H.C. Equities, L.P. v. Co. of Union

H.C. Equities filed suit against the County of Union and the Union County Improvement Authority, asserting claims for breach of a lease, claims about an alleged settlement agreement, conspiracy, and promissory estoppel, amongst others. The trial court dismissed the claims. The Appellate Division reversed. The New Jersey Supreme Court reversed the Appellate Division’s order and affirmed the trial court. The Court held that a finding of substantial compliance with the Tort Claims Act could not be premised on comments made by H.C. Equities’ counsel in three different letters sent to lawyers representing the defendant public entities. The letters, individually or collectively, did not communicate the core information that a claimant must provide to a public entity in advance of filing a tort claim. Therefore, H.C. Equities did not comply with the notice of claim provisions of the Tort Claims Act or file a timely motion to submit a late claim.

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