While most construction contractors and material suppliers know about serving the preliminary 20-day notice in order to qualify for a mechanic’s lien and/or stop notice, few focus on the proof of service requirement in California Civil Code section 3097.1(a).

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Our capitalist system encourages individuals to take risks. Some prove productive; unfortunately, for those that fail, many times the individual is left with tax debt.

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Fired employees are often a source of problems for a business, especially when those ex-employees choose to bad-mouth their former employer. While some employers may simply ignore allegations that terminations were based on racism, sexism or ageism, other employers choose to take legal action. One such employer is Overhill Farms, Inc., which chose to terminate […]

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California law provides broad immunity from civil liability for a social host who “furnishes alcoholic beverages to any person,” as many Californians do at their house parties. (Civil Code section 1714 (c).) However, a social host loses that immunity if he or she “sells, or causes to be sold, any alcoholic beverage, to any obviously intoxicated minor.” (Business and Professions Code section 25602.1.)

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To the surprise of one local employer, a class action labor and employment attorney alleged that their pay stubs failed to include the required information. With the opposing attorney specifying damages at the statutory maximum of $4,000 for each of their 250 employees, the employer was faced with a potential $1M liability.

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Don’t rush to sue a newspaper or other media outlet. Losing’s bad enough, but paying the newspaper’s lawyer rubs salt in the self-inflicted wound.

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While many victims of the so-called “Nigerian e-mail scam” would be too embarrassed to trumpet that fact, others end up infamous for their victimhood like the appellant in a published opinion of the California Court of Appeal in Riverside. Also known as an advance-fee fraud, the Nigerian scam baits the victim with an advance sum […]

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Beginning January 1, 2011, the California Evidence Code, as applied in civil cases, will no longer govern California State Bar attorney disciplinary hearings. The new Rules of Procedure, new rule 7.12, provide that the hearing need not be conducted according to technical rules of evidence.

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An added pressure to businesses can be the cost of responding to a subpoena requiring the production of documents. While many assume that only parties can be subpoenaed, a third party, also known as a non-party, can be subject to this power as well.

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In order to be protected by limited liability, a corporation must act like an independent legal entity and follow through with its corporate formalities of properly addressing corporate records, regular meetings and financial statements.

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Construction lenders beware of California Civil Code section 3137(c), which provides that a mechanic’s lien for “site improvements” has priority over a trust deed recorded before commencement of the site improvement work in certain circumstances.

That provision has several subparts, but one trap for the unsuspecting lender and title insurance company is this if the loan proceeds secured by the trust deed are solely or primarily to pay for the construction of the site improvements, then a mechanic’s lien for those site improvements would have priority over the prior-recorded trust deed. Period.

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The California attorneys at Reid and Hellyer are excited to announce the launch of their new blog: California Litigation Attorney Blog.

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