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Kenneth Vercammen & Associates
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2053 Woodbridge Ave.
Edison NJ 08817
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NJSA 2A:18-61.6 Owner Liability for Wrongful Evictions

2A:18-61.6. Owner liability for wrongful evictions

a. Where a tenant vacates the premises after being given a notice alleging the owner seeks to personally occupy the premises under subsection L. of section 2 of P.L. 1974, c. 49 (C. 2A:18-61.1) and the owner thereafter arbitrarily fails to personally occupy the premises for a total of at least six months, or arbitrarily fails to execute the contract for sale, but instead permits personal occupancy of the premises by another tenant or instead permits registration of conversion of the premises by the Department of Community Affairs pursuant to "The Planned Real Estate Development Full Disclosure Act," P.L. 1977, c. 419 (C. 45:22A-21 et seq.), such owner shall be liable to the former tenant in a civil action for three times the damages plus the tenants attorney fees and costs. 

b. If an owner purchases the premises pursuant to a contract requiring the tenant to vacate in accordance with subsection l. of section 2 of P.L. 1974, c. 49 (C. 2A:18-61.1) and thereafter arbitrarily fails to personally occupy the premises for a total of at least six months, but instead permits personal occupancy of the premises by another tenant or instead permits registration of conversion of the premises by the Department of Community Affairs pursuant to P.L. 1977, c. 419 (C. 45:22A-21 et seq.), such owner-purchaser shall be liable to the former tenant in a civil action for three times the damages plus the tenants attorney fees and costs. 

c. If a tenant vacates a dwelling unit after notice has been given alleging that the owner seeks to permanently board up or demolish the premises or to retire permanently the premises from residential use pursuant to subsection g.(1) or h. of section 2 of P.L. 1974, c. 49 (C. 2A:18-61.1) and instead, within five years following the date on which the dwelling unit or the premises become vacant, an owner permits residential use of the vacated premises, the owner shall be liable to the former tenant in a civil action for three times the damages plus the tenants attorney fees and costs of suit. 

An owner of any premises where notice has been given pursuant to subsection g.(1) or h. of section 2 of P.L. 1974, c. 49 (C. 2A:18-61.1), who subsequently seeks to sell, lease or convey the property to another, shall, before executing any lease, deed or contract for such conveyance, advise in writing the prospective owner that such notice was given and that the owners of the property are subject to the liabilities provided in this subsection and sections 3 and 4 of this 1986 amendatory and supplementary act. Whoever fails to so advise a prospective owner prior to the execution of the contract of sale, lease or conveyance is liable to a civil penalty of not less than $2,500.00 or more than $10,000.00 for each offense, and shall also be liable in treble damages, plus attorney fees and costs of suit, for any loss or expenses incurred by a new owner of the property as a result of that failure. The civil penalty prescribed in this subsection shall be collected and enforced by summary proceedings pursuant to "the penalty enforcement law" (N.J.S. 2A:58-1 et seq.). The Superior Court, Law Division, Special Civil Part, in the county in which the rental premises are located shall have jurisdiction over such proceedings. Process shall be in the nature of a summons or warrant, and shall issue upon the complaint of the Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs, the Attorney General, or any other person. 

d. If a tenant vacates a dwelling unit after receiving from an owner an eviction notice (1) purporting to compel by law the tenant to vacate the premises for cause or purporting that if the tenant does not vacate the premises, the tenant shall be compelled by law to vacate the premises for cause; and (2) using a cause that is clearly not provided by law or using a cause that is based upon a lease clause which is contrary to law pursuant to section 6 of P.L. 1975, c. 310 (C. 46:8-48); and (3) misrepresenting that, under the facts alleged, the tenant would be subject to eviction, the owner shall be liable to the former tenant in a civil action for three times the damages plus the tenants attorney fees and costs. An owner shall not be liable under this subsection for alleging any cause for eviction which, if proven, would subject the tenant to eviction pursuant to N.J.S. 2A:18-53 et seq. or P.L. 1974, c. 49 (C. 2A:18-61.1 et seq.). 

In any action under this section the court shall, in addition to damages, award any other appropriate legal or equitable relief. For the purposes of P.L. 1974, c. 49 (C. 2A:18-61.1 et seq.), the term "owner" includes, but is not limited to, lessee, successor owner and lessee, and other successors in interest. 

e. An owner shall not be liable for damages pursuant to this section or section 6 of this 1986 amendatory and supplementary act or subject to a more restrictive local ordinance adopted pursuant to section 8 of this 1986 amendatory and supplementary act if: 

(1) Title to the premises was transferred to that owner by means of a foreclosure sale, execution sale or bankruptcy sale; and 

(2) Prior to the foreclosure sale, execution sale or bankruptcy sale, the former tenant vacated the premises after receiving eviction notice from the former owner pursuant to subsection g.(1) or h. of section 2 of P.L. 1974, c. 49 (C. 2A:18-61.1); and 

(3) The former owner retains no financial interest, direct or indirect, in the premises. The term "former owner" shall include, but not be limited to, any officer or board member of a corporation which was the former owner and any holder of more than 5% equity interest in any incorporated or unincorporated business entity that was the former owner; and 

(4) The former tenant is provided notice and rights in accordance with the provisions of section 6 of this 1986 amendatory and supplementary act.


Kenneth Vercammen was the Middlesex County Bar Municipal Court Attorney of the Year

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Kenneth Vercammen is the Managing Attorney at Kenneth Vercammen & Associates in Edison, NJ. He is a New Jersey trial attorney has devoted a substantial portion of his professional time to the preparation and trial of litigated matters. He has appeared in Courts throughout New Jersey each week for litigation and contested Probate hearings.

Mr. Vercammen has published over 125 legal articles in national and New Jersey publications on elder law, probate and litigation topics. He is a highly regarded lecturer on litigation issues for the American Bar Association, NJ ICLE, New Jersey State Bar Association and Middlesex County Bar Association. His articles have been published in noted publications included New Jersey Law Journal, ABA Law Practice Management Magazine, and New Jersey Lawyer.

He is chair of the Elder Law Committee of the American Bar Association General Practice Division. He is also Editor of the ABA Estate Planning Probate Committee Newsletter and also the Criminal Law Committee newsletter. Mr. Vercammen is a recipient of the NJSBA- YLD Service to the Bar Award. And past Winner "General Practice Attorney of the Year" from the NJ State Bar Association. He is a 22 year active member of the American Bar Association. He is also a member of the ABA Real Property, Probate & Trust Section.

He established the NJlaws website which includes many articles on Elder Law. Mr. Vercammen received his B.S., cum laude, from the University of Scranton and his J.D. from Widener/Delaware Law School, where he was the Case Note Editor of the Delaware Law Forum, a member of the Law Review and the winner of the Delaware Trial Competition.

RECENT SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS ON WILLS, ELDER LAW, AND PROBATE

Edison Adult School -Wills, Elder Law & Probate- 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002 [inc Edison TV], 2001, 2000,1999,1998,1997
Nuts & Bolts of Elder Law - NJ Institute for Continuing Legal Education/ NJ State Bar ICLE/NJSBA 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2000, 1999, 1996
Elder Law and Estate Planning- American Bar Association Miami 2007
Elder Law Practice, New Ethical Ideas to Improve Your Practice by Giving Clients What They Want and Need American Bar Association Hawaii 2006
South Plainfield Seniors- New Probate Law 2005, East Brunswick Seniors- New Probate Law 2005
Old Bridge AARP 2002; Guardian Angeles/ Edison 2002; St. Cecilia/ Woodbridge Seniors 2002;
East Brunswick/ Halls Corner 2002;
Linden AARP 2002
Woodbridge Adult School -Wills and Estate Administration -2001, 2000, 1999, 1998, 1997, 1996
Woodbridge Housing 2001; Metuchen Seniors & Metuchen TV 2001; Frigidare/ Local 401 Edison 2001; Chelsea/ East Brunswick 2001, Village Court/ Edison 2001; Old Bridge Rotary 2001; Sacred Heart/ South Amboy 2001; Livingston Manor/ New Brunswick 2001; Sunrise East Brunswick 2001; Strawberry Hill/ Woodbridge 2001;
Wills and Elder Law - Metuchen Adult School 1999,1997,1996,1995,1994,1993
Clara Barton Senior Citizens- Wills & Elder Law-Edison 2002, 1995
AARP Participating Attorney in Legal Plan for NJ AARP members 1999-2005

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