Purported appeal of order compelling arbitration treated as extraordinary petition; order compelling individual arbitration affirmed

Posted by Steven Vartabedian on

In Nelsen v. Legacy Partners Residential, Inc. (filed July 18, 2012) 2012 DJDAR 9956, plaintiff Lorena Nelson worked for defendant as a property manager from 2006 to 2009. Early in her employment she received a 43-page pre-printed form employee handbook that included a small-print arbitration clause at page 42 headed “TEAM MEMBER ACKNOWLEDGMENT AND AGREEMENT.” […]

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National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius

Posted by Dowling Aaron on

There are approximately 50 million Americans uninsured for healthcare. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) seeks to have about 30-35 million of those covered by private and public health insurance. About half of those will be covered under the “Individual Mandate” that each individual, subject to certain exceptions, purchase health insurance or pay […]

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Dismissal of CCP 998-settled case where agreement silent on plaintiff’s statutory claim of attorney fees does not preclude award

Posted by Steven Vartabedian on

Does a dismissal with prejudice after a case settles under California Code of Civil Procedure section 998 preclude an award of attorney fees because the case did not proceed to “judgment?” This is the principal question raised in the Court of Appeal, Fifth Appellate District, case of Wohlgemuth v. Caterpillar, Inc. (filed July 23, 2012, […]

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Plaintiffs alleging separate acts of sexual battery by physician are not properly joined in single action

Posted by Steven Vartabedian on

In Moe v. Anderson (filed July 11, 2012) 2012 DJDAR 9523, the Court of Appeal, Third Appellate District, distinguishes between joinder of plaintiffs against an offending physician defendant sued for separate sexual batteries, and joinder in the same lawsuit of those plaintiffs against the physician’s employer for the negligent hiring and supervision of that physician. […]

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Work product privilege: recorded witness statements get at least qualified protection; identity of witness not automatically protected

Posted by Steven Vartabedian on

The California Supreme Court has offered some clarification to the divergent appellate court opinions written in recent years on the subject of protection of an attorney’s work product in Coito v. Superior Court (filed June 25, 2012) 2012 DJDAR 8713. To the extent there was a split of authority, the court has drawn the line. […]

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Loss of consortium may lie for pre-marriage acts causing latent injury: a lesson that appellate authority may not carry the day

Posted by Ronald Henderson on

John Leonard was first diagnosed with mesothelioma after his marriage to Sandra Leonard in 2001. This progressive and fatal disease allegedly resulted from John’s exposure to asbestos between 1958 and 1995 caused by John Crane, Inc. In Leonard v. John Crane, Inc. (filed June 13, 2012) 2012 DJDAR 7862, Sandra’s lawsuit for loss of consortium […]

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General contractor not liable for workplace injury claim of employee of subcontractor premised on negligent coordination of various subs

Posted by Steven Vartabedian on

In Brannan v. Lathrop Construction Associates, Inc. (filed May 21, 2012, certified for publication June 12, 2012) 2012 DJDAR 7743, plaintiff was working for a masonry subcontractor at a school site when he slipped on wet scaffolding and injured his back. He sued defendant, the general contractor, on the theory that defendant negligently sequenced and […]

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Public policy considerations no longer a bar to enforcement of class action waiver in employment arbitration agreement

Posted by Steven Vartabedian on

AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion (2011) __ U.S.__ [131 S. Ct 1740] changed the legal landscape concerning class arbitrations. The United States Supreme expressly overturned the California Supreme Court ruling in Discover Bank v. Superior Court (2005) 36 Cal.4th 153, which had held that class action waivers in contracts of adhesion subject to arbitration are […]

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No duty of machine manufacturer to warn when hazardous material is used with otherwise nonhazardous machine

Posted by Steven Vartabedian on

Earlier this year, the California Supreme Court determined that a manufacturer has no duty to warn about another manufacturer’s dangerous product even if it is foreseeable that the products will be used together. (O’Neil v. Crane Co. (2012) 53 Cal. 4th 335, 361; see Jan. 31, 2012 blog.) The sued manufacturer there was the maker […]

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The difficult question of when a disabling psychiatric condition is employment related: don’t bank on unrefuted expert evidence

Posted by Steven Vartabedian on

This issue more often arises in the workers’ compensation context. In Valero v. Board of Retirement (filed May 1, 2012) 2012 DJDAR 5698, plaintiff contended in a petition for writ of mandate that the Board of Retirement of the Tulare County Employees erroneously denied him disability retirement benefits under California Government Code section 31720. Under […]

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