Saturday, February 15, 2014

Choosing a Civil Trial Attorney in New Jersey

New Jersey Supreme Court Certified Civil Trial Attorneys

A Consumer’s Guide to Understanding the Significance of being Certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as a Civil Trial Attorney

What does it mean to be a Certified Civil Trial Attorney?

Certified Civil Trial Attorney designations are granted by the New Jersey Supreme Court to attorneys who are able to demonstrate certain levels of experience, education, knowledge, and skill in civil trial practice by submitting the details of their legal practice to the scrutiny of a special Board appointed by the Court to insure high standards of civil trial practice in the State of New Jersey.  In addition, all attorney-applicants for board certification must pass a written examination, and are required to identify attorneys who’ve opposed them in Court, and Superior Court Judges before whom they’ve appeared, to attest to their professional skills, reputation, and integrity. 

Why does the New Jersey Supreme Court have a Certification Program?

To quote from the Court itself – “ The Certification Program helps the public find attorneys who have demonstrated proficiency in specialized fields of law. Certification helps lawyers by giving them a way to make their experience known to the public and to other lawyers.  Certification also encourages the maintenance and improvement of attorney competence in specialized fields of law.”

In which areas of law does the New Jersey Supreme Court Certify Attorneys?

At present, there are five (5) specialty areas of practice that are approved for Certification by the Supreme Court of New Jersey: Civil Trial Law, Criminal Trial Law, Matrimonial Law, Workers Compensation Law, and Municipal Court Law.

How many attorneys are Board Certified in Civil Trial Law in New Jersey?

At present, less than three (3%) percent of all licensed New Jersey attorneys hold Board Certifications in Civil Trial Law. Once granted, certifications are good for just five years, after which the attorney must submit a new application for renewed certification.

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