1. Read the Court Rules.
2. Keep in mind that time limits for responses and certain other pleadings are reduced in New Jersey Superior Court, Law Division: Special Civil Part. Those time limits are set forth in the New Jersey Court Rules (above).
3. Know that most civil disputes in New Jersey Superior Court, Law Division: Special Civil Part will be submitted for mediation. That means before you see the judge, you and your opponents will sit before a mediator, who may be a clerk working for the judge. In this mediation session, efforts will be made to force a compromise upon both parties. This can be a good thing if you're ready to bargain as the courts would like to clear up these matters without having to use up a judge's time. But neither party will be forced to accept the mediator's conclusions. Litigants can demand to see the judge and get the court's full disposition.
4. If you are pleading pro se (meaning without an attorney) you had better familiarize yourself with the forms for pro se litigants made available by the court. Otherwise, the pleadings and materials you submit may violate court rules and procedures and these violations can be exploited by your opponent.
5. New Jersey Superior Court, Law Division: Special Civil Part is where disputes are heard in which the monetary amount in dispute is less than $15,000. Any more than that and your matter needs to be heard in Law Division.
6. Make friends with the clerks. If you have questions about your matter that a clerk can answer, by all means call and ask. If your dispute is being litigated in New Jersey Superior Court, Law Division: Special Civil Part -- Union County, call the clerk at (908) 659-4900. Keep in mind the clerks can't answer questions concerning legal issues; only an attorney can do that.
7. When filing pleadings New Jersey Superior Court, Law Division: Special Civil Part, make sure to follow court rules regarding service of papers. If you're serving a lawyer, you can send the papers directly to that attorney. If serving a part representing themselves pro se, everything needs to be "double-mailed", which means the filing party must mail it via regular AND send another copy certified mail, return receipt requested. Remember to do both.
8. If you're already getting confused by reading this blog about New Jersey Superior Court, Law Division: Special Civil Part, then you should consider calling my office at (973) 376-8585. I can help you pursue a claim or defend yourself against a claim in New Jersey Superior Court, Law Division: Special Civil Part. The closest Special Civil part court to me is the court in Elizabeth, New Jersey, but I am capable of protecting your interests in courts all over northern New Jersey as well.
9. Here's the address for New Jersey Superior Court, Law Division: Special Civil Part - Union County:
Special Civil Part
Old Annex, 3rd Floor
2 Broad Street
Elizabeth, NJ 07207
10. When answering a claim, remember to incude all possible defenses you may wish to use at trial. Don't worry that you may be submitting a laundry list and the "kitchen sink"; you never know what you may wish to argue before the judge to make your list large (but within reason).