N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 457


STATE OF NEW JERSEY CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION OF 1947
COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY
Thursday, July 24, 1947 (Morning session)

those who administer equity jurisprudence were appointed by the Governor with confirmation by the Senate.

Those, I think, are the views of the Ocean County group - that is, the Ocean County Bar Association and the Ocean County Lawyers' Club.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Any questions?

MR. AMOS F. DIXON: Judge Ewart, may I ask this: If we have a general state court which you are referring to as the Superior Court, set up in divisions - equity and law divisions and appellate divisions - and if we have the rule-making power and the allocation of judges in the Supreme Court, do you think that the Supreme Court in allotting these judges would put all the law judges in the equity division and equity judges in the law division?

MR. EWART: Well, the answer to your question is obvious. I think that was unkind. But I do think it would be inevitable that in the course of time you would get judges administering law for part of the year and equity for part of the year. That is the system to which we object because we think the administration of equity as well as the administration of law requires specialists in those respective fields.

MR. DIXON: I wonder why you draw that conclusion, or try to mix these up so that law judges would be administering equity?

MR. EWART: Well, if in the Constitution you give the power to the Chief Justice of the Court of Appeals, or some administrative official, to assign these judges, I think it is to be presumed that the same system generally will be followed as is followed in other jurisdictions where they have one court with law divisions and equity divisions and probate divisions, and the judges are assigned to the different divisions as time goes on, if you give power to make such assignments.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Any further questions?

(Silence)

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Thank you very much.

MR. THOMAS J. BROGAN: I want to ask a question. You spoke about the make-up of the court of last resort, and I take it that you meant that there should be included in that court some of the equity judges or Vice-Chancellors?

MR. EWART: Yes, we thought so.

MR. BROGAN: Do you not consider that the judges of the Court of Appeals - we will drop out the special judges for the moment - but the Supreme Court justices who become judges of the Court of Appeals by virtue of their office, do you not consider them equity specialists?

MR. EWART: I would say not, Judge Brogan. I think no one


Previous Page in Book ********* Table of Contents *********** Next Page in Book