Monday, June 12, 2017
MVC hearing N.J.A.C. § 1:1-14.4 Failure to appear; sanctions for failure to appear
N.J.A.C. § 1:1-14.4 Failure to appear; sanctions for failure to appear
(a) If, after appropriate notice, neither a party nor a representative appears at any proceeding scheduled by the Clerk or judge, the judge shall hold the matter for one day before taking any action. If the judge does not receive an explanation for the nonappearance within one day, the judge shall, unless proceeding pursuant to (d) below, direct the Clerk to return the matter to the transmitting agency for appropriate disposition pursuant to N.J.A.C. 1:1-3.3(b) and (c).
(b) If the nonappearing party submits an explanation in writing, a copy must be served on all other parties and the other parties shall be given an opportunity to respond.
(c) If the judge receives an explanation:
1. If the judge concludes that there was good cause for the failure to appear, the judge shall reschedule the matter for hearing; or
2. If the judge concludes that there was no good cause for the failure to appear, the judge may refuse to reschedule the matter and shall issue an initial decision explaining the basis for that conclusion, or may reschedule the matter and, at his or her discretion, order any of the following:
i. The payment by the delinquent representative or party of costs in such amount as the judge shall fix, to the State of New Jersey or the aggrieved person;
ii. The payment by the delinquent representative or party of reasonable expenses, including attorney's fees, to an aggrieved representative or party; or
iii. Such other case-related action as the judge deems appropriate.
(d) If the appearing party requires an initial decision on the merits, the party shall ask the judge for permission to present ex parte proofs. If no explanation for the failure to appear is received, and the circumstances require a decision on the merits, the judge may enter an initial decision on the merits based on the ex parte proofs, provided the failure to appear is memorialized in the decision.