N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 66

Wednesday, June 25, 1947 (Morning session)

a separate equity and probate section.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Do they have definite terms?

MR. CONFORD: Not to my understanding, Mr. Jacobs. The justices of the Supreme Court of New York, who are the judges with original unlimited jurisdiction, are subject to assignment at any time for different type cases.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: They are assigned to different type cases, where federal judges are not.

MR. CONFORD: They are assigned to type cases for a limited period of time.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Judge Forman in the U. S. District Court at Trenton hears all District Court cases, doesn't he?

MR. CONFORD: I understand they do. At least the information I have is that they may take a judge and assign him to a criminal case and then to a civil case.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Except in a Federal District where there is only one judge.

MR. CONFORD: That is not a matter of organization. What I am talking about is the first approach, which is to have no separate law and equity sections. The minority of four members of our committee advocated that as their first choice.

The second approach would be that which the majority of the committee adopted as a final choice by a vote of seven to four, and that is the proposal you heard me summarize: - a single court of original unlimited jurisdiction and the separate sections, but having judges not permanently assigned, subject to transfer from section to section in the wisdom or at the discretion of the administrative officer.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: You recommend that that should be left with the Chief Justice?

MR. CONFORD: The majority of the committee entertained that view.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Did the committee consider the question of leaving that to the Legislature?

MR. CONFORD: They did, and I think they felt that was a matter which should be as flexible as possible and best accomplished by leaving it to the court or the discretion of the Chief Justice of the court.

The third approach was that of having law and equity sections as I have just mentioned, but provide that judges in each section - law, and equity and probate - be permanently assigned to those divisions. I understand that is the point of view advanced here yesterday on behalf of the State Bar Association.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: What proportion of your committee was in favor of number three?

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