TRENTON - The New Jersey Supreme Court has thrown out a ruling that barred using "the best lawyers in America" or similar superlatives to advertise lawyers.

In 2005, a lawyer objected to an advertising magazine, New Jersey Super Lawyers, on the ground that it implied those lawyers were more qualified than others. A Supreme Court committee ruled in 2006 that such magazines violated state laws barring ads that are comparative.

But the 5-0 ruling published yesterday holds that the ads are commercial speech protected by the First Amendment, and that the laws must be modified.

Two committees will give the matter an expedited review.

- AP