I’ve built my practice by recognizing that clients are best served by listening, thinking and acting strategically to protect their best interests. Solving problems by negotiation, or by thoughtful litigation, secures the best results. A balance of strategic aggression and compromise represents the lynchpin of my practice.
Mr. Pralgever concentrates his practice in business and commercial litigation, with a special focus in corporate, partnership and LLC split-ups and dissolutions, condominium matters and representation of associations, estate litigation, employment issues, real estate and intellectual property disputes. He has handled a wide variety of complex commercial and corporate litigation in state and federal courts, as well as arbitrations in both New Jersey and New York.
Mr. Pralgever’s experience includes the representation of clients in a variety of areas. These include: restrictive covenant and intellectual property matters; issues impacting physicians, medical groups, hospitals, assisted living and nursing home facilities; real estate, ground lease and condominium litigation; employment discrimination matters; wills and estate litigation, divorce matters involving valuation issues; and corporate lending and warranty disputes. He appears in arbitration matters and was in the past appointed to the panel of arbitrators before the American Arbitration Association for commercial and construction matters. Mr. Pralgever has also long represented owners, general contractors and public institutions such as school boards in construction and related matters.
Honors & Awards
- Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rated AV® Preeminent; based on his AV rating, selected for inclusion on the list of New Jersey's Top Rated Lawyers in the areas of Alternative Dispute Resolution, Construction Law and Labor & Employment (2013) published in Inside New Jersey (an advertising supplement in the Star-Ledger and the New Jersey Law Journal); based on his AV rating, selected for inclusion in New York Area's Top Rated Lawyers (an advertising supplement published in New York Magazine)
- Balsamides v. Perle, a notable and nationally recognized 1999 New Jersey Supreme Court case in which Mr. Pralgever won a unanimous decision regarding the use of a "marketability discount" in the forced sale of a close corporation. This is the leading valuation case for partnership or corporate dissolutions in New Jersey, also used as a valuation case in divorce proceedings in the state
- Conchita Smith v. Medpointe Healthcare, Inc., et al, a 2007 case in the United State District Court in which Mr. Pralgever represented Medpointe against a plaintiff who was terminated for missing eleven months of work in an eighteen month period, a violation of the defendant’s published attendance policy. The plaintiff alleged discrimination for age, disability, race discrimination, as well as claims under the Family and Medical Leave Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, COBRA, breach of contract, and defamation. The Court ruled that the plaintiff failed to show any evidence of “retaliation” or that the employer’s legitimate, non-discriminatory reason for termination was a “pretext for discrimination.” The case was affirmed on appeal by the Third Circuit.
- Palisadium Management Corp. v. Carlyle Towers Condominium, Inc., (Superior Court of New Jersey, Bergen County) On July 24, 2014, Mr. Pralgever won a major motion for summary judgment on behalf of Carlyle Towers, a large condominium association in Cliffside Park, NJ. The plaintiff claimed that approximately $2.5 million was owed to it pursuant to the terms of a 1989 Additional Recreational Facilities Agreement (ARFA) for fees in connection with the Carlyle Towers’ use of a health club, known as the Palisadium, which was created by the developer when he built Carlyle Towers, but was a separate entity. The developer had Carlyle Towers enter into a 75 year plus contract. On a motion for summary judgment, the Court (Hon. Rachael Harz, JSC) dismissed plaintiff’s claims in their entirety because she determined the 1989 ARFA was “unconscionable and illegal” pursuant to certain sections of the condominium statute, N.J.S.A. 46:8B-32. The Court also found that an illegal agreement is void ab initio regardless of the subsequent conduct of the parties. The Court further determined that “a course of conduct” was established by the parties in accordance with two unsigned ARFA amendments, which despite never being signed by the plaintiff, created a “course of conduct” by which the parties conducted business. As a consequence, the Court found that the plaintiff’s acceptance of certain payments without protest for in excess of 14 years resulted in a waiver and/or estoppel of the plaintiff’s claims premised on the unconscionable 1989 ARFA.
- GF Princeton v. The Herring Land Group, a case in which the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey entered a favorable reported decision in 2012, affirmed by the Third Circuit on appeal in 2013. Mr. Pralgever represented real estate owners and investors GF Princeton and its principals in a case involving a sixty year ground lease. The trial court denied all ground rent due Herring during a five year period totaling in excess of $1.3 million, in large measure due to the ground lessor’s failure to abide by the contractual ground rent setting appraisal process.
- Metem Corporation v. Stephen Chen, a three and a half month 2003 trial 2003 in New Jersey Superior Court which concerned the client's right to repurchase a 60% interest in a subsidiary/sister corporation. Mr. Pralgever relied on the New Jersey Oppressed Minority Shareholder Statute to successful demonstrate oppression of the minority shareholders, with the client winning the right to buy back the company, together with the technology sold by the parent to the subsidiary, despite the fact that the parent corporation's owners only controlled 40% of the subsidiary.
- Other New Jersey Supreme Court cases include Barry v. Arrow Pontiac, a consumer fraud case concerning false advertising practices by automobile dealers involving commercial speech, and Friedman v. Friedman, a case involving conflicts of interest.
- A. Pflugh, Inc. v. Aspar Construction Company, argued by Mr. Pralgever in the Third Circuit and United States District Court of New Jersey, which concerned the necessity to secure a supersedeas bond in a construction litigation matter involving the United States government.
- Appearing before the Court of Appeals in New York, Mr. Pralgever represented Turner Construction Company in a contract dispute over the New York corporate headquarters of Goldman Sachs and confirmation of an arbitration award.
- Certified Civil Mediator, New Jersey Superior Court
- Member, New Jersey State Bar Association
- Member, Association of the Federal Bar of New Jersey
- Member, Marie L. Garibaldi Inn of Court for Alternate Dispute Resolution
- Member, Association for Corporate Growth New Jersey
More Activities & Experience
- Member, American Bar Association
- Member, New York State Bar Association
Presentations & Speaking Engagements
- Faculty Member, Helping Your Client Buy or Sell a Small-to-Medium Sized BusinessSponsor: National Business Institute, December 11, 2014
- Speaker, Construction Contract WorkshopSponsor: HalfMoon Education Inc., August 28, 2014
- Sponsor: Lorman Education Services, January 30, 2014
- Presenter, Affordable Care Actaka ‘Obamacare’Sponsor: Academy for Continuing Professional Education., September 17, 2013
- Sponsor: Greenbaum, Rowe, Smith & Davis LLP; Wiss & Company; and Marsh & McLennen Agency, March 12, 2013
- Fundamentals of Construction Contracts: Understanding the Issues in New JerseySponsor: Lorman Education Services, January 30, 2013
- Conference Chair, Zone Program Integrity Contractors: Medicare, Medicaid Fraud and Abuseconferences for medical practices and hospital management
- Conference Chair, Five Mistake that Could Cost You Millions: Formation, Business Divorce and Shareholder Oppression for Business OwnersJuly 2011
- Presenter, Forming, Maintaining or Breaking Shareholder and Partnership Relationships in a RecessionSponsor: Greenbaum, Rowe, Smith & Davis LLP Webinar, June 23, 2009
Publications & Alerts
- New Jersey Law Journal, January 8, 2013
- Oppressed shareholders are equitably protected by discounts, at the expense of wrongdoersNew Jersey Law Journal, November 21, 2011
- New York Daily News, September 24, 2009
- New York Newsday, September 8, 2009
- New Jersey Law Journal, February 9, 2009
- New Jersey Law Journal, July 30, 2007
- Building Profits, May/June 2007
- Courts seldom admit e-mail under the business record exceptionComplex Litigation & E-Discovery, New Jersey Law Journal, February 19, 2007
- In Re:, New Jersey Lawyer, October 16, 2006
- Author, Choose and Use Experts WiselyNew Jersey Law Journal, July 31, 2006
- Courts grapple with when to use a marketability discount to value shares of close corporationsNew Jersey Law Journal, August 1, 2005
Antioch School of Law, J.D., 1979
Columbia University, M.A., 1974
Lafayette College, B.A., cum laude, 1973
- New Jersey, 1980
- U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey, 1980
- New York, 1986
- U.S. District Court, Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, 1986
- U.S. Courts of Appeals, Second, Third and Fourth Circuits, 1986
- U.S. Supreme Court, 2012