Issue By:  Vernice T. Louie Stacey Chavez, et al. v. 24 Hour Fitness USA, Inc. Court of Appeal, Sixth Appellate District (July 8, 2015) California’s public policy in favor of sporting and leisure activities provides strong support for enforcing written waivers of liability for such activities.  The exception is when there is evidence of “gross…

  On August 20, 2015, the California Supreme Court reversed its 12-year-old decision in Henkel Corp. v. Hartford Accident Indemnity Co. (2003) 29 Cal. 4th 934, re-aligning California with the majority of jurisdictions which allow policy holders to assign rights to coverage to successor companies regarding earlier occurring losses.  The case was Fluor v Superior…

Issue by: David L. Blinn dblinn@lowball.com and Guy W. Stilson gstilson@lowball.com www.lowball.com Fluor v Superior Court (Hartford) California Supreme Court (August 20, 2015) In 2003, the California Supreme Court ruled in Henkel Corp. v. Hartford Accident & Indemnity Co. (2003) 29 Ca.4th, 934, that a “consent-to-assignment” provision in a liability insurance policy barred the insured’s…

Plaintiff alleged that our client exposed him to toxic substances that led to his development of colon cancer. After analyzing plaintiff’s expert’s report, the medical references cited therein, additional medical references on the subject which plaintiff’s expert had not considered, and taking the expert’s deposition, the defense moved in limine for an order precluding plaintiff’s…

Issue By:  Janell M. Alberto Seth Flowers, et al. v. Brinda Prasad, et al. California Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District (July 17, 2015) The Unruh Civil Rights Act and Disabled Persons Act vary in their provisions.   The Court of Appeal recently evaluated whether those differences are so irreconcilable that a disabled person asserting a…

Issue By:  David L. Blinn Hartford Casualty Insurance Company v. J.R. Marketing, L.L.C., et al. California Supreme Court (August 10, 2015) Under the Independent Counsel provisions of Civil Code Section 2860, a carrier that defends has certain controls over the payment of attorney’s fees to independent or “Cumis” counsel.  This case considered the ability of…

Congratulations to shareholder Laura S. Flynn for being selected as a Super Lawyer in the area of civil litigation defense for the fourth year in a row. Super Lawyers are selected based on peer recognition and professional achievement. Only the top 5% of attorneys are selected.  Our compliments to Ms. Flynn on this achievement.

On August 10, 2015, the California Supreme Court announced its decision in Hartford Casualty Ins. Co. v. J.R. Marketing, LLC, holding that a carrier, which was found to have breached its duty to defend and waived its rights to Civil Code Section 2860 arbitration over any Cumis fee dispute, could still bring a direct action…

Issue By:  Linda Meyer David Litt v. Eisenhower Medical Center, et al. Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District (June 19, 2015) The purpose of California Code of Civil Procedure (“CCP”) § 998 is to encourage the settlement of disputes prior to trial.  Section 998 states, in pertinent part, that if an offer made by a…

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