Legal Hotline - Legal Newspaper Qualifications
Because the law is constantly evolving, it is important before relying
upon any opinion on this website that you check with the hotline counsel
to ascertain whether or not there has been any subsequent change or
supplementation to the law since the date of the opinion.
Answers provided by
Jan. 8, 2004
What is the time limit for publication of the notice of adoption of
an ordinance and what is the method for counting the time?
Under NJSA 40:49-2 notice of the second reading/adoption of an
ordinance must be published “at least 1 week prior to the time fixed
for further consideration for final passage.” The date of
publication is not counted, however the date of the hearing is
counted. So, for example, if publication is on a Thursday the time
would begin to run on Friday (the first day) and on the 7th day (the
following Thursday) the hearing could be held. Gober v. Pemberton Tp.,
185 NJ Super 323 (Law Div 1982).
Jan. 7, 2004
Does a legal notice become public when it is received by the
newspaper advertising department? May a reporter who sees the notice
base an article upon it?
Oct. 9, 2003
Is the newspaper required to redact a social security number from a
change of name judgment legal ad?
The rules of court which govern how legal matters are to proceed
require that the judgment granting a change of name be published.
Effective June 20, 2003, the rule was amended to require the social
security number be redacted prior to publication. The redaction is
the obligation of the person or attorney placing the ad and not the
Aug. 25, 2003
Are notice that attorney are seeking reinstatement to the bar and
practice in New Jersey “legal ads”?
Yes. The attorney is required to publish such a notice when seeking
Aug. 8, 2003
If the newspaper prints an insert, in Spanish, on different paper
and a different size than the newspaper itself, will that affect the
newspaper’s standing as a legal newspaper?
The statute governing legal newspapers requires that the newspaper
be printed “entirely in the English language.” A special insert,
delivered with the newspapers, may well be considered to be a
separate publication and not part of the newspaper, provided of
course it is a one-time event and not a regularly scheduled addition
to the newspaper.
July 22, 2003
Are unpaid members of a municipal committee, government employees
for purposes of filing disclosures under the Local Government Ethics
Maybe. The Local Government Ethics Law defines “local government
employee” as “any person, whether compensated or not, whether
part-time of full-time, employed by or serving on a local government
agency who is not a government officer, but shall not mean any
employee of a school district.” “Local government agency” includes
any committee of a municipality that “performs functions other than
a purely advisory nature”. Thus an unpaid member of a committee that
has decision making authority is a local government employee for
purposes of filing disclosure statements under the Local Government
Feb. 21, 2003
Are sheriff's sales required to be published in two newspapers?
Yes. NJSA 2A:61.1 requires that sheriff's sales be published in two
newspapers four times, at least once a week during four consecutive
weeks in two newspapers.
Jan. 28, 2003
Is the December 1994 edition of Newspapers Publication Laws of New
Jersey a reliable reference? Is it the most recent edition and, if
not, what changes have occurred to Title 35.
The Newspaper Publication Laws of New Jersey was last updated in
December 1995. The statutes governing legal advertisements have not
been changed since 1995.
July 18, 2002
Are there different rates for legal advertisements based on who
places the ad - for example, an attorney or a municipality?
No. Legal advertisements are those required by law to be published.
The law makes no distinction based on who is placing the ad and all
legal ads are to be charged the same rate.
April 30, 2001
Must a school board designate an official newspaper for publication as a municipality must do?
No. Different statutes set forth where a school board must place its legal ads. For example for a budget matters the Board must publish "in at least one newspaper published in the district" NJSA 18A:22-11; for an election the board must publish in "at least one newspapers published in at least one newspaper published in each municipality in the
What are the general requirements to be a legal newspaper?
Generally a newspaper must be printed and published in the English language and must have been published at least once a week for at least one year continuously, it must have a second class mail permit for at least two years under the Postal Regulations, must have an average news content of not less than 35%, and must be printed and published within the State of New Jersey.
The Hotline is operated by
General Counsel, Tom Cafferty of Gibbons P.C.
Cafferty has served in this capacity for more than 30 years and has
extensive First Amendment and communication law expertise. The Hotline
is available to all publications that are active members of the New Jersey
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NJPA Legal Hotline, c/o Gibbons P.C., One Gateway Center, Newark, NJ