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The following is a guest blog post by Richard J. Simmons of Sheppard Mullin in Los Angeles. He represents employers in various labor and employment matters. California law establishes unique rules governing when time spent is compensable “hours worked.” How these rules are applied to travel time is continuing to evolve. Unlike federal law, under which employees need only be paid for time when they’re “suffered or permitted to work,” California law requires that an…
There are several types of statements that, although sought to be admitted in evidence for their underlying truth, aren’t considered hearsay. This means you can get them into evidence and no hearsay exception need apply. Here are the most noteworthy of the types of statements that aren’t considered hearsay: Contemporaneous translation. In Correa v Superior Court (2002) 27 C4th 444, 457, the California Supreme Court held that the contemporaneous translation into English of a statement…
The requirements for when an attorney may enter into a transaction with a client in which the attorney will acquire a pecuniary interest adverse to the client have been slightly modified by Cal Rules of Prof Cond 1.8.1. Here’s what you need to know. An attorney can’t enter into a transaction with a client in which the attorney or another attorney in his or her law firm acquires an “ownership, possessory, security, or other pecuniary interest…
The following is a guest blog post by Richard J. Simmons of Sheppard Mullin in Los Angeles. He represents employers in various labor and employment matters. The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has proposed a new salary standard for exempt employees under the federal wage and hour law. But it falls below California’s standard. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA), the minimum salary that employees must receive to qualify under the executive,…
As you work on your questions to ask the jurors during voir dire, consider these six sources for ideas. Sample questions in the rules. Standards 3.25 (civil) and 4.30 (criminal) of the Standards of Judicial Administration (part of the California Rules of Court) spell out areas of inquiry that the trial judge should include in examination of prospective jurors in state civil and criminal cases. They include special questions for personal injury and wrongful death cases.…
Don’t want the baby thrown out with the bathwater? Use a “severability” or a “partial invalidity” clause to prevent a court from declaring an entire contract invalid or unenforceable just because a single provision in the contract is declared invalid or unenforceable. A contract may be construed as either severable or entire. A severable or divisible contract is one in which two or more separate partial performances on each side are agreed to be exchanged…
Before you serve a deposition notice, make sure your timing complies with the statutes. Defendant’s earliest time to serve notice of deposition without leave of court. A defendant may serve a deposition notice at any time after being served with summons or appearing in the action, whichever occurs first. CCP §2025.210(a). This applies to depositions of both parties and nonparties because both require service of a deposition notice on the plaintiff and all other…
A Luddite attorney is not a competent attorney, at least according to the ethical rules. But how much and what type of technology do you need to understand? ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct 1.1, Comment 8 specifically states that an attorney’s duty of competence includes keeping “abreast of changes in the law and its practice, including the benefits and risks associated with relevant technology.” Although there’s no direct equivalent of such rule within the…
When defending a tenant facing eviction, you need to create negotiating opportunities for the tenant while proceeding with the unlawful detainer case. This requires developing a bargaining strategy for deciding what, if any, settlement offers or counteroffers to make to the landlord and when to make them. The following tips will help in formulating that strategy. 1. Look for ways to strengthen the tenant’s case and weaken the landlord’s case. A skillful negotiator for the…
It’s not required that a party amend interrogatory responses to reflect information the party got after responding, but there are situations in which a party may want to do just that. Here’s why it may be a good idea to amend interrogatory responses: Don’t make it look like you’re concealing facts. If you or your client learn new information, immediately file amended interrogatory responses. The court may view a failure to do so as a…