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Court Night Program

“Court Night” is an informational program about New Jersey’s court system cosponsored by the New Jersey State Bar Foundation and the county and specialty bar associations in New Jersey. The purpose of the program is to open the courts to the public in order to explain how our judicial system works in an effort to demystify, educate and welcome. Events are planned around Law Day USA, held yearly on May 1st  to celebrate the role of law in our society and to cultivate a deeper understanding of the legal profession.

Court Night Programs honoring Law Day have been part of the NJSBF’s core mission to educate the public about New Jersey law for 30 years.

Previous topics covered have included Advancing the Rule of Law, Now; the 100th anniversary of the transformative 19th Amendment to the Constitution that gave women the right to vote; civil, criminal, and family divisions of the Superior Court; and special seminars on legal issues such as family law, estate planning, employment law, landlord/tenant matters and constitutional law. There have been mock trial presentations by students, essay contests, and discussions with judges and lawyers about the law and the trial process.

The 2022 Law Day theme, Toward a More Perfect Union: The Constitution in Times of Change, reminds us that the Constitution is a dynamic document, as it not only outlines a blueprint for government, but also delegates power, articulates rights, and offers mechanisms for change. It is neither perfect, nor exhaustive, as our nation’s history makes clear. Legislation, court rulings, amendments, lawyers, and “we the people” have built upon those original words across generations to attempt to make the “more perfect Union” more real. That effort continues today, as contemporary leaders and everyday citizens raise their voices as loud as ever to fulfill the promise of the Constitution. Check back later for the announcement of the 2023 Law Day theme and the grant funding application for Court Night programs.

Questions? Contact Mary Jean Barnes, Director of Administration and Grant Programs, at [email protected].