Several months ago, I published a blog which discussed an important case that could affect employment discrimination litigation in New Jersey.
In summary, the New Jersey Appellate Court, in the case Rodriquez v. Raymours Furniture Company, Inc., 93 A.3d 760 (App. Div. 2014), permitted an employee to reduce the statute of limitations period for an alleged violation of New Jersey’s Law Against Discrimination from 2 years to 6 months. In that case, the Appellate Court held that the reduced statute of limitations period was set forth in conspicuous, highlighted language in the employment application.
On December 1, 2015, the New Jersey Supreme Court entertained oral argument regarding the important issue of whether or not New Jersey employers may use contractual language in order to significantly reduce the statute of limitations period. Clearly, the enforcement of a shortened statute of limitations period would eliminate some litigation. The central question for the Court is whether or not parties via contract could reduce the legislature’s enactment of a 2 year statute of limitations.
The ultimate decision of the New Jersey Supreme Court will certainly affect employment discrimination litigation in New Jersey. Moreover, if the Court upholds the reduced statute of limitations, it could possibly affect other statutes of limitations. For example, there is a 4 year statute of limitations for a goods contract and 6 year statute of limitations for a non-goods contract in New Jersey. Assuming the decision is affirmed, could parties agree to reduce the time period for which breach of contract claims could be filed?
I will continue to monitor this case and will provide updates as developments are made. Stay tuned, and continue to check out the New Jersey Law Blog for other important legal issues that may affect you, your business, and your family.