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NJ Supreme Court Takes Us Back in Time on Tort Statute of Limitations

February 21, 2017

The New Jersey Supreme Court has changed the rules of the game with respect to statute of limitations and choice of law for tort actions. Again. On Jan. 24, in McCarrell v. Hoffmann-La Roche, the court found that Section 142 of the Second Restatement of Conflicts of Law governed statute of limitations choice of law conflicts. This ruling is a significant and outcome- deter­minative departure from the most-significant-relationship test previously adopted by the court in P.V. ex rel. T.V. v. Camp Jaycee, 197 N.J. 132 (2008), and Cornett v. Johnson & Johnson, 414 N.J. Super. 365 (App. Div. 2010), aff’d as modified, 211 N.J. 362 (2012).

This article discusses: (1) the recent history of the New Jersey Su­preme Court’s choice of law jurisprudence in the statute of limitations context; (2) the court’s rationale in the McCarrell case; and (3) why this change in law will undoubtedly overburden the courts and citizens of New Jersey by re-opening the flood gates for lawsuits filed by out of state plaintiffs.

To continue reading Michelle Bufano and Rachel Sherman's article from the February 20, 2017 edition of the New Jersey Law Journal, please click here.