N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 462

Thursday, July 24, 1947 (Morning session)

specialization. As you know, inheritance tax matters are decided by the Commissioner, and the procedure then is appeal to the Prerogative Court, the Chancellor there being Ordinary, then by certiorari to the Supreme Court, and finally by appeal to the Court of Errors and Appeals. The Chancellor very early made it a rule that the Vice-Chancellor sitting in Trenton would hear all those cases, so that that meant that Vice-Chancellor Buchanan, and then his successor, Vice-Chancellor Jayne, decided those matters. The result has been special attention by one man, very carefully, to that field, to the legislation, the changes in that legislation, and the analogy between our own and the estate taxation cases in the federal courts. It seems to me that there has never been in New Jersey a better body of law than that. It results, as I say, from specialization which, it seems to me, is the strongest argument advanced for a separate equity court and separate justices.

One third comment I would like to make. I had about six, no nine months, under Vice-Chancellor Buchanan before he suddenly died, and the balance of my year and a half under Vice-Chancellor Jayne. I was always amazed, because to a young lawyer the field of equity is so vast. It's like a will-of-the-wisp; it gets away from you. When I came in there and a case had been presented on its pleadings and heard by the Vice-Chancellor, Vice-Chancellor Buchanan would hand the papers and the file to me, and he would say this immediately: "The leading case in this field in such and such," or "The leading cases are such and such," and "That's the place from which to start your work in working on the memorandum on the conclusions to be reached in this case."

Then Vice-Chancellor Jayne came in. Now, Vice-Chancellor Jayne had been an outstanding jurist - I don't think anybody can question that - on the circuit bench for ten years. Yet his problem showed immediately how different were these two fields of our jurisprudence, because he expressed both publicly and privately the amount of study that had immediately become his lot in trying to encompass his field. It is only now, after about five or six years, that he begins to have at his finger tips again - and this I say in answer to a question which was propounded a while ago - at his finger tips, a ready knowledge without cumbersome detailed study of the branches of that field of equity jurisprudence.

Those are the three comments that I wanted to make from my own experience.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Any questions of Mr. Lombard?

MR. BROGAN: Yes, I would like to ask a question.


MR. BROGAN: Do you believe in the practice, for instance, in tax matters, to which you refer, there should be, as in this case, four judgments: one by the Commissioner, one by the Vice-Ordinary,

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