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Defective Medical Products

Defective Medical Products

Personal Injuries

Dangerous Prescription Drugs

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Are Boats Required to Have Insurance in California?

  California law does not require boaters to insure their boats. Despite California’s policy on boater’s insurance, it is wise to get coverage to minimize risks to your personal assets. Boating insurance is like car or home insurance; it covers

California Supreme Court Rules Retirees Entitled To Prompt Pay

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Kershaw, Cook & Talley is a plaintiffs’ complex litigation and personal injury law firm in Sacramento, California representing individuals and businesses nationwide.


Sacramento-based law firm Kershaw, Cook & Talley recently achieved a significant victory on behalf of California retirees. On August 18, 2016, the California Supreme Court held in part that prompt pay protections “apply to persons who retire from their employment, just as they apply to those who voluntarily leave their employment for other reasons.” The class case, McLean v. State of California, et al., was brought by a retired deputy attorney general, Janis S. McLean, who alleged that the State of California violated Labor Code sections 202 and 203 by failing to pay timely final wages to State employees.

The issue was previously appealed to the Third District Court of Appeal, where the court of appeal agreed that the protections afforded under Labor Code sections 202 and 203 also protect retirees.  The court of appeal also determined that the State of California was properly sued as plaintiff’s “employer.”  The California Supreme Court unanimously affirmed the court of appeal’s judgment.

William A. Kershaw, of Kershaw Cook & Talley PC, argued before the Supreme Court on behalf of the plaintiff and putative class. Mr. Kershaw told Law360, “That with the state’s main defenses decided in our favor by the Supreme Court, [Ms. McLean] will return to the trial court to proceed with the claims on behalf of herself as well as a class of retired state employees.”

The case is McLean v. State of California, number S221554, in the Supreme Court of California.

False Advertising and Illegal Business Practices Explained

(Part 1 of 3)

The words Consumer protection shot with artistic selective focus.

Have you ever bought a product that did not live up to your expectations? Most consumers have gotten caught up in flashy advertising tactics at one time or another, buying a good or service that may not have ended up being nearly as useful as it appeared. But when do advertising tactics and business practices become possible illegal activity? California has multiple statutes designed to protect consumers.

First is the California Business and Professions Code § 17200[1], termed California’s Unfair Competition Law (“UCL”):

Unfair competition shall mean and include any unlawful, unfair or fraudulent business act or  practice and unfair, deceptive, untrue or misleading advertising and any act prohibited by  Chapter 1 of Part 3 of Division 7 of the Business and Professions Code (which outlines false advertising in regards to various products).

Actions under the UCL for injunctions and restitution may be brought by a prosecuting authority or by private persons acting for themselves or the general public. The language is purposefully broad, allowing the definitions of ‘unlawful, ‘unfair’ and ‘fraudulent’ to evolve with business practices.

This statute has been used in a variety of contexts. If you think you have a claim under California’s Unfair Competition Law, contact an attorney experienced in consumer fraud or false advertising.

[1] Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code § 17200.

[2] Regarding legal claims, a per se violation refers to something that is illegal in and of itself, not requiring further proof.

[3] Cel-Tech Commc’ns, Inc. v. Los Angeles Cellular Tel. Co., 20 Cal. 4th 163, 187 (1999).

[4] Bank of the W. v. Superior Court, 2 Cal. 4th 1254, 1267 (1992).

J&J Defense and DePuy Pinnacle Trial Verdict

John Beisner, an attorney for Johnson & Johnson’s DePuy, stated he expects the DePuy Pinnacle trial verdict to be a “pyrrhic victory for plaintiffs’ counsel” .

The J&J DePuy attorney’s position that this is a “pyrrhic victory” and that there are strong grounds for appeal is simply his opinion.  We know from DePuy’s prior history that they were going to appeal any verdict in the plaintiffs’ favor.  Whether or not they have strong grounds to have this verdict reversed or the judgment reduced will be a matter for the plaintiffs’ appellate team to work through.

As for the statutory cap, yes the punitive damage award will be reduced pursuant to a Texas law that limits the amount of punitive damages that can be recovered against a defendant.  The law in Texas is:
 
LIMITATION ON AMOUNT OF RECOVERY. (a) In an action in which a claimant seeks recovery of damages, the trier of fact shall determine the amount of economic damages separately from the amount of other compensatory damages. (b) Exemplary damages awarded against a defendant may not exceed an amount equal to the greater of: (1)(A) two times the amount of economic damages; plus (B) an amount equal to any noneconomic damages found by the jury, not to exceed $750,000; or (2) $200,000. (Texas Civil Practice & Remedies Code 41.008)

So, for example, in the DePuy Pinnacle trial, most plaintiffs received a compensatory damage award of about $27 million.  If the economic damages were $1 million and the non-economic damages were $26 million, the punitive damages should be capped at $2.75 million (i.e. two times economic damages plus non-economic damages up to $750,000).

On the other extreme, if the economic damages were $26 million and the non-economic damages were only $1 million, the punitive damages should be capped at $52,750,000.

This is similar to the medical malpractice MICRA cap in California – i.e., even where a California jury awards a plaintiff many millions of dollars in pain and suffering damages against a negligent doctor (because the jury is not told about the cap), the pain and suffering award gets reduced to a mere $250,000.

Since we don’t have the information yet as to how much the Texas jury awarded each of the 5 plaintiffs in economic damages, we don’t know by how much the $360 million punitive damage award will be reduced.

Defective & Dangerous Products

Chicago Medical Malpractice Lawyers

The attorneys at Kershaw, Cook & Talley successfully represent consumers in lawsuits against manufacturers and companies involving defective products and product recalls. Our experienced trial attorneys recover thousands of dollars on behalf of injured individuals in cases involving defective medical devices, dangerous drugs, car defects and more.

Referring Attorneys

Best Chicago Medical Malpractice Lawyers

At times, attorneys require further expertise and resources, legally and financially, to resolve a legal matter. We have the team, capability and dedication to handle challenging cases. If you have a case exceeding your resources with respect to workforce or experience, consider contacting our firm. We welcome referrals from firms in Sacramento and throughout the United States.

Our Services

Medical Malpractice Lawyers, Kershaw, Cook & Talley

We provide free case consultations. If you, or a loved one, suffered an injury due to another’s negligence or wrongful conduct, call our firm. We will examine your individual situation and explain your legal rights. Our attorneys have extensive experience representing injured individuals, in both jury trials and settlement negotiations.

Personal Injury Attorneys, Personal Legal Service.

Kershaw, Cook & Talley is a Sacramento law firm founded on the principle of helping our clients through personalized legal services. With this philosophy, Kershaw, Cook & Talley has garnered a statewide and national reputation for providing outstanding legal representation and obtaining significant compensation for our clients.

Nationally Recognized Personal Injury Law Firm.

We understand personal injury cases are often emotionally and financially straining. Our team of top personal injury attorneys in Sacramento is committed to seeking justice for individuals injured as a result of another's negligence or intentional misconduct. At Kershaw, Cook & Talley, our experienced personal injury attorneys will hold the responsible parties accountable for their actions.

CLIENT TESTIMONIALS

“Bill and Stu worked expeditiously to get my hip claim resolved.
I couldn’t believe how personable they were and easy to contact.”

-S. Thomas

“Stuart helped me with a case involving a defective hip replacement. He was incredibly responsive to my calls and concerns and really kept me updated on what was going on in the litigation. Even though his office was not in my hometown, he actually flew out to meet with me. He was incredibly knowledgeable about the case and really helped me through a very difficult time.”

-Personal Injury Client, as seen on AVVO

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