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Public Entity Representation

 

LDG is an established litigation boutique firm with some of the most experienced public entity litigation attorneys in the field.

LDG has specialized experience in a myriad of municipal entity areas including: Employment Litigation Defense focusing on the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination and the Conscientious Employee Protection Act; Civil Rights Defense in 42 U.S.C. Section 1983 and the New Jersey Civil Rights Act matters focusing on employee grievances involving the exercise of First Amendment and Due Process Rights; Civil Rights Defense Matters in police related matters involving Excessive Force; Election Law Matters, Condemnation/Redevelopment Area Designation Challenges; Labor Negotiation – Management Side; Public Employee Disciplinary Hearings; General Commercial Litigation Defense: General Premises Liability and Personal Injury Defense; and Rent Control Litigation on behalf of Rent Control Boards and the empowering Public Entity.  During the past twelve years we have litigated hundreds of these types of matters for our public entity clients and also served in a counseling roll as to the passage of Resolutions, Ordinances, Statewide Legislation and the Municipal Corporation’s Policies.  We have successfully litigated all of these types of matters before the Superior Court of New Jersey and the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey.  In addition, our Firm has prepared and argued numerous appeals before the Superior Court of New Jersey Appellate Division, the New Jersey Supreme Court, the District of New Jersey and the United States Third Circuit Court of Appeals.

 

Heffernan v. City of Paterson, 2 F. Supp. 3d 563 (D.N.J. 2014)

Heine v. City of Paterson, 2014 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 2094 (App. Div. Aug. 26, 2014)

Lamorte Burns & Co. v. Walters, 167 N.J. 285 (2001) (the leading New Jersey case regarding employees’ duty of loyalty and related doctrines)

Rivkin v. Dover Tp. Rent Leveling Bd., 143 N.J. 352 (1996) (federal Civil Rights Act claim not available where adequate post-deprivation remedy exists)

Sica v. Wall Tp. Bd. of Adjustment, 127 N.J. 152 (1992) (enhanced burden of proof for use variances does not apply to inherently beneficial uses)

North Bergen Action Group v. North Bergen Tp. Planning Bd., 122 N.J. 567 (1991) (height variances are bulk variances, not use variances, under New Jersey’s Municipal Land Use Law)

 

LDG scored a win for the City of Hoboken in the Appellate Division on September 1, 2015. Shipyard Associates, L.P. filed three OPRA requests with the City in connection with legislation Hoboken passed in 2013.  Hoboken denied all three requests as being overbroad.  Shipyard brought a lawsuit against Hoboken which the trial court dismissed in 2014.  Yesterday, the Appellate Division largely affirmed the trial court’s decision, finding all three OPRA requests to be impermissibly overbroad, and finding that the lower court was correct in dismissing the OPRA portion of the complaint.

LDG was recently retained by Jersey City to continue prosecuting this federal lawsuit against the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (the "Port") . The case is centered around the Port's failure to pay taxes or enter into PILOT ("payments in lieu of taxes") Agreements for properties owned and controlled by the Port within Jersey City.  The amount of lost tax payments have hampered the City's tax revue for years.  The firm is zealously eager to champion the rights of Jersey City's residents in this matter.  Click here to view LDG in the media.

Victor A. Afanador and Susana Cruz Hodge were mentioned in an article on Law360.com, "3rd Circ. Nixes NJ Cop's Free Speech Retaliation Suit" (January 22, 2015).  Click here to view this article.

Victor A. Afanador was quoted in an article on Law360.com, “Bridgegate-Inspired NJ Bill Imperils Gov't Employers” (October 31, 2014), which reviewed proposed state legislation that would enhance whistleblower safeguards for government whistleblowers, but could cause an increase in frivolous litigation against public employers.

Victor A. Afanador was quoted in an article on Law360.com, “NJ Town's Petition Refusal Was Civil Rights Breach: Court” (July 31, 2014), which reviewed a state Supreme Court ruling on a claim that a municipal clerk had illegally refused the petition of a citizens’ rights group.

Victor A. Afanador was quoted in an article on Law360.com, “NJ High Court Tackles Local Referendum Question” (March 31, 2014), which explored a case with the potential to affect the referendum process of municipalities organized under the state’s Faulkner Act.

Victor A. Afanador, Bruce D. Greenberg, Susana Cruz Hodge and Danielle Y. Alvarez were mentioned in an article on Law360.com, “Newark Doesn't Have To Cover Cop For Shooting: NJ Court” (July 29, 2013), covering a New Jersey appeals court’s decision that the city of Newark was not required to indemnify a police officer for a $2.8 million civil judgment stemming from an off-duty shooting.

Victor A. Afanador and Susana Cruz Hodge were mentioned in an article on Law360.com, “Fraud Law Applies In Rent Charging Row: NJ Appeals Court” (June 25, 2013), which reported on a New Jersey appellate panel’s ruling that a landlord could be sued for overcharges under the state’s Consumer Fraud Act.

Victor A. Afanador was mentioned in an article on Law360.com, “NJ Court Says City Clerks Must File Referendum Proposals” (May 29, 2013), which reviewed a state appellate court’s ruling in a case involving a lawsuit against a city clerk who refused to file a petition challenging a rent-control ordinance.