New Year, New Laws for Employment Lawyers

464956543The following is a guest blog post by Tyler M. Paetkau, a partner with Hartnett, Smith & Paetkau in Redwood City. Tyler represents employers in all aspects of labor and employment law. He’s a frequent author and speaker on labor and employment law issues, and the former Chair of the Executive Committee of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the State Bar of California.

The California legislature has enacted several new laws that will affect every employer and employment lawyer in 2015. Here’s an overview of some of the key statutory changes you need to know about. Continue reading

Dead Man “Kwoking”: Estate Planning Property Transfers Can Trigger Title Insurance Nightmares

475902405Estate planning attorneys regularly advise their clients about the tax and other advantages of transferring real property to irrevocable trusts or similar estate planning vehicles. But they may not consider the potentially disastrous title insurance implications of such transfers. The original property owners may have had coverage under their policy, but—depending on the type of policy—once the property is transferred to the estate planning entity, the entity (i.e. trustee of the trust) isn’t the “insured” anymore and coverage could be lost. Continue reading

Give the Reporter a Hand to Get a Clean Depo Transcript

117533578When you’re taking a deposition, you know that ensuring a complete and accurate record is vital. So don’t take the person who’s dutifully taking down the proceedings for granted: Assisting the court reporter is not only polite, it might be the key to a clean depo transcript to use at trial. Continue reading

4 Steps to Drafting a Contract to Your Client’s Advantage

460275005Yes, drafting a contract takes a lot of work. But it generally takes less time to draft a contract document that advances your client’s interests than it does to modify another party’s document to achieve that result. So whenever you have the opportunity to be the drafter, take it—and follow these four steps to drafting a contract to your client’s benefit. Continue reading

Like Steve Jobs, Unavailable Witnesses Can Still “Appear” at Trial

451334569In the trial of an antitrust case against Apple, Steve Jobs will come back to life as a key witness—if only in the form of his videorecorded deposition. Continue reading

Timing Your Interrogatories

170189536Interrogatories can be a very powerful discovery tool. With interrogatories, you get to ask questions of adverse parties and then use their answers against them at trial. Don’t miss out on this opportunity by bungling the timing of your interrogatories. Continue reading

10 Ways to Finance a Business

164176162A great business idea is not enough—a business needs capital to thrive. Attorneys can help their clients consider all the financing options, figure out which one(s) are the best fit, and comply with applicable laws.

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