Tag Archives: Basic Contents

Courts

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Courts in California

Over the period 2008-2013, the financial crisis affecting California’s courts has caused:

  • 46 courthouses to close
  • 164 courtrooms to close
  • 1,885 court employees to lose their jobs
  • $1.2 billion to be cut from the state courts’ budget

Source: Assembly Judiciary Committee, February 2013

Federal Courts

Federal Courts in California include the following:

  • California Bankruptcy Court. The main office is in the capital of California (differerent from the divisional offices, located in the main city or cities of each U.S. State)
  • California District Court. The main office is in the capital of California (differerent from the divisional offices, located in the main city or cities of each U.S. State)
  • Probation Office. The main office is in the capital of California (differerent from the divisional offices, located in the main city or cities of each U.S. State)

California Courts

This section covers California-specific basic information on courts and related topics. Many of California's laws on courts are similar to those of other U.S. states, with some differences (in some cases, minor differences). California courts laws on courts are created and revised by the actions of lawmakers and the courts. Use the cross-references and topics below to learn more about California statutes and laws on courts, which is a basic matter in California law.

California Courts

This section covers California-specific basic information on courts and related topics. Many of California's laws on courts are similar to those of other U.S. states, with some differences (in some cases, minor differences). California courts laws on courts are created and revised by the actions of lawmakers and the courts. Use the cross-references and topics below to learn more about California statutes and laws on courts, which is a basic matter in California law.

Courts and Judges in California: General Overview

This entry offers readers with practical insight to the subject of courts and judges in California, a general introduction to the legal issues relating to courts and judges under California law and practice.

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Battery

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Battery

California Battery

This section covers California-specific basic information on battery and related topics. Many of California's laws on battery are similar to those of other U.S. states, with some differences (in some cases, minor differences). California battery laws on battery are created and revised by the actions of lawmakers and the courts. Use the cross-references and topics below to learn more about California statutes and laws on battery, which is a basic matter in California law.

Assault and Battery in relation to Criminal Law & Procedure

This section analizes the legal issue of assault and battery in this context, and provides information on its relation with Particular Crimes and Offenses

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Holidays

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Holidays

California Holidays

This section covers California-specific basic information on holidays and related topics. Many of California's laws on holidays are similar to those of other U.S. states, with some differences (in some cases, minor differences). California holidays laws on holidays are created and revised by the actions of lawmakers and the courts. Use the cross-references and topics below to learn more about California statutes and laws on holidays, which is a basic matter in California law.

Sundays and Holidays in California: General Overview

This entry offers readers with practical insight to the subject of sundays and holidays in California, a general introduction to the legal issues relating to sundays and holidays under California law and practice.

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Settlement

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Settlement in California

Good Faith Settlements

All litigators need to know the statutory rules governing good faith settlements.

By Gilda R. Turitz. She is a partner and litigation practice group leader at Sideman & Bancroft in San Francisco.

When one defendant in a multiparty case settles for a low amount, an issue often arises as to whether the settlement has been entered in “good faith.” The issue is important because a key California statute enables a party who settles in good faith to leave the litigation and exempts them from certain cross-claims asserted by the other defendants.

Statutory Procedure

Settlements are supposed to bring warring litigants peace and finality, but that goal may be jeopardized when non-settling defendants challenge a pre-verdict or pre-judgment settlement between the plaintiff and some – but not all – joint tortfeasor or co-obligor defendants. The challenge usually comes in the form of an objection that the settlement lacks the requisite good faith to qualify for the protective statutory cloak that would shield the settling party from the cross-claims asserted by other defendants for equitable comparative contribution or indemnity based on comparative negligence or comparative fault. Moreover, a good faith settlement will reduce the plaintiff’s claims against the non-settlors by the amount stipulated in the release, dismissal, or covenant not to sue or enforce judgment, or by the amount of consideration paid to the plaintiff, whichever is greater. (See Cal. Civ. Proc. Code §§ 877 and 877.6.)

Any party can apply to the superior court for a good faith determination under alternative procedures of section 877.6(a) by a formal motion or a simple notice served by certified mail. A party asserting the lack of good faith (which is a question of fact) bears the burden of proof. (§ 877.6(d).) The battle regarding a disputed good faith claim usually focuses on the factors explained in Tech-Bilt, Inc. v. Woodward-Clyde & Associates (38 Cal. 3d 488 (1985)) and its progeny. The issue is whether the settlement is so far “out of the ballpark” that it is inconsistent with the statute’s dual goals of encouraging settlements and equitably allocating costs among multiple tortfeasors.

Proportionate Liability

The predominant factor under Tech-Bilt is that the settlement amount cannot be “grossly disproportionate to what a reasonable person, at the time of the settlement, would estimate the settling defendant’s liability to be.” (38 Cal. 3d at 499.) Although a monetary sum is easily quantified, total settlement value must factor in any nonmonetary considerations. Admissible evidence is required to prove value and the settlor’s proportionate liability, and expert affidavits in support may be necessary on both issues.

Financial Reality

Courts recognize that a settlor may pay less in settlement than it would be found liable for at trial, especially if its financial resources are limited. The good faith determination requires adequate and admissible evidence of the settling defendant’s net worth and any insurance or claimed noncoverage. An objecting party may properly seek a continuance of the good faith hearing to marshal evidence, including taking discovery, to support its burden of proof on the financial issues. If discovery is sought, the settlor may seek a protective order to limit financial disclosures.

Although courts are quite flexible in applying the good faith analysis, a settlement will not qualify as valid under section 877.6 if the evidence demonstrates that the settling parties engaged in conduct aimed at injuring the non-settlors’ interests. A collusion finding may be supported by a disproportionately low settlement figure entered into solely to immunize the settlors from a cross-complaint. (See Mattco Forge, Inc. v. Arthur Young & Co., 38 Cal. App. 4th 1337 (1995).) However, if the settlement resulted from a mediation or judicially hosted settlement conference, there is a much better chance that it will meet the good faith standard.

Make It Conditional

If settling parties anticipate a challenge, they should consider conditioning the settlement upon the court’s approval. Otherwise, if the court finds lack of good faith, the settling defendants will still be bound to pay, and they will face continuing potential exposure to indemnify non-settlors.

Dismissing Cross-Complaints

A good faith settlement order does not by itself dismiss indemnity and contribution cross-complaints. The settling defendant must move for that relief, and the motion can be made concurrently with or immediately following the good faith hearing.

Appellate Relief

Any aggrieved party may file a petition for writ of mandate within 20 days after written notice of the good faith ruling. (Cal. Civ. Proc. Code § 877.6(e).) Because there is no right to appeal from a good faith settlement order, to contest the trial court’s ruling, a party should promptly file a writ. Waiting to pursue appellate relief until after a judgment is entered will usually be too late.

The rules governing settlement are designed to be efficient and user-friendly. And any lawyer in a multiparty case is well advised to not only be aware of them, but also to understand both their potency and their limitations.

California Settlement

This section covers California-specific basic information on settlement and related topics. Many of California's laws on settlement are similar to those of other U.S. states, with some differences (in some cases, minor differences). California settlement laws on settlement are created and revised by the actions of lawmakers and the courts. Use the cross-references and topics below to learn more about California statutes and laws on settlement, which is a basic matter in California law.

Settlement Contracts

Welcome to the California legal encyclopedia's introductory part covering the settlement contracts laws of California, with explanations of the various implications of settlement contracts in California and the statutes enforced in California in connexion with settlement contracts. This introductory section covers case law related to settlement contracts in California, the legal approach on settlement contracts in the United States and related topics. The information below provides an California-specific general overview of the legal regime of settlement contracts in California.

Settlement Contracts in relation to Commercial Law

This section analizes the legal issue of settlement contracts in this context, and provides information on its relation with Contracts.

Settlement of Small Estates

Welcome to the California legal encyclopedia's introductory part covering the settlement of small estates laws of California, with explanations of the various implications of settlement of small estates in California and the statutes enforced in California in connexion with settlement of small estates. This introductory section covers case law related to settlement of small estates in California, the legal approach on settlement of small estates in the United States and related topics. The information below provides an California-specific general overview of the legal regime of settlement of small estates in California.

Settlement of Small Estates in relation to Probate, Estates and Trusts

This section analizes the legal issue of settlement of small estates in this context, and provides information on its relation with Administration of Estates.

Settlements; Agreements on Compensation

Welcome to the California legal encyclopedia's introductory part covering the settlements; agreements on compensation laws of California, with explanations of the various implications of settlements; agreements on compensation in California and the statutes enforced in California in connexion with settlements; agreements on compensation. This introductory section covers case law related to settlements; agreements on compensation in California, the legal approach on settlements; agreements on compensation in the United States and related topics. The information below provides an California-specific general overview of the legal regime of settlements; agreements on compensation in California.

Settlements; Agreements on Compensation in relation to Workers' Compensation

This section analizes the legal issue of settlements; agreements on compensation in this context.

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Bonds

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Bonds in California

Bond Bill (General Obligation Bonds) and the Legislative Process

A bill authorizing the sale of State general obligation bonds to finance specified projects or activities; the measure subsequently must be approved by the voters.

California Bonds

This section covers California-specific basic information on bonds and related topics. Many of California's laws on bonds are similar to those of other U.S. states, with some differences (in some cases, minor differences). California bonds laws on bonds are created and revised by the actions of lawmakers and the courts. Use the cross-references and topics below to learn more about California statutes and laws on bonds, which is a basic matter in California law.

Bonds of Guardians

Welcome to the California legal encyclopedia's introductory part covering the bonds of guardians laws of California, with explanations of the various implications of bonds of guardians in California and the statutes enforced in California in connexion with bonds of guardians. This introductory section covers case law related to bonds of guardians in California, the legal approach on bonds of guardians in the United States and related topics. The information below provides an California-specific general overview of the legal regime of bonds of guardians in California.

Bonds of Guardians in relation to Probate, Estates and Trusts

This section analizes the legal issue of bonds of guardians in this context, and provides information on its relation with Administration of Estates.

Bonds in California: General Overview

This entry offers readers with practical insight to the subject of bonds in California, a general introduction to the legal issues relating to bonds under California law and practice.

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  • Legislative Power
  • Legislative Branch
  • Legislation
  • Executive Branch
  • Legislative Function

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Aliens

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Aliens

California Aliens

This section covers California-specific basic information on aliens and related topics. Many of California's laws on aliens are similar to those of other U.S. states, with some differences (in some cases, minor differences). California aliens laws on aliens are created and revised by the actions of lawmakers and the courts. Use the cross-references and topics below to learn more about California statutes and laws on aliens, which is a basic matter in California law.

Aliens With Extraordinary Ability

Welcome to the California legal encyclopedia's introductory part covering the aliens with extraordinary ability laws of California, with explanations of the various implications of aliens with extraordinary ability in California and the statutes enforced in California in connexion with aliens with extraordinary ability. This introductory section covers case law related to aliens with extraordinary ability in California, the legal approach on aliens with extraordinary ability in the United States and related topics. The information below provides an California-specific general overview of the legal regime of aliens with extraordinary ability in California.

Aliens With Extraordinary Ability in relation to Immigration Law

This section analizes the legal issue of aliens with extraordinary ability in this context.

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Distribution

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Distribution

California Distribution

This section covers California-specific basic information on distribution and related topics. Many of California's laws on distribution are similar to those of other U.S. states, with some differences (in some cases, minor differences). California distribution laws on distribution are created and revised by the actions of lawmakers and the courts. Use the cross-references and topics below to learn more about California statutes and laws on distribution, which is a basic matter in California law.

Distribution in relation to Probate, Estates and Trusts

This section analizes the legal issue of distribution in this context, and provides information on its relation with Administration of Estates

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Criminal Law

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Criminal Law in California

For California Attorneys: Criminal Law

There is more information about this subjet in the California legal portal in these entries: Victim Restitution Plea Bargaining Proceeding Innocence Money Laundering Evidence Victims Three Strikes Law

California Criminal Law

This section covers California-specific basic information on criminal law and related topics. Many of California's laws on criminal law are similar to those of other U.S. states, with some differences (in some cases, minor differences). California criminal law laws on criminal law are created and revised by the actions of lawmakers and the courts. Use the cross-references and topics below to learn more about California statutes and laws on criminal law, which is a basic matter in California law.

Criminal Law (Substantive Principles and Offenses) in California: General Overview

This entry offers readers with practical insight to the subject of Criminal Law (Substantive Principles and Offenses) in California, a general introduction to the legal issues relating to Criminal Law (Substantive Principles and Offenses) under California law and practice.

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Pleading

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Pleading

California Pleading

This section covers California-specific basic information on pleading and related topics. Many of California's laws on pleading are similar to those of other U.S. states, with some differences (in some cases, minor differences). California pleading laws on pleading are created and revised by the actions of lawmakers and the courts. Use the cross-references and topics below to learn more about California statutes and laws on pleading, which is a basic matter in California law.

Defending Against a Cause of Action: Responsive Motions and Pleadings

Welcome to the California legal encyclopedia's introductory part covering the defending against a cause of action: responsive motions and pleadings laws of California, with explanations of the various implications of defending against a cause of action: responsive motions and pleadings in California and the statutes enforced in California in connexion with defending against a cause of action: responsive motions and pleadings. This introductory section covers case law related to defending against a cause of action: responsive motions and pleadings in California, the legal approach on defending against a cause of action: responsive motions and pleadings in the United States and related topics. The information below provides an California-specific general overview of the legal regime of defending against a cause of action: responsive motions and pleadings in California.

Defending Against a Cause of Action: Responsive Motions and Pleadings in relation to Civil Procedure

This section analizes the legal issue of defending against a cause of action: responsive motions and pleadings in this context.

Pleading in relation to Civil Procedure

This section analizes the legal issue of pleading in this context.

Pleading in California: General Overview

This entry offers readers with practical insight to the subject of pleading in California, a general introduction to the legal issues relating to pleading under California law and practice.

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Prohibition

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Prohibition

California Prohibition

This section covers California-specific basic information on prohibition and related topics. Many of California's laws on prohibition are similar to those of other U.S. states, with some differences (in some cases, minor differences). California prohibition laws on prohibition are created and revised by the actions of lawmakers and the courts. Use the cross-references and topics below to learn more about California statutes and laws on prohibition, which is a basic matter in California law.

Mandamus, Procedendo, and Prohibition in California: General Overview

This entry offers readers with practical insight to the subject of mandamus, procedendo, and prohibition in California, a general introduction to the legal issues relating to mandamus, procedendo, and prohibition under California law and practice.

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