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December 8, 2023
CEB has my article, “Sanctions of $8.7M was voidable, but not void, and so was reinstated on appeal”

CEB DailyNews has published my article, “Sanctions of $8.7M was voidable, but not void, and so was reinstated on appeal.” The article is about In re the Marriage of Jensen (D2d2 Sep. 5, 2023) No. B320565 (nonpub. opn.), which distinguished void from voidable judgments. What makes a judgment or order “voidable” or “void” can be […]

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December 4, 2023
CEB has my article, “Pay in 30 Days or Arbitration Is Forfeit—And ‘Check Is in the Mail’ Does Not Cut It”

CEB’s DailyNews has published my article, “Pay in 30 Days or Arbitration Is Forfeit -- and 'Check Is in the Mail' Does Not Cut It.” The article is a reminder to ensure you pay arbitration fees within 30 days. And make sure not only that fees have been paid, but received. The employer-defendant in Doe v. […]

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November 13, 2023
CEB DailyNews: How to Preserve Appellate Rights in Your Arbitration Agreement

CEB’s DailyNews has published my article, “How to Preserve Appellate Rights in Your Arbitration Agreement.” The article illustrates how to use the California Supreme Court’s suggestion in Cable Connection, Inc. v. DIRECTV, Inc. (2008) 44 Cal.4th 1334 that parties agreeing to arbitration may also agree that the award be subject to judicial review on the merits. The case is […]

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June 15, 2023
When It Comes to Writs of Administrative Mandamus, the Appealability Rules Are Confused (published at CEB)

CEB has published my article, “When It Comes to Writs of Administrative Mandamus, the Appealability Rules Are Confused,” available here. The article is about the mandamus case of County of Santa Cruz v. Santa Cruz County Civil Service Commission (D6 May 5, 2023 no. H049856) 2023 WL 3267749 (nonpub. opn.). The setup is that, when […]

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April 27, 2023
CEB has my article, What Happens to a Fee Award After the Judgment Is Reversed? Try a Stipulated Reversal

CEB has published my article, “What Happens to a Fee Award After the Judgment Is Reversed? Try a Stipulated Reversal.” In the short article, I discuss a common confusing scenario: what happens when a judgment is reversed, but the fee award is still on appeal? That is what happened in Mid-Wilshire Property, L.P. v. Dr. Leevil, […]

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March 9, 2023
Appeal Filed One Minute Late—Literally One Minute—Dismissed As Untimely

CEB has published my article, “Appeal Filed One Minute Late—Literally One Minute—Dismissed As Untimely,” about an appeal challenge anti-SLAPP fees in McKenna v. Sony Pictures Entertainment, Inc. (D2d5 Feb. 15, 2023 No. B304256) 2023 WL 2007687 (nonpub. opn.). To file the notice of appeal, the attorney logged on to the e-filing system late in the […]

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February 20, 2023
Ten Trial Tips from an Appellate Specialist

Last week I presented my talk “Ten Trial Tips from an Appellate Specialist” to the San Francisco Lawyers Network (Feb. 16, 2023). Here are the tips: Rule Zero: Make the Record #1 Make sure your theories of the case are captured in your pleadings #2 Was key evidence excluded? Preserve the issue by making a […]

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February 6, 2023
There Is No Such Thing As a “Corporate Representative” or “Person Most Qualified” Witness (CEB)

CEB has published my article, “There Is No Such Thing As a “Corporate Representative” or “Person Most Qualified” Witness.” The article discusses Ramirez v. Avon Products, Inc. (D2d8 Jan. 23. 2023 no. B313982) --- Cal.Rptr.3d --- (2023 WL 354915), which reversed a summary judgment. The corporate defendant had supported summary judgment with a “corporate representative” […]

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December 22, 2022
SLAPP Fee Award Held Not Appealable If SLAPP Order Itself Is Not Appealed

CEB has published my article, “SLAPP Fee Award Held Not Appealable If SLAPP Order Itself Is Not Appealed.” The article is about a recent appellate opinion, Ibbetson v. Grant (D4d3 Nov. 30, 2022) No. G060473 (nonpub. opn.), that holds that an order on an anti-SLAPP fee motion is not appealable. But there are conflicting cases […]

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December 7, 2022
Personal Jurisdiction Unnecessary to Issue Judgment on an Out-of-State Judgment, New Published CA Case Holds

CEB has published my article, “Personal Jurisdiction Unnecessary to Issue Judgment on an Out-of-State Judgment, New Published CA Case Holds.” The article is about a surprising recent appellate opinion, WV 23 Jumpstart, LLC v. Mynarcik (D3 Nov. 21, 2022) No. C095046, that allowed a Nevada judgment debtor to domesticate a judgment in California—even though the […]

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"It may be that the court is thought to be excessively legalistic. I should be sorry to think that it is anything else."

— Hon. Sir Owen Dixon, Chief Justice of Australia

"Upon putting laws into writing, they became even harder to change than before, and a hundred legal fictions rose to reconcile them with reality."

— Will Durant

"God made the angels to show Him splendor, … Man He made to serve Him wittily, in the tangle of his mind."

— Sir Thomas More in Robert Bolt's A Man for All Seasons

"At common law, barratry was 'the offense of frequently exciting and stirring up suits and quarrels' (4 Blackstone, Commentaries 134) and was punished as a misdemeanor."

Rubin v. Green (1993) 4 Cal.4th 1187

"Counsel on the firing line in an actual trial must be prepared for surprises, including requests for amendments of pleading. They cannot ask that a judgment afterwards obtained be set aside merely because their equilibrium was slightly disturbed by an unexpected motion."

Posz v. Burchell (1962) 209 Cal.App.2d 324, 334

“It will be of little avail to the people, that the laws are made by men of their own choice, if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood; if they be repealed or revised before they are promulgated, or undergo such incessant changes that no man, who knows what the law is today, can guess what it will be tomorrow. Law is defined to be a rule of action; but how can that be a rule, which is little known, and less fixed?”

— James Madison, Federalist 62

"Moot points have to be settled somehow, once they get thrust upon us. If an assertion cannot be proved, then it must be settled some other way, and nearly all of these ways are unfair to somebody."

—T.H. White, The Once and Future King

"Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws."

— Plato (427-347 B.C.)

"A judge is a law student who grades his own papers."

— H.L. Mencken

Show neither partiality to the weak nor deference to the mighty, but judge your fellow men justly.

Leviticus

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