Our business law practice helps clients avoid legal disputes with customers, suppliers, licensees, partners, private shareholders, landlords, tenants, contractors, consultants and others. Our attorneys will anticipate and defuse issues that could result in expensive litigation.
Our attorneys deliver more than sound legal advice. We provide clients with real-world business expertise from attorneys that possess MBA degrees and have worked for numerous large companies.
This practice area is lead by Bernd E. Hefele, who also serves as a senior officer at various private corporations. Our attorneys are experienced as both outside counsel and in-house counsel, and directly advise senior management and directors on key legal issues. They have represented many private companies, both in the United States and abroad, and have led numerous private placements and major financings. They have also assisted clients in acquiring other companies.
Services provided by our corporate team include:
Formation and structuring of companies; shareholder agreements; employment agreements; financing agreements; and corporate governance and compliance.
Advice on strategic matters, spin-offs, joint ventures and other partnership agreements.
Assisting general counsel of small and growing companies by acting as part of the in-house counsel team.
We are not just lawyers - we are business advisors. Years of experience as attorneys and corporate officers give us uncommon insight into what it takes to run and grow a business. As a result, we can offer exactly the kind of practical advice that companies need.
Land Use, Real Estate and Construction
The Land Use, Real Estate Development and Construction Law team represents sellers, buyers, and developers of real property, private owners, contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, construction managers and design professionals, including architects and engineers. Our attorneys navigate clients through the maze of governmental and environmental approvals required in a development project or transaction.
We also represent both lenders and borrowers in all aspects of real estate financing, as well as landlords and tenants in commercial leasing matters.
Real Estate Transactions
Buyers and sellers, lenders and borrowers, landlords and tenants all turn to us to represent their interests in complex and substantial commercial matters.
Our in depth knowledge of financing, landlord and tenant law, land use and title, help us document and resolve all issues that may arise in connection with these transactions.
We facilitate the efficient progress of our clients' projects, from inception through build-out and sale or leasing. Our experience in representing government agencies ensures that our private clients receive a balanced realistic assessment of development issues and the best strategies for achieving success.
Construction Law, Litigation and Arbitration
We represent private owners, contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, construction managers and design professionals in the creation of contract documents that clearly allocate risk, responsibility and rewards for proper performance. This is essential to a successful project and part of our strategy is to avoid costly litigation. Nevertheless, disputes can arise involving payments, allegations of defective design or construction, changed or unforeseen conditions, delays and other claims. Where possible, we seek to achieve a practical resolution of contract disputes, without the expense and disruption of litigation or arbitration. If settlement is not possible, we have extensive experience litigating complex construction claims.
Real Estate Litigation
We have successfully litigated prerogative writ actions involving planning board approvals and denials as well as disputes arising out the sale and purchase of real estate. We also regularly litigate property right disputes, leasehold disputes and redevelopment issues. We have successfully prosecuted real property tax assessment appeals through the New Jersey Tax Court and County Board of Taxation.
We serve as our clients' as the primary liaison with the NJDEP and coordinate all aspects of the process from cost-effective investigations to issuance of any necessary permits. We provide our clients with effective management of environmental issues including site acquisition, local and state permitting, municipal approvals, development strategies, reimbursement of remedial costs and final site development.
The sale and purchase of contaminated property often involves developing strategies for redevelopment and productive re-use. We vigorously pursue economic incentives provided by brownfields programs and counsel our clients in the negotiation and purchase of insurance policies to prospectively manage risk.
Our attorneys assist in analyzing and managing liability and compliance issues associated with leases, real property sales and purchases, as well as corporate acquisitions and divestitures. We draft contractual provisions related to the environmental liability issues that arise in connection with such transactions, including terms necessitated by state environmental laws such as The Industrial Site Recovery Act.
We represent clients in wrongful discharge, employee discrimination and sexual harassment litigation in federal and state courts and in administrative proceedings. We defend clients against allegations of all types of discrimination including gender, race, national origin, age and disability. Our attorneys handle Equal Employment Opportunity Investigations and civil rights complaints. We assist clients with entering the terms of restrictive covenants against departing employees, and in protecting against acts of employee disloyalty or unfair competition.
We provide our clients with employment and labor counseling to minimize exposure to claims and to avoid litigation. In addition, to representing our clients in arbitration proceedings and litigated matters, we regularly counsel clients on employee discipline and discharge, employment policies, handbooks and manuals.
Our Personal Injury practice is here to help those who have been injured as a result of someone else's negligence. When an accident occurs, most people are thrown into a system that they don't know much about, having to navigate insurance policies, medical expenses and appointments, all while learning to live with pain from their injuries. Sometimes these injuries place a strain on families, work life, social lives and every day activities. When this occurs, we are here to help you work through these challenges.
This department has expertise in all areas of personal injury including:
Slips and Falls
Estate Planning & Administrative Planning for Your Family's Future
Our estate planning practice is designed to address the needs of clients who understand the importance of protecting property and assets and ensuring that family assets and property are of maximum benefit to the next generation.
We assist clients with a wide variety of estate planning, probate and estate administration matters, including:
Wills, trusts and powers of attorney
Advance medical directives, also known as living wills
Guardianship and conservatorships
Medical eligibility and long term care planning
Complete strategies for asset and protection and wealth management
Complex business succession issues
Estate disputes such as will contests and alleged breaches of fiduciary duty
Guidance for executors, heirs and estate administrators throughout the probate process, including all necessary financial and tax filings
The Litigation Department serves corporate and individual clients in a broad range of litigated and other contested matters in both state and federal courts, as well as before administrative agencies.
Our utmost goal is a favorable result for the client through proactive planning in the litigation process. This may mean winning at trial, or it may mean an early, cost-effective resolution of the dispute. Because we are very aware of the high cost of litigation, our litigation practice includes not only trials and appeals, but when consistent with the client's objectives, the pursuit of a speedier and/or less costly alternatives, such as direct negotiation or various mediation or arbitration programs. In this way, we strive to keep costs and benefits in proper balance in the interest of our client.
The department's practice covers numerous fields of law, which include:
Corporate and Commercial Litigation
Real Estate Litigation
Trust and Estate Litigation
Municipal Court Matters
Our Municipal attorneys represent individuals in traffic violations and municipal ordinance infractions. While these types of violations may seem minor, they could have costly consequences, including hefty fines, increased insurance premiums, DMV points and loss of driving privileges. Our office can help reduce your exposure and work toward a favorable outcome.
Some of the more common municipal cases that we handle are:
Speeding (N.J.S.A. 39:4-98)
Careless/Reckless driving (N.J.S.A. 39:4-96/97)
Failure to observe traffic signals (N.J.S.A. 39:4-81)
Failure to yield (N.J.S.A. 39:4-87/90/92)
Driving while intoxicated/under the influence (N.J.S.A. 39:4-50)