The purpose of a trust document is to convey information to its intended audience. But that audience is typically a very disparate group in terms of its education in general and its knowledge of trusts and taxes in particular. How can you write a trust that’s understandable to them all?
Whether and how you discuss damages in your opening statement and closing argument is a strategic consideration. A plaintiff discussing damages in the opening may turn jurors off, but not doing so can be a tactical mistake. Defendants usually want to steer clear of damages in the opening if possible. And both sides should discuss damages in the closing, but maybe in a different order. Continue reading
Automobile liability policies provide coverage both to “named insureds” and “insureds.” Do you understand the coverage consequences of this distinction? Continue reading
The timing of a motion to compel depends largely on whether responses have been served. Here’s a review of the timing in common situations and a handy chart with the time limits. Continue reading
The following is a guest blog post by Tyler M. Paetkau, Hartnett, Smith & Paetkau, Redwood City, CA. Tyler represents employers in all aspects of employment and labor law, including counseling and litigation regarding trade secrets and unfair competition.
Now is a particularly good time for California employers to update and revise their agreements with employees respecting trade secrets and other confidential and proprietary information (NDAs), based on several recent, noteworthy legal developments. Review your NDAs and make these three changes. Continue reading
When drafting a contract, make sure to give attention to the defined terms portion. Defined terms are important because they allow the use of short-form references for names, terms, and concepts that are frequently repeated in an agreement, thus saving space, improving readability, and assuring consistency. They also encourage the drafter to be precise in stating important concepts and procedures. Use these four tips next time you draft a contract. Continue reading
Generally, depositions are a fairly intimate gathering with only the necessary attendees. But what do you do if you’re surprised by an unwelcome person who insists on being present? Continue reading
Employers not only may be held liable for workplace harassment, but they have the potential for separate liability for not taking reasonable steps to prevent the harassment from occurring. Govt C §12940(k). One step every employer should take is to draft and disseminate an anti-harassment policy. Note that the mere existence of a policy prohibiting harassment isn’t enough to shield the employer from liability. To work as a shield, the policy must be adequate and it must be distributed to employees. Does your client’s policy include all of the elements in this checklist? Continue reading
There are some questions that are virtually always safe to ask during cross-examination and often elicit pleasantly surprising answers. Consider asking these questions on your next cross—they could make all the difference. Continue reading
It’s often a problem for transgender people that their government documents (e.g., driver’s license, Social Security record, passport) don’t match their name and gender. Having updated documents is important for employment, government benefits, and even safety. An incorrect document can “out” a transgender person at a dangerous moment. Here’s what you need to know about making name and gender marker changes. Continue reading