Halloween Harassment

As reported in Corporate Counsel, office Halloween parties can be a nightmare for in-house and other employment lawyers. Costume choices can raise various discrimination and harassment issues  — consider the “illegal alien” costume or the sexy maid get-up.  To keep Halloween fun for all, employers should be proactive, and then reactive when necessary. Continue reading

Should I Go for (Wr)it by Noticed Motion or Alternative Writ Procedure?

When you want to challenge an action or decision by a nonjudicial body, such as a governing board, an administrative agency, or a public official, you need to file a writ in superior court. You have two procedural options for getting this process going: noticed motion and alternative writ. Ultimately, these two procedures are simply two different routes to the same goal—obtaining a hearing on the merits of the writ petition—but each procedure has its particular advantages and disadvantages. Continue reading

Until the End of the Contract Do We Part

The rumor that Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes signed a five-year marriage contract prompted a New York Time’s article on the idea of 20-year renewable marriage contracts as a way of overhauling marriage in our society. The idea of short-term, renewable marriage contracts can be appealing, but would such agreements be enforceable under California law? The hitch may be in California law’s abhorrence of anything that promotes divorce. Continue reading

Catch a Catchphrase

During the election season we all get a bit tired of  slogans and catchphrases, but these tools can be very useful at trial. Keep alert for any catchphrase that comes up at trial or during discovery and be prepared to exploit it for all it’s worth. Continue reading

Get While the Getting’s Good: Checklist of Info You Need to Form a Limited Partnership

You have been retained to advise your clients in forming a limited partnership and to draft a limited partnership agreement. Where to begin? Always start with information gathering. To help organize the process for you, here’s a handy checklist of the information you’ll need from your clients. Continue reading

Picking the E-Data Custodian’s Brain

After you’ve ensured that your client is preserving all potentially relevant or responsive electronic data, you need to identify what E-data to collect for potential use in the litigation, including for discovery. This means you need to find the key data custodians and pick their brains. Continue reading

The Mighty Separate Statement

The separate statement that accompanies your summary judgment motion in California courts is not merely a technical requirement you can breeze through; rather, it’s an exceedingly important document, and should not be viewed as an afterthought. In fact, when the law is straightforward and well known to the court, the judge may turn first to the separate statement and form an impression on whether the motion is well taken. Continue reading

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