N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 461


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

Court of Chancery to be maintained. We are also in favor of a separate Court of Appeals, on which we would like to see an equal representation, other than a chief judge, among the law and equity judges.

MR. SOMMER: Isn't it a fact that in New York the large and reputable firms, to which you refer, adopt the same practice with respect to cases at law as they do with respect to cases in equity? They may hold and attempt to put them before a particular judge, sitting at a particular time?

MR. COOPER: Let me say this - that same practice, I think, exists in this State to a certain extent. Does that answer your question?

MR. SOMMER: Both at law and in equity?

MR. COOPER: Both at law and in equity we try to use the judges who will decide a case according to the principles upon which we think it should be decided. If we are wrong, we are wrong, and if we are right, we are right.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Any further questions?

(Silence)

VICE-CHAIRMAN: All right then, I will call the next speaker, Mr. Frederick Lombard.

MR. FREDERICK E. LOMBARD: Mr. Chairman, lady and gentlemen:

I want to speak on only two points that are relative to my fortunate experience of a year and a half with the late Vice-Chancellor Buchanan, and his successor, Vice-Chancellor Jayne.

In the discussions of the bar and the members who have appeared before this Committee, and in newspaper editorials and articles on the subject of revision, I was particularly interested in the fact that it was frequently suggested that the great delay in Chancery was due to the fact that matters came in there which were equitable in nature but in which the question of title to land had to be sent into the Supreme or Circuit Courts for trial. Well, that struck me as a rather odd and a particularly infinitesmal argument, because in the year and a half before one of the busiest Vice-Chancellors in the State of New Jersey, only once had that case arisen, and in that case by immediate stipulation of counsel the question was tried by the Vice-Chancellor himself. So that didn't seem to me to be too important.

There was a second point I made before the committee and also before the Bar Association in discussing this problem, and that is this: I do not think there is in New Jersey a more concise, consistent and cohesive body of law than that which concerns inheritance taxation, and it seems to me that that points out, more forcibly than anything else in our legal system, the advantages of


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