Family Law Legal Topics Profiles

Profile in Practice: Mary C. Rupp

As part of CEB’s commitment to bringing together California’s legal community, we will be posting a short interview with one of your fellow attorneys.

This week, we profile sole practitioner Mary C. Rupp:

CEB: What is your practice area and how did you choose it?

Mary: I practice family law, which was a natural segue for me. My former career in the 1980’s was in speech/language pathology and I taught in special education classrooms for many years. My experiences in dealing with family issues, child development, schools, etc. enhance my law practice. Also, I chose family law when I first started my practice in 1994 because I needed to charge an hourly rate to pay my monthly bills!

Legal Topics Tort Law

Will Toyota’s Woes Lead to Successful Suits?

Toyota’s vehicle recalls have been front-page news for some time now, and this spawned many lawsuits from Toyota owners. Some of these plaintiffs have been injured when their vehicles malfunctioned. But there are also many plaintiffs with recalled models who don’t have any personal injury or property damages to point to. 

To be successful, a plaintiff must show that the manufacture or design caused injury (Soule v General Motors Corp. (1994) 8 C4th 548, 560, 34 CR2d 607). So, the $64,000 question (more likely, $64 million) is whether the plaintiffs who have not been involved in an accident with their Toyota vehicle will be able to make the required showing of injury.

Business Law

FTC Guides Apply to Bloggers

Effective December 1, 2009, the FTC updated its Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising, including among the changes a requirement that “bloggers who make an endorsement must disclose the material connections they share with the seller of the product or service.”

Business Law New Legal Developments

Red Flags Rule Now Effective June 1, 2010

Note: On May 28, the FTC postponed the effective date of these rules through December 31, 2010.  See updated blog post here.

Under the Federal Trade Commission’s “Red Flags Rule,” financial institutions and creditors with “covered accounts” must develop protocols to detect and prevent identity theft. The new deadline for complying with this Rule is June 1, 2010. This effective date has been postponed several times, most recently from November 1, 2009, because:

a number of industries and entities within the FTC’s jurisdiction expressed confusion and uncertainty about their coverage by and/or obligations under the rule. See the earlier FTC Statement and the FTC Red Flag website.

Employment Law Litigation Strategy

Governor Wants Supreme Court To Decide on Furlough Authority NOW

On March 2, 2010, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger petitioned to consolidate the appeals in seven cases that challenged his right to order state employee furloughs. The petition also asks that the cases be transferred to the Supreme Court immediately. Since the furloughs were instituted last year, 27 cases have been filed, and there are currently ten appeals pending in those  cases.

As pointed out at Legal Pad:

…It’s not like the trial courts have been issuing consistent rulings. … All these lawsuits were probably headed to the Supreme Court anyway… But it’s also shaping up to be a big political headache for the judiciary.

What do you think?
© The Regents of the University of California, 2010. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.


Estate Planning New Legal Developments

Are You Ready for Roth IRA Conversions?

By Michael J. Jones

As of January 1, 2010, the well-to-do can take advantage of Roth IRA conversions.  The Tax Increase Prevention and Reconciliation Act of 2005 (Pub L 109-222, 120 Stat 345)  §512 eliminates the IRC §408A(c)(3)(B) provision prohibiting such conversions by taxpayers having adjusted gross income in excess of $100,000. Estate planners have a great deal to offer clients who wish to consider the move. After being funded with after-tax dollars, Roth IRAs offer tax-free, as opposed to tax-deferred, returns on investment.

Criminal Law Employment Law

How Changes to the DSM Could Affect Your Practice

The American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders — the listing of all recognized mental disorders — is set to have a new (fifth) edition published in 2013. A draft of the document was just released and displayed for public comment. This document clearly affects those in the mental health profession, but you may wonder what it has to do with lawyers. It seems predictable that the effects on the legal community will be felt in the criminal and employment areas and possibly in other areas as well.         

Proposed changes include new designations of gambling addiction and binge eating as recognized mental disorders.         

The proposed change creating a new category for gambling addiction could lead to the disorder being used as a defense to an employee’s embezzlement to pay gambling debts, or by an employee fired for excessive absences from work due to visits to the race track. The proposed change recognizing binge eating as a disorder may lead to more overweight employees claiming a disability.         

What do you think these changes will mean for your practice or the law generally? Do you think lawyers should provide their input to the proposed changes in an organized way? Tell us what you think!     

 © The Regents of the University of California, 2010. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.


New Legal Developments Real Property Law

FDIC Issues Guidelines on Real Estate Loan Workouts

On October 30, 2009, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) published its Policy Statement on Prudent Commercial Real Estate Loan Workouts. These guidelines were created by FDIC to assist institutional lenders facing significant challenges on loans secured by commercial real estate when borrowers experience diminished operating cash flows, depreciated security values, or prolonged sales and rental absorption periods.