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Uber-Accident-Attorneys-CaliforniaMany people in Los Angeles and throughout California use Uber as a convenient and affordable mode of transportation. Uber has a duty to screen its drivers and take steps to protect people who use its app to hail rides. However, this duty covers when an Uber passenger rides with an Uber driver. In the case of Jane Doe No. 1 v. Uber Technologies, Inc, Cal. Ct. App. Case No. B310131, the California Court of Appeal considered whether Uber’s duty extended to situations in which women were assaulted by fake Uber drivers.[1]

Factual and Procedural Background

Between June 2017 and Feb. 2018, three women in Los Angeles each attempted to use the Uber app to hail rides home after spending their nights out at clubs where they consumed alcohol. In each of the women’s cases, fake Uber drivers who had purchased Uber decals from the company’s website and attached them to their vehicles pulled up instead of the Uber drivers. Two of the women did not try to verify that the vehicles and drivers were the right ones before getting into the vehicles. The third woman noticed the license plate number didn’t match, but the fake Uber driver convinced her to get in by claiming he had recently crashed his car and had not yet updated his information in the app.

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Costco-Accident-Attorneys-CaliforniaBusinesses owe a duty of care to their customers to keep their premises reasonably safe. This duty includes a duty to inspect the premises and promptly correct any hazardous conditions that might be discovered. In Hassaine v. Club Demonstration Services, Inc., Cal. Ct. App. Case No. D079396, the Court of Appeal considered whether an independent contractor demonstrating products inside of a larger store also owed a duty of care to customers extending to the entire premises.

Factual and procedural background

Club Demonstration Services, Inc. (CDS) contracted with Costco to demonstrate products to customers shopping in Costco stores. CDS employees would demonstrate products to customers while stationed at various demonstration tables.

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Police reports are often found to be inadmissible as hearsay in both civil and criminal cases. However, there are certain situations in which the information contained in police reports might meet an exception to the hearsay rule and be admissible in court. In Doe v. Brightstar Residential Inc., Cal. Ct. App. Case No. B304084, the Court of Appeal considered whether the trial court had erroneously excluded a police file in a civil sexual assault case against a residential care home filed by a developmentally disabled woman and her father.

Factual and Procedural Background

Jane Doe was a developmentally disabled young woman with severe autism and other diagnoses in her 20s who lived at Brightstar Residential Incorporated, a facility that provides residential care and supervision for people with mental disabilities. Doe had the mental capacity of a child. Doe was unable to do things for herself or recognize hazards and required constant supervision.

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accidental-shooting-attorneys-CaliforniaCalifornia employers are vicariously liable for the negligent actions of their employees while they are acting within the scope and course of their jobs and negligently cause injuries to others. However, employers are generally not liable for the actions of their employees when they are off duty. In Perez v. City and County of San Francisco, Cal. Ct. App. Case No. A161279, the California Court of Appeal considered whether the city was vicariously liable for the actions of a police officer who left his weapon unsecured in his vehicle at home.

Factual and Procedural Background

Marvin Cabuntala was employed as a police officer with the San Francisco Police Department. The agency issued service weapons to its officers and also had the policy to allow officers to carry guns as secondary weapons as long as they were approved by the department. Cabuntala owned a handgun that was approved as a secondary weapon. He regularly carried it in his vehicle and also used it at home to protect his family.

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paraquat-injury-claims-CaliforniaParaquat pesticides have long been used by farmers and others in the agricultural industry because of their ability to kill weeds and pests. However, these pesticides have been linked to an increased risk of developing Parkinson’s disease. Many lawyers have filed lawsuits against the manufacturers of paraquat pesticides on behalf of agricultural workers who have developed Parkinson’s disease after chronic exposure. When plaintiffs are age 70 or older and have deteriorating health conditions that threaten their interests in the outcome of litigation, they have a right to request the court provide them with a preference and set trials within 120 days. In Isaak v. Superior Court, Cal. Ct. App. Case No. A163675, the Court of Appeal considered whether the preference rule applies even when a coordinated proceeding has been established under the Joint Civil Commission Proceeding (JCCP) rules.[1]

Factual and Procedural Background

George Isaak, an 84-year-old retired farmer, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in the summer of 2020 after years of using paraquat pesticides for agricultural purposes on his fields. This type of pesticide has been linked to Parkinson’s disease. Isaak suffered multiple impairments as a result of his condition, including cognitive impacts, fatigue, weakness, the inability to walk, and incontinence.

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Street-Racing-Accidents-Attorneys-Los-AngelesCalifornians should be aware of several new laws that are effective in 2022. Multiple laws that were passed by the legislature and signed into law by Gov. Newsom affect motorists and pedestrians, and most of them were effective as of Jan. 1, 2022. Here are some of these new laws and the changes that you can expect during the new year.

Reduced Speed Limits in Certain Situations

Assembly Bill 43 was passed by the California Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Newsom on Oct. 8, 2021. This law amended several statutes and added some new statutes to the California Vehicle Code. Under AB43, local authorities have been granted the authority to reduce speed limits on state highways in areas where doing so is necessary to protect bicyclists, pedestrians, and other vulnerable populations from being injured in collisions with cars.

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California-Wrongful-Death-AttorneysA law that was recently signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom will make significant changes to survival actions and wrongful death claims and the types of damages that can be recovered in them. The changes to the law might substantially increase the damages that might be recoverable when people are killed as a result of the negligent or wrongful actions of others.

Survival actions are brought by the personal representative or successor in interest of the deceased person’s estate and seek the types of damages the deceased victim could have pursued in a personal injury claim if he or she had survived. By contrast, wrongful death claims are brought by the surviving family members of deceased victims to recover compensation for the harms they have suffered because of their loved ones’ deaths. The changes to the law affect the types of damages that are recoverable in survival actions brought by the estate for the benefit of the heirs.

Background of the law

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Drowning-Claims-Attorneys-CaliforniaIn California, many drownings and other types of water accidents happen each year at beaches located across the state. To help to prevent drowning accidents, counties and cities across California’s coastal areas post lifeguards who use jet skis to quickly respond when someone is in trouble in the water. However, a recent California Supreme Court decision revealed the ambiguity in the state’s speed limit laws for watercraft within 100 feet of swimmers or 200 feet of beaches, including jet skis used in water rescues by lifeguards.

Whenever people head to the beach, a lake, or a swimming pool, they need to be aware of the potential risks of drowning that they face. People should always make sure to follow all applicable rules, use life jackets, and avoid drinking when they plan to swim.

Factual and procedural background

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Many people in California have heard the shocking story about 19-year-old Miya Marcano, a Florida college student who was brutally slain by a co-worker. Marcano was initially reported missing by her family when she failed to take a flight home for a planned visit. She worked in the office of an apartment complex located in Orlando, Florida and also lived in an apartment in the complex. Marcano’s family has now filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Arden Villas and its operator for negligent hiring and supervision. The case provides a good illustration of negligent hiring and supervision cases.

Marcano’s case

Miya Marcano was a 19-year-old student who was studying at Valencia College in Orlando, Florida. She lived and worked at the Arden Villas, an apartment complex where she was employed in the leasing office.

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electrical-burn-injury-lawyersWhen employees of contractors are injured while performing work on behalf of a third party, they generally cannot hold the company that hired the contractors liable for their injuries. However, exceptions exist when the hirer retains control over the safety conditions of the work environment, fails to disclose a hidden, dangerous condition, or affirmatively contributes to the workers’ injuries. In Sandoval v. Qualcomm Inc., Cal. S. Ct., No. S252796 (2021), the California Supreme Court considered whether a hirer has a tort duty to inform individual employees of an independent contractor about hidden safety hazards in the workplace.[1]

Factual and procedural background

Martin Sandoval was an electrical parts specialist who worked for ROS Electrical Supply & Equipment. He was hired by Transpower Testing, Inc. to help Transpower’s president, Frank Sharghi, a licensed electrical engineer, to locate some busbars in the main cogen circuit at Qualcommm Inc.’s campus. Qualcomm had hired Transpower Testing to upgrade the company’s turbines in 2013. Sharghi had previously worked on Qualcomm’s switchgear for more than 20 years.

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