Business Law

What You Should Know About Mediation

Mediation is a flexible, non-binding, confidential process in which a Neutral (mediator) facilitates settlement negotiations. The informal session typically begins with a presentation of each side's view of the dispute, either through counsel or the clients. The mediator, who may meet with the parties in joint and/or separate sessions, works Read more…

By Steven L. Simas, ago
Civil Litigation

Digital Discovery

Rules 26b and 34 of the Federal Rules of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure instruct that information stored on computers is discoverable under the same rules that apply to tangible, written materials.[1] According to Principle 12 of The Sedona Principles:[2] Absent party agreement or court order specifying the form or Read more…

By Steven L. Simas, ago
Civil Litigation

Agency as Affirmative Defense

Civil Code section 2295 provides: “An agent is one who represents another, called the principal, in dealings with third persons. Such representation is called agency.” Under California law, agency is not presumed. One must prove its existence to assert as a defense. The burden of proving the existence of an agency Read more…

By Steven L. Simas, ago
Civil Litigation

Declaratory Relief

Declaratory Relief is a legal procedure designed for those seeking “preventive justice.” Specifically, its purpose is to “set controversies at rest before they lead to repudiation of obligations, invasions of rights or commissions of wrongs.” It is a vehicle to allow a presumptive defendant or respondent take adjudicative action to Read more…

By Steven L. Simas, ago
Civil Litigation

Best Practices on Record Retention

Employers accumulate and receive substantial volumes of documents as a result of their day-to-day business. The office manager or head of human resources compiles such documents as job postings, employment applications, résumés, reference checks, testing data, personnel files, wage and hour records, payroll records, and disciplinary files, as part of their Read more…

By Steven L. Simas, ago
Civil Litigation

AB 1506 Enacted to Address PAGA Abuses

On October 2, 2015, Governor Brown signed urgency legislation (Assembly Bill [AB] 1506) that immediately amends California’s Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act of 2004 (PAGA) to address increasing civil litigation alleging technical violations of itemized wage statements (pay stubs) issued to employees. Existing law required an employer to provide Read more…

By Steven L. Simas, ago