I collect workers compensation?

Most workers know that if you are injured on the job you can collect workers compensation benefits. However, a lot of folks are unclear about whether or not you can make a claim if you are hurt at work while doing something other than your actual job. A client once asked the following question, which

Pedestrian Deaths Nearing Unfortunate 25-year Record in NJ

Unfortunately, walker (pedestrian) fatalities have been rising in New Jersey. For many years, there was a decrease in pedestrian fatalities in New Jersey. That decrease has been attributed to things such as a law requiring drivers to stop for pedestrians in marked crosswalks (instead of just yielding to them). This positive trend, unfortunately, has been

I’m thinking of getting divorced. What should I do to prepare?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. When I consult with potential clients about divorce cases, a fair percentage of folks have not yet decided whether they want to get divorced. Rather, they want to know a bit about the process and what they can do to prepare for filing for divorce. Below, I have some

I am in a same-sex relationship and getting separated or divorced; does my partner have rights to my child?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. When I consult with clients in my Family Court practice, I get more and more questions from people who are ending a same-sex relationship. Some of the questions are very straightforward and simple to answer. Some are not. Issues involving children are usually in the category of “not simple

If I have a workers compensation case, can the doctor bill me for treatment?

If you were injured on the job, your will be treated by a Workers’ Compensation doctor. The insurance company may have paid part of the bill, but now the doctor expects the patient to pay the rest of the bill that the insurance company will not pay. Does the patient have to pay this? No,

School Zones and Street Signs: When Children Are Present

We’ve all seen the signs in school zones that read “25 mph When Children are Present.” Hopefully, we all drive a little more cautiously and attentively in those areas. However, when does “when children are present” apply? Is it all times in the school zone? The simple answer is no. The Superior Court of New

What happens after someone is arrested for a felony in New Jersey?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. As part of my criminal practice, I often get calls from spouses, relatives, and friends of those recently arrested for various kinds of New Jersey felonies. Gone are the old days of monetary bail for the vast majority of New Jersey criminal cases where bail would be set and

IF MY CAR GOT FLOODED, DOES MY CAR INSURANCE COVER THE DAMAGE?

The devastation brought by recent hurricanes and massive rainstorms has been chilling. We have all seen the disheartening scenes of homes and businesses destroyed and people’s lives upended. Needless to say, a lot of cars get damaged and totaled from flooding. Cars can flood not only from those storms, but from rivers overflowing, water main

Can I get child support from a parent who doesn’t get a pay stub?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. I represent clients in all sorts of child support related cases. Although child support is generally a standardized system in New Jersey, many issues routinely arise during these cases. Once issue that comes up with great frequency is the question of calculating child support when one parent cannot produce

Can I pick my own doctor in a worker’s compensation case?

When a worker’s compensation case is opened in New Jersey, the carrier will direct the worker where to go for treatment. But from time to time, the injured worker is unhappy with that doctor and wants to switch to a new doctor of their choosing. Clients ask us if they can pick their own doctor

Can You Use Dash Cam Video in Your Auto Case?

It’s always a good idea to gather as much relevant evidence as you can after a car crash. We are increasingly representing clients involved in motor vehicle crashes in which one of the vehicles had a dash cam installed in it. (We have also obtained dash cam video footage from the other vehicles.) Videos from

DAN LEVY, ESQ. NAMED PARTNER

We are pleased to announce that Daniel A. Levy, Esq. has been named partner at Raff & Raff. He has been with our firm for many years and we’re happy to have him on board as partner. Dan is Certified as a Civil Trial Attorney by the New Jersey Supreme Court. In addition to representing

Does the mother always get residential custody of a baby in New Jersey?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Many of my custody and visitation clients come to me with questions about babies and small children. Almost always, the mother assumes that she should have primary residential custody. Fathers often ask me what rights they have and whether they can get custody. All custody and visitation cases are

I work for a temporary employment agency and was hurt at the site where they assigned me – can I bring a worker’s compensation claim?

Clients sometimes ask us, if I work for a temporary employment agency and was assigned out to a factory by the agency. I was injured while working in the factory and need medical treatment. Both the agency and the factory refuse to help me. Can I file for Workers Compensation? Who do I file against?

New Jersey Auto Insurance: The Dreaded Health Insurance Primary Option

When filling out your New Jersey Auto Insurance policy, please, please, please, do NOT select “Healthcare Primary” or “Health Insurance Primary” as an option on your New Jersey automobile policy. I repeat this mantra daily to my clients (and anyone else in earshot). I’m hoping it sinks in eventually. Any savings in selecting this option

I was hurt on the job but was working “off the books” can I get Workers’ Compensation?

Unfortunately, there are many people in New Jersey who work “off the books.” And if they get hurt on the job, they may assume that they cannot collect through worker’s compensation coverage. But is that true? Can someone working off the books collect worker’s compensation coverage? Actually, the answer is yes! Working without reporting it

If a passenger is found with drugs, will the driver of the car also get arrested?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. When I meet with a client about a criminal case, many times the client is accused of possessing drugs (more officially known as a controlled dangerous substance) in their vehicle. And in many of those cases, the alleged drugs that were found are not necessarily in the possession of

FDA WARNS OF INACCURATE LEAD TESTING

The effects of lead poisoning are well known and can be devastating. Infants and young children are especially vulnerable to lead poisoning, which can seriously affect mental and physical development. On May 17, 2017, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued warnings about the validity

What happens when divorced parents can’t agree on college?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. As part of my divorce practice, clients routinely ask me about college for the children. They want to know how to manage the college savings after they are divorced, how to choose colleges when they are co-parenting, and what will happen if the parents disagree. In fact, this isn’t

CRASHES / ACCIDENTS INVOLVING UBER / LYFT VEHICLES

Earlier this year New Jersey Governor, Chris Christie, signed into a law a bill designed to regulate ride-sharing companies such as Uber and Lyft (Transportation Network Companies). The statute, known as the “Transportation Network Company Safety and Regulatory Act,” establishes statewide standards for these types of companies. Those interested can read the statute in full

Can I re-open my worker’s compensation case?

On many occassions, a Worker’s Compensation case settles, but some time later the pain returns. In such a case, clients may ask if they can re-open their Worker’s Compensation case. The short answer is yes, in most cases, but not all. If your Compensation case resolved with a successful trial or on an Order Approving

I was hurt on the job about one (1) year ago and the company is now out of business can I still make a Workers’ Compensation claim?

Yes, the fact that the company is out of business is not important as you are covered for your work injuries by the Workers’ Compensation insurance policy in place at the time of your injury, so as long as your former employer had insurance, you are covered. Secondly, you have two (2) years from the

If I Don’t Drive My Car, Do I Still Have to Have Insurance on It?

The short answer is yes, you do. Like most things involving the law, however, there are exceptions. In New Jersey, “[a]ll owners of motor vehicles registered or principally garaged in [the State] are required to maintain minimum amounts of standard, basic, or special liability insurance coverage for bodily injury, death, and property damage caused by

How to avoid court for divorce and custody cases

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Whenever I work on Family Law cases involving divorce and/or custody issues, clients are always concerned about how long the process will take, and how much it will cost. In fact, I recently wrote two articles on those exact topics: How much does it cost to get divorced in

Sweeping changes to New Jersey bail system

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Beginning on January 1, 2017, New Jersey’s new bail reform measures went into effect. Full details are available using this link. To call this a “change” would be a real understatement. This is more than a change; it’s a wholesale revamping of the entire bail system. There are some

Slip and Falls: How to Fall

Every winter season, we receive many inquiries about and handle “slip and fall” cases. These cases typically involve someone slipping on snow or ice due to a commercial property owner’s failure to adequately provide a safe walking area. Some of the injuries from these falls are horrific leading to catastrophic injuries and deaths, while other

Does Workers’ Compensation pay me if I get hurt on the job and miss work?

If you are on the job, Workers’ Compensation will pay you 70% of your average weekly gross, but only if a doctor selected i.e. authorized by your employer determines that you can not work for more than seven (7) days because of an injury suffered while working. As such, it is very important that you

Moving and Changing Your Driver’s License and Vehicle Registration

If you move to New Jersey from another state, you have a limited amount of time to get a N.J. Driver’s License and obtain N.J. automobile insurance. New Jersey law requires any person who becomes a resident of this State to obtain a New Jersey license and registration within sixty (60) days of becoming a

HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM RAFF & RAFF!

From all of us at Raff & Raff, we wish you and yours, happy holidays and a happy new year. May you have nothing but happiness, health and success in all of your endeavors during the new year. We hope that you have enjoyed the newsletters this year, and if there are any comments, questions,

How much does it cost to get divorced in New Jersey?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Recently, I did a posting called, How Long Does It Take To Get Divorced In New Jersey. Along that same topic, I want to discuss another question that practically all clients ask me on the initial consultation for a divorce case: How much does it cost to get divorced

The Truth About the McDonald’s Coffee Lawsuit

Here’s a great video about one of the biggest myths of civil lawsuits. As Adam (who apparently ruins everything) explains, big business constructed a massive disinformation campaign about “frivolous lawsuits.” The media ate it up because it made great headlines. Unfortunately, many people continue to believe that false narrative, despite any truth behind it. Typically,

Happy Thanksgiving from Raff & Raff!

On behalf of all of the attorneys and staff at Raff and Raff, we would like to wish you and yours a happy Thanksgiving. Please enjoy your festivities with family and friends, and we hope that each year you have more and more to be thankful for. Remember to stay safe when traveling this holiday

Can I plea bargain before the case goes to a grand jury for indictment?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. A lot of people have heard the terms “grand jury” and “indictment”, especially when reading about publicized events in the news. In New Jersey, before the prosecutor can proceed with a criminal case, each and every defendant has the right to have their case heard by a grand jury

The True Costs of Motor Vehicle Crashes in the U.S.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) published an incredibly thorough 304 page report, breaking down what motor vehicle crashes cost. The NHTSA breaks it down into costs for medical care, workplace costs, household productivity, legal costs, property damage, etc. The report, entitled The Economic and Societal Impact of Motor Vehicle Crashes can be found

We’re Expanding at Raff & Raff

No, I’m not referring to our waistlines. (We’ll see what happens about that after our Thanksgiving and Holiday meals.) We’re pleased to announce we’ve expanded our Worker’s Compensation department with the addition of Chris Hoskey, Esq. Chris served 8 years with the United States Air Force, and has been representing aggrieved parties in Worker’s Compensation,

If I am in a car accident while working, who pays for my bills and injuries?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. We do a lot of car accident cases, but when someone is injured while on the job, it adds an additional layer of complexity. In fact, we were recently in front of the Appellate Division on this exact issue. And it is no wonder that many clients are confused

The (Funny) Traffic Stop

The Traffic Stop An older lady gets pulled over for going 70mph in a 35mph zone … Older Woman: Is there a problem, Officer? Officer: Ma’am, you were speeding. Older Woman: Oh, I see. Officer: Can I see your license please? Older Woman: I’d give it to you but I don’t have one. Officer: Don’t

Who pays for my damage from flying road debris?

It happens more often than people think. A driver is on a road or highway and their vehicle is suddenly struck by dangerous flying debris. A study from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found 39,000 injuries and more than 500 deaths from those incidents during that time. Between 2011 and 2014, flying debris was

I was served with a temporary restraining order. How long will the process take?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. As part of my Family Law practice, I regularly represent people who were served with a temporary restraining order (“TRO”). And one of the first questions that clients ask me is, “how long is this going to take?” A temporary restraining order is typically a quick and easy document

THE ONLY PERSON DESIGNED TO SURVIVE A CAR CRASH

Far too many folks believe in their own invincibility. Once seriously injured though, that belief quickly changes. While our bodies are pretty tough, there is only so much force that they can take before they break. Since car technology has evolved far faster than our human bodies, we’re not really equipped to handle the damage

Sleeping with Back Pain after Injury

Many of our clients sustain back injuries from various types of trauma, such as car accidents or bad fall-down incidents. So many of them enter a vicious cycle of interrupted sleep due to back pain, causing them to be exhausted the following day, and then repeating the process night after night and day after day.

What is the most important question to ask police if they approach you?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. As I write this post, it is impossible to turn on the TV or browse social media and ignore the severe tension between police and members of the public. This article is not about the recent incidents with police shooting suspects or the tragic events in Dallas. Rather, it

How do I get a copy of police dashcam video?

In many criminal cases, the police and the defendant have very different versions of the events that led up to an arrest. Routinely, a client comes into our office and explains what happened and then some time later – maybe months later – police reports are authored and the police describe something very different. Also,

Can a child testify in court?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. In all types of cases – criminal, civil, family – when it comes time for trial there may be situation where one of the parties wants to call a minor child as a witness to testify. It is not extremely common, but it does happen more often than most

Medical Errors are No. 3 Cause of Death in U.S.

By: Michael Raff, Esq. Researchers from Johns Hopkins analyzed medical death rate data over an eight year period. They have calculated that more than 250,000 deaths per year are due to medical error in the U.S. Their analysis was published May 3, 2016 in The BMJ. The report, authored in part by researcher, Martin Makary,

Is it a burglary if you were given permission to enter?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. In New Jersey, a person commits a burglary if they enter or remain within certain types of structures without having license or privilege to do so, with the intent to commit an offense. This is discussed at N.J.S.A. 2C:18-2a and related statutes. When we represent a client in a

Raff & Raff argues in Appellate Division as Amicus counsel

We are pleased to report that Raff & Raff recently appeared before the Appellate Division to argue an important appeal as amicus curiae counsel for New Jersey Association for Justice. When a case is appealed, the attorneys who represent the parties would file briefs and argue before the court. However, when the appeal is important

Ovarian Cancer and Talcum Powder

Talcum powder may be a staple in bathrooms throughout the country, but evidence of its association with ovarian cancer goes back to the early 1970s. Back then, scientists noted a possible connection between the use of talcum powder on female genitals and ovarian cancer. The scientists opined that the talc particles entered the reproductive tract

Do social security benefits, pensions, and retirement accounts get divided during a divorce?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. When I represent a client during a divorce case I am frequently asked about dividing assets, which is known as “equitable distribution.” Basically, that’s a fancy word for the court dividing the assets in a way that is fair. It sometimes means that property is split 50/50, but not

What is a DRE and how will it affect my DWI case?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. According to N.J.S.A. 39:4-50, a person is guilty of Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) if they operate a vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor, narcotics, hallucinogenic or habit-producing drugs. It is also a disorderly persons offense to by in public while under the influence of a controlled dangerous

For Lawyers: Effective Use of Exhibits in Civil Trial

For any lawyers interested in learning more about using exhibits during trial, feel free to sign up for this weekend’s seminar, presented by the New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education. I will be lecturing on this topic from the Plaintiff’s perspective. For more information and to earn up to 4 CLE credits: Hope to

Is the owner responsible if someone uses their car and causes an accident?

Updated April 28, 2018 During many accidents in New Jersey, the person who is driving the car is not the owner of the car. Many times people who were injured in accidents or suffered property damage have asked us whether the owner of the vehicle is responsible when someone else uses the car and causes

What Happens if Someone Wants to Bring a Claim, but Had a Prior Injury or Physical Disability?

Assume a person (let’s call her Mary) was involved in some sort of incident (let’s say a car wreck) caused by someone else. If Mary sustained injuries caused by that car wreck, she may have a bodily injury claim. Mary cannot, however, recover money damages for injuries that are solely due to any pre-existing illness

Child support changes when a teenager gets a drivers license

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. We previously wrote about how to lower child support payments. But as part of our Family Court practice we are sometimes faced with the issue of rising child support obligations around the time when children get their drivers licenses. By way of background, there is typically one parent of

What does “PIP” Coverage Mean on My Auto Policy?

“PIP” stands for Personal Injury Protection. This is the portion of automobile insurance that covers your medical coverage. If you or other persons covered under your policy are injured in a motor vehicle collision, PIP (under your own insurance policy) is required to pay for your medical treatment. This is part of the “No-Fault” law

BREAKING: New Jersey lab technician falsified drug test results

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Today, we learned of a shocking discovery regarding falsification of drug test results within the New Jersey State Police Laboratory. As part of our Criminal Practice, we handle plenty of cases that involve drug crimes. In practically all drug cases, the State has the burden to prove that a

WAIT. WHAT? A PERSON CAN HAVE CAR INSURANCE WITHOUT ANY LIABILITY COVERAGE?

In New Jersey, sadly the answer is yes. It wasn’t always this way. Up until several years ago, if you owned an operable car, you were required to have car insurance with a minimum of $15,000 in coverage. That all changed when the New Jersey Legislature came up with the brilliant idea of trying to

What Happens to Social Security Disability Benefits if there is Personal Injury Claim Recovery?

Occasionally, we have clients who were declared disabled by the federal government and then sustain another unrelated injury, which gives rise to a personal injury claim. A client’s personal injury settlement typically has NO impact his/her Social Security Disability Income (SSDI). SSDI is a basically an insurance program paid by payroll deduction and it is

Grandparent Visitation in New Jersey

During the past few years, the issue of grandparent visitation has become something of a hot button issue in New Jersey and across the country. Beginning several years ago, lawmakers across the country began to recognize the benefits of grandparent visitation laws. Grandparent visitation laws are basically laws that allow a grandparent to get a

Do I Need an Expert Witness in My Case?

If you’re the injured party in a personal injury lawsuit, the answer is generally, yes. Expert witnesses are an important and often a necessary part of personal injury cases. They may be crucial to introduce medical evidence, such as the cause of the injuries and the prognosis. Usually, witnesses can testify only about the facts

What happens if you fail out of Drug Court?

If a person is accused of a serious crime involving drugs, they may be offered entry into a program called Drug Court. Basically, the program is designed to take non-violent drug offenders out of the prison system and place them into an intensive program for drug treatment and rehabilitation. The person would have to be

Injuries at construction work sites

The late ’60s was a rocky time in United States. The country was focused on civil rights, women’s rights, and Vietnam. Also during that time, workplace injuries and illnesses were dramatically increasing in both number and severity. The public and workers were demanding workplace safety and health legislation. In 1970, the U.S. Congress enacted the

Happy Holidays from Raff & Raff!

From all of us at Raff & Raff, we wish you and yours, happy holidays and a happy new year. May you have nothing but happiness, health and success in all of your endeavors during the new year. We hope that you have enjoyed the newsletters this year, and if there are any comments, questions,

Can I plead guilty if I’m not guilty?

When we handle a criminal case, it is very common that we are able to negotiate an early plea offer for our clients. Of course, our clients typically have a lot of questions about the plea and how it will impact their lives. But an interesting question that we are sometimes asked is whether or

Can a judge order a divorced couple to sell their home?

When a client consults with us on a divorce matter, one of the more common questions is, what’s going to happen to the house?  And this isn’t just a common question that clients ask attorneys, but also a common question that attorneys ask their own clients!  The reason for this is two-fold:  If the couple

Forced Arbitration

By Michael Raff, Esq. Most people are used to clicking “agree” and signing contracts frequently without much thought. Buried in the fine print of these documents and online websites for things like credit cards, mobile phones, nursing home contracts, job applications, are some words that can really impact your constitutional rights. Corporations really like these

Evaluating Wrongful Death Cases

New Jersey law can be brutally harsh toward families who have lost a loved one due to the fault or negligence of someone else. People are often surprised to learn that the law treats the death of a family member strictly as a matter of economics. The law prohibits a recovery for the emotional consequences

Marital fraud does not require intent

As part of our Divorce Law practice, clients sometimes ask about annulments and something called “marital fraud”. Clients sometimes want to know if they need to get a divorce or if they could just get an annulment. Frequently, those people accuse their spouse of committing fraud regarding the marriage. Almost all actions to dissolve a

Police no longer need a warrant to search a car in New Jersey

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Very recently, the New Jersey Supreme Court drastically changed the rules regarding police searches of vehicles. The bottom line is that police in New Jersey now do not need a warrant to search a car when police have probable cause to believe that it contains contraband or evidence of

WHAT IF A DOCTOR IS UNINSURED AND COMMITS MALPRACTICE?

In NJ, a physician who fails to have medical malpractice insurance and then commits medical malpractice cannot be sued on the basis of his failure to have the proper insurance. He (or she) also cannot be sued for failing to tell his patient that he is not insured, as it does not violate the “Informed

Does child support automatically terminate in New Jersey?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. As part of my Family Law practice, I am often asked by clients about child support issues. Previously, I wrote about the question of whether or not a lawyer is needed for a child support motion and about the basic question of how a person can lower their child

New Child Car Seat Laws in NJ

Starting Tuesday, September 1, 2015, new child safety seat regulations take place in New Jersey. For all you parents, grandparents, and caregivers of little ones, here is a summary of the new law: • Children under age 2 and weighing less than 30 pounds must be secured in a rear-facing child safety seat that is

Is leaving a baby in a car always considered child abuse?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. A hot topic in the news today is the issue about babies and toddlers who were left in a locked car. Certainly, there are several dangerous things that could happen to a child left in a car, even if the parent is only away for a few minutes. But

The dangers of having too little insurance

Photo by Pictures of Money | Flickr We represent countless clients who were involved in car accidents. As such, we are constantly working with car insurance issues of all kinds. Some of them are very unusual issues or involve circumstances that are probably not applicable to the average buyer of car insurance. However, one issue

Sheldon Richardson – lucky he wasn’t arrested in New Jersey!

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Sheldon Richardson, the New York Jets’ Pro Bowl defensive lineman, was arrested July 14, 2015 in Missouri. The police allege that he was driving at 143mph, leading police on a high-speed chase, and when they finally caught him he had a loaded handgun underneath the driver’s side floor mat,

No, you cannot be sued for donating food

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Earlier this week John Oliver used most of his time on his HBO show to discuss the problem of food waste in America. One of the issues that he pointed out is that stores and restaurants are unwilling to donate food that they cannot sell because they are afraid

Mediation and arbitration during New Jersey lawsuits

Most people know what a lawsuit is and people are generally familiar that a plaintiff may file a lawsuit and at the end there eventually is a trial. But many people are unfamiliar with the terms, “mediation” and “arbitration”, despite the fact that both kinds of proceedings play crucial roles in the vast majority of

Same-sex marriage in New Jersey

Recently, the United States Supreme Court decided the case of Obergefell v. Hodges, holding that the United States Constitution requires the States to license marriages between two people of the same sex and to require States to recognize same-sex marriages performed out of state. Some may ask how this ruling affects gay and lesbian couples

It’s a Crash. Not an Accident.

When a toddler spills his milk, it can be considered an accident. When a driver gets behind the wheel of a car and is texting instead of paying attention to the roadway and smashes into another vehicle or a pedestrian, it’s a crash. The nonprofit organizations, Transportation Alternatives and Families for Safe Streets, created a

BEST AND WORST SLEEPING POSITIONS FOR PAIN (AN INFOGRAPHIC)

So many of our clients, unfortunately, suffer from unrelenting pain caused by a trauma. Pain’s ability to disrupt one’s sleep can be devastating. The pain cycle can lead to irritability, decreased work productivity, more pain, etc. The useful graphic comes from the Cleveland Clinic, via SheKnows. It shows the do’s and dont’s for five types

Workplace injuries in the trial courts

We previously wrote about work-related injuries and explained some of the legal background. Specifically, we explained that if a worker in New Jersey wants to bring a claim for personal injuries after an accident while on the job, the matter will usually be a worker’s compensation claim against the employer and possibly an additional law

Reimbursing Medicare for treatment related to an accident

If a person is injured in an accident, they need to figure out how their medical providers will be paid for their treatment. Many of our personal injury clients in New Jersey are Medicare beneficiaries, many others have private or public employee insurance benefits, and others have access to other types of benefits (or no

Slow down when driving through town

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. A large part of our personal injury practice are cases involving car accidents. We have seen too many types of car crashes to list, but the most common car accidents involve negligent drivers in densely populated areas who are simply not paying attention and/or driving too fast and too

How can I lower my child support?

Many clients come to us asking if they can lower their New Jersey child support payments. In most cases, the client is subject to a child support order and they either cannot afford to make the payments or they feel that the amount was set too high. If someone wants their child support lowered, they

Injured While Bike Riding

Now that the flowers are blossoming and potholes are being filled (slowly), bike riders are once again taking to the streets. Many bike riders are still confused as to their rights and duties. In New Jersey, “Every person riding a bicycle on a roadway is granted all the rights and subject to all of the

If you drive while suspended for DWI, you will go to jail

As we have previously discussed, drunk driving convictions (whether by plea or trial conviction) are very serious in New Jersey and carry with them several mandatory penalties. The prosecutors take these cases seriously and they will not agree to drop the charges or plead them down to a lesser offense. One of the mandatory penalties

Happy Holidays from Raff & Raff!

From all of us at Raff & Raff, we wish you and yours, happy holidays and a happy new year. May you have nothing but happiness, health and success in all of your endeavors during the new year. We hope that you have enjoyed the newsletters this year, and if there are any comments, questions,

Testifying against a spouse in a New Jersey criminal trial

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. When a person is charged in a criminal case, they may be concerned that their husband or wife will testify against them. In fact, people want to know if, under New Jersey law, conversations that they have with their spouse are confidential and protected by law. As discussed below,

If the victim wants to drop the charges, will the case be dismissed?

As part of our Criminal Practice, clients sometimes explain that the victim of a crime wants to just drop the charges. They ask why the criminal case is still in court and why the prosecutor will not simply dismiss the case. This is common in assault cases and domestic violence cases. Often, the defendant and

Lawsuits for children injured during youth sports

As part of our extensive New Jersey Personal Injury practice, we are occasionally asked by parents whether they can bring a lawsuit for injuries suffered by their child during a youth sporting event. Lately, there has been a lot more public education about the dangers of youth contact sports. The public is starting to better

What happens in a Grand Jury: A Ferguson case study

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. A grand jury decided not to indict Ferguson police Officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown. This was heavily covered in the news and there are clearly very strong opinions about the case. This article is not a commentary about the grand jury’s decision or the

Happy Thanksgiving from Raff & Raff!

On behalf of all of the attorneys and staff at Raff and Raff, we would like to wish you and yours a happy Thanksgiving. Please enjoy your festivities with family and friends, and we hope that each year you have more and more to be thankful for. Remember to stay safe when traveling this holiday

Medicare and Medicaid Liens and Personal Injury Cases

If a Medicare or Medicaid beneficiary is injured and brings a Personal Injury case, their attorney must handle the case a little bit differently. In every case, an injured person is concerned about who will pay the medical bills after an accident. Most of the time, a Medicare or Medicaid beneficiary will gladly present their

Is My Car on the Airbag Recall List?

There’s hardly been a day that’s gone by in recent weeks in which there is not a headline regarding a motor vehicle airbag problem. The best way to determine whether your vehicle is subject to a recall is to visit this webpage of the U.S. Department of Transportation. Here’s an itemized list of cars that

How to beat/fail a field sobriety test

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. A significant portion of my practice involves defending those accused of driving while intoxicated. As such, I am very familiar with what New Jersey law enforcement typically does when they suspect that a person may be guilty of DUI/DWI. I am not writing this article to encourage people to

Steve Raff Appears Before the U.S. Supreme Court

On October 14, 2014, Stephen Raff, Esq. had the honor of appearing before the United States Supreme Court to request the admission of his friend and colleague, Derek T. Smith, Esq. to the Bar of the United States Supreme Court. In order to be admitted, an attorney needs two sponsors who are already members of

Canceling a Contract

There is plenty of misinformation among the public about canceling or rescinding a contract. Many folks think there is a magical three day period during which one can back out of a contract for goods and services. Those folks are wrong. There are, however, certain situations when consumers are able to cancel. Some state and

Civil Forfeiture in New Jersey

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Civil forfeiture actions in New Jersey are some of the most misunderstood cases that clients ask me about. Basically, the state of New Jersey can bring a civil action against your property, alleging that the property was involved in a crime. It’s bizarre, because the state is not suing

Reimbursement for Lost Wages After a Car Accident Through Your Insurance

Following a car accident, an injured person may be in the position where they are too hurt to immediately return to work. In New Jersey, we use the term “lost wage claim” to describe a claim made to recover lost wages that were never earned because of an accident. Unfortunately, lost wage claims could take

New Jersey Alimony Reform Signed Into Law

After a nearly unanimous vote in the New Jersey Senate, Governor Chris Christie signed into law a comprehensive set of New Jersey alimony reforms. This will impact our Family Law practice, and in a very welcome way. Almost all involved (as well as commentators) agreed that alimony laws in New Jersey were over-due for a

Seat Belt Violation Can Now Be Criminal Offense

As if anyone needed another reason to wear a seatbelt, here’s one for you. The New Jersey Supreme Court, in a unanimous ruling on Sept. 18, 2014, held that a driver who fails to use a seat belt or fails to require a passenger to use one may be convicted of a criminal offense if

Slip and fall accidents in restaurants and grocery stores

We have many clients who are injured in fall-down accidents, and usually the first issue that comes up in a fall-down case is whether the owner/operator of the property is responsible for the client’s injury. While this is always an issue in any personal injury case, there are some specific issues that arise when a

I went to court, but the judge wouldn't listen to me!

Article by: Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Very frequently, I speak with clients who complain that they appeared in court but the judge just wouldn’t listen to them. They ask me what I can do for them after the first appearance did not go their way. Below I discuss some common issues that people face when

Is it legal to film the police?

Photo courtesy of Gerry Lauzon Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Related: Criminal Law, Can police detain me if they have a search warrant?, What to do if you are pulled over.   Throughout the protests in Ferguson, Missouri, many people have asked whether it is legal to film the police. Indeed, several people were

Alternatives to Lawsuit Funding: Anything Else!

If you are considering taking out a lawsuit funding or financing, we would like to tell you about a surprising and new alternative: It’s called, “Anything Else”! Clients with personal injury cases sometimes ask us, should I apply for lawsuit funding? And we always try to explain how lawsuit loans are a really bad idea

Vote on New Jersey Constitutional Amendment for Bail Reform

On election day this November, 2014, there will be vote as to whether the New Jersey Constitution should be amended to allow judges to deny bail to certain high risk criminal defendants. This is part of a larger scheme to reform New Jersey bail procedures. As part of our Criminal Defense practice, it is very

New Law Eases Penalties for Driving Without Insurance

Driving without insurance in New Jersey is a very serious matter, and for many years the New Jersey courts and politicians have taken steps to combat the rising problem of uninsured drivers. As the cost of insurance rose in New Jersey during the 80’s and 90’s, more and more people were driving without insurance. And

Bicycle Accidents and Helmets

A lot of our clients are bicyclists. While some are aspiring to ride in the Tour de France, most of them ride for the pleasure, the exercise, the transportation, and freedom it provides. We’ve handled cases involving some pretty horrific bicycle / motor vehicle collisions in which helmets were truly life-savers. Many folks, especially those

Police cannot search a cell phone without a warrant

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Related: Police cannot track cellphones without a warrant, Can police detain me if they have a search warrant?, What to do if you are pulled over.   In my criminal defense practice, I hear clients complain that police officers stopped them and demanded that they inspect and search through

Contribution towards college expenses for a child who refuses to speak with you

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Back in March, many news organizations reported that New Jersey Judge Peter Bogaard of Morris County Superior Court’s Family Division said “no” to Rachel Canning’s request that her parents contribute towards her education expenses. Ms. Canning’s allegation was that her parents forced her to leave the house and that

Elevator Injuries

While our firm represent many individuals who are harmed by elevator defects and malfunction, rarely do we have videos of the actual incidents. This video, which has made the rounds on the internet and on news program, captures the panic this poor guy must have been going through. There are about 18 billion passenger elevator

The Seriousness of an Insurance Medical Exam

                              In most New Jersey cases, if a person is injured in a car accident their own insurance company will pay for medical treatment under the PIP portion of their auto insurance policy. Treatment for other types of injuries (at work,

The Trials of a Jury

Source: eLocal.com .

Arrests following Teaneck High School 'Senior Prank' – a case study in diversionary justice

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. On May 1, 2014, over 60 students at Teaneck High School were arrested following what was allegedly a high school senior prank. Some were over 18 and charged as adults, some were still minors. During the days and weeks that followed, there were numerous conflicting reports about what had

Party hosts can be liable after serving alcohol

With summer coming up, clients should be reminded that they could be liable for accidents that occur both at and after their backyard BBQ’s and parties. In New Jersey, this is known as “social host liability”. In some cases, a party host could even be convicted of a crime for irresponsibly serving and over-serving alcohol

Dog Bite Injury Cases

This dog bite attack was thwarted by a heroic cat, and captured on video, much to the delight of many viewers online. However, the sad fact is that many children and adults are injured by dog bites each year. According to the Centers for Disease Control, as of 2013 it was estimated that 4.5 million

Kellogg Agrees to Change Food Labels After Class-Action Settlement

Ingredients with the names pyridoxine hydrochloride, calcium pantothenate, and hexane-processed soy ingredients don’t sound very natural, but they are apparently used in Kashi products. A class-action lawsuit was filed alleging Kashi mislead consumers by using the phrases “all-natural” and “nothing artificial” on its packages. Kellogg Co., the parent company of Kashi, agreed to pay $5

Traffic Tickets: Missing court; pleading by mail; expunging traffic tickets

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Clients who have received traffic tickets often ask me many of the same questions about how the New Jersey court system generally handles tickets. Therefore, I wanted to publish some common questions and general answers to questions about New Jersey traffic tickets. In this first installment, I address three

TRUCK ACCIDENTS AND COLLISIONS: "UNDERRIDES"

The National Transportation Safety Board recently recommended new safety standards in an effort to reduce injuries and deaths caused by vehicles sliding underneath tractor-trailer trucks. As any driver knows, these trucks have large blind spots on their sides and rear. Smaller vehicles, motorcycles, and bicyclists that collide with these trucks have a high risk of

Dan Levy wins appeal after NJ CURE refuses to honor insurance obligations

We are happy to report that Dan Levy just won an appeal against NJ CURE, an insurance carrier that refused to honor their legal obligations. The case, Khalid Sanders v. NJ CURE, A-3878-12T1 (Unpublished App. Div., March 13, 2014), involved a car crash. At the time, our client Mr. Sanders was a passenger in his

Slip and Falls on Snow and Ice

We receive many inquires from potential clients regarding injuries sustained from slip and falls on snow and ice. This winter, with its abundance of snowfall, has prompted more inquires than usual. Not every such injury, of course, warrants bringing a personal injury claim. The mere fact that someone falls and hurts him or herself while

What happens if the police don't read me my rights?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Related: Criminal Law, What happens on the first court date if arrested in New Jersey?, Understanding the fee for criminal defense cases   As part of my New Jersey criminal defense practice, the most common question that I hear from clients is, “what happens if the police don’t read

I was hurt, it's not my fault, and still I get nothing??!!

Frequently, clients come to use after being injured through no fault of their own and they assume that we will be able to recover compensation for their pain and suffering, bills, lost wages, etc. However, there are certain situations when it is essentially impossible for an accident victim to receive any money for their injuries,

Child visitation while criminal case is pending

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. It is unfortunate, but while a couple is in the process of divorce or separation, there may be incidents of domestic violence. Domestic violence and similar cases of abuse and neglect are criminal matters, while visitation and temporary parenting time arrangements are family court matters. Below I discuss a

Children and Car Seats

On a positive note regarding a sad topic, motor vehicle deaths among children, age 12 and under, decreased by 43% in the past decade. The information comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which published a positive report in February 2014. There is still a lot of work to do, because more

Health Insurance Primary

As many of you already know, there are many options when choosing an automobile insurance policy. One such option is “Health Insurance Primary.” We recommend NOT to elect Health Insurance Primary or Health Care Primary. Your health insurance plan may not provide coverage for automobile collisions and may not cover all family members. Many health

What is a 'civil reservation'? Proposed changes in the process.

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. At times, a person who has been injured in a car accident through no fault of their own is still issued a traffic ticket by the police. This happens for various reasons, and in such a case the person may hear the term “civil reservation” at their municipal court

Happy Holidays from Raff & Raff!

From all of us at Raff & Raff, we just wanted to thank all of you for your business, referrals, support, and assistance over the course of the past year. And it’s been quite a year! We handled some very large cases, argued appeals, began our news letter, and opened our new Bergen County office

Halfway House Can Be Sued for Inmate Escape

Related: Premises Liability and Negligent Security, Personal Injury Practice. Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. As New Jersey attorneys who represent those injured due to negligent security, we are frequently asked if the owners and operators of a halfway house are liable for the injuries of fellow inmates and pedestrians around the facility who are

Proposed law to protect legal-service consumers held up in committee

S-3056, sponsored by Senator Nicholas P. Scutari, is a consumer protection bill designed to protect consumers of legal services from improper solicitation. Unfortunately, the bill remains held up in committee. The bi-partisan bill was designed to prevent the wide-spread practice of direct mail solicitations sent to accident victims. What is taking place currently, especially in

Do I need a lawyer for child support and custody/visitation cases?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Many people in New Jersey file applications in Family Court for child support, custody, visitation, emancipation, etc. without even considering hiring an attorney. Most assume that they do not need an attorney unless things start going wrong, and they assume that they can always hire an attorney later on

Failed Oversight Causes 25 Deaths in Recent Bus/Truck Accidents

Related: Auto Negligence, Personal injury practice. The National Transportation and Safety Board has opened a string of investigations after a series of trucking accidents, including 4 recent crashes that resulted in the deaths of 25 people and at least 86 additional people injured. Apparently, investigators had not noticed certain safety deficiencies until after the crashes,

Five Myths of Medical Malpractice

Below is an excellent article that we recently read, by Tatum Bronte on the Trial Lawyer Center website. It is reprinted, with permission, on our website and we encourage our friends and colleagues and keep his points in mind when thinking about a medical malpractice case. Five Myths of Medical Malpractice This year, widely circulated

Daniel Levy selected as Rising Star, 2014 by Super Lawyers

The firm is pleased to report that Daniel A. Levy, Esq. has been selected by Super Lawyers as a Rising Star for their 2014 publication. Super Lawyers is a research-driven, peer-influenced rating service of outstanding lawyers who have attained high degrees of peer recognition and professional accomplishments. Their patented system is designed to compile a

Our New Bergen County Office!

We are pleased to announce that Raff & Raff, LLP has opened a new, satellite office at 525 Palmer Avenue, Maywood, New Jersey 07607. This new office will allow us to better serve our Bergen County clients and give us a presence very close to the Bergen County courthouse in Hackensack. The office is easily

Deaths of children in car seats decline, but about 3 of 4 seats installed improperly

Related: Auto Negligence, Personal injury practice. Car accidents remain the leading cause of death for children under the age of 13, and a large number of these cases involve children strapped into car seats. Thankfully, deaths of children in car seats has declined significantly over the years. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration,

Law about Uninsured Motorist coverage argued on appeal

We are happy to report that Daniel A. Levy, Esq. appeared on October 9, 2013 before the Appellate Division for oral arguments on an important issue of Uninsured Motorist (“UM”) coverage. The case is captioned Sanders v. CURE, Appellate Division Docket No. A – 003878-12. Mr. Levy also filed the briefs with the appellate court.

Criminal defendants have no right to choose their public defender

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. In New Jersey, if a criminal defendant is indigent and cannot afford a lawyer, the court will appoint a public defender. But what happens if you don’t like your public defender? Do you have the right to switch public defenders or choose a new public defender yourself? This question

New Conditional Dismissal Program Available in New Jersey Municipal Courts

Under current New Jersey law, people charged with certain minor drug crimes (possession of small amounts of marijuana/hashish, loitering to commit a CDS offense, etc.) could avoid criminal penalties and a conviction by entering a conditional discharge program at the Municipal Court where they were charged. Under a new law, S-2588, which was signed into

Can I sue if I am partially at fault?

What happens if you are injured in an accident and you are partially at fault? You may ask yourself if you can still sue and collect damages for your expenses, medical bills, and pain and suffering. As New Jersey lawyers, we are frequently asked these questions by those injured in car accidents and other types

Alcotest for DUI Challenged at New Jersey Supreme Court

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. In New Jersey, if a driver is pulled over and suspected of drunk driving or driving while intoxicated/under the influence (“DUI”), the officer may ask the driver to submit to a breath test. In years past, officers used the famous Breathalyzer test, which became obsolete. After lengthy hearings and

Can police force you to take a breath, urine, or blood test?

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. In New Jersey, if a driver is pulled over and suspected of drunk driving or driving while intoxicated/under the influence (“DUI”), the officer may ask the driver to submit to a breath, urine, or blood test. Clients have asked us whether they must take the test or if they

Texting while driving causes over 100,000 accidents per year

Werner Herzog, a Hollywood director who has to his credit movies like “Grizzly Man,” and had a bit part in “Jack Reacher”, produced a new documentary that we recommend everyone view. The documentary, called “From One Second to the Next,” explores the consequences of texting while driving, which the film says leads to 100,000 or

Can the landlord or roommate let police in to search my apartment?

Related: Criminal Law, Can police detain me if they have a search warrant, Drug Crimes, Understanding the Fee for a NJ Criminal Defense Attorney.   Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. As a New Jersey criminal defense attorney, I am sometimes asked if the landlord or a roommate can let police in to an apartment

Police cannot track cell phones without a warrant, Supreme Court rules

Related: Can police track my cellphone without a warrant?, Criminal Law, No Warrant Required for Facebook Postings, Understanding the Fee for a NJ Criminal Defense Attorney.   Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. As a New Jersey criminal defense attorney, I am sometimes asked, “can police track my cellphone without a warrant?” I discussed this

Treyvon Martin, Stand Your Ground, and Self Defense in New Jersey

With the recent verdict in the Treyvon Martin and George Zimmerman case, many people have asked us questions about “stand your ground” and self defense, and how the case may have been different using New Jersey law in a case with a gun crime/homicide and claimed self defense. This article is NOT about the verdict

Plea bargaining DUI cases in New Jersey – will they drop the charges?

Drunk drivers may face serious penalties for DUI/DWI and related tickets, or even criminal charges in Superior Court. Often, clients ask us whether we can “get the charges dropped” or whether the prosecutor will plea bargain a DUI ticket in New Jersey. Below we discuss some general answers to those questions. Related: Drunk driving car

Bad Idea: Electing Health Insurance Primary on Your Car Insurance Policy

New Jersey car insurance companies are constantly trying convince you to switch insurance companies by offering cheaper rates. Not long ago, we explained how New Jersey car insurance companies rip you off by “saving you money”. One of those “savings” is to elect the health insurance primary option. After a recent car accident case where

Dan Levy wins insurance coverage trial

We are happy to report that Dan Levy of this firm won a trial this week regarding insurance coverage on a major car accident case. The trial was a bench trial (non-jury) in Passaic County before Judge Mizzone. The at-fault driver had been in a relationship with his high school girlfriend for over 10 years.

Published Appellate Opinion on Medical Malpractice Jury Charge

As previously reported, Raff and Raff represented the Estate of Keisha Flood in a complex medical malpractice and wrongful death case. The case went to trial towards the beginning of 2012. During trial, settlements were reached with most of the defendants and the case proceeded against the remaining doctor. The allegation was that the radiologist

Wrongful Death Cases – human life has no value by law

In every wrongful death case, the family of the deceased feels that they have each lost something. When that death is the fault of another, they may ask whether they are entitled to compensation for the loss of a loved one. As we discuss below, the law, unfortunately, places no value whatsoever on human life

Dan Levy wins trial in Bergen County

The Firm is pleased to report that Dan Levy has recently won a jury trial in Bergen County. The case was about a car accident that occurred within an intersection, and we represented the plaintiff, who was making a left hand turn. She made the left turn because a car in the opposite direction was

Transporting Firearms in New Jersey – getting searched, and getting caught

Article by Daniel A. Levy, Esq. Gun crimes and issues regarding carrying firearms and possessing weapons have been heavily covered by news sources lately. And our clients in New Jersey may have lots of questions about transporting guns in their cars and whether police may search a car for guns. Recently, the Appellate Division case

Passenger arrested for possession of gun/drugs in car, a Mike Goodson case study

In recent news, Michael Goodson, a running back signed to the New York Jets in the off-season before the start of the 2013 football season, was arrested in New Jersey for possession of marijuana and an illegal handgun. He was a passenger in a car and only a small amount of the marijuana was found

Can police use a drug sniffing dog without probable cause?

What happens if police show up to your New Jersey home with a drug sniffing dog? Are they permitted to use the dog around your home to search for drugs without probable cause? Or do they need permission or a warrant? The United States Supreme Court recently addressed this question, and the outcome will likely

I was hurt in an accident, do I need a lawyer?

What happens if you are unfortunately injured in an accident? You might ask, do I need a lawyer? Won’t the insurance company for person at fault pay for my injuries and bills? Can I take care of this myself? As attorneys with a robust personal injury practice, we hear these questions, and unfortunately the insurance

Can police detain me if they have a search warrant?

What happens if police show up to your New Jersey home with a search warrant? Can they detain you? Are you free to leave? What if you don’t even live there? In our criminal defense practice, especially our Passaic County, Essex County, and Hudson County cases, we hear questions like these from our clients. Related:

Drunk Driving and Car Accidents in New Jersey

There are a lot of legal issues involving drunk driving and car accidents. People may be hurt and suffer severe personal injuries in car accidents. Drunk drivers may face serious penalties for DUI/DWI and related tickets, or even criminal charges in Superior Court. A bar may be liable for injuries. Below we discuss a few

Will I get an ignition interlock for DWI in New Jersey?

Many people in New Jersey are not exactly sure what an ignition interlock device is, but many have at least heard the term. As New Jersey DWI attorneys, we are sometimes asked, “will I get an ignition interlock for DWI in New Jersey?” Below we will discuss when a judge must sentence someone to install

Can I go to jail for careless driving in New Jersey?

As New Jersey traffic attorneys, we are sometimes asked, “can I go to jail for careless driving?” There is no clear cut answer, and you should consult with a New Jersey traffic defense attorney right away if you receive a ticket for careless driving. As we explain below, there are a number of factors and

What will happen if I am served with a restraining order in New Jersey?

Related: Family Law.   As New Jersey criminal and family lawyers, clients come to us after having received a temporary restraining order (TRO). Naturally, they want to know what will happen after they are served with TRO. It is a serious situation in New Jersey, but the process itself is usually fairly straightforward. The first

New England Compounding Center Sued By Dozens For Meningitis Infections/Deaths

Related: Personal Injury Practice, Medical Malpractice / Negligence.   As New Jersey attorneys who represent those injured due to medical malpractice and medical related negligence, we learned about a rising epidemic in fungal meningitis outbreaks allegedly caused by contaminated epidural steroid injections produced by New England Compounding Center of Framingham, Mass. More than 280 people

Driving While Suspended for Prior DWI Considered Felony

Related: DUI/DWI, Traffic Tickets.   As attorneys who represent drivers accused of drunk driving in New Jersey, we are often asked what will happen if caught driving while suspended for DWI. The consequences are severe, and include a host of penalties that include additional suspension, heavy fines, and possible jail time. Effective August 1, 2012,

Raff & Raff speaks at NJAJ Meadowlands Seminar 2012

  From Wednesday, November 14 through Friday, November 16, 2012, New Jersey Association for Justice hosted it’s 2012 annual conference at the Sheraton Meadowlands in East Rutherford, New Jersey. In addition to attending this important conference for trial lawyers, attorneys from Raff & Raff also participated as speakers and chairs of certain seminars. On the

How to make an insurance claim for hurricane damages to your home or business

As New Jersey rebuilds from the massive damage and loss of services from Hurricane Sandy, we want to take this opportunity to give people some tips on how to deal with insurance companies while making a claim for damage to your home or business. The below is just some general information, and not legal advice.

UM/UIM Claims: When your own insurance company defends the person who injured you

As New Jersey attorneys who regularly represent people injured in car accidents, we are very familiar with representing people in uninsured and underinsured motorist claims. We would like to take the time to explain some of the important points regarding UM and UIM claims in New Jersey. What is an Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist claim?

Understanding the Fee for a New Jersey Criminal Defense Attorney

If you are in the unfortunate situation where you need to hire a New Jersey criminal defense attorney, it is important that you understand the legal fee arrangement. In a New Jersey criminal case, a lawyer is allowed to charge a reasonable hourly rate, or a reasonable flat fee, or a combination of the two

Lautenberg calls for federal probe of Community Education Centers

Back in 2010 we filed a lawsuit against Community Education Centers, which alleged that our client was brutally beaten, almost to death, by a resident at one of their facilities in New Jersey. The client, also a resident at the facility, suffered severe neurological injuries from the attack. Although the perpetrator of the crime clearly

Commercial property owner has duty to remove snow/ice from sidewalk at vacant building

As New Jersey attorneys who represent people seriously injured in falls on ice and snow, we are constantly working to make sure that our clients are able to make claims against all available insurance policies. Sometimes we must unfortunately advise our clients that they are not able to make a claim because the person who

Utility company liable for placing pole in dangerous location

Most of our car accident cases involve at least one driver who is clearly at fault. But what about the case where a person is injured after crashing into an electric or telephone pole? In the recent New Jersey Supreme Court case of Seals v. County of Morris, the court held that in certain circumstances

Injuries caused by employees of charities

As New Jersey personal injury lawyers, we are sometimes consulted by people who have been injured by employees of charitable organizations. Normally, a business has a non-delegable duty to do certain things that prevent their employees from intentionally harming people. For example, a company should not ignore signs that an employee is violent by nature,

Police charged with misconduct for not stopping/reporting motorcycle accident

According to the Associate Press, two members of Paterson’s Office of Emergency Management were charged with misconduct for their failure to properly respond to a fatal motorcycle accident. The Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office alleges that the auxiliary officers were driving an OEM vehicle in Paterson on April 17 and following behind a motorcycle, and when

Kinnelon motorcyclist killed in tragic collision

As New Jersey personal injury attorneys, we see far too often the tragic injuries that occur when people negligently operate their vehicles. The Bergen Record reported that on Sunday, May 13, a Kinnelon, New Jersey man was driving his motorcycle on a Meadowlands Sports Complex service road, on his way to work. At that same

How long do I have to wait to expunge a criminal conviction?

As a New Jersey criminal defense attorney, many of my clients want to know how long they have to wait before they can file for an expungement. The New Jersey expungement law states in detail who is eligible for an expungement. You or your lawyer should review the current applicable provisions of N.J.S.A. 2C:52-1 through

No Miranda warnings required when asking location of a gun

As a New Jersey criminal lawyer, clients often complain that the police did not read them their Miranda rights before arresting them. Failing to read a person his/her rights may lead to the judge eventually throwing out critical evidence (perhaps even the whole case), but the Appellate Division recently held in State v. Melendaz, 423

Is a church liable for a broken sidewalk?

As New Jersey personal injury lawyers, we are frequently asked by clients if they have a case for personal injuries due to a trip and fall accident on a broken sidewalk. According to New Jersey law, private residents who own a sidewalk, which is for the use of the public, are not generally liable for

Admission to PTI bars a civil rights claim against police

Under the civil rights laws, specifically 28 U.S.C. 1983, a person can bring a civil suit against police and the municipality for violating a person’s civil rights and causing injuries. For example, if police use excessive force when making an arrest and injure a person, that person may have a case against the police for

Motorcycle Season Spring 2012

Motorcycle season has come a little earlier this year to us in the New Jersey / New York area thanks to Mother Nature and a lack of snow and salt on the roads.  All of us who ride understand the risk inherent in motorcycle riding, but in the early parts of the season, we often

If you are offered probation, can you go to jail?

As a New Jersey criminal attorney, I am asked if a guilty plea and probation will result in jail time.  In New Jersey, if you accept a plea in exchange for probation, you can still go to jail in certain situations. First, it depends on the terms of the probation.  In New Jersey, there are

Understanding that domestic violence plea results in loss of firearm permits

As a New Jersey criminal defense lawyer, I am frequently asked by clients how a guilty plea will affect them.  In fact, criminal defense attorneys are prohibited from providing misleading material information that results in an uninformed plea.  This may be considered ineffective assistance of counsel. Several weeks ago, the Appellate Division handed down an

Out-of-State Drivers and No Fault

New Jersey has a No Fault law, and, as New Jersey personal injury lawyers, several people have asked us what this means if a perseon who lives and is insured in Pennsylvania gets into a car accident in New Jersey. Under N.J.S.A. 39:6A-1 et seq. – the No Fault Law – each insured person goes

NJ Legislature Moves Claims for Car Accident Injuries to the Head of the Line

In New Jersey, if you have your own auto insurance and are injured in a car accident, it is your own insurance company that pays for your medical treatment.  This is known as No Fault insurance, i.e. regardless of fault, your insurance company pays. The system generally does not effect your personal injury claim, if

Video Preview: A Plaintiff Attorney's Guide to Auto Insurance Law

Michael Raff discusses New Jersey auto insurance in the context of its no-fault statute.      

Lab Report Not Admissible On Its Own

In the case of Bullcoming v. New Mexico, 131 S.Ct. 2705 (2011) the United States Supreme Court recently held that a lab report in a drunk driving case is not admissible on its own.  In other words, if a person is charged with DWI, the prosecutor cannot simply show the judge the lab report and

Arguments begin in lawsuit against doctors at St. Joseph's

The following is an article from the Bergen Record and NJ.com about a major trial that is currently going on: A young Paterson mother of three who went to the hospital with nausea and constipation and ended up suffering an agonizing death would still be alive today if not for the negligence of some doctors

Raff and Raff wins case on appeal

Towards the end of 2010, we won a jury trial in which the jury found that our client had suffered a permanent injury to her back in a car crash. The defense argued that our expert should not have been allowed to testify that the injury was permanent, nor read the client’s MRI films at

Community Caretaking Exception to Warrant Requirement is Clarified

In the recent appellate division case of State v. Witczak, 421 N.J. Super. 180 (App. Div. 2011), the court clarified what is known as the “community caretaking” exception to the requirement that police obtain a warrant before searching a person’s home.  Here are the facts from the case: On May 9, 2009, at approximately 9:43

Welcome to Our New Website

Thank you for visiting the new Raff & Raff, LLP website. I hope you enjoy the new features. This is our brand new legal blog, and please come and visit our blog page regularly for our postings about all kinds of legal information. But please note, nothing on the blog or anywhere else on the

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