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Scura, Wigfield, Heyer, Stevens & Cammarota Blog

Mark T. Matri

Recent Posts

Defending Against a Construction Lien Claim

If you are a property owner who has had a construction lien filed against your property, you may have defenses allowing you to discharge the lien at the lien claimant’s expense. Liens against property are problematic because they can prevent transfers of the property or impede your ability to obtain a mortgage. This article will explore some of the defenses available in the event a construction lien has been claimed against your property.

The Added Requirements of Residential Construction Liens

For most residential construction contractors, the risk of non-payment is a threat that, if realized, can cease the day-to-day operations of the business. Non-payment usually stems from a dispute between the owner and general contractor (“GC”) regarding the quality of the work. Regardless of whether you are a GC or subcontractor, the filing of a construction lien is a powerful weapon against non-payment. In the residential construction context, the filing of a construction lien has additional requirements above and beyond that of commercial construction. This article will discuss the added requirements necessary to validly record a residential construction lien claim.

Plaintiff Seeking: Immediate Relief

The primary relief sought by plaintiffs in civil actions is money damages. Over the life of the lawsuit, the typical plaintiff fears a defendant will take actions which increase those damages, negatively impact plaintiff’s good will, or make it impossible for plaintiff to collect on any resulting award. In such situations, a plaintiff may apply for temporary restraints or a preliminary injunction to “stop the bleeding” and maintain the status quo while the lawsuit is pending.    

Are You an “Oppressed” Minority Shareholder?

The New Jersey Shareholders Protection Act (the “Act”) enumerated laws that protect minority shareholders in closely held corporations from “oppression” by the majority shareholders. The Act provides that, in cases of corporations having 25 or less shareholders, a court may appoint a custodian, appoint a provisional director, order a sale of the corporation’s stock or enter a judgment dissolving the corporation upon proof that the directors or those in control have acted fraudulently or illegally, mismanaged the corporation, or abused their authority as officers or directors or have acted oppressively or unfairly toward one or more minority shareholders in their capacities as shareholders, directors, officers, or employees. N.J.S.A. §14A:12-7(1)(c). If used properly, the Act may provide relief to a shareholder who is unhappy with a corporation’s management.   

Changing Your Name

Do you dislike your name? Perhaps, you have gone by a middle name, nick name, or shortened version of your name for a majority of your life. Now, legal documents such as your driver’s license, passport or social security card are the only places where your birth name exists. Why not legally change your name? Generally, the process is quick and inexpensive. Scura, Wigfield, Heyer, Stevens & Cammarota LLP is a multi-practice law firm capable of handling your name change and other legal needs.  

Expunging a Costly Criminal Mistake

For many people, a past criminal conviction continues to negatively impact their prospects of future happiness. With easy access to information, many employers, landlords, educators and licensing agencies now require a criminal background check when considering potential candidates. Obviously, a past criminal conviction weighs negatively for a candidate in any application process. If you have experienced this, “expungement” may offer relief.  

Enforcing Your Rights as a Non-Residential Construction Subcontractor

For most nonresidential construction subcontractors, the risk of non-payment on a job is a threat that, if realized, can cease the day-to-day operations of the business. Non-payment usually stems from a dispute between the general contractor and the subcontractor regarding the quality of the work. If you are a subcontractor, this article will explain your rights to lien property in efforts to ensure compensation for the work you have performed. Please note, the contents of this article only apply to liens involving non-residential construction contracts.

Personal Deficiency Judgments after Foreclosure in New Jersey

For homeowners facing the imminent loss of their home to a foreclosure, the added threat of a personal deficiency judgment lurks in the background. Because a deficiency judgment is personal, it may have negative effects on your credit and can result in wage garnishments, bank account levies, or subject you to other collection methods. Therefore, for those facing foreclosure, it is important to understand the personal deficiency judgment process and the options available to you.

Foreclosure: A New Jersey Homeowner’s Right to Reinstate

Across the country, foreclosures have become an unfortunate reality for many homeowners. Most states, including New Jersey, require a lawsuit to be filed to effectuate the foreclosure process. In other words, if a homeowner stops paying the mortgage, the lender cannot simply show up at the residence without a court approved final judgment and demand the homeowner vacate the premises.

Of Their Own Free Will? The Burden of Proving Undue Influence

In the typical will contest, a party seeks to invalidate a decedent’s will due to an alleged lack of testamentary capacity and/or undue influence. The battle is often exclusively fought on these two fronts. For purposes of this article, we shall assume there exists a will meeting New Jersey’s statutory formalities. The good news for those seeking to invalidate a will is that proving undue influence or lack of testamentary capacity is sufficient to prevail. The bad news is that you must overcome the legal presumption that a testator is of sound mind and competent when he or she executed the will.

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