Daily Commerce
Saturday, January 23, 2021
GUEST COLUMNS

Friday, January 22, 2021

As Americans have increasingly turned to digital devices and online shopping as a result of the pandemic, there has been an unfortunate rise in identity theft and fraud as scammers attempt to exploit the situation. Alarmingly, 10% of US adults report being a victim of identity theft since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Thursday, January 21, 2021

The Supreme Court recently denied petitions for certiorari in two of the most highly watched intellectual property cases before the Court.
Congress recently passed the Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2020 as part of the National Defense Authorization Act.

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Working families can benefit from a federal tax credit intended to put cash in their pockets. But millions of eligible people miss out on the rebate, known as the earned-income tax credit, because they don't file tax returns.

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Rudy Giuliani needs to confront bar disciplinary proceedings for his words that were part of the mosaic that egged on a mob illegally storming our Capitol on Jan. 6. Giuliani's words to his client's rallying crowd: "Let's have trial by combat."
As a deadly surge of COVID-19 began hammering California late last year, Gov. Gavin Newsom imposed new restrictions on personal and economic activities and repeatedly promised that massive vaccinations would soon stop its spread.

Monday, January 11, 2021

Friday, January 8, 2021

If you're a parent, here are some ways you can encourage your kids to become budding philanthropists.
A new bill could make it easier for seniors and people with disabilities to apply for CalFresh, California's version of food stamps, and allow people to enroll entirely over the phone by 2024.

Thursday, January 7, 2021

Nearly unnoticed in the wrangling over the amount of COVID relief payments, the stimulus bill signed into law on December 27, 2020 also included several interesting intellectual property provisions.

Wednesday, January 6, 2021

For decades, a cliché about California was that the weather was always sunny and mild during Pasadena's Rose Bowl Parade on New Year's Day, and snowbound television viewers in other states were thus enticed to migrate westward.

Monday, January 4, 2021

Here are five simple lessons on "dollars and sense" that can help kids develop a financial foundation.

Thursday, December 31, 2020

In my last column, I discussed the first argument that should be made in overcoming an obviousness rejection made by the patent examiner in a patent application. If possible, the applicant should argue that the examiner has failed to establish a prima facie case of obviousness because the examiner did not make the required factual findings.
As 2020 draws to a close, ending what is unofficially the longest year on record, California workers are facing more uncertainty than ever.

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

When it comes to terminology that is acceptable in legal briefs and judicial opinions, the California Style Manual is the bible of legal lexicon.
When the state Employment Development Department released a new report on jobsthis month, it had a tinge of optimism.

Monday, December 28, 2020

If you are nearing or in retirement, you may be reconsidering your housing needs. Does your current home feel like it's too big for your needs?

Thursday, December 24, 2020

One of the last books written by Dr. Seuss, "Oh, The Places You'll Go" is one of the bestselling books during graduation season each year. The copyright for this book, like all of the works of Dr. Seuss, belongs to Dr. Seuss Enterprises, LP, which issues licenses for the creation of new works under the Dr. Seuss brand.

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

California's fiscal squeeze tightened up Sunday when congressional leaders reached agreement on a $900 billion COVID-19 relief package that did not include direct aid to state and local governments.
When I was first elected to the state Assembly more than a decade ago, I had never held public office, yet I knew in my heart I could lead.

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

California demands a new compact for higher education – one that is based on Black people thriving.

Friday, December 18, 2020

For many of us, the new year means a fresh start and the chance to set new goals. As you consider your resolutions, you may want to add "strengthen my financial foundation" to the list.

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Most patent applications are initially rejected on obviousness grounds by the patent examiner in the US Patent and Trademark Office.

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Gov. Gavin Newsom already faces the complicated chore of filling several high-profile political positions.

Friday, December 11, 2020

Social Security is likely to play an integral role in your retirement income plan. Yet too many people aren't as familiar with the complexities of the program as they should be. There are a number of false perceptions about what to expect when the time comes to start collecting benefits. Here are five common myths out there and the real story behind each of them.

Thursday, December 10, 2020

In 10x Genomics, Inc. v. Celsee, Inc., 1-19-cv-00862 (DDE 2020-12-04, Order) (Colm F. Connolly), the District Court ordered the defendant to produce documents and give testimony about communications between defendant and its new corporate owner concerning the litigation and the provisions in the acquisition agreement that concern the litigation.
The act exists for a simple reason: To ensure a complete and accurate record of historically valuable presidential records.

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Almost one year into a global pandemic that is taxing health care systems and decimating communities, we are learning that Native people are 5.3 times more likely than white people to be hospitalized due to COVID-19. It's the largest disparity for any racial or ethnic group in the U.S.
Hopin, a virtual events startup in London, had seven employees and was valued at $38 million at the beginning of the year. Johnny Boufarhat, the company's chief executive, wasn't planning on raising more money.

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

As annual open enrollment proceeds for Affordable Care Act health plans, millions of Americans have signed up for low-cost coverage. But some people, like those who earn too much to qualify for financial help under the health care law, may find the cost of a plan daunting.
The word "controversial" is not a word used to describe the actions of the California Wildlife Conservation Board. Unlike other state agencies that oversee environmental issues, the board's main role is to distribute public funding for popular conservation projects such as purchasing easements and restoring fish and wildlife habitat. Votes by the board are nearly always unanimous.

Monday, December 7, 2020

Here is the second half of our two-part article on new employment law legislation affecting California employers.

Friday, December 4, 2020

Investing used to be easier for retirees. Many sought to generate enough income from the yield created by bonds or short-term investments like money market funds to meet their living expenses.

Thursday, December 3, 2020

In 2019, Carnival Corporation, the owner of the Carnival Cruise Line, attempted to register KING JAMES in connection with a wide variety of services, including retail store services, various retail goods, cruise-ship services, sports, entertainment, banquet services, beauty and health care, and much more. According to Carnival, it planned to name its newest ship King James, and the application seems to indicate that Carnival also planned to use the KING JAMES mark in connection with various other goods and services onboard the ship. As you can imagine, a prominent figure took issue with Carnival's plan. That figure was none other than LeBron James, or as those in the sports world have known him for over a decade, King James.

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has shone a spotlight on our health care system. Often it has revealed heroics showing that California's health care workers put themselves on the frontlines for their community, the industry came together to meet new and evolving challenges, and forged partnerships to innovate in double time. The pandemic has also shone a bright light on many of the shortcomings in the system, like health care workforce shortages. Even before the pandemic, our nation was experiencing a growing shortage of health care professionals.
Throughout California, academic grades for children forced into makeshift learn-at-home arrangements rather than receiving classroom instruction have plummeted — and that's among kids who are actually signing on via computer.

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Decades of political conflict over the fate of four obsolete dams on the Klamath River reached a turning point last week with a multi-party, two-state "memorandum of understanding" to remove them in hopes of restoring salmon runs.

Monday, November 16, 2020

George Floyd's murder in May expanded this nation's racial justice movement. A recent poll reported that 85% of Los Angeles County voters were concerned about race relations, and two-thirds had a favorable view of the Black Lives Matters movement.

Friday, November 13, 2020

At this time of year, you often hear advice to take steps before year-end to limit your tax liability. Yet 2020 is a unique year in a variety of ways – while many of the normal rules regarding managing income and timing deductions still apply, new provisions for 2020 have been implemented by The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act that may impact your year-end tax planning. Consider if any of these actions make sense for you.

Thursday, November 12, 2020

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Friday, November 6, 2020

What comes to mind when you think of creating a budget? For some people, even the thought of putting one together is unappealing and stressful. However, there's another more positive way to look at budgeting that may surprise you.

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Credit Donald Trump with one achievement in California: His presidency has encouraged record numbers of Californians to become registered voters and cast ballots.
Of the many cracks in our country's foundation laid bare by the COVID-19 pandemic, unequal access to the internet may have the most devastating long-term consequences.

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

2020 is set to be the year the Latino voter, the so-called "sleeping giant," fully realizes the political promise we have been showing for decades.
The California Legislature recently concluded this session's work. There are many new mandates for California employers. Some "urgency" laws took effect immediately upon passage. Others take effect on January 1.

Friday, October 30, 2020

Are you among the millions of Americans who has pursued a moneymaking endeavor outside of your job, what is commonly referred to as a "side hustle?" If you have a passion for this venture, you might be looking for a way to turn it into your primary occupation.

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

It is, as the inimitable Yogi Berra once observed, "déjà vu all over again" for the proponents of affirmative action in college admissions, contracts and other governmental decisions.

Thursday, October 15, 2020

Jack Daniel's Properties, Inc. has petitioned the Supreme Court of the United States for certiorari following an unfavorable ruling from the Ninth Circuit in the matter of VIP Products LLC v. Jack Daniel's Properties, Inc.
Ground-breaking research, published this week, reports that the high minimum passing score ("cut score") on the California bar exam does not result in greater public protection but does result in racially and ethnically disparate pass rates on the California bar exam.

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Last week the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral argument in Rutledge v. Pharmaceutical Care Management Association, 18-540, a case examining whether the Employee Retirement Income Security Act preempts state laws regulating the reimbursement rates paid by "pharmacy benefit managers" to pharmacists who sell prescription drugs to claimants with ERISA-governed health care plans.

Friday, July 31, 2020

With a referendum, California's Constitution gives voters the right to overturn unjust laws passed by the Legislature. This year, we have the chance to reject a law that will make our justice system even more racially biased and burden our counties with hundreds of millions in new costs when they can least afford it.
It has never been more clear that our criminal justice system needs major reforms to meet its promise of justice for all. For far too long, the money bail system has not only failed to keep us safe, it has served as a one-way door into a racially biased penal system.
When legislators passed and Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a 2020-21 state budget in June, they described it as "balanced." Not by a long shot.
In important ways, the John Bolton and Mary Trump cases are not representative of the broader ongoing efforts of Trump and his acolytes to use nondisclosure agreements to stifle criticism of the president.
Many Americans took advantage of May's long Memorial Day weekend by venturing out of town for the first time in weeks, to gather with family or visit resorts. A few weeks later, COVID-19 cases began a vertiginous rise.

Thursday, July 30, 2020

An unpublished decision from the Northern District of California emphasizes how important it is for attorneys to follow patent local rules.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

The fact that the Department of Justice is used to carry out the president's broad policy preferences is neither surprising nor unusual. But allowing political considerations to influence prosecutorial decisions in individual cases is not the same thing.
The pandemic-truncated 2020 legislative session, which resumed this week, has no shortage of business to conduct and just a month to do it — unless Gov. Gavin Newsom grants an extension.
As doctors, we fight for our patients, advocating for improved patient care and safety in our hospitals. When our weekly shifts end, many of us volunteer to further treat underserved populations.
For those who have either forgotten or don't keep up with takings law, Kelo v. New London was the bombshell case in which a 5-4 majority approved the condemnation of an inoffensive working class Connecticut neighborhood in order to provide amenities for the nearby Pfizer development.
A PIPE, or private investment in public equity, is a private placement transaction executed in accordance with the Section 4(a)(2) exemption and Rule 506(b) of Regulation D.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

The object of this article and accompanying self-study test is to familiarize readers with procedures under the Government Claims Act (Gov. Code Sections 810, et seq.), the statute that must be complied with when litigating actions against public entities.
If you want to experience the power of the Endangered Species Act for yourself, go to Sequoia National Park and look up. There, gliding high on the thermals, you'll see the embodiment of this extraordinarily successful law: California condors.
The court's rationale is that motions under that statute are limited to eminent domain actions and other remedies, such as summary judgment motions are available. The Weiss decision is logically flawed and will inevitably result in waste of precious judicial resources.

Monday, July 27, 2020

California's attorneys general, the state's top legal officers, have developed a bad habit in recent years — skewing the official titles of ballot measures.
The ABA recently issued an ethics opinion to clarify the line between legitimate advocacy and conduct that would violate Model Rule 8.4(g).
The data is in: We now know for certain who really benefited from federal efforts intended for small business recovery. The biggest banks made billions of dollars in fees from the Paycheck Protection Program.
Maitely Weismann moved her 77-year-old mother from New York into a Los Angeles assisted living facility in mid-March, planning frequent visits to help her settle in. The timing couldn't have been worse, as California's pandemic lockdown had just banned virtually all visits in long-term care homes.

Friday, July 24, 2020

Over the course of their lifetime, the average American changes jobs 12 times and works for 5-7 different employers1. If this rings true for you, you may be among the millions of people who have started 401(k) or 403(b) plans with multiple companies over the years.
Months into the coronavirus pandemic, California is stockpiling masks for a future wave of infections even as hospitals say they still don't have enough to protect workers from the deadly virus.
Every aspect of life, business and law has been impacted by the current and unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic. The cannabis industry, which was already a transitioning industry undergoing many challenges, has seen a number of major changes.
While a final resolution of the issue in a recent California Supreme Court ruling is long overdue and the court's recent decision brings needed clarity to condemnation law, the work of the Legislature, the Judicial Council and the Supreme Court is incomplete.

Thursday, July 23, 2020

The past few months have seen a historic surge in both state and federal legislation aimed at lessening the detrimental effects of the current pandemic on the health of both individuals and the economy as a whole. This has included multiple congressional relief bills, along with a multitude of other laws by states across the nation aimed at protecting individuals and employees affected by COVID-19.
As COVID-19 cases surge in California, some of the state's leading mental health professionals warned of long-lasting psychological fallout that will require enormous investment to help Californians who are suffering. Yet they also praised innovative experiments during the pandemic and said there is reason for hope.
Despite the concerted efforts to pressure the insurance industry for business interruption payments, none have been successful as one French restaurant, and the ruling is leading to more settlements.
In f'real Foods, LLC et al v. Hamilton Beach Brands, Inc. et al, 1-16-cv-00041 (DDE 2020-07-16, Order) (Colm F. Connolly), plaintiffs freal Foods, LLC and Rich Products Corporation sued defendants Hamilton Beach Brands, Inc. and Hershey Creamery Company for infringement of four patents on four accused products that are high performance blenders manufactured by Hamilton Beach.

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

The past months have been a time of exceptional change and challenge for Green Dot Public Schools -- as they have for most organizations, families and communities.
We certainly know that COVID-19 strikes hardest, sometimes fatally, at those who already have weakened bodies, such as the elderly.
As fiduciaries, trustees are typically guided by the responsibilities and obligations imposed on them under the law and/or pursuant to a contract or trust instrument. In litigation, courts typically focus more on the sufficiency of the trustee's asset management process and administrative approach than investment portfolio results. It is important, therefore, that a trustee focus on the review process and reevaluate all aspects of the administration.
Those not knowledgeable in the art of jury selection see little harm in masking jurors and lawyers. But for those of us who spend our careers in the trenches of the courtroom reading the subtleties of juror reactions in order to decide how to exercise the precious few preemptory challenges allowed by law, we will be stumbling blindly — deprived of the essential signs of facial expression.
For high growth tech companies, corporate venture capital can be an attractive investment option. Not only can corporates provide capital, but they can also offer commercial synergies and valuable services — from assistance with product design to regulatory and technical support in specialist areas.

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Many employers and employees alike are eager to get back to work as Safer-at-Home restrictions begin to ease. Notwithstanding reports that coronavirus infection rates are spiking in California, efforts by businesses to cautiously resume operations are likely to continue.
According to many polls, President Donald Trump's path to re-election has never looked more difficult. But the polls fail to account for what is known as the "contingent election," which Lin-Manuel Miranda uses in the storyline to the hit musical "Hamilton."

Monday, July 20, 2020

After weeks of uncertainty, it's now obvious that the vast majority of California's six million public school students will be staying, and presumably studying, at home this fall, rather than returning to the classrooms they hastily abandoned four months ago.
In June we marked the one-year anniversary of Gov. Gavin Newsom's formal apology to California's Native American people for official atrocities and genocide committed against them by the state.
The nationwide coronavirus lockdown — the first in over a century from a global pandemic — has given us an opportunity to slow down, spend more time with our loved ones, and reflect on our priorities. As we emerge from the lockdown, what lessons can we take with us to thrive in our professional and personal lives in increasingly challenging times? Here are five.
Next in the Negotiating Trauma & the Law Series, interview with Fresno-based immigration lawyer on the importance of giving clients more control; on the imperative of habits to stay healthy in difficult trauma-inducing work.

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

On June 5, the governor of California gave the green light for film and television production to resume, effective June 12. This news came a few weeks after the Industry-Wide Labor-Management Safety Committee Task Force submitted a white paper containing recommended protocols to governors across the country, including California and New York.
In the ongoing confrontation between the U.S. government and Chinese telecom giant Huawei, the U.S. has dealt another major blow.

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

The economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting urban and rural communities across California. Congress is exploring economic recovery legislation that includes investments in workforce development and infrastructure. And in Sacramento, there have been discussions about focusing future climate and natural resource bonds on economic recovery.

Monday, July 6, 2020

Two bills currently before the California Legislature are seemingly moving quite easily through the Assembly and Senate but are facing significant opposition from the California insurance commissioner and insurance consumer organizations.
A Court of Appeal ruling recently added to the growing number of California state and federal courts holding that the websites of businesses that are connected to a "brick and mortar" physical location are covered by the ADA if there is a "sufficient nexus between the claimed barriers and the plaintiff's ability to use or enjoy the goods and services offered at the defendant's physical facilities.
It has been five long weeks since the reckless, highly visible killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police. Although media coverage has dwindled, uprisings continue to sprout in nearly every major metropolitan area in the United States, calling for an end to police brutality against Black Americans, calling for an end to policing as we know it -- with global support. The people have declared, unequivocally, that it's time to defund the police.
By best estimates, police in the United States killed more than 1,000 individuals last year. Fortunately, there are a number of concrete steps that can be taken in the areas of recruitment, training, liability and root cause analysis to reduce police violence.

Thursday, June 25, 2020

The work of crafting a pandemic-era state budget was never going to make California Democrats happy. The question, as soon as the economic fallout from the coronavirus became evident this spring, wasn't whether there would be cuts, but rather, who would take them and how deep they would go.
The 2020-21 state budget agreement, announced this week by Gov. Gavin Newsom and legislative leaders, assumes that California's economy will perform a bit better than previously assumed — enough better to add another billion dollars to the revenue side of the ledger.
As California confronts increasing water challenges, the most equitable statewide solution from a social justice perspective is the single-tunnel project proposed by Gov. Gavin Newsom, known as the Delta Conveyance Project.
After months of being confined to our homes, thousands of people have been shouting in the streets, risking their lives in the midst of a pandemic to fight structural racism and to be heard. It's time to listen.
nicolors, Inc. creates and markets artistic design fabrics to various garment manufacturers. Some of these designs are marketed to the public and placed in its showroom while other designs are considered "confined" works that Unicolor sells to certain customers.
Marijuana, the IRS and taxes have a difficult relationship. In a recent 9th Circuit ruling, the unhappy story starts with a regular old tax audit.
A wave of bankruptcies is likely due to the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the economy and the unemployment rate. For someone with an outstanding income tax liability who is considering filing for bankruptcy, a key question will be whether that liability is dischargeable in bankruptcy.

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

With camps and youth programs canceled, many California families are wrestling with how to keep their children engaged throughout the summer. For too many families, there is a more gut-wrenching challenge: how to keep their children fed.
We are in a time of global pandemic and the U.S. Southern border wall is progressing. More than 180 miles of new wall has been constructed, without recent push-back from those of us who have long protested the building of a wall.
Sisters Maria and Jennifer Salvador start their days before the sun. The Southern California teenagers report to work at an Oxnard strawberry farm with one goal: To harvest as many bright red strawberries as they can.
The Death Penalty Clinic at Berkley Law released a study last week that concludes that "racial discrimination is an ever-present feature of jury selection in California."
Gov. Gavin Newsom and legislative leaders announced this week that they have a deal on a new state budget to take effect on July 1.
A society's budget reveals its moral values, and by that metric, 21st century America barely hovers above bankruptcy. Our budgets expose our value of a carceral, police state, or at least one imposed and inflicted upon marginalized communities of color.

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

The Families First Coronavirus Act requires certain employers to provide employees with Emergency Paid Sick Leave or Expanded Family and Medical Leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19, paid at the employee's average "regular rate of pay."
The California Public Employees Retirement System, the nation's largest pension trust, benefited greatly from the runup in stocks and other investments during the last few years, topping $400 billion early this year.
It is inevitable that the ongoing global pandemic will continue to affect nearly all facets of social and business life across the nation. Some bankruptcy courts have utilized their equitable powers to assist debtors in their attempts to reorganize and/or liquidate while accounting for the COVID-19 lockdowns and economic downturn.
As director general at Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority, known as ZimParks, I am keenly aware of the reliance we have on revenue provided by international hunting tourism.

Friday, June 19, 2020

Interest rates recently hit all-time lows as the Federal Reserve made cuts to mitigate the financial impacts of COVID-19. If you're a homeowner with a monthly mortgage payment, you might be wondering if now is a good time to refinance.
In a stinging blow to the Trump administration, Thursday's Supreme Court decision found the administration's attempt to terminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, known as DACA, was "arbitrary and capricious."
In Duke, the California Supreme Court expanded the power of the trial court to admit extrinsic evidence to correct mistakes in wills, a power neither statute nor case law permitted, holding that such intervention was required to avoid unjust enrichment.
On June 9, the California Public Utilities Commission issued an order designating all gig drivers classified as independent contractors as presumptive employees of their respective companies.

Thursday, June 18, 2020

The United States Patent and Trademark Office has established a new program for prioritized examination for patent applications for inventions related to COVID-19 and for trademark applications for marks used for certain medical products and services used in connection with COVID-19.
Commercial and residential tenants and landlords seeking to address the financial impact of COVID-19 shelter-in-place orders and reopening plans have encountered a confusing maze of new laws at the city, county and state levels.

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

One would think that with demonstrations against police brutality raging throughout the state, even in small rural towns, officers who monitored the protests would have been on their best behavior.
Three summers ago, my Stanford Law classmates and I were volunteering at an immigration detention center in rural Texas to help asylum seekers. While we were there, President Donald Trump, in a blink of a tweet, rescinded DACA, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
Recently, Sen. Mike Braun introduced the Conditional Approval Act, which would amend the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act to allow for a shorter pathway to market — that is, to allow for an early, provisional, and time limited approval — for drug candidates that meet six criteria.
Only a little more than a week after the protests started, a panel of the 4th Circuit issued an opinion on the use of excessive force by the police against a homeless black man.

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Is this the end of the line for California's misbegotten bullet train project?
It hardly counts as a silver lining, but policymakers and the press are finally calling out racial disparities in both income and health that have intensified with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Easing the restrictions of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act's Payment Protection Program program, on June 3, the Senate passed H.R. 7010, the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act of 2020, which had passed the House in late May.
Recognizing the issue as a matter of first impression, the Court of Appeal construed the statutory language as limiting coverage "only if the insured is aware of the hazard or reasonably could have discovered it through exercising ordinary care or diligence."

Monday, June 15, 2020

We lawyers are accustomed to incremental change based on reasoned consideration of precedent. Legal precedent is designed to change slowly. That's not always a good thing.
The murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and countless others to state violence has ignited a global uprising against racism in all its forms. It also has given new momentum to the fight for justice for black and brown communities across California, with a call to revolutionize our justice systems.
When Jerry Brown returned to the governorship in 2011, he pledged that fixing a deficit-ridden state budget would be his highest priority.
Each juror brings a unique perspective and experience to the process, but together they create new energy. When jurors aren't physically together, some of that will be lost.

Friday, June 12, 2020

The economic shutdown that we've endured as a nation as we attempt to combat COVID-19 has created significant challenges for small business owners. Even those that were thriving before the crisis are not immune to the effects of a sustained closure or limitation on how they operate.
In a report issued on June 4, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which oversees most nursing homes in the United States, estimated that almost 32,000 residents have died of the virus, more than a quarter of all COVID-19 deaths in the country.
The COVID-19 pandemic has placed a spotlight on the shortcomings of many of the programs that help protect older adults in California, including our state's food assistance program, CalFresh.
In recent months, many insured businesses have turned to their insurers seeking coverage for claims and losses related to COVID-19.

Thursday, June 11, 2020

What was once illegal is now a thriving industry. That's right — I'm talking about cannabis. But my initial statement isn't entirely accurate. Although Alaska, California, Colorado, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington have legalized cannabis, the drug remains a Schedule I narcotic under the federal Controlled Substances Act.
The commonly used methods of valuation are categorized into three primary approaches. The three approaches are the asset, income and market approaches. Each method uses its own theoretical basis and mathematics. The independent results of each method can produces sometimes significantly different valuation results.
As we face the COVID-19 pandemic, most of us have experienced anything from noticeable stress to serious health or financial problems. Are our law practices facing financial ruin? Is emotional upheaval affecting our relationships? How do we deal with this crisis? Fortunately, there are adaptive strategies that can help.

Wednesday, June 10, 2020

No sooner had Joseph Strauss first imagined a bridge to cross the Golden Gate Strait, than the complaints came rolling in. Property prices would be lowered. Views would be ruined. The environment would be harmed. More than 2,000 lawsuits that sought to stymie the project were a testament to an opposition that was powerful, determined and well-funded.

Friday, June 5, 2020

Politicians from both political parties have floated various proposals for limiting or eliminating CDA immunity. If those efforts succeed, online platforms will find themselves without a key protection against user-content-based litigation.
We are all engaged in a great struggle. Pandemic or not, this is the nature of our journey. Throughout our negotiations, we seek above all to persuade, to influence the outcome of our conversations to satisfy the interests of clients.
One possible upside to a down market comes in the form of a long-recognized strategy called tax loss harvesting. The concept took a backseat in the midst of an 11-year bull market, but it has jumped back into discussion now.

Thursday, June 4, 2020

In the midst of this pandemic, college-age students and their families are considering what to do next fall. The most interesting question posed to me is: should I take a "gap year"?
In Ferring Pharmaceuticals Inc. et al v. Serenity Pharmaceuticals, LLC et al, 1-17-cv-09922 (SDNY 2020-05-27, Order), Chief Judge C.J. McMahon of the Southern District of New York ordered an upcoming bench trial set to begin on July 6, 2020 in a patent infringement case to be "all remote," at least in the sense that at a minimum all the witnesses will testify remotely.

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

I spent my final years at Harvard studying hard and working hard to fight for race conscious admissions policies there. After graduating last year, I returned home to California as another conversation about affirmative action was emerging with Assembly Constitutional Amendment 5.
As the crises cascade one upon the other — pandemic, economic decline and racial conflict — Democrat Gavin Newsom's governorship bears an increasingly eery resemblance to that of Republican Pete Wilson three decades earlier.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

The news in this opinion is that the California Supreme Court has found that preventive detention is constitutionally permitted under both the state and federal constitutions under the standard of California Constitution Article I, Section 12, subdivision (b), but with qualifications.

Monday, June 1, 2020

Governments' efforts to address the novel coronavirus pandemic include measures that closed or curtailed many businesses' operations. As governments relax these restrictions, businesses must hire, rehire, or recall employees who were laid off or paid to be on call.

Friday, May 29, 2020

No one could have predicted with certainty how quickly the COVID-19 pandemic would change the lives of so many around the world. Fear of infection, stay-at-home orders and a rallying cry to help "flatten the curve" have drastically changed how people behave in their daily lives. In the face of so much uncertainty, the need to have an emergency fund -- a tool that can help your family manage the financial fallout in the case of a job loss or other unwelcome impact -- has come to the forefront.

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Certain literary or graphic characters may, in some cases, enjoy copyright protection. Think James Bond - or Batman and even his Batmobile. Recently, the Ninth Circuit was called upon to determine whether the Moodsters, "anthropomorphized characters representing human emotions," are subject to the same copyright protection as Batman. Sadly, the Ninth Circuit concluded they do not.
The extraordinary events of the last few months have affected millions of lives and the one thing that can restore more certainty and control in litigation is self-resolution of disputes, as courts seem handcuffed and continue to broadcast that there will be significant delay in providing the justice that litigants seek.
Previous articles indicate that if COVID-19 is a force majeure event, it is one like no other ever litigated: a worldwide pandemic, occurring in continuing phases, with no known cure or end, and a waterfall of events, specifically including social and economic shut down of most the United States and a number of other countries.

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Last week, the 9th Circuit issued its decision in one of the biggest legal cases in the National Collegiate Athletic Association's 114-year history.
Faced with rebuilding California's economy — one founded upon caring and fairness — let's ignore Wall Street and ivory tower economists. More can be learned from selfless frontline workers, like Danielle Mahabir. Donning sterile gloves and gown, nurse Mahabir, 34, elbows open the door into her intensive-care unit in San Jose. Hot-running ventilators sustain over a hundred patients inside, recovering from strokes, brain injuries or COVID-19 — an eerie climate inside, like an "arid forest waving in the summer breeze," Mahabir said.
Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously reversed the 2nd Circuit's application of res judicata to bar Lucky Brand's assertion of a defense in a 2011 lawsuit where it failed to litigate that same defense in a separate lawsuit in 2005.
It's time's up, pencils down for the SAT and ACT tests at the University of California.
Even before COVID-19 rocked California, there were stark economic differences between the state's two major metropolitan regions — the San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles County-centered Southern California — and the pandemic will widen the gap even more.
By confirming a property interest in employment and fraud as a basis of a public policy claim (albeit in the context of Penal Code statutes), a recent appellate ruling has broadened the definition of statutorily based public policy, to the benefit of unjustly terminated employees.

Friday, May 22, 2020

In these challenging economic times, many worthwhile charitable organizations find themselves in a precarious financial position. Meanwhile, they are experiencing unprecedented demand, especially those charities who provide basic needs like food and shelter.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Adding to the maze of federal and state coronavirus legislation, Gov. Gavin Newsom recently announced sought-after property tax relief for California homeowners and businesses who have demonstrated financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
When California, with 17 million residents, surpassed New York to become the nation's most populous state in 1962, it was a cause for celebration.
Eventually, it was bound to happen. A patent application was filed by a machine. Well, not exactly. A human being filed a patent application naming a machine as the inventor.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Clem Miller, a congressman from California's North Coast known as Spendin' Clem for his ability to bring home pork-barrel funding, was a shoo-in for re-election to a third term in 1962.

Friday, May 15, 2020

The unprecedented shuttering of physical campuses amid the COVID-19 pandemic has forced California colleges and universities into triage mode, scrambling for quick solutions to host classes online.
The now ended long economic boom from 2010-2020 made Californians complacent. Workers were in demand everywhere in America, so employers put up with California's high minimum wage, stunning housing costs and often absurd regulations.
California's preparations to battle wildfires this year will not be slowed by the coronavirus pandemic, Gov. Gavin Newson vowed Wednesday, saying the state will purchase specially equipped helicopters and fire engines and hire hundreds of additional firefighters.
The coronavirus pandemic has stoked fears among businesses that they will be targeted with lawsuits as they reopen for business. They foresee customers and employees lining up to sue, claiming unsafe conditions and negligent exposure to the virus, along with mult-million-dollar wrongful death claims from victims' family members. They envision years of litigation, astronomical legal defense bills, and millions of dollars in payouts.
It has taken a global pandemic to finally move legislators in DC toward progress on consumer privacy issues. Despite an urgent need for a comprehensive legal framework to protect personal data, more than a year after it first began looking at a federal scheme, Congress has not managed to reach consensus on a framework such as the European Union's GDPR or California's CCPA.
As California communities return to work amidst the ongoing pandemic, landlords must consider how and when to reopen traditional workspaces. Five key principles should guide their decisions as they face this challenge.

Thursday, May 14, 2020

The battle started almost six years ago. A Utah-based company known as Dan Farr Productions ("DFP") decided to use San Diego Comic Convention's ("SDCC") registered trademark COMIC-CON in conjunction with its own comic and popular arts convention, resulting in SDCC filing suit in the Southern District of California. SDCC alleged in its complaint that it has the exclusive right to utilize its COMIC-CON trademarks and has done so in connection with its comic convention since 1970.
A major deficiency under the current whistleblower protections is the time-consuming litigation process subjecting aggrieved employees to years of litigation before potential redress.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Great job, California! Your high, continued support for social distancing and sheltering-in-place have helped reduce COVID-19's spread and lay the groundwork for state and federal plans to slowly re-open society.
What Congress and the Small Business Association giveth, the IRS taketh away.
On May 5, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, along with the City Attorneys for the cities of Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco, filed a lawsuit in San Francisco County Superior Court against Uber Technologies, Inc. and Lyft, Inc. alleging that these entities violated California law by intentionally misclassifying their workers as independent contractors rather than as employees.
Early in his second governorship, Jerry Brown championed a major overhaul of school finance that, he pledged, would close the stubborn "achievement gap" that separated poor and English-learner students from children of more privileged circumstances.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

While it's not possible to cover all of the legal issues that nonprofits are currently facing in this one column, I'm focusing this month on a few of the key issues I'm seeing.
It is important that businesses enduring significant financial distress, even if the problems only arose as a result of fall-out from the pandemic, act proactively to sustain viability and chart a viable path forward.

Monday, May 11, 2020

The always forward-thinking New York City Bar Association has urged adoption of a humanitarian exception to its ethics rules to permit its members to contribute items of necessity such as food and rent assistance to poor client situations. Other lawyers have indicated a desire to assist by contributing to community businesses serving low-income residents in their communities.
The federal Paycheck Protection Program was meant to help small businesses keep their employees on payroll, and to pay utilities, rent, interest, health insurance and pension contributions.

Friday, May 8, 2020

Women are uniquely impacted by the coronavirus. Domestic violence has surged; industries in which women provide an outsized portion of the labor force — service, retail and childcare — are being crushed by the economic fallout; and incidents of sexual harassment by landlords have reportedly increased. Women are also experiencing disruptions in sexual and reproductive health care during the peak of the pandemic.
California finance officials revealed a $54.3 billion deficit Thursday in the first economic assessment of the coronavirus pandemic's devastating blow to the fifth-largest economy in the world.
It was purely coincidental that state Supreme Court justices heard arguments this week in a landmark case involving public employee pensions as state and local officials were beginning to wrest with the severe impacts of a pandemic-induced recession on their budgets.
Officials in the Lammersville Joint Unified School District had to make a decision about grading policies.
The onset of COVID-19 flu has prompted physicians, researchers and health care practitioners to scramble to come up with treatment methods for the illness.

Thursday, May 7, 2020

Amidst all the chaos and concern, it can be easy to lose sight of some basic tax rules.
On Monday, May 4, 2020, the Supreme Court of the United States heard oral argument in United States Patent and Trademark Office v. Booking.com, B.V. For the first time in the history of the Court, the argument was live streamed via multiple outlets, including CNN, enabling us trademark junkies to listen to the argument in real time.
Take advantage of this quiet time as a point of self-reflection. If you have a lull in your practice, take advantage of all of the free CLE offerings. Learn a new area of law, or educate yourself in your current area of practice. Read up on all of the new rules. We do not know if some of them will be permanent.

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

About three-fourths of the Legislature's 120 seats are occupied by Democrats, which renders the Capitol's relatively tiny band of Republicans pretty much irrelevant.
In the context of the numerous lawsuits have recently filed by policyholders seeking compensation for lost business income occasioned by the pending pandemic, a key issue will be whether those policyholders have suffered "direct physical loss or damage" to their businesses.
The COVID-19 pandemic gives new meaning to the phrase "living the dream." Like millions, I find myself ruminating, so for want of anything better to say, here are my latest reflections. If I waited another three weeks, you undoubtedly would be reading an entirely different article.
Just as every dog has his day, every litigant — best in show, purebred, cur, or junkyard biter — can always exercise that right, right? Well, actually not. In exceptional cases, a litigant can so egregiously misbehave that the right to appeal can be lost. We're talking here, of course, about the civil disentitlement doctrine.

Thursday, April 30, 2020

For some time there has been a split among the Federal circuits as to whether evidence of willfulness is required in order to award disgorgement of profits for trademark infringement under Section 1125(a) of the Lanham Act.
Public support for marijuana legalization and regulation has been increasing steadily nationwide for years. But the recent decision of elected officials in California and elsewhere to embrace cannabis during the COVID-19 pandemic has solidified its status as part of the mainstream fabric of America.
The view from high up in Del Mar's 17th Street lifeguard station is a visit-California poster: a sweeping curve of sand, dramatic coastal bluffs, a welcoming sea. 
In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the White House is reportedly working behind the scenes to reduce wages for farmworkers. 
This article will address how work from home mandates resulting from the pandemic also increase the risks to the employer's trade secrets and some potential measures that employers can take to reduce those risks.

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

In a matter of weeks, Dr. William Goral, a private practice ear, nose and throat specialist in San Bernardino County, will be out of business.
Wells Fargo's problems may not be over. Last month, the Democratic staff of the Committee on Financial Services for the U.S. House of Representatives issued a scathing 113-page report. And just recently, some small businesses have filed class actions accusing Wells Fargo of gerrymandering the order of processing of loans under the government-backed Paycheck Protection Program to favor larger loan applicants, which make the bank more money.
The 9th Circuit recently found jurisdiction over a non-tribal member under both prongs of Montana v. U.S.

Monday, April 27, 2020

Since the coronavirus pandemic hit the United States, Congress has enacted several legislative packages aimed at providing financial relief to businesses in the form of loans, increased tax deductions, and refundable tax credits.
Today's COVID-19 pandemic is a reminder that every person is vulnerable to disease, instability, unavailability and loss. Its worldwide reach has created circumstances that most people never before considered but which have always been possibilities.
A party accused of infringing a patent may challenge the validity of the patent in the federal court infringement litigation or in separate administrative proceedings in the Patent and Trademark Office's Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB). 

Friday, April 24, 2020

For over 75 years, California employers have been vexed by the prolix requirements for the statements accompanying paychecks set out on Labor Code Section 226. After a decade of pitched litigation concerning the scope of penalties for violation of these requirements, a state trial court has now definitively held — for the first time — that there are severe statutory limitations on the scope of civil penalties for paystub violations.
Retirement is an important milestone that often comes after years (or decades) of careful planning. But even the most seasoned planners couldn't have foreseen the severe market selloff that happened in March in reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic. The abrupt end to the 10-year bull market surprised investors of all ages who are now wondering how long it will take for their portfolios to recover.
With the COVID-19 wreaking havoc on California's economy, many of the adversely affected businesses increasingly find themselves unable to perform their contractual obligations.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Californians pushed back at Gov. Gavin Newsom's handling of the coronavirus pandemic on Monday, with protesters demanding that stay-at-home restrictions be eased and state lawmakers arguing for more transparency and a bigger role in decisions.
A commercial insurer that denied a business interruption claim by Hollywood's Musso & Frank Grill over its forced closure due to the coronavirus pandemic is the target of a federal suit filed Tuesday in the Central District of California.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Last week, Gov. Gavin Newsom declared the obvious fact that "we are now in a pandemic-induced recession," and appointed an 80-member "Task Force on Business and Jobs Recovery" to guide our way back to prosperity.
At Immigrants Rising, the Bay-Area nonprofit where I'm director of Research and Entrepreneurship, the early-stage entrepreneurs we support resemble a lot of other ambitious, millennial CEOs.

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

In the wake of the federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act, local governments have begun enacting ordinances designed to extend FFCRA-like leave entitlements to employees not eligible for this particular federal paid leave because they work for employers with 500 or more employees.
A core component of the $2.2 trillion COVID-19 stimulus package allows the Small Business Administration to create a Paycheck Protection Program from Feb. 15, 2020, to June 30, 2020, that provides for 100% federally backed forgivable loans for certain eligible businesses and nonprofits hurt by the coronavirus fallout.
As California scrambles to protect more than 150,000 homeless residents from contracting and spreading novel coronavirus, Gov. Gavin Newsom had some harsh words Saturday for cities he accused of blocking the conversion of hotels and motels for emergency housing.

Monday, April 20, 2020

Despite rapid growth of regulated cannabis markets across the U.S. and its territories, conflicting federal and state laws continue to hinder the industry. As a result of banking restrictions, everyday business activity performed by state licensed cannabis businesses — lawful in most other sectors — transforms into criminal conduct.
The battle to expand vote-by-mail erupted last Tuesday in Wisconsin's primary when state Republican lawmakers denied Gov. Tony Evers' call to mail a ballot to every registered voter in hopes of reducing the threat of COVID-19. The reason cited: voter fraud.

Friday, April 17, 2020

Gov. Gavin Newsom said Wednesday the state is partnering with philanthropic groups to provide disaster relief to undocumented immigrants affected by the coronavirus who have been left out of other pandemic assistance programs.
Local governments have met the unprecedented circumstances surrounding COVID-19 with unprecedented changes in law. This is especially true in Los Angeles. In the past weeks, the city council has proposed several significant legislative actions in response to the COVID-19 crisis.
Given the rise of the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic, it is safe to assume the world as we know it has changed and even a return to some level of normal is likely to be a very different type of normal than what existed pre-COVID-19.
Burbank High School runs a music program that reportedly provided the inspiration for the hit TV show, Glee. It is nationally known for the competitive show choirs its students participate in as part of the program.

Thursday, April 16, 2020

A major consideration for landlords and tenants is a loss of business or increased liabilities due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Insured parties should review their insurance coverages and determine whether additional coverages are available or whether COVID-19-related losses are a covered event.
Consider the following scenario: Smith sues Jones. Insurance Company hires Defense Counsel to defend Jones under the terms of a liability policy with $1 million policy limits.

In a roadmap unveiled Tuesday with top public health officials, Gov. Gavin Newsom said he will not lift his shelter-in-place order until adequate suppression and mitigation measures are in place to prevent future flare-ups. 

In mid-March, a fear-induced global sell-off triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic ended the longest bull market in U.S. history -- leading us into our first bear market in 11 years. Bear markets are commonly defined as a decline of at least 20% from the market's high point to the low during the sell-off.

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Even if the most restrictive social distancing measures adopted to address the pandemic last for only a short time, with brick-and-mortar establishments forced to shut their doors, consumer spending has declined and tenants have begun to face extreme hardship in meeting their rent and financing commitments. While some landlords may have the liquidity to offer rent concessions, they still face financing and other contractual obligations of their own.
The coronavirus pandemic has pushed California and the nation into uncharted waters, especially with the impact on our schools.
The first few days of the coronavirus crisis revealed that the veneer of civilization may be thinner than we assumed.
Last week, Isabel Solorio turned away five families from the Lanare food bank serving farmworkers in rural Fresno County.

Monday, April 13, 2020

For California's seniors, the coronavirus pandemic is an especially terrifying crisis. For the state, it is also a powerful signal that gaping loopholes in protections for this vulnerable and growing population must change.

Friday, April 10, 2020

In response to the severe economic fallout stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, a record $2 trillion fiscal stimulus package was enacted at the end of March. 
In my early twenties, I started a modest sandwich shop where I learned that even on good days, the margins are tight. The risk, sweat and stress that goes into starting, owning and operating a small business are so constant that one wonders what compels anyone to do it.

Thursday, April 9, 2020

As cities and states now in lockdown struggle to determine if construction in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic is an essential service, commercial real estate stakeholders and their attorneys are examining contractual obligations to assess risk and introduce clauses to limit exposure.
On March 31, 2020, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office announced that, pursuant to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, certain deadlines for patent and trademark applications would be extended. 
Franchise systems in all industries would be well served to proactively adapt their systems to allow franchisees to provide some level of service, while navigating legal issues prompted by COVID-19.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Lori Waldman got lucky. She thought she and her 87-year-old father would be sleeping in her car tonight.
In a virtual Q&A last week hosted by CalMatters, two of California's top education leaders gave parents and teachers advice on how to educate students while schools remain physically closed.

Monday, April 6, 2020

As a teacher, I have realized students have different assumptions now. I am sure it is an actual difference in attitudes toward authority for the next generation and our era; it is not merely my imagination or my own maturation.
I recently encountered a case involving a liability claim related to serving alcohol. The drinker's intoxication was alleged to be a factor in causing injury to the plaintiff and the plaintiff sued both the drinker and the server. In reviewing the law, I found this area to be quite technical.
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has issued a ruling which will likely make it harder for copyright owners to prove infringement in courts that are subject to the jurisdiction of the 9th Circuit, the largest circuit in the nation.

Friday, April 3, 2020

COVID-19 has precipitated a record drop in the stock market. Here are a few steps to consider.
The COVID-19 pandemic may give rise to a variety of novel insurance coverage disputes, and some of those disputes may include claims by policyholders for emotional distress due to a bad-faith claim denial.
Businesses will lose billions of dollars because they cannot operate due to the coronavirus. People either will not enter retail establishments or cannot do so due to stay-at-home orders. Restaurants are existing on takeout orders and those who do not have takeout windows are not operating at all. This will lead to a dispute between commercial tenants who cannot pay rent and their landlords.
With the closure of the U.S. southern border due to the pandemic, many Mexicans and Mexican Americans in California are physically cut off from home or family, while others contend with indefinite pauses in deportation or residency cases.

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

On Friday, a lawsuit was filed challenging Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva's effort to shut down gun stores in Los Angeles by deeming such business "non-essential." The lawsuit names Villanueva, Gov. Gavin Newsom and two public health officers.
California, the largest purchaser of goods and services in the country—outside of the federal government—has been particularly impacted by COVID-19, with the ramifications of the virus also felt by local governments throughout the state.
As the coronavirus pandemic terrorizes the nation, the federal government generally and President Donald Trump specifically have been criticized — with good reason — for their lack of preparedness and slow reaction.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

On Wednesday afternoon, Gov. Gavin Newsom took his now-usual spot behind a podium in Sacramento for a livestreamed news conference and rattled off a dizzying list of statistics.
Gov. Gavin Newsom expressed confidence Saturday that California has the capacity to produce enough ventilators to meet its projected needs in response to the coronavirus pandemic. But during a tour of a San Jose energy company that is refurbishing outdated ones, he cautioned that the state's need could expand significantly if the public doesn't maintain social distancing and the crisis worsens.

Monday, March 30, 2020

The need to delay CCPA enforcement is particularly acute for the state's brick-and-mortar retailers. For many of them, this is one more burden as they shut their doors indefinitely and try to figure out how to stay solvent amid what is quickly becoming the most devastating pandemic of our lifetime.
The rapidly expanding COVID-19 pandemic threatens the lives and livelihoods of Californians, but it also lays bare some multi-billion-dollar shortcomings in state government finances that have been ignored for decades, despite many warnings.
Many California employers have temporarily curtailed or even closed operations as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. Even temporary layoffs may require employers to distribute notices under federal or California laws known as "WARN Acts."
Trade secret litigation in California is growing, in both volume and impact.

Friday, March 27, 2020

When the warm weather finally hits, most of us get bit by the spring-cleaning bug. Our to-do lists often include cleaning out our garages, basements and closets. But this year, it might be time to add another section to the list: finances.

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

During his first couple weeks of managing California's COVID-19 crisis, Gov. Gavin Newsom's words and actions were impressively cool-headed and measured.
There may be a coronavirus pandemic, but California is making it easier than ever for housebound and anxious residents to get buzzed.
California can readily and cost-effectively reach its goal to achieve climate neutrality by 2045 and begin to reverse climate change, according to a recent report led by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and authored by more than 20 researchers.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

This is Sunshine Week, which pays homage to the principle that the public's business should be public even though officials often try to keep us in the dark about their unsavory activities.

Monday, March 2, 2020

Employers must compensate employees for the time they spend waiting for management to inspect personal property before they leave work.
Attorneys generally may not directly solicit potential clients to provide legal help. This prohibition is meant to alleviate the concern that an attorney's skill and training could permit the attorney to unduly influence a person with less experience dealing with the legal system to retain the attorney.
The state high court will soon decide if and when jury trials are available in these actions, including Prop 65.

Friday, February 28, 2020

The new lower PFAS levels will result in many more public water systems with wells exceeding the new response levels, and more wells will likely be removed from service until they can be treated.
The California Supreme Court is expected to decide whether state laws governing wage statements and minimum wage apply to employees who perform work both inside California and outside the state.
If you have a pet, you know the costs of keeping them healthy can add up quickly. From annual vet visits, to medication to special diets, pet ownership often includes a variety of expenses. Plus, you never know when they may need emergency care, surgery, or other expensive treatment.
When Resi Salvador's three little brothers walk through the door, they make a beeline for her, seated at a folding chair at her parents' kitchen table. They snuggle into her arms. Resi laughs. She's home.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

The devastating wildfires we face in California demand more action at the federal level. Buildings, communities and lives have been destroyed and we need to approach the issue as a crisis. After 35 years fighting fires and serving as chief of the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, I can promise you that the time for talk has long passed. 
It has become commonplace for companies such as Google to use local servers to provide faster service to customers. This practice has raised the question as to whether those local servers constitute "a regular and established place of business" for the purposes of establishing venue in patent infringement suits in the districts where the servers are located.

Monday, February 24, 2020

At a time when rural schools all over California struggle to keep students in school, a three-year-old experiment in the southern Fresno County community of Parlier is showing some interesting results.
Back in the 1800s, the expression "pull oneself up by the bootstraps" meant the opposite of what it does now. Then it was used mockingly to describe an impossible act.

Friday, February 21, 2020

On a recent afternoon, more than a dozen California lawmakers gathered to discuss thorny issues impacting a state that is the cradle of technological innovation — but also suffering from wildfires, aging infrastructure, and vast economic inequality. On the agenda: how to maintain wireless phone service during emergencies; how to protect internet connection during power outages; and how work is being changed by artificial intelligence and the gig economy.
While securities fraud remains atop as the most active area for blockchain litigation — due in part to the rush towards initial coin offerings from 2017 onwards — disputes over intellectual property, unfair competition, class action membership, consumer protection, tax, immigration and elections law have begun.
No one can predict the future, but one thing is for sure: If we leave unanswered questions about how to handle our affairs after we pass, life for our loved ones could become much more difficult.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

A crisis, it's been said, is a terrible thing to waste. Stanford economist Paul Romer coined the phrase in 2004 in referring to the nation's waning education levels and it's since been adopted and adapted by others.
The debate over the Supreme Court of California's 2018 Dynamex decision – in which the state's highest court adopted the so-called "ABC test" for determining whether a worker is properly classified as an independent contractor or as an employee – and the California legislature's subsequent codification of Dynamex via Assembly Bill 5 (A.B. 5), has dominated the legal landscape of California employment law.
Nurse practitioner Surani Hayre-Kwan sees long-time patients and first-timers. She manages chronic illnesses, diagnoses kids with colds and refers people to specialists. She goes it alone or works with another nurse practitioner at the Russian River Health Clinic in Sonoma County.
Jennifer Jennings dons a veritable uniform these days. Whether she's picking up groceries, cruising through a fast-food drive-thru or headed to the carwash, she's always sporting Bernie-wear — sweatshirts, t-shirts, whatever.

Friday, January 10, 2020

The start of the new year is a great time to focus on your finances and put them into perspective.

Monday, January 6, 2020

"Behavioral Legal Ethics" is a relatively new area of the law that deals with how automatic and mostly unconscious processes potentially lead otherwise well-intentioned people to make self-serving decisions, and the implication of such actions for legal policymaking.
Happy 2020. If you're in California, you're now subject to a spate of new laws. Natasha Singer focused on a big one: The state's landmark consumer privacy law.
Happy new year! Hopefully, you got everything you wanted for Christmas and didn't get a lump of coal. For one contractor, aptly named Black Diamond Electric, Inc., the holidays weren't so good.

Friday, January 3, 2020

When Disney chose to delay the production and release of merchandise related to The Child—commonly referred to as Baby Yoda—from its hit series, The Mandalorian, it created a significant opportunity for unlicensed fans to create and sell such merchandise.
Three appellate courts recently reached different conclusions regarding whether a claim for contractual indemnity "arises from" protected petitioning activity within the meaning of California's anti-SLAPP statute.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has upended divided patent infringement.

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Would you be willing to delay your retirement to help your child pay for their first car, college education or wedding? Increasingly a lot of Americans say the answer is yes.
Senate Bill is a lengthy and complicated piece of housing legislation that will significantly affect land development in California. But does the new law unreasonably curb local agencies' police power? Or is it the answer to solving the state's housing crisis?
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced a record-setting $191 million settlement with the University of Phoenix (UOP) and its parent company, Apollo Education Group, Inc., following allegations that the school deceptively advertised the benefits of a UOP education.

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

In the early 2000's, an all-girl band called 3LW performed a song called "Playas Gon' Play," which was written by Sean Hall and Nathan Butler. "Playas Gon' Play" was initially released in May, 2001 and rose to number 81 on the Billboard's Hot 100 chart.
Banks are caught in the between state and federal laws on marijuana. Like any other business, marijuana producers and dispensaries need bank accounts to avoid the costly and dangerous consequences of all-cash dealings.

Monday, December 30, 2019

Earlier this year Congress enacted the Small Business Reorganization Act of 2019 with the stated goal of assisting small business debtors who have struggled to reorganize under Chapter 11.
It is an historical anomaly that Supreme Court justices are the only judicial category not currently covered by a code of conduct.

Friday, December 20, 2019

Many parents have children who have accrued significant debt while they are in college. College graduates often have multiple loans ? each one requiring its own payments on its own due date each month. Aside from parents giving money, there are steps they can encourage their child to take to help manage those debts.

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Gov. Gavin Newsom says he wants Pacific Gas & Electric Co. to become a "radically restructured and transformed utility that is responsible and accountable?..." But how?

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

We face an important opportunity to finally put the seemingly permanent conflicts that have defined water and environmental management in California behind us, but not if we let it drift away.

Thursday, December 5, 2019

The priority date of a patent is an important aspect in protecting intellectual property. The priority date is the earliest possible filing date that a patent application is entitled to rely on; it is based on the filing dates of any related patent applications that were filed before the application (the priority chain).

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

California's juvenile justice system has evolved as we have learned more about brain development, the effects of adverse childhood experiences and social, emotional, and mental health needs of our young people.

Monday, December 2, 2019

Professional listservs for attorneys often provide a fertile ground for seeds of hypertension for risk managers and legal ethicists. Whereas these platforms offer a very useful and beneficial environment for many practitioners to roundtable ideas about the craft, they sometimes reveal misunderstandings about lawyer obligations.

Friday, November 29, 2019

In many ways, 2019 has been a miserable year for the world economy, with trade wars, geopolitical instability and slowing growth. Yet global investors in fact have much to celebrate this year — no matter where they invested their money.

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Have you noticed that the world is on fire?

Thursday, November 21, 2019

If you're plugged into the digital world and its constantly emerging meme trends, you've probably encountered various "OK, Boomer" memes by now.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Remember the children's fable about the wolf who was attempting to capture and consume the three little pigs?

Friday, November 15, 2019

The gift-giving season is fast approaching. So, if you are like a lot of people, this means you are spending time trying to brainstorm gifts to give your loved ones ? something that they will use and appreciate. For those disillusioned with giving gifts that are quickly used up or forgotten the moment the wrapping paper comes off, consider a financial gift designed to make an impact. Here are a few financial gift ideas you can feel good about giving.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

Virginia Vallejo, a well known Colombian journalist and media personality, authored the memoir "Loving Pablo, Hating Escobar". The book is a factual account of her romantic relationship with Pablo Escobar and a chronicle of the rise of the Colombian drug cartel.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

California's economy has been booming for most of this decade and has generated a cornucopia of tax revenues for state and local governments.

Monday, November 11, 2019

A half-decade ago, Gov. Jerry Brown and the Legislature overhauled California's school finance system with the avowed goal of closing the "achievement gap" separating poor and English learner students from their more privileged classmates.

Thursday, November 7, 2019

In Arthrex Inc. v. Smith & Nephew Inc. et al., case number 18-2140, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit recently considered whether the appointment of the Board's Administrative Patent Judges ("APJs") by the Secretary of Commerce, as currently set forth in Title 35, violates the Appointments Clause of the U.S. Constitution. The Federal Circuit held that the statute as currently constructed makes the APJs principal officers.

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Having declared "I own it," Gov. Gavin Newsom is stepping up his personal involvement and political investment in the disaster-tinged bankruptcy of Pacific Gas and Electric Co., wagering his still-new governorship on reforming — or dissolving — the nation's largest investor-owned utility.

Friday, November 1, 2019

We hear frequent references in the news to the Federal Reserve (or the "Fed," as it is more commonly called). Yet, for many individual investors and consumers, the way the Fed affects their lives is a bit cloudy. So, let's clear the air.

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Should a company be required to license its patents to a competitor? That's one question that arises when intellectual property law and antitrust law intersect.

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Apple Inc. and Google LLC are "nothing more than modern tape pirates" according to amended complaint filed Friday in a Los Angeles federal court by the rights-holder to the works of an acclaimed composer and songwriter.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

America is a society that relies heavily on tipping. Tipping allows us to reward excellent service. However, research shows that the amount of a tip is rarely related to the quality of the service. What matters most is the size of the check. If you want bigger tips, induce your customers to order more.

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Before 1995, the term of a U.S. utility patent was 17 years from the day the patent issued. In 1994, the federal statutes were changed to make the patent term 20 years from the effective filing date of the patent application.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

This article is Part 2 of a two-part series providing an overview of recent California Supreme Court decisions in employment law.

Monday, October 21, 2019

A Temecula doctor has been found guilty after a six-day trial in federal court in Los Angeles for $12 million in fraudulent bills submitted to Medicare, according to an announcement Thursday from U.S. Attorney Nicola T. Hanna of the Central District.

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Many resources are being devoted to preventing data breaches and protecting privacy. In fact, patents have issued on various approaches. But are those approaches really patentable? In a recent challenge to OneTrust's patent, which is related to data privacy risk, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board ("PTAB") found the subject matter patent ineligible.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

It was a problem that California had come to dread. The risk of wildfires was high. acific Gas & Electric, the giant utility whose power lines and transformers have been blamed for a series of disastrous wildfires in recent years, was determined to prevent another one.

Monday, October 14, 2019

This article is Part 1 of a two-part series providing an overview of recent California Supreme Court decisions in employment law.

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Educational accountability is attracting a lot of political attention — or perhaps lip service — these days in California.

Monday, September 30, 2019

For James Ehrlich, farm-to-table is just a starting point for the future.

Friday, September 27, 2019

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Bill Chang joined Verishop as its first ever legal officer and has been advising the growing company as it disrupts the world of online marketplace retailers.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

College application season is approaching, and that means prospective students are in the midst of campus visits.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Monday, September 16, 2019

Giving a teenager a credit card may seem a risky proposition. But finance experts say it can be a helpful educational step, with proper limits.

Friday, September 13, 2019

Many people dream of starting a business. And, for some, a spouse or significant other is the ideal business partner. The prospect of building an enterprise with the person they share other parts of their lives with may be appealing on a number of levels from shared passion, convenience and common goals. However, it's important to approach the joint venture with the same care a person would apply to any other business dealings.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Landlords whose tenants sell counterfeit goods can be liable for trademark infringement if they have knowledge of the infringing acts or are willfully blind to the infringement.

Friday, September 6, 2019

Insurance is one of the fundamental financial tools for any household. Most people recognize the important role of insurance, but many are unsure about how it works. If you have questions about insurance, you aren't alone. As a financial advisor, I get a variety of questions about insurance

Friday, August 30, 2019

One problem the IRS faces with cryptocurrency (that it did not face with Swiss Bank accounts to the same extent), is that the tax reporting rules for crypto are not at all clear. The IRS issued limited guidance five years ago, in Notice 2014–21. But it left a number of big questions unanswered.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

The scheduling comes after the rejection of defense motion to compel discovery

Monday, August 26, 2019

Human resources professionals may shudder at the sound of an "audit." For starters, it is difficult to make available the time and personnel needed for day-to-day work. And what if the audit uncovers "bad news?"

Friday, August 23, 2019

Retirement is one of the most important financial goals for many married couples. It's something you may dream about and work hard to reach. But, even if you feel like you are on track in terms of meeting your financial objectives, there is an equally important factor to consider ? are you both on the same page about your vision and plans for retirement?

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

The record of the 2019 legislative session ? Gov. Gavin Newsom's first ? is still a work in progress, but his signature on Assembly Bill 392 this week makes it a success, no matter what else happens.

Monday, August 19, 2019

Not so long ago, philanthropy was an area where politics were left at the door.

Friday, August 16, 2019

It's no secret that many American parents want to support their kids by paying for their college education.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

In Celgene Corporation v. Peter, the Federal Circuit recently affirmed the PTAB's decisions finding appealed claims obvious.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

The California Legislature's 2019 session began last winter amidst great hopes and fears.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Employers must take both preventive and remedial action to stop unlawful discrimination, harassment, and retaliation at work. An internal investigation is a critical tool to help fulfill these obligations.

Friday, August 9, 2019

Parents want good things for their children, and a good credit record is certainly something that falls into that category.

Thursday, August 8, 2019

Thursday, August 1, 2019

The federal patent laws provide for an award of attorneys' fees to the prevailing party in exceptional patent infringement cases.

Monday, July 29, 2019

COMPTON — It was bath time and Rosalba Moralez heard a cry. She rushed to the bathroom and found her 7-year-old daughter, Alexxa, being doused with brown, putrid water.

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

There is some sort of hard-to-define spiritual crisis across the land, which shows up in rising depression rates, rising mental health problems. A survey that the Pew Research Center released late last year captures the mood. Pew asked people to describe the things that bring meaning to their lives.

Friday, July 19, 2019

One of the most important decisions you will make in retirement is when to begin receiving your Social Security benefits. Yet this decision often depends on another: whether you plan to retire or keep working. The following are some pointers to help you make both decisions with confidence.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

California is home to 9 million people under the age of 18. Recently, as I crossed the mountainous divide separating San Diego from the inland desert on my way to the Imperial Valley, I found myself reflecting on the enormous divides of a different sort—involving poverty, neglect, and school discipline problems—that frustrate the lives of all too many kids in California.
Given their druthers, many government officials would prefer to do their business ? our business, actually ? behind closed doors and provide sanitized, self-serving versions of their actions after the fact.

Monday, June 17, 2019

As President Donald Trump rails against the Federal Reserve and urges it to lower interest rates, a similar push is coming from a group founded this year by three left-leaning millennials — albeit for very different reasons.

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Michael Avenatti said he must travel regularly as he represents clients and prepares for trial in his New York and California criminal cases.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Over the past several years, teenage suicide rates have spiked horrifically. Depression rates are surging, and America's mental health overall is deteriorating. What's going on?

Monday, June 3, 2019

David Bornstein points out that a lot of American journalism is based on a mistaken theory of change.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

If your heart is beating and your lungs are taking in oxygen, you know that Game of Thrones recently reached its epic conclusion.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Fair warning: By reading this you will be plunging into the Legislature's almost impenetrably arcane thicket of internal procedures.
Carol Spencer, 86, may be the most influential fashion designer you've never heard of.

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Last September, Uber's top executives were pitched by some of Wall Street's biggest banks, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs. The bankers' presentations calculated Uber's valuation almost identically, hovering around one particular number: $120 billion. Nine months later, Uber is worth about half that figure.

Friday, May 24, 2019

Many couples are choosing to start families later in life compared to their parents and grandparents.
Not surprisingly, technology is not the main barrier to the introduction of urban air taxis. Rather, regulation and public policy are the main obstacles.

Thursday, May 23, 2019

One of the requirements for obtaining a patent is the written description requirement -- the specification must include a written description of the invention. 35 U.S.C §112(a).

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

In January, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press and the International Documentary Association started hearing worrying reports from journalists and documentarians covering developments related to migrants arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border from Central America.
At last count, California's Democratic political leadership had filed four dozen lawsuits against President Donald Trump's administration, reflecting differences on policies large and small.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

The Chinese technology giant Huawei on Monday began feeling painful ripple effects of a Trump administration order that effectively bars U.S. firms from selling components and software to the company.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

In Apple Inc. v. Pepper et al., case number 17-204, the United States Supreme Court considered a case alleging Apple has monopolized the retail market for the sale of apps and has unlawfully used its monopolistic power to charge consumers higher-than competitive prices. As an early defense in the case, Apple asserted that the consumer plaintiffs could not sue Apple because they supposedly were not "direct purchasers" from Apple under Illinois Brick Co. v. Illinois, 431 U. S. 720, 745--746 (1977).

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Gavin Newsom has spent the last four months telling Californians that he could -- and would -- cure some of California's most pressing social ailments.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

More than 40,000 investors descended on Omaha for Berkshire Hathaway's annual meeting. The most prominent face of capitalism — Warren Buffett, the avuncular founder of Berkshire appeared to distance himself from many of his peers, who have been apologizing for capitalism of late. "I'm a card-carrying capitalist," Mr. Buffett said.

Monday, May 13, 2019

There's nothing terribly surprising about how Elizabeth Warren's campaign is playing out. She's scoring big points for her seriousness, reflected in a raft of detailed policy proposals.
Under current regulations, a manufacturer can place the required warning on the product or its packaging, or it can pass the obligation to warn "downstream" to retailers by notifying the retailer directly that a warning is required and providing the retailer with the materials necessary to transmit the warning to consumers.
Senate Bill 188 would significantly broaden employees' protections against improper race discrimination and make California the first state in the nation to pass a law explicitly prohibiting discrimination based on hairstyles.

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Employers must pay workers for "reporting time" when employees call in to determine if they will be expected to work, according to the California Court of Appeal's decision in Ward v. Tilly's, Inc.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Pitting the power of the arbitrator against the arbitration agreement, attorneys for Twenty-First Century Fox Inc. argued Monday a neutral overstepped his bounds with a $128 million punitive damage award.
Pitting the power of the arbitrator against the arbitration agreement, attorneys for Twenty-First Century Fox Inc. argued Monday a neutral overstepped his bounds with a $128 million punitive damage award.

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Gary Cohn was born in 1960 in the suburbs of Cleveland.

Friday, April 26, 2019

Buying a home for the first time in some U.S. markets is becoming increasingly challenging. In competitive housing markets, the supply of available homes is tight, which means sellers often have the upper hand and home prices are rising above what is typically considered their fair value.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

We've all seen children, often very young children, hunched over from heavy book backpacks, shuffling along sidewalks just an hour or two after sunrise on their way to school.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

When Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook called for regulating harmful internet content in an opinion column last month, Republicans in Washington expressed outrage that he was calling on the government to regulate speech.

Monday, April 22, 2019

NAs the unemployment rate remains low, there may be more available jobs than qualified applicants to fill them. So, job-seekers are in high demand. One possible side effect of aggressive recruiting and rising wages is that employers are experiencing what is colloquially known as "ghosting."
A fight over a subpoena focuses on $25,000 Avenatti paid his new criminal lawyers.

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Many businesses rely on their websites to promote their company and drum up business. Having a "professional" looking web page is considered a must and companies spend a lot of money in creating and maintaining their web presence.
The Board of supervisors adopted a motion calling for a multi-agency collaboration to examine the impact of these charges.
A change in the governor's office and expanded Democratic supermajorities in the Legislature have emboldened long-frustrated advocates of increasing taxes to expand health, welfare and education services.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Cary Berger has worked as a general counsel for technology companies, media productions and even one of the largest online dating sites in the country. His most recent adventure is a brewpub startup that's all about the beer.
Cary Berger has worked as a general counsel for technology companies, media productions and even one of the largest online dating sites in the country. His most recent adventure is a brewpub startup that's all about the beer.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Last year, Facebook's chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, testified before Congress and apologized for his company's role in enabling "fake news, foreign interference in elections and hate speech." As Silicon Valley grapples with its version of becoming too big to fail, Zuckerberg and his industry peers might take lessons from Wall Street, whose leaders have some experience with government scrutiny.

Monday, April 15, 2019

Susan Covell Alpert was crushed by grief when her 71-year-old husband, Larry, died of leukemia in 2008. Adding to her misery, a tidal wave of financial decisions and tasks demanded the new widow's attention at a time when she could barely think straight.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

For two decades, the California Chamber of Commerce's annual descriptions of certain legislative bills as "job killers" have framed the Capitol's sharpest economic conflicts.

Monday, April 8, 2019

There is an essential aspect of the creative process that everyone can relate to, even people who don't think of themselves as creative. And it's something that almost no one enjoys: failure.

Friday, April 5, 2019

f you're planning a wedding -- whether it's your own or your child's -- and haven't been paying close attention to the wedding industry, you may experience sticker shock as you begin calculating costs.

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

The Constitution's very specific list of inviolable human rights sets the United States apart from almost every other nation on Earth

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

The two most recent times I saw my friend Makoto Fujimura, he put a Kintsugi bowl in my hands. These ceramic bowls were 300 to 400 years old. But what made them special was that somewhere along the way they had broken into shards and were glued back together with a 15th-century technique using Japanese lacquer and gold.
A recent Court of Appeal ruling held that California's state minimum wage applies to all public employers, including charter cities and all counties.
As the gig economy continues to expand and businesses grapple with remaining legally compliant with the ever-evolving employment and labor landscape, the question of worker classification has significant impact on how California employers run their businesses.

Monday, April 1, 2019

Out in the way beyond, the open land on the far side of the Mueller report and cable news obsessives, is a vast kingdom now being used to hasten the demise of the planet.
The housing crisis gripping the Golden State threatens to permanently stymie economic growth and demands bold and innovative solutions.

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

The plaintiff's attorney said the case is about civil rights but the lawyer for the city of Baldwin Park said it's about money.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

"At the beginning of the year, if you told me this is what we were going to be dealing with, I would have called you crazy," said Mayor Steve Manos of Lake Elsinore. He was taking a brief reprieve from dealing with the biggest crisis of his short term in office yet: an explosion of picture-perfect California poppies in the Temescal Mountains, just northwest of the center of town.
Many employers use background investigations when making hiring, promotional, and similar decisions. The data made available by these investigations help the employer evaluate applicants in greater depth than an application and typical job interviews will allow.

Monday, March 25, 2019

The average American consumes roughly 200 pounds of meat a year. According to Jayson Lusk, an agricultural economist at Purdue University, Americans eat more meat per capita than citizens of almost any other country in the world, making them "the king of meat eaters." How did the United States achieve such a status? And what — if anything — should be done about it?

Friday, March 22, 2019

A matter of blockbuster significance is the subject of a current petition for certiorari. The case is Oracle v. Google. We submitted a brief as amici curiae supporting that petition out of the strong conviction that review is vitally necessary of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit's wrong-headed decisions in this case.
If you follow the news, you may be hearing about how recent changes in the tax code may impact how much Americans receive as a tax refund this year. With tax filing season upon us, now is the time to analyze your tax bill.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

There's long been a somewhat competitive relationship between the power of governors and legislators to make law and the ability of voters to overturn what the politicians wrought and/or make law themselves via the initiative process.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Fortunately, the Code of Civil Procedure offers a potential escape hatch when an attorney's mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or neglect has harmed the client.
Josef Stalin dreamed of creating a totalitarian society where every individual's behavior could be predicted and controlled but he was born a century too early. He lived before the technology that would have made being a dictator so much easier!

Monday, March 18, 2019

Frans and Caroline Swaalf, management consultants in the Netherlands, have been enamored of South Florida since they were graduate students at the University of Miami in the 1990s.

Friday, March 15, 2019

Proposed law may actually impede lactation accommodations for working mothers and promote litigation.
The 2016 voter initiative to keep the death penalty required the state to maintain the ability to "perform any duty needed to enable it to execute the judgment."

Thursday, March 14, 2019

The United States Supreme Court granted a writ of certiorari in Iancu v. NantKwest to determine whether a patent applicant, win or lose, must pay the salaries of the United States Patent and Trademark Office's ("USPTO") in-house attorneys in district court actions challenging the rejection of patent claims by USPTO patent examiners.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

After being accused of witness tampering, an attorney in a patent infringement case hired his own lawyer over the weekend and sent a strongly worded letter to the judge saying Apple's counsel's accusations are sanctionable.

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

The financial system had nearly collapsed. The deepest recession in decades was devouring over 700,000 jobs a month.
The indebted attorney again halted scheduled sworn testimony with a last-minute filing

Monday, March 11, 2019

The California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 echoes concepts found in the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation, but it differs in key respects as well.
Raghuram Rajan is a professor of finance at the University of Chicago. Rajan's book called "The Third Pillar: How Markets and the State Leave the Community Behind." Its theme is the fragility of democracy — a fairly radical notion for an economist.
Raghuram Rajan is a professor of finance at the University of Chicago. Rajan's book called "The Third Pillar: How Markets and the State Leave the Community Behind." Its theme is the fragility of democracy — a fairly radical notion for an economist.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

The initial coin offering was the natural next step in the evolution of applications for blockchain technology. The only problem is that the law did not keep up with the technology.
This week, the Supreme Court resolved a split in the circuits regarding an issue in copyright law that affects copyright owners in California.
As every law student and lawyer knows, while there are the rules, there are the exceptions to the rules, and then there are the exceptions to the exceptions to the rule, and so on.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

As California's housing shortage deepened in the last decade, Jerry Brown made only token efforts to address it.

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Everyone, it seems, has ideas about new tax strategies, some more realistic than others. Whatever your politics, there is a bipartisan acknowledgment that the tax system is broken. Whether you believe the system should be fixed to generate more revenue or employed as a tool to limit inequality, there is a justifiable sense the public doesn't trust the tax system to be fair.

Monday, March 4, 2019

When nine refund checks landed in his mailbox a few months ago, Jed Shafer figured he was finally done with his student loan.

Friday, March 1, 2019

Retirement is an important milestone that often comes after years (or decades) of careful planning. For those who've saved diligently and are nearing the end of their careers
A wrongful death lawsuit filed against prominent Democratic donor Ed Buck claims a combination of race, class and high-flying political connections have shielded the fundraiser from being charged in connection with the death of a man who overdosed in his apartment.
A wrongful death lawsuit filed against prominent Democratic donor Ed Buck claims a combination of race, class and high-flying political connections have shielded the fundraiser from being charged in connection with the death of a man who overdosed in his apartment.

Thursday, February 28, 2019

ompanies have a number of tools available to them to help protect their intellectual property, including trade secret and other proprietary information that give them a competitive advantage.

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

The U.S. Supreme Court's decision last week to apply the excessive fines prohibition of the Eighth Amendment to the states, Timbs v. Indiana, 2019 DJDAR 1337 (Feb. 20, 2019), has broad implications to the right to a jury trial in civil cases.
This week the U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments in a case that will remind many Californians of the Mt. Soldad controversy.
The California Republican Party, which has become virtually irrelevant in recent years, had a great opportunity last weekend to commit self-annihilation by electing an unrepentant, Donald Trump-loving right-winger as party chairperson.

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

For decades, employers have used timekeeping practices that involve rounding, for example, rounding the employees' "punch time" up or down to the nearest tenth or quarter hour.

Monday, February 25, 2019

It's natural enough to see elite athletes as finely tuned machines. They're usually bigger, faster and stronger than the rest of us, and their movements can have a grace that appears nearly effortless. But if you talk to enough athletes and coaches, you discover that the mind, not the body, is where most of their energy is going.

Friday, February 22, 2019

After one of the longest bull markets in history, stocks experienced some major ups and downs toward the end of 2018.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

In Continental Circuits LLC v. Intel Corp. et al., case number 18-1076, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, in a precedential opinion, recently clarified the rules for the incorporation of a limitation from a patent's specifications into the claims during claim construction.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

There has been, by happenstance, a cyclical pattern in the mindsets of California governors in the post-World War II era and Gavin Newsom fits it to a tee.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

The 2018 California wildfires destroyed some 22,000 structures, including nearly the entire town of Paradise. Most of the ensuing insurance claims are being handled by hundreds of out-of-state adjusters who are not licensed in California and are working here unlawfully.
The federal debt ticked past $22 trillion this week, a record that comes despite continued economic growth, but neither political party appears to be making a priority of debt reduction.
A U.S. magistrate judge appointed a certified public accountant to take control of Eagan Avenatti LLP.
Eleven low-income people trying to secure affordable housing in Santa Monica in 2018 all got good news — followed hard by bad news.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

On October 11, 2018, the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a memorandum relaxing the rules on post-accident drug testing and drug testing as part of a safety incentive program.
Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District was the first Supreme Court ruling that provided protection for students' First Amendment rights.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Two banks announced the industry's biggest merger in a decade on Thursday, signaling bank executives' growing confidence that the regulatory constraints imposed after the 2008 financial crisis have begun to loosen.

Monday, February 11, 2019

Andrew Yang was born in Schenectady, New York, to immigrant parents from Taiwan. Yang, now 44, studied economics and political science at Brown, got a law degree at Columbia and ultimately became a successful entrepreneur, with a focus on job creation. In the American dream sweepstakes, he was a pretty big winner. But along the way, he came to see that for every winner, there were thousands upon thousands of losers.

Friday, February 8, 2019

Parents of college-bound students know that paying for higher education takes planning and saving. For divorced parents, it can be particularly complex. Whether they're paying for the college bills solo or contributing to the expenses in partnership with their ex-spouse, there are a lot of financial and emotional items to consider.
As digital technologies take hold within the construction industry, prudence requires a reassessment of legacy agreements and legal arrangements.
Reality -- a new reality -- is hitting home as Californians work on their 2018 federal income tax returns.
As with sexual harassment in the workplace, lawyers can take advantage of clients in complex and nuanced ways. It makes no sense to create an avenue of escape that can be exploited by the small minority of lawyers who would think to exploit it.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

For those of you that watched the red carpet happenings at last year's Golden Globe Awards, you may have noticed the "Fiji Water Girl", a model standing ready to keep Hollywood glitterati hydrated with bottles of Fiji water, photobombing numerous shots of celebrities.
The state Supreme Court heard arguments Tuesday in a case that could change the balance of power between borrowers and lenders.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

The state Supreme Court denied anti-SLAPP motions by the city of Carson stemming from its unsuccessful attempt to lure a National Football League franchise.

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

One by one, the concerns that have hung over the stock market have faded.

Monday, February 4, 2019

Real property tax lien investments are not without risk. When there are liens arising under federal law which attach to the real property, most commonly federal tax liens, sovereign immunity issues are implicated there are different steps that need to be taken.
axing the wealthiest Americans at a higher rate may be good politics, since most voters won't be affected. But while two recent proposals sound simple enough, they could be difficult to put into effect.
A few practical pointers that contract negotiators and drafters can use to ensure that, if arbitration becomes necessary, your company can obtain a just, speedy and cost-effective resolution.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Prior to the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act ("AIA"), the patent statute (35 U.S.C. § 102(b)) prohibited patenting an invention that was "on sale in this country, more than one year prior to the date of the application for patent in the United States."

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Employers require at least some employees to travel for business purposes.

Monday, January 28, 2019

The Ford Motor Co. is ditching its legacy sedans, doubling down on trucks and trying to steer its stock price out of a long skid.

Friday, January 25, 2019

The dream scenario for many retirees is to have a second place to call home.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

When a new invention is created (if it is worth anything), everyone wants to take credit.
If voters wish to narrow the sentence reductions of Proposition 57 in a way that does not conflict with its actual text, they are free to do so. A
President Donald Trump has threatened to exercise emergency lawmaking power to construct a $5.7 billion border wall; many legal experts have opined that no such constitutional power exists.

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