The Equalizer

Combating Paparazzi Intrusiveness

Whether you like it or not, our society is heavily influenced by celebrities, as our country is driven by fame, glamour, social media and image more and more every year. Most celebrities have a love/hate relationship with the paparazzi, and with good reason. Some live by the motto that, “any publicity is good publicity,” while others consider the unwanted attention as intrusive, stifling, and even dangerous. The lengths that some paparazzi go through for a picture are unprecedented, such as engaging in high-speed chases on California freeway’s, putting the general public at risk. On September 30, 2014 Governor Brown signed […]

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The Case for a Will, Starring the Estate of Jimi Hendrix

Jimi Hendrix is considered by many the best guitarist that has ever lived, and although the legendary icon has been dead for over 40 years, his music, and unfortunately lawsuits, has kept his spirit alive. The Hendrix estate is one of the most-litigated in the history of entertainment litigation, which include copyrights and royalty rights. When he unexpectedly passed away at the age of 27 on September 18, 1970, he did not have a will. His father Al Hendrix inherited his $80 million dollar estate, becoming the protector of his legacy. Jimi Hendrix’s family members had all separately set up […]

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Intentional Interference with Expectancy of Inheritance – Beckwith v. Dale

In 2012 California became the 26th state to recognize the tort of Intentional Interference with Expected Inheritance (IIEI) in the case of Beckwith v. Dahl, 205 Cal.App.4th 1039 (2012).  The tort provided a remedy in civil courts for anyone who lost all or part of an inheritance because of the tortious acts of another, and for which there was no adequate probate remedy. Since Beckwith was decided, there have not been any other decisions in California that expand or restrict the holding.  While Beckwith has been cited by a handful of appellate cases, none of them has actually addressed the […]

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What You Can and Can’t Do With a Phone While Driving

Update: Assembly Bill 1785 is a groundbreaking new law that takes effect January 1, 2017. It states “holding and operating a handheld wireless telephone or an electronic wireless communications device unless the wireless telephone or electronic wireless communications device is specifically designed and configured to allow voice-operated and hands-free operation, and it is used in that manner while driving.” It prohibits motorists from holding their phone while driving, and drivers may only perform the motion of a single swipe or tap of a device while it is mounted in a vehicle. Safety officials are hoping AB 1785 will plug a […]

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The Boesch Law Group Takes on the Judgment Obtained by a Chinese Government-Owned Company

In a case with international implications involving breach of contract and interference with contractual relationships, the Boesch Law Group achieved an important milestone on March 24, 2015, when the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued its opinion in favor of Folex Industries, a California corporation and a client of the Boesch Law Group. The legal question was whether a Chinese court ruling obtained by a Chinese government-owned company should be enforced in the United States. As U.S. trade and business transactions with Chinese companies have grown dramatically in the last few years, this case was closely watched by international law […]

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Defeating Extortion and Abuse of Process in All Their Ugly Disguises

“Pay me or I’m going to the police…” “Pay me or I will tell the press about you…” Or perhaps someone has filed a lawsuit against you that has an ulterior motive. These actions might or might not be an abuse of process, a tort in the state of California — or worse, the tort (and potential crime) of extortion. Whether you are owed money and frustrated, or are on the receiving end of demands, you may need legal advice. Extortion is not only a criminal act, but also a tort that may be addressed directly, with or without law […]

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Cases Can Often Begin and End With a Competent Evaluation of Lost Profits

No matter what type of claim you may be facing, whether you are the plaintiff or the defendant, an evaluation of damages is the first step toward determining how to proceed. Understanding lost profits is often a crucial part of that evaluation, and our professionals at the Boesch Law Group are both experienced and adept in making solid calculations which are accepted by the courts. In many cases, the exact amount of damages is impossible to establish, and estimates based on the best factual evidence available, frequently bolstered by expert testimony, are the best that can be presented. Courts understand […]

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Are Non-Compete Agreements Enforceable?

Many business contracts—whether partnership agreements, distribution agreements, operating agreements, or employment agreements—include non-competition clauses. When two parties are doing business together, important and sometimes confidential information and trade secrets are passed or learned; and so it is natural for businesses to protect themselves with contract clauses designed to prevent contract associates or partners from taking their clients or customers. But because public policy favors “free and open competition,” clauses restraining competition are narrowly construed, limited and sometimes plainly prohibited. Knowing the rules, what works and what doesn’t, is essential business practice—and at the Boesch Law Group, our professionals have negotiated, […]

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Article by Philip W. Boesch, Jr. for Realty 411 Guide

America’s TOP ATTORNEY on Combating Realty Fraud Real estate fraud is alive and kicking. Many industry experts anticipate real estate scams and legal issues to escalate in tandem with the new housing boom in the U.S. So how can investors at all levels enjoy sustainable investing, fend off risks of fraud, and better fulfill their goals of solving the issues they care about the most? THE EMERGING FRAUD BOOM Median existing home prices rose 11.5% last year, according to the latest data from the National Association of Realtors. NAR forecasts the median price of a new home will hit $289,700 by […]

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To Be or Not to Be, in Probate Court

  In general, causes of action provided for in the Probate Code require filing petitions and responses. If a cause of action is not expressly authorized by the Probate Code, matters of pleading and procedure are governed by the Code of Civil Procedure. This is also true of Probate Code matters except to the extent the Probate Code provides otherwise. (Prob Code §1000). In planning to initiate a “hybrid” action, where a trust litigation matter involves both probate matters and civil matters in a single case, practitioners must confront the realities of the confusing state of California law regarding the […]

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Jury Awards Six Billion Dollars in Punitive Damages Against Japan’s Largest Drugmaker

In one of the largest punitive damage awards in history – greater even than that awarded against Exxon Mobile Corp. for the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill – a Louisiana Federal Court jury awarded $6 billion in punitive damages against Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd., and $3 billion against Eli Lilly and Co., Takeda’s Indiana-based co-defendant. (In re: Actos Products Liability Litigation, Case No. 6:11-md-2299 (W.D. Louisiana)) After deliberating for less than two hours, the jury found that Takeda, Japan’s largest pharmaceutical company, had concealed cancer risks associated with its diabetes medication, Actos, and in addition to its punitive damages award, awarded […]

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General Motors Seeks to Avoid Products Liability

General Motors has asked the Bankruptcy Court to confirm that it has immunity from products liability claims brought in a class-action lawsuit in California Federal Court. General Motors (GM) went through a taxpayer-financed bankruptcy reorganization in 2009. The new GM that emerged from that process was offered immunity from product liability claims directed against the former GM entity. That immunity could potentially shield GM from responsibility in a San Francisco class action lawsuit, in which a group of owners of recalled GM cars from nine states are claiming that GM knew about its faulty ignition switch, and should compensate the […]

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Michael Jackson’s Estate, Lloyd’s of London Settle Insurance Dispute Out of Court

After three years of litigation between Lloyd’s of London, the insurers of Jackson’s “This Is It” tour, and Jackson’s estate, attorneys for the estate advised the court on January 15th  that they have settled with the insurer over a $17.5 million insurance policy. The case was scheduled to begin trial in February. The terms of the settlement were not disclosed. Jackson estate attorney, said in a statement, “The estate and Lloyd’s of London are glad this matter got resolved.” Lloyd’s had filed a lawsuit claiming it did not have to honor the policy it had issued to cover losses from […]

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The Developing Law on No Contest Clauses in Estate Litigation

Effective January 1, 2010 and applicable to all cases where the will or trust was executed after January 1, 2001, the California statutes governing No Contest Clauses have been repealed and re-written. For anyone considering challenging a will or trust that contains a No Contest Clause, it is of the utmost importance to understand the new laws pertaining to challenges and to seek the advice of legal counsel who is experienced in estate litigation. Many estate documents contain a provision known as a No Contest Clause. This clause provides that, if any person challenges – or contests – the terms […]

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Will Seeking to Remove a Fiduciary Violate a No Contest Clause?

When a beneficiary of a trust is concerned that the trustee, or “fiduciary,” is breaching his or her fiduciary duty by failing to act in the beneficiary’s best interests or is otherwise abusing his position, the beneficiary can seek to have the fiduciary removed. However, the beneficiary may be concerned about triggering a No Contest Clause in the trust. No Contest Clauses generally provide that, if a beneficiary contests the terms of the trust, he or she will be disinherited or otherwise removed as a beneficiary. These are serious consequences and should be always carefully considered when taking any action […]

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Duty to Disclose Dangerous Condition of Property Runs to Real Estate Agents

In Hall v. Aurora Loan Services, LLC (2013) 215 Cal.App 4th 1134, the California court of appeals recently held that real estate agents who are showing a property to prospective buyers, or their agents, have a duty to disclose dangerous conditions of which the seller’s agent has actual or constructive knowledge. In the above-stated matter, while being shown the property by the seller’s agent, the potential buyer’s agent was injured when she fell from an attic staircase. The buyer’s agent, the plaintiff, contended that she was injured due to a concealed dangerous condition of the property which was actually known […]

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What Artist and Talent Managers Should Know About California’s Talent Agency Act: Part Two – Handling Disputes

In “What Artists and Talent Managers Should Know About California’s Talent Agency Act: Part One,” we discussed the differences between talent agents and managers and the ways that Talent Agency Act disputes can be avoided. Here we will discuss the potential results that come from a Talent Agency Act violation, as well as one exception to the act’s strict regulations. Consequences of a Talent Agency Act Violation If the Labor Commissioner or arbitrator finds that there has been a violation of the Talent Agency Act, he or she has three options. First, the decision-maker can completely void the parties’ contract. […]

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What Artist and Talent Managers Should Know About California’s Talent Agency Act: Part One – Avoiding Disputes

California law makes a significant distinction between talent managers and talent agents, oftentimes with dire consequences for those who, wittingly or unwittingly, blur the line between the two roles. California’s Talent Agency Act requires anyone who solicits or procures artistic employment or engagements for artists to obtain a talent agency license. Labor Code §1700.4, 1700.5. Talent managers who have “solicited” or “procured” work for their clients may find their contracts voided by the Labor Commissioner, and may even be required to return some or all of their earned payments. “Artists” that fall under the act include, but are not limited […]

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Silicon Beach Fest 2016

Entrepreneurs, start-ups, content creators, social media mavens and masters of the digital world – mark your calendars!  Silicon Beach Fest returns August 23-27 in Los Angeles! Silicon Beach Fest is a biannual event celebrating LA’s flourishing digital media community. Spread over the course of four days, Silicon Beach Fest is an educational, creative and social community event to look forward to. Panelists include VCs, digital marketing strategists, entrepreneurs, and tech company CEO’s. A Digital Film Fest, workshops, and networking events populate the schedule. With extensive and diverse expertise in entertainment disputes, digital media and contracts, the attorneys at the Boesch […]

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Firefighter Injured in Multi-Vehicle Collision in Northern California

Unfortunately, it is something we see all too often in California. A speedy motorist in a flashy car thinks that the traffic laws – and the rules of common decency – do not apply, and turns the freeway into his personal racetrack, cutting off other vehicles and swerving in and out of traffic. On May 24, 2013 in Fresno, California, a driver of a red BMW sped in front of a fire truck responding to a call, causing a collision wherein the fire truck overturned and struck another SUV. The driver of the BMW, the passenger of the SUV, and […]

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Los Angeles Ranked in Top Five Cities with Most Pedestrian Fatalities

According to the National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTA), California, Florida and Texas have more pedestrian deaths than any other states, and Los Angeles ranks in the top five cities with the most pedestrian deaths as a proportion of total pedestrian fatalities. The NHTA reports that the most deadly season for pedestrian fatalities is autumn, with the most deaths occurring in October, November and December. Pedestrian accidents mostly occur between 6:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, when poor lighting conditions are a known factor. Males account for seventy percent of pedestrian victims, and the majority of drivers involved […]

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Wrongful Death Versus Survival Action: Why You Should Know the Difference

When a loved one dies because of the negligence of another, California law provides for two different types of lawsuits that can be brought against the wrongdoer. One type of lawsuit is known as a “wrongful death” lawsuit and is brought under California Code of Civil Procedure §377.60. The other is known as a “survival action” and is brought under California Code of Civil Procedure §377.30. If you are considering your legal rights because of the untimely death of a family member, it is important to know the difference between the two types of lawsuits and what you are entitled […]

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Broker’s Duties to Conduct Visual Inspections Pursuant to C.C.P. SECTION 2079, ET SEQ.

A selling broker or agent has a duty to conduct a visual inspection of residential property offered for sale and to disclose all facts materially affecting the value of the property to a potential buyer. See Cal. Code Civ. Proc. §2079 et seq. To be safe, a broker or agent showing a home should fully disclose all defects to which he or she becomes aware during the course of the visual inspection. The standard of care owed by a broker or agent is the degree of care that a reasonably prudent real estate broker or agent would typically exercise during […]

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Wrongful Death of a Jogger by Pack of Dogs

A sixty-three year old jogger was violently mauled to death by a pack of pit bulls in the Palmdale area of Los Angeles County on Thursday, May 9, 2013. The victim was dragged fifty yards and her arm was ripped off in the attack. She died of her injuries in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. The victim was identified on Friday as Pamela Maria Devitt. Alex Jackson has been arrested as a “person of interest” but it has not been confirmed whether he is the owner of the six pitbulls and two mixed-breed dogs that killed Ms. […]

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Wrongful Death of Unborn Babies Killed by Ariel Castro

Ohio prosecutors sought death penalty charges against convicted kidnapper and rapist Ariel Castro for the miscarriages he inflicted on the women he held prisoner for ten years. The women testified that Castro starved them and beat them in the stomach in order to terminate their pregnancies making him the first person in the United States to be put to death under fetal homicide law. Ohio is one of thirty-eight states, including California, which allows murder charges to be brought for the unlawful killing of a fetus with “malice aforethought.” This raises the question of whether a civil cause of action […]

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Wrongful Death of Bride and Her Friends Killed in Limousine Fire

In the California Bay Area, five women, including a bride, were killed while on their way to a bridal shower when their limousine – a 1999 Lincoln Town Car – suddenly caught fire on a San Francisco bridge. Four other passengers escaped with injuries including burns and smoke inhalation and two were in critical condition. Investigators do not believe the fire was caused by a collision and are looking into other causes. They are planning to review previous inspections of the vehicle to determine whether it had any prior issues. It is known that the fire started in the rear […]

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There Was Something About Mary

By Philip W. Boesch, Jr. Reprinted with permission – www.westsidetoday.com For the first 89 years of this country’s existence, no woman was ever executed for any crime. Then along came Mary Surratt. Mary Surratt and Thomas Jones never knew one another, but they both knew the actor John Wilkes Booth. In downtown Washington, Mary ran a modest boarding house where Booth hung out with Mary’s son John and other theater cronies. Thomas Jones lived a day’s ride away. The last anyone heard from Jones, he had a cheap booth on the midway at the 1892 Chicago World’s Fair, where he […]

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No Cold Case for This Murder

By Philip W. Boesch, Jr. Reprinted with permission - www.westsidetoday.com His friends called him Kirk but I always called him Professor Kirkpatrick. He sat white-haired, dignified in his wheelchair, patient to his admiring students, popular, even kind. So I felt grateful to take three of his classes, plus a seminar, plus an independent study. He became my adviser. He recommended me, and we had our private moments when he changed his gray suit for a cardigan. I had access to him, maybe not as much as some, but all I needed. I was sure he taught by the truth. If only […]

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Right to Privacy

By Philip W. Boesch, Jr. Reprinted with permission – www.westsidetoday.com The Los Angeles Times reminded us this week that the fate of Roe v. Wade likely depends on this presidential election. The next president, they say, will appoint the swing votes on the Supreme Court for or against the right to an abortion. Democrats and “liberal” groups frame the debate in favor of a woman’s right to choose…pro-choice. “Conservatives” and the Republican platform promote the right to life…pro-life. Justice Scalia himself has taken to the airwaves to remind voters that the Founding Fathers did not write into the Constitution a […]

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When David Killed Goliath

By Philip W. Boesch, Jr Reprinted with permission – www.westsidetoday.com “David Steals Goliath’s Music.” A New York Times editorial weighs online music piracy. “David Versus Goliath.” – Business Week describes podcast wars. Under the heading “David and Goliath,” it’s Elizabeth Hasselbeck and Rosie on rightwingnews.com. Newsweek says Arabs on the street see America as Goliath. An ad agency just calls itself “David and Goliath,” because everyone must know what that means. It’s the classic confrontation. David, small and quick, lines up against the hugely ugly and powerful Goliath. Goliath goes down with one stone from David’s sling, defeated, beheaded, and […]

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The Sport of Headhunting

By Philip W. Boesch, Jr. Reprinted with permission – www.westsidetoday.com Litigation is a nasty business, an expensive process which usually leaves the underdog deep under. But it is the system we have for ordinarily civilized people to resolve conflict, so as to come to a settlement no one is happy with. The first rule you learn about settlement is that a good one is equally disliked by all sides. No one comes to litigation with much affection for the one who sues him, and it is easy to understand revenge when your loved ones are injured or your business is […]

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Underdog Justice™

By Philip W. Boesch, Jr. Reprinted with permission - www.westsidetoday.com Petra Hernandez, the bread-winning mother of four, was on her way to work along Route 144. Ten minutes later, state troopers sifted the remains of Petra’s head-on meet with a dozing truck driver. One minute Nga Li was minding her own business, turning left on Alvarado, heading home. Next thing she remembered there were bandages on her face and the loud moans of a charity ward, courtesy of the speeding cabdriver who hit her. At the hospital, Eliza Hurtault, who checked in two days earlier with a bleeding ulcer, stared blankly […]

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One Against a Billion

By Philip W. Boesch, Jr Reprinted with permission – www.westsidetoday.com A mind-numbingly tragic end – Start with the young beauty, out there in every sense, with the rich older man. Add the scandalous theft of oil billions by bribery and forgery. Mix in sensational front-page death with uninformed legal opinions. Finish with a baby girl whose paternity is challenged in headlines, and you get media frenzy for the ages. But the baby in this story is Elizabeth Ann, not Anna Nicole’s Dannielynn. It’s 1923. The elderly lover is Warren Harding, the childless 29th President of the United States, who watches […]

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