Disputes between neighbors over a fallen tree or a fence line can be extremely emotional. And when these disputes turn into litigation, this heated emotion can make it very expensive for your client. Here are 5 tips to make sure that at least your attorney fees get paid in the end. Continue reading
The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA-2012) (Pub L 112-240, 126 Stat 2313) allows IRA owners to make retroactive direct distributions to charity for 2012. It could be a good deal for you or your clients, but you have to act by January 31, 2013—this week!—to take advantage of it.
The following is a guest blog post by Frederick Hertz, an attorney and mediator based in Oakland, CA, and the author of the ABA treatise Counseling Unmarried Couples: A Guide to Effective Representation.
One of the worst forms of discrimination against same-sex couples is discrimination in the form of legal complexity. The twists and turns of same-sex partnership law over the past ten years—both in California and federally—have resulted in a morass of legal uncertainty, and the litigation flowing from these complications is just now beginning to hit the appellate courts. Continue reading
Whether employers like it or not, social networking and social media have found their way into most workplaces. Their appearance has meant many potential landmines for employers to navigate. Luckily, there are several relatively easy steps that every employer can take to decrease potential liability. Continue reading
A trustee is entitled to compensation for services as provided in the trust instrument when the trust “provides for a trustee’s compensation” (Prob C §15680(a)), or “reasonable compensation” when the trust instrument “does not specify the trustee’s compensation” (Prob C §15681). But what if the trust provides for no compensation? In that case, the trustee is out of luck. Continue reading
Did you know there are many informal discovery techniques you can use to gather information without using the procedures described in California’s Civil Discovery Act (CCP §§2016.010-2036.050)? Continue reading
If nothing else, recent natural disasters have shown us the importance of carefully reading insurance policies before we buy them. But many people won’t do that, so that leaves it to attorneys to figure out coverage after disaster strikes. Attorneys faced with this task need an organized approach to determining whether coverage exists. Continue reading
As James Beck of Reed Smith puts it, “California has long gone its merry, idiosyncratic way in the Daubert/Frye wars.” That’s why it was a big surprise when the California Supreme Court cut off this legal tangent and stated that California courts must apply the same Daubert standard as their federal counterparts when it comes to admitting opinion testimony not based on a new scientific technique. Continue reading
Trials are stressful, fact-filled, and laced with legal issues. Don’t become so obsessed with detail that you miss the essential case. You should be able to pick out two or three major themes that you can use to guide the jury’s thinking. Continue reading
Law firms are getting more aggressive about suing clients for unpaid legal bills. As the New York Law Journal says, what used to be “unseemly” may become routine. But bringing a breach of contract action against a client for unpaid fees is a very tricky business: first, you have to get out of the attorney-client relationship, and then you have to invoke your (hopefully) enforceable fee agreement.