Publications Archives

Prejudgment Interest on Unliquidated Damages

By: John Schroeder

California Civil Code § 3288 states, "In an action for the breach of an obligation not arising in contract, and in every case of oppression, fraud, or malice, interest may be given, in the discretion of the jury." This article will review how to obtain prejudgment interest at trial and how to use such interest in an effort to resolve matters without trial.

Improper Withholding of Retention Results in Penalties

By: John Schroeder

The recent case of FTR International, Inc. v. Rio School District (2015) DJDAR 1141 has shifted the balance of power to contractors in public works projects. The FTR Court held that under Public Contract Code § 7107, a public agency could not justify their refusal to release the retention because of disputed change orders not related to the retention. Public works contractors should be expected to aggressively pursue public agencies for their retention once they have cleared all stop notices and there are no disputes related to the work that produced the retention.

Reforms to Construction Defect Litigation Signed Into Law in Nevada

By: Robert L. Thompson

On February 25, 2015, Governor Sandoval signed into law Assembly Bill 125 which significantly reforms Nevada's construction defect law statute, also known as "Chapter 40." The reforms to the statute have been an ongoing issue in previous legislative sessions over the past 10 years and will have a significant effect on subsequent construction defect litigation in Nevada.

How to Clear Title to Real Property - The Basics

By: Lance A. Adair

California law provides a statutory method of resolving conflicting interests in real property, known as an action to "quiet title." A quiet title action may be brought to establish-or to clear title against-any kind of claimed title or interest in real property. The action is available to anyone who holds an interest or a claimed interest in the property.

A Parent Corporation May Be Liable for the Nonpayment of Wages by its Subsidiary

By: Alis M. Moon

In Castaneda v. Ensign Group, Inc., (2014) 229 Cal.App.4th 1015, plaintiff, a former employee of Cabrillo Rehabilitation and Care Center ("Cabrillo"), filed a class action against Cabrillo's parent company, The Ensign Group, Inc. ("Ensign") for nonpayment of minimum wages and overtime wages.

Nevada's Newly Established Intermediate Appellate Court

Posted on February 17, 2015

Posted by: Jon J. Carlston

In November 2014, voters in Nevada voted to amend the Nevada constitution to create an intermediate appellate court. Until the passage of this amendment, Nevada was one of ten states that did not have an intermediate appellate court. The Nevada Supreme Court was the only appellate court in Nevada hearing and deciding appeals from final judgments entered by Nevada's 82 district court judges. As a result, Nevada's Supreme Court was one of the busiest in the nation. Each of its seven justices was averaging approximately 333 cases per year - more than three times the American Bar Association's ("ABA") recommended 100 cases per year.

How to Partition Real Property - The Basics

Posted on January 10, 2015

By: Lance A. Adair

It is common for two or more individuals or business entities to hold title to real estate as co-owners, also known as "tenants in common." In this type of ownership, each party owns an undivided interest in the whole. This may work well as long as the parties agree on what to do with the property. But what happens when the relationship sours or the parties otherwise reach an impasse?

Are Co-tenancy Agreements Enforceable?

By: Roland J. Amundsen

A recent decision by the California Court of Appeal answers this question to a large extent, and the answer is... it depends!

In Grand Prospect Partners LP v. Ross Dress for Less, Inc. (2015) 182 Cal. Rptr. 3d 235, the Court looked at a co-tenancy clause agreed upon by two sophisticated parties to a commercial retail lease, and addressed the issues of whether the clause was unconscionable and/or an unenforceable penalty. It found that despite the relatively equal sophistication of the two parties, under some circumstances, the co-tenancy agreement can constitute an unreasonable penalty and be unenforceable, although it may not be unconscionable.

Year In Review - 2014 Key Employment Legislative Laws

Posted on January 15, 2015

By: Allyson K. Thompson

Employment related legislation was big in 2014. The Legislature once again passed a number of pro-employee bills that are worth reading about. While this list is not exhaustive, it provides an overview of the key legislation employers should be aware of. In case you are tempted to skip this article, remember that the State of California expects employers to know and understand all laws that are passed that may affect your employees. So keep reading!

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