Best Lawyers In America Names Capehart Scatchard Shareholders to 2020 List

Capehart Scatchard Shareholders, Amy C. Goldstein, Esq. and Betsy G. Ramos, Esq., were recently selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© 2020 (a trademark of BL Rankings, LLC).  Ms. Goldstein was selected for the tenth consecutive year in the practice area of Family Law and Ms. Ramos was selected for the first time in the area of Litigation – Insurance.

Ms. Goldstein has been practicing exclusively Family Law for thirty-seven years. She handles complex cases relating to all aspects of family law including prenuptial agreements, custody, alimony, child support, equitable distribution, surrogacy and all other issues related to family law. She is a Past President of the New Jersey Chapter of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers and she was voted one of the Top 50 Women Attorneys in the State of New Jersey in 2019 by the New Jersey Super Lawyers organization.

Certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as a Civil Trial Attorney, Ms. Ramos, is an Executive Committee Member and Co-Chair of the Litigation Department.  She is a seasoned litigator with over twenty-five years experience handling diverse matters and concentrates her practice in tort defense, business litigation,  insurance coverage,  estate litigation, employment litigation, and general litigation.

Best Lawyers in America® is based on an exhaustive peer-review survey in which leading attorneys cast votes on the legal abilities of other lawyers in their practice areas.  A description of the selection methodology can be viewed here. The Super Lawyers list is issued by Thomson Reuters and a description of the selection methodology can be viewed here.


Capehart Scatchard Paralegal Named an Accredited Estate Planner®Designee

Capehart Scatchard is pleased to announce that paralegal, Kay M. Sowa, was recently designated as an Accredited Estate Planner® by the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils.

The Accredited Estate Planner® designation is a graduate level specialization in estate planning, obtained in addition to already recognized professional credentials within the various disciplines of estate planning. It is awarded by the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils to recognize estate planning professionals who meet stringent requirements of experience, knowledge, education, professional reputation, and character, and who commit to the team concept of estate planning.

In addition to her paralegal duties in tax, accounting and litigation matters relating to trusts, estates and individuals, Ms. Sowa is an IRS Enrolled Agent eligible to represent taxpayers before all administrative levels of the IRS.  She is also a Certified Trust and Financial Advisor through the Institute of Certified Bankers.


Capehart Scatchard Attorneys Recognized As Top Attorneys By SJ Magazine

Twenty-five Capehart Scatchard attorneys achieved recognition by their peers as “Top Attorneys” in the current issue of SJ Magazine.   The magazine’s annual list of Southern New Jersey’s best lawyers is the result of comprehensive polling of members of the Southern New Jersey legal community.


The Capehart Scatchard Top Attorneys are:

Alan Fox – Alternative Energy

Charles Holmgren – Appellate

William Wright – Banking & Finance

Vincent Cieslik – Business

Laura Ruccolo – Commercial

Christopher Hoare – Construction

Charles Rizzi – Corporate

Michelle Corea – Criminal

Sergio Scuteri – Debt Collection

Amy Goldstein – Divorce & Family

Carmen Saginario – Employment Discrimination

Melissa Mignogna – Family Mediation

Mary Ellen Rose – Franchise & Distribution

Sheila Mints – Healthcare

Alyson Knipe – Insurance

Denise Sanders – Intellectual Property

Ralph Smith – Labor & Employment

Christopher Carlson – Litigation

Stephen Alexander – Product Liability

Kelly Dugan – Real Estate

Robert Muccilli – Regulatory & Government

Sheila Mints – Taxation

Betsy Ramos – Trial

Yasmeen Khaleel – Wills, Estates & Trusts

Ana Bauersachs – Workers’ Compensation


Marconi v. United Airlines

Client: United Airlines/Sedgwick

Court: Workers’ Comp Court in Newark

Trial Attorney:  Prudence M. Higbee, Esq.

In the reported case of Marconi v. United Airlines, A-0110-18T4 (App. Div. July 22, 2019), the Appellate Division affirmed the dismissal of two claims against United Airlines for lack of jurisdiction. Richard Marconi lived in New Jersey and suffered a work injury to his left hip on January 31, 2015 working for United Airlines in Philadelphia.  United paid full benefits to Marconi under Pennsylvania law, but eventually Mrconi brought two claim petitions in New Jersey seeking permanency benefits that were not available in Pennsylvania.  One claim petition was for the accident in 2015 and the other was an occupational claim alleging work exposures from 1988 to the present.  Mr. Marconi admitted he was not hired in New Jersey and worked most of his career in Philadelphia, with only a brief period of employment at Dulles Airport.

United moved to dismiss both claim petitions for lack of jurisdiction in New Jersey.  Petitioner argued that even if residency alone was insufficient for a finding of jurisdiction, Professor Larson’s fourth factor, namely “place where the industry is localized,” in conjunction with petitioner’s residency in New Jersey is sufficient for a finding of jurisdiction.  However, the Appellate Division disagreed, explaining the concept of localization should be analyzed in terms of advancement of company interests, not its mere presence in the State. In this case, the Court found that, “nothing in the course of Marconi’s two-decade employment with United advanced the company’s localized interests in New Jersey.  In these circumstances, although United maintained a localized business interest in Newark, New Jersey has no substantial interest in exercising its jurisdiction over the petitions.”  As such, the Appellate Division affirmed the dismissals of both claim petitions.


Howard Vogel Honored At CFO Awards Gala

CFO and Firm Administrator, Howard P. Vogel, CPA MBA was one of thirty-five Outstanding CFOs who were honored at the CFO Excellence Awards Ceremony and Dinner Gala held at the Governor Morris Hotel, Morristown, NJ on June 6, 2019.

The CFO Excellence Awards celebrate highly accomplished CFOs who apply creativity and skill in contributing to and leading their organization’s economic growth, stability, and success.

Mr. Vogel, a Marlboro resident, has been with the firm since 2015 and is a graduate of the City University of New York – Queens College.  He received his MBA from St John’s University in New York.  Mr. Vogel is a member of the New Jersey Association of Legal Administrators and New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants.


Capehart Scatchard Hosts Apala-NJ Mock Interview Workshop

Capehart Scatchard hosted the Asian Pacific American Lawyers Association of New Jersey’s (APALA-NJ) Annual South Jersey Mock Interview Workshop on July 30, 2019 at its Mount Laurel office.  The workshop was sponsored by Rutgers Law School Minority Student Program and Rutgers Law Center for Career Development.

The workshop featured a discussion on interviewing methods, tips and techniques, and allowed law students to practice interviewing while receiving real-time coaching from practicing attorneys.  Capehart Scatchard attorneys, Sanmathi (Sanu) Dev and Ruby Delarosa participated in the event.  The event was hosted by Capehart Scatchard’s Diversity & Inclusion committee, which Ms. Dev leads.


Boyle v. Giannakis, et al., Docket No. MID-L-6571-18

Client: School Board Member Defendants

Court: Superior Court, Law Division, Civil Part, Middlesex County

Trial Attorney:  Cameron R. Morgan, Esq.

Brief Attorney: Cameron R. Morgan, Esq.

A member of the South Plainfield Board of Education, Deborah Boyle, and her husband, brought suit against four other current school board members, two former board members, and six other citizens of the South Plainfield community, alleging claims of harassment, gender based discrimination under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD), terroristic threats, conspiracy, and loss of consortium.  Plaintiffs’ claims were based primarily on her allegations that one of the defendant school board members had attended meetings of the local middle school PTO of which Plaintiff was the president, sought to obtain financial records related to the organization, and expressed views which Plaintiff found harassing.  After being denied access to the PTO financial records, several of the defendants later ran for and were elected to the Board of Education, and the Board lawfully enacted a policy prohibiting current Board members from serving in positions of executive leadership in the local PTO, thereby causing Plaintiff to resign her presidency of that organization.  Plaintiff also alleged that several local citizens had made statements or engaged in conduct which she felt diminished her reputation in the local community.

After permitting Plaintiffs several opportunities to amend, on June 26, 2019, the trial court granted Defendants’ Third Motion to Dismiss in Lieu of an Answer, dismissing all six of the seven counts of the complaint applicable to the Board member defendants, in their entirety and with prejudice.  The court held that, even if a cause of action exists in New Jersey for civil harassment, plaintiffs’ claims could not survive a motion to dismiss, as they had failed to plead the necessary elements of a claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress.  The court also dismissed Plaintiffs’ NJLAD claims, finding that Plaintiffs had failed to plead facts sufficient to show an “unlawful employment practice” or “unlawful discrimination,” within the meaning of the NJLAD, N.J.S.A. 10:5-5d, as there was no employer/employee relationship, and the conduct alleged was not within any of the twenty subsections of the NJLAD setting forth the various categories of unlawful discrimination pursuant to N.J.S.A. 10:5-12.  Claims of harassment against one of the citizens of the community were also dismissed with prejudice.


Patricia Costanzo vs. Meridian Rehab

Client: Meridian Rehab

Court: Freehold Workers’ Compensation Court

Trial Attorney:  Carla P. Aldarelli, Esq.

Brief Attorney:  Maura Burk, Esq. 

Petitioner filed a Motion for Medical and/or Temporary Disability Benefits seeking treatment for her left knee as recommended by her medical expert.

The Motion was fully tried, and testimony was taken from petitioner, petitioner’s medical expert, and from Respondent’s medical expert.

The Judge denied the Motion for Medical and/or Temporary Disability Benefits, finding that Respondent’s medical expert was more credible than petitioner’s medical expert, and found that petitioner failed to establish that any need for treatment to her left knee was work related.


Mary Grace Lawson v New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority, DOCKET NO. A-4058-17T1

Client: New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority

Court:  Appellate Division

Trial Attorney:  Keith E. Nagy, Esq.

Brief Attorney:  Keith E. Nagy, Esq. and John H. Geaney, Esq.

Petitioner appealed the Workers Compensation Court’s finding that she was not entitled to wage reconstruction after a full trial on the issue. After trial, the lower court found that the petitioner did not sustain her burden of proof as she found the petitioner capable of a myriad of strenuous activities and found that the petitioner failed to prove that she lacked the potential for full time employment. Petitioner appealed arguing that she never returned to full-time employment and that she had a significant injury.

The Appellate Division affirmed the Workers’ Compensation Court’s finding that the petitioner did not sustain her burden of proof pursuant to Katsoris v. South Jersey Publishing Co., 131 N.J. 535 (1993). The Appellate Division noted that the applicable standard is that an enhanced award utilizing wage reconstruction is to compensate the injured employee “for his loss of earning capacity, i.e., diminution of future earning power.” Id. at 546 (quoting Torres v. Trenton Times Newspaper, 64 N.J. 458, 460-61 (1974)). That diminution includes the employee’s capacity to work full time either now or in the future. Id. at 548. The Appellate Division found that the record supported the Workers’ Compensation Judge’s findings that the petitioner’s accident did not diminish her capacity to perform full-time work.

To view case, click here.


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