N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 369
of social relations a new case is presented and new features of wrong are involved."
The Court of Errors and Appeals said that the birth certificate should be cancelled.
In short, a judge can be a good equity judge and a good law judge at the same time. Indeed, a good judge must be both even under our present system. In order to determine whether the remedy at law is adequate and complete the Vice-Chancellor must know the law side as well as the equity side. Many cases in equity involve legal questions which the Court of Chancery will determine. Some of the equitable maxims themselves indicate this. For example, quoting from the title "Equity" in the New Jersey and Atlantic Digest again, we have "Equity follows the law"; "When equity takes cognizance of the case it will give complete relief"; "If equity has jurisdiction of the case it will settle all questions legal and equitable," etc.
Certainly some judges will like equity cases better, just as other judges will prefer criminal cases, or civil trial work, or probate cases. Certainly some judges will be more proficient than others in certain types of cases. At the time of his appointment, however, it is not at all certain where the new judge will do his best work. The best use of judicial manpower will be to put each judge as far as possible on the types of cases he handles best, and inevitably that will happen in an integrated court with a capable administrative head. Furthermore, it must be remembered that not all of our Chancellors and Vice-Chancellors have been great and good.
Impeachment is an unwieldy weapon, and will never reach the indifferent or the incompetent. For the safety of the public and for the good of the court, the administrative head of the integrated court should have the power to transfer good judges to positions where they will do the most good; poor ones, where they will do the least harm.
For these reasons, it is my earnest recommendation that for the good of the public, and for the courts, that the Court of Chancery and the court of law be completely under a system similar to that which they have in the federal courts.
MR. SOMMER: Might I ask -
MR. GAULKIN: Surely.
MR. SOMMER: What is the situation in a case like this? I institute my action in the court of equity. It is finally determined that I am not entitled to equitable relief, and that any relief to which I may be entitled must be obtained from an action at law. Now, in the meantime, the statute of limitations is running and I am confronted in the action at law by a plea of the statute. The statute cannot be prevented from running by the fact that an action was instituted in equity and there determined adversely to my claim.
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