Search form

New Jersey Bill Will Make Whistleblower Settlement Agreements with Public Entities Public Records

By Richard J. Cino, Joseph C. Toris and Katerina R. Mantell
  • March 27, 2017

Proposed legislation that would make whistleblower settlement agreements involving public entities available to the public has been approved unanimously by the New Jersey Assembly on March 23, 2017.

The New Jersey Assembly Bill (A-4243) would bar public entities and public employees from entering into confidential settlements of whistleblower claims asserted under the New Jersey Conscientious Employee Protection Act, except where the settlement involves a matter concerning national security.

A public entity is defined as the state and any county, municipality, district, public authority, public agency, and any other political subdivision or public body in the state.

The bill provides that such settlements constitute public records under the open public records laws. While such information is often available under existing laws, such as the Open Public Records Act (N.J.S.A. 47:1A-1 et seq.), the proposed legislation requires that all settlement agreements be prominently displayed on the Attorney General’s website, in a searchable format, and include:

  1. the date the agreement was signed;
  2. the names of the parties;
  3. a description of the claims;
  4. the total amount each party is obligated to pay; and
  5. the total amount of compensation for outside legal counsel.

Supporters of the bill maintain that it will prevent public entities from keeping information involving the expenditure of public funds on such litigation confidential.

Jackson Lewis Morristown and Monmouth County attorneys are available to discuss this bill and other developments.

©2017 Jackson Lewis P.C. This Update is provided for informational purposes only. It is not intended as legal advice nor does it create an attorney/client relationship between Jackson Lewis and any readers or recipients. Readers should consult counsel of their own choosing to discuss how these matters relate to their individual circumstances. Reproduction in whole or in part is prohibited without the express written consent of Jackson Lewis.

This Update may be considered attorney advertising in some states. Furthermore, prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

Jackson Lewis P.C. represents management exclusively in workplace law and related litigation. Our attorneys are available to assist employers in their compliance efforts and to represent employers in matters before state and federal courts and administrative agencies. For more information, please contact the attorney(s) listed or the Jackson Lewis attorney with whom you regularly work.

See AllRelated Articles You May Like

February 23, 2018

Foreign Parent Company is Joint Employer with Subsidiary for Employment Claims, Court Rules

February 23, 2018

A foreign parent company can be held jointly liable for employment claims against its U.S. subsidiary, a federal district court has held. Middlebrooks v. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc., No. 17-00412 (E.D. Pa. Feb. 1, 2018). The employee brought claims against his former employer, Teva USA, and its parent company, Teva Israel, alleging... Read More

February 20, 2018

Ban-the-Box Laws in Spokane, Washington, and Kansas City, Missouri

February 20, 2018

State and local jurisdictions have continued to consider and enact legislation restricting employers from inquiring about a job applicant’s criminal background during the initial stages of the application process. Two of the latest enactments are in Spokane, Washington, and Kansas City, Missouri. Some ban-the-box ordinances are... Read More

February 12, 2018

EEOC: Retaliation Tops Discrimination Charges Filed in Fiscal Year 2017

February 12, 2018

Retaliation was the most common workplace discrimination charge received by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in fiscal year (FY) 2017, according to the agency. (The fiscal year runs from October 1 to September 30.) Retaliation has been at the top since FY 2010. A total of 84,254 charges were filed with the agency... Read More

Related Practices