Where Should I File a Fictitious Business Name (DBA) Statement?

It is widely known that if you want to conduct business in the State of California using a fictitious business name, you must properly register your fictitious business name. Whether your business is a sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation or other legal entity seeking to use a fictitious trade name, the registration process requires the business owner to file a fictitious business name statement (within 40 days of first using the business name) with the county clerk’s office where the principal place of business is located in California. Within 30 days of the filing, the fictitious business name statement must be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the same county. Registration of the trade name is complete when an affidavit or proof of the publication is filed with the county clerk’s office, as long as such proof is filed within 30 days of completion of the publication process. Fictitious business name statements generally expire 5 years after filing, but can be renewed by the registrant.

The filing of a fictitious business name generally gives the business owner the exclusive right to use that name (and often confusingly similar names) in the county of registration, provided that the owner is the first to file in that county and is actually engaged in business using that name. You also need a fictitious business statement to open a bank account in the fictitious business name or accept for deposit checks in such name. Finally, if you do not have a properly registered fictitious business name, your business will not be able to sue on account of any contract made, or transaction had, in your fictitious business name, even though others can bring legal action against your business.

One of the most common questions I get from startups and companies looking to enter into the California market relates to where the business should file their fictitious business name statement and whether the business is required to file a separate statement in every county where the company intends to do business. Surprisingly, search engine results are not helpful so I decided to write this post to clarify California law on this subject. The bottom line is that you need only to file your fictitious business name statement in the county where your principal place of business is located in California, and if you do not have a place of business in California, the fictitious business name statement must be filed with the Clerk of Sacramento County.

Specifically, Business & Professions Code section 17915 provides:

A fictitious business name statement shall be filed with the clerk of the county in which the registrant has his or her principal place of business in this state or, if the registrant has no place of business in this state, with the Clerk of Sacramento County. This chapter does not preclude a person from filing a fictitious business name statement in a county other than that where the principal place of business is located, as long as the requirements of this section are also met.

As always, there are exceptions to every rule and there may be reasons why a business should register a fictitious business name in more than one county in California, especially for startups trying to grow and protect their business name. In developing a particular approach to dealing with business formation and fictitious business name statements, consult with your general counsel or experienced business attorney.

 

For more information about this topic please contact:

Ng-Chris-web

Christopher E. Ng, Esq.

Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP

1880 Century Park East 12th Floor

Los Angeles, CA 90067

 

email: cng@gibbsgiden.com

The content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel.

Copyright 2017 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP ©

Attorney Newsletter Advertisement

Beware: In a Settlement Silence on Fees is Not Golden

Businessman offering you to sign a document with focus to the teIn DeSaulles v. Community Hospital (March 10, 2016) case no. S219236, the Supreme Court has weighed in with what it calls a “default” rule regarding which party may be entitled to costs when an action is dismissed by way of settlement.  Such a “default” rule in effect overturns the prior holding in Chinn v. KMR Property Management (2008) 166 Cal. App.4th 175, at 185–190.

The settlement in Desaulles was made and put on the record during trial as a result of rulings by the Court and included a monetary payment plus the Defendant to prepare a Judgment of Dismissal with prejudice with respect to certain adverse rulings that Plaintiff wanted to appeal.  The settlement preserved the right to seek costs after the appeal was complete:  “The Parties shall defer seeking any recovery of costs and fees on this Judgment coming final after the time for all appeals.”  Plaintiff filed an appeal and lost.  Upon remand, Plaintiff filed for costs as prevailing party and the Supreme Court reversed the trial court’s ruling that Plaintiff was not the “prevailing party” under CCP 1032(a)(4), holding that under the statute, the monetary payment was a “net monetary recovery” which made the Plaintiff the prevailing party entitled to costs.

By referring to this as a “default” rule, the Court’s opinion applies to cases where the parties have not addressed “costs” in the settlement agreement or in a CCP 998 offer.

The  Supreme Court indicated this “default” may be altered by express agreement of the parties and that trial courts may look to such agreement of the parties when considering the issue of who is the prevailing party for purposes of costs when there has been a settlement. The Court stated:  “. . . settling parties are free to make their own arrangements regarding costs,”  and “Section 1032 merely establishes a default rule, and a settling defendant is in a far better position to calibrate the terms of a settlement, including allocations of costs, with appropriate provisions in the settlement.”

Costs, including defense fees as costs pursuant to a statute or contract, should be addressed in a written Settlement and Release Agreement which expressly provides either that costs are included in the settlement amount and/or that each side is waiving and releasing all claims, including costs. If there is an attorney fees provision at issue in the case, then a 998 offer should either include or exclude recoverable costs (which can include attorney fees).  If costs are excluded and Plaintiff accepts the 998 offer of money, plaintiff can then file a motion for recovery of fees as costs.  The same is true if a defendant accepts a Plaintiff’s 998 offer that is silent on the issue of costs.

For more information contact:

MICHAEL_GEIBEL_0309

Michael B. Geibel, Esq.

Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP

1880 Century Park East 12th Floor

Los Angeles, CA 90067

email: mgeibel@gibbsgiden.com

The content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel.

Copyright 2016 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP ©

To Cash or Not to Cash? How to Handle a “Payment In Full” Check

hand cashw

What should you do when you receive a check from a customer for an amount less than your total claim, but the check is marked with a “payment in full” or similar restrictive notation?  Should you return the check to the debtor?  Or can you simply cross out the “payment in full” language, deposit the check and pursue the unpaid balance?  And what if you use a lockbox to handle the numerous checks you receive and those checks are deposited before you see them?

Short Answer

The answer to this question depends on what state law applies to your customer’s account.  In the vast majority of states, if you are not willing to accept the amount of a “payment in full” check, the only safe action is to return the unnegotiated check.  If you have accidentally negotiated a restricted check, many state laws give you a period of time (e.g., 90 days) to return the funds to the debtor to avoid an “accord and satisfaction” (the acceptance of a certain sum as payment for the entire disputed amount) of the claim.  Finally, even if you have negotiated a “payment in full” check, you may be able to avoid waiving your right to pursue the balance if the debt was undisputed, or if the debtor did not act in good faith.

Creditors that want to expansively address the problem of inadvertently accepting “payments in full,” resulting in an unintended accord and satisfaction, can create and conspicuously designate a “debt dispute office” in credit agreements and invoices to customers.  If such a debt dispute office procedure is appropriately implemented, an accord and satisfaction will not be established unless a person who is charged with the responsibility of dealing with such issues makes a knowing, affirmative decision to accept the partial payment.  If such a procedure is not established, creditors should implement an alternative process to identify all partial payments made by a customer that could result in an inadvertent accord and satisfaction within 90 days from the date payment is received.

It goes without saying that it is imperative that you understand the applicable state law, consider including a favorable governing law provision in your credit and sales agreements and consult with an experienced commercial attorney regarding your particular situation.  And if this topic has piqued your interest, please read on for more information and suggestions!

Some History and Context

The “full payment” check has an erratic history in different jurisdictions around the country.   Prior to the original adoption of the Uniform Commercial Code (“UCC”) by most states about 50 years ago, the majority common law rule in the United States followed general contract law principles: the tender of a “full payment” check was an offer, and the creditor had no power to unilaterally rewrite the terms of the offer by reserving rights while simultaneously accepting the payment.  In other words, as long as it was clear that the check was tendered in full satisfaction of a disputed claim, the creditor’s deposit of the check was deemed a binding acceptance (notwithstanding any reservation of rights by the creditor) to the accord and satisfaction.

When states adopted the UCC in the 50’s and 60’s, a split developed among jurisdictions with respect to the consequences of negotiating a “payment in full” check.  A minority rule emerged in some states, including commercially significant jurisdictions such as New York and Illinois, holding that UCC section 1-207 (as originally enacted) displaced the common law accord and satisfaction rule, permitting the creditor to negotiate the check while preserving its rights as to the disputed balance by simply striking the restrictive notation.  Thereafter, some states enacted statutes (including California Civil Code section 1526) that effectively adopted the minority rule under which the creditor could negotiate the check without prejudicing its right to pursue the disputed balance by crossing out the “payment in full” notation or otherwise expressly reserving its rights. To make matters more confusing, some states have adopted various amendments to the UCC, including the 1990 Amendments to the Uniform Commercial Code which sought to bring jurisdictions back in conformity with the common law majority rule.

The Legal Roller Coaster in California

There is no better example of the pervasive see-saw legal interpretation of “payment in full” checks than in the Golden State.   For decades, California followed the majority common law rule, including after its adoption of the UCC in 1963.   In 1987, however, California enacted Civil Code section 1526 in an effort to counteract unscrupulous debtors that used the “payment in full” check to chisel down legitimate debts.  By enacting section 1526, California effectively relegated itself to the minority rule under which a creditor could negotiate a “payment in full” check and by striking  out any restrictive notation (or otherwise expressly reserving its rights), preserve its right to the disputed balance.

Just six years after enacting section 1526, California adopted the 1990 Amendments to the Uniform Commercial Code, including California Commercial Code section 3311.  Section 3311 directly contradicts Civil Code section 1526 and generally provides that cashing a check with restrictive language acts to prevent the creditor from later attempting to collect any additional disputed amounts, even if the creditor strikes any “payment in full” or similar notations.  Thus, the adoption of section 3311 should have returned California to the majority rule; the only problem is that the California legislature left Civil Code section 1526 on the books creating a irreconcilable conflict.

Commercial Code Section 3311 Wins the Statutory Tug of War in California. 

For almost 10 years, no California appellate court opinion acknowledged the direct conflict between the Civil Code and Commercial Code.  Two reported court decisions have now addressed the conflict of sections 1526 and 3311. Both courts (a California appellate court – Woolridge v. J.F.L. Electric, Inc. (2002) 96 Cal.App.4th. Supp. 52  and a federal district court – Directors Guild of Am. v. Harmony Pictures, Inc., 32 F. Supp. 2d 1184, 1192 (C.D. Cal. 1998)) applied the maxim of statutory construction that when two statutes governing the same subject matter cannot be reconciled, the latter in time prevails.  As such, both courts, whose opinion provides persuasive authority to other California courts, held that the provisions of section 3311 prevail over section 1526.  In effect, both courts’ rulings bring California back into the majority rule, meaning that the recipients of “payment in full” checks must refuse such payments or take great care before cashing them, or else forfeit the legal right to pursue any unpaid balance.

In Woolridge, the plaintiff was the owner of a BMW that had been damaged in an automobile collision.  The insurance company for the defendant sent the plaintiff a check for less than the full amount of the damage claimed by the plaintiff.  The face of the check contained a notation that the check was in “full and final settlement” of the plaintiff’s claim.  The plaintiff tried to collect additional money from the insurance company after writing “partial payment” next to his endorsement and cashing the check. The trial court found that writing “partial payment” next to his endorsement was not sufficient to defeat the “full and final settlement” language put on the check by the insurance company.

The appellate court agreed that the plaintiff had accepted the check in full and final settlement of his claim and that he could not recover any further damages from the insurance company.  In doing so, the appellate court noted the conflicting accord and satisfaction statutes in California and held the statute enacted later in time –Commercial Code section 3311 – prevailed.  Reviewing the facts before it, the appellate court found that:  (1) there was clearly a dispute between the plaintiff and the insurance company over the amount due, and (2) the plaintiff cashed a check that contained conspicuous statements indicating that it was tendered in full and final satisfaction of the claim.  Accordingly, the appellate court concluded that the requirements of section 3311 were met and an accord and satisfaction had been reached barring any further claim by the plaintiff against the insurance company.

A Closer Look at UCC Section 3-311 (and California Commercial Code  Section 3311) and the “Debt Dispute Office” Option

For those of you that love to read statutes, you can read UCC section 3-311 here, and the substantially similar California Commercial Code section 3311 here. (I’ll simply reference section 3311 hereafter).  Pursuant to section 3311, depositing a check which purports to be “payment in full” may prevent the creditor from suing to collect any additional disputed amounts if several requirements are met.

First, under section 3311, there must be a “bona fide dispute” between the parties as to the balance owed.  In other words, if there is not an honest dispute as to the amount of the debt (or that the debt is owed in the first place), tender of a “payment in full” check will not constitute an accord and satisfaction. For example, if it is undisputed that a debtor owes $500 on an open book account (because, for example, the debtor has admitted to the amount due), the debtor’s tender of a check in the amount of $100 marked “payment in full” will not operate as an accord and satisfaction.  On the other hand, if the debtor genuinely contends that it did not order $400 worth of goods, the tender of such a check, if accepted, may establish an accord and satisfaction.  Of course, in reality, a debtor sending a $100 payment will likely argue that there was a genuine dispute as to the balance owed.

Second,the check in question must be tendered in “good faith.” Using the above example, if the debtor was trying to sneak in a “payment in full” notation on a partial payment in the hope that the creditor would not pick up on the accord and satisfaction (because, for example, the debtor knows the creditor uses a lock box and rarely reviews the actual check or because it believes it can take advantage of a new and inexperienced credit manager), the tender of the check is not likely to constitute a “good faith” tender and will not establish an accord and satisfaction.

Third, the debtor must “conspicuously” disclose on the check or accompanying written communication that the partial payment is being tendered as full satisfaction of the claim. This requirement may be satisfied by simply writing “payment in full” on the check itself or by enclosing a letter or memorandum with the check which states that the payment is being made in full satisfaction of the claim.  The UCC defines “conspicuous” as a “term or clause…so written that a reasonable person against whom it is to operate ought to have noticed it.”  A printed heading in capitals is conspicuous (e.g., “PAYMENT IN FULL”), as is language in the body of an accompanying written communication if it is in larger type or contrasting type or color.

If the above three requirements are met, the customer must accept the payment in order for it to constitute an accord and satisfaction. Obviously, depositing the check constitutes acceptance, but so can endorsing the payment to a third party or even holding the check for an extended period of time. Therefore, it is wise for a creditor not only to hold or even destroy the check, but to return the check to the debtor with correspondence expressly refusing the payment.  The payment should be returned via certified mail or express delivery with third party delivery confirmation.

Finally, section 3311 gives the creditor further protection by allowing the creditor to designate a particular person or office to which all communications regarding “disputed debts” (expressly including “payment in full” checks) are to be sent.  In order to take advantage of this “debt dispute office” solution, the creditor must provide the debtor with a conspicuous statement that all “payment in full” checks must be sent to the designated person or office.  Thus, if the creditor make such a conspicuous designation on account statements, credit or sales agreements and/or invoices, restrictive checks sent to any undesignated person or office (including a lockbox) rather than the debt dispute designee will generally protect the creditor from unintentionally establishing an accord and satisfaction.

Know Your Rights and Consider Establishing a Debt Dispute Office

In light of the foregoing, when there is a dispute between a debtor and creditor, and the debtor submits a “payment in full” check for less than the full amount owing to the creditor, the only true safe practice in jurisdictions such as California may be for the creditor to return the check to the debtor.  Creditors must carefully scrutinize all checks and all written communications that accompany any checks for “payment in full” or similar language before making a deposit at the bank.  If a lockbox is used and/or checks are deposited without inspecting each check or accompanying correspondence, the creditor should adopt a review procedure so that it can identify restricted checks within 90 days from deposit to utilize the statutorily authorized return process and avoid an accord and satisfaction of the claim.  Even if you have negotiated a “payment in full” check and the 90 day safe harbor provision has passed, you may still be able to avoid waiving your right to pursue the balance if the debt was undisputed, or if the debtor did not act in good faith.  Finally, consider expansively addressing the problem of inadvertently accepting “payments in full” by creating and designating a “debt dispute office” as authorized by section 3311.

Every circumstance presents a unique set of facts.  Moreover, as described above, some states have adopted a modified version of UCC section 3-311 or have enacted statutes that conflict with section 3-311.  In developing a particular approach to dealing with the accord and satisfaction problem for your organization, you should consult with your general counsel or experienced commercial attorney.

For more information about this topic please contact:

Christopher E. Ng, Esq.
Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP
1880 Century Park East 12th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90067

email: cng@gibbsgiden.com

The content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel.

Copyright 2015 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP ©

Attorney Newsletter Advertisement

Online Advertising: Disclose, Disclose, Disclose

AAEAAQAAAAAAAANYAAAAJDQzZWQ5NzI0LWZmMmQtNGYzOC1iZjljLWJmODg1MzQxMjc3YQ

If you or your business engage in online advertising (including through websites, blogs, mobile applications, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr), be sure you are familiar and comply with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) disclosure guidelines commonly known as the “.com Disclosures

The FTC is stepping up enforcement actions that require businesses make clear and conspicuous disclosures, regardless of the platform, so as not to engage in “deceptive or unfair” advertising.  A couple of months ago, the FTC entered its Decision and Order in connection with its complaint against Amerifreight, Inc. for failing to properly disclose that it had paid consumers for online reviews. The action against Amerifreight came on the heels of the FTC’s action against Legacy Learning Systems for $250,000 in damages for a violation of blogger endorsement rules.

Similarly, Lock & Taylor may have recently violated the FTC’s disclosure guidelines when the retailer gave 50 bloggers a dress from its 2015 Design Lab fashion line and paid the bloggers an undisclosed amount of money to post a photo of themselves wearing the dress on Instagram with the hashtag #DesignLab.  While the advertising campaign was undoubtedly successful (the dress quickly sold out), none of the bloggers mentioned that they were paid by Lord & Taylor to post their photos on Instagram.

According to the FTC’s disclosure guidelines, “Bloggers receiving free products or other perks with the understanding that they’ll promote the advertiser’s products in their blogs [or social media accounts] would be covered [by the guidelines].” Such disclosures must be “accessible on all platforms used” and “clear and conspicuous.” The FTC suggests using “#Ad”, “Ad:” or “Sponsored” in tweets to be clear that a tweet or link within a tweet includes compensated content, and also placing clear disclosures near the beginning of your posts.

The FTC guidelines make it clear that when in doubt, it’s best to conspicuously disclose when a post or review is an ad or a sponsored message. Required disclosures “should not be relegated to ‘terms of use’ and similar contractual agreements” (i.e., Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, etc.) per the FTC Guidelines.

For a recent summary and expansion on the FTC’s .com Disclosures, see this article by Christine Buzan.   As the author points out, even though .com Disclosures are helpful and includes more than a dozen examples where disclosure may be required, its direction on how to comply (i.e., issues of disclosure size, placement and location) with the FTC’s guidelines are frustratingly vague– “There is no set formula for a clear and conspicuous disclosure; it depends on the information that must be provided and the nature of the advertisement.”

For more information contact:
Christopher E. Ng, Esq.
Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP
1880 Century Park East, 12th Floor
Los Angeles, California 90067
Phone: (310) 552-3400
email: cng@gibbsgiden.com

twitter@bizlawprof360

The content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel.

Copyright 2015 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP ©

Attorney Newsletter Advertisement

YELP Asks a Federal Court for HELP!

AAEAAQAAAAAAAAM2AAAAJDRhMTQ4ZGVjLTQzNWYtNGFmMi1hNGI0LWM5NGViZjdjN2JjNw

A Florida attorney’s wage and hour lawsuit against Yelp made its way this week to a federal court in the Northern District of California.  The potential class action allegation?  That Yelp’s failure to pay its employees proper wages amounts to a’21st century galley slave ship.’   Sounds both colorful and very serious.

What makes this employment case more interesting than most is that the plaintiff contends that the millions of consumers that post reviews on Yelp are the aforementioned slaves.  Specifically, the plaintiff claims that reviewers should be classified as employees and that failing to pay them for their feedback and content (without which Yelp “could not exist”) is actionable.

Although Yelp has been battling plaintiff’s claim for almost two years, Yelp filed a motion to dismiss which will likely be set for hearing by the federal court once a judge is assigned.   With 132 million monthly visitors and 57 million reviews, shockwaves will be sent through cyberspace if the court denies the motion and Yelp is faced with the reality that it may have suddenly hired millions of employees. No doubt lawyers for companies like Amazon, Angie’s List, TripAdvisor and eBay are watching this alleged “slave ship” closely.

For more about this case, check out the article at therecorder.com here:http://www.therecorder.com/id=1202727067078/Yelp-Stuck-Battling-Reviewer-Suit

For more information contact:
Christopher E. Ng, Esq.
Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP
1880 Century Park East, 12th Floor
Los Angeles, California 90067
Phone: (310) 552-3400
email: cng@gibbsgiden.com

twitter@bizlawprof360

The content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel.

Copyright 2015 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP ©

Attorney Newsletter Advertisement

$1.4 Billion Not Enough to Establish General Jurisdiction

AAEAAQAAAAAAAAJ8AAAAJGE4MzRkMDVhLWU5NDEtNGRkNi05NGQ4LWJjN2U5ZTVmM2U2YQ

In Daimler AG v. Bauman (2014) 134 S. Ct. 746, the United States Supreme Court rewrote civil procedure textbooks around the country. In last year’s momentous decision, the Supreme Court held that “the place of incorporation and principal place of business are paradig[m]…bases for general jurisdiction,” and that only in “exceptional cases” should a court exercise general jurisdiction over a corporation domiciled in another state.

Just weeks ago, a California appellate court was asked to review a trial court decision finding the existence of general jurisdiction over BNSF Railway Company in a wrongful death action. Specifically, the family of a former BNSF employee filed suit in a Los Angeles Superior Court last year, alleging that the decedent’s death from mesothelioma was the result of his having worked with asbestos at a facility located in Wichita, Kansas. BNSF, incorporated in Delaware with its principal place of business in Texas, filed a motion to quash arguing that the California court lacked jurisdiction because the lawsuit did not arise from any of BNSF’s California activities (i.e., no specific jurisdiction) and because its activities within the State of California were a “minor” component of its overall operation. BNSF claimed that only six percent of its sales revenue came from California, and a similarly small percentage of its infrastructure and workforce are located in California, whereas the largest share of its workforce, sales, and infrastructure came from BNSF’s home state of Texas.

A Los Angeles County Superior Court judge denied BNSF‘s motion to quash. CitingDaimler, the court said that general jurisdiction was present because BNSF has a “continuous and systematic” relationship with California that made the company “essentially at home” here.

The Court of Appeal, however, reversed the trial court decision, reiterating that while a defendant may be sued in a state where it is neither incorporated nor headquartered, it requires an “exceptional case.” Also relying on Daimler, the Court asserted that although California was an important market for BNSF’s products, its activities in California were comparatively small compared to its national business. The uniqueness of asbestos litigation “does not make every asbestos suit ‘exceptional,’” said the Court. Although sympathetic to the plight of the plaintiff, the Court opined that allowing the plaintiff to sue BNSF either where it was incorporated or where its principal place of business was located, preserves the constitutional rights of of both parties. To permit BNSF to be sued in a multitude of states would violate the due process rights of BNSF for the reasons set forth in Daimler:

[T]he due process rights of defendants cannot vary with the types of injury alleged by plaintiffs.  Our analysis must focus on ‘the relationship among the defendant, the forum, and the litigation’…and that relationship here is simply not enough to render petitioner ‘at home’ in California such that the exercise of general jurisdiction over actions unrelated to petitioner’s forum activities is warranted.”

Despite the fact that $1.4 billion in revenue generated in California seems to be an “exceptional” drop in the bucket, it is clear Daimler and appellate cases like BNSF are establishing a high threshold for the “exceptional case.”  National and global companies like BNSF have reason to celebrate. To read the appellate opinion, click here.

The content contained herein is published online by Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP (“Gibbs Giden”) for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements, and does not constitute legal advice. Do not act on the information contained herein without seeking the advice of licensed counsel.

For more information contact:
Christopher E. Ng, Esq.
Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP
1880 Century Park East, 12th Floor
Los Angeles, California 90067
Phone: (310) 552-3400
email: cng@gibbsgiden.com

Copyright 2015 Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP ©

Attorney Newsletter Advertisement

Are You Using Updated Notary Acknowledgment and Jurat Forms?

Although many businesses have updated their forms to reflect the new Notary language required for Certificates of Acknowledgment and Jurats, we still see many obsolete forms floating around.  Documents with outdated Notary Acknowledgments or Jurats are being rejected by County Recorder offices throughout the State of California.

For those of you not already aware, the California Legislature recently passed a law to make it clear that the Notary’s seal and signature do not authenticate or endorse the contents of a document.  The purpose of the law was to make sure that consumers unfamiliar with a Notary’s duties would not be more inclined to trust a fraudulent document simply because it was notarized.

The law, effective January 1, 2015, requires the following new language to appear word-for-word at the top of the notary certificate in a box:

“A notary public or other officer completing this certificate verifies only the identity of the individual who signed the document to which this certificate is attached, and not the truthfulness, accuracy, or validity of that document.”

If you haven’t already done so, it is important to update all of your forms that require a Notary Acknowledgment, Jurat or Proof of Execution Certificate.  Links to updated  PDF forms can be found below:

Notary Acknowledgment (Effective January 1, 2015):

http://notary.cdn.sos.ca.gov/forms/notary-ack.pdf

Jurat (Effective January 1, 2015)

http://notary.cdn.sos.ca.gov/forms/notary-jurat.pdf

For more information contact:
Christopher E. Ng, Esq.
Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP
1880 Century Park East, 12th Floor
Los Angeles, California 90067
Phone: (310) 552-3400
email: cng@gibbsgiden.com

The content contained herein is for informational purposes only, may not reflect the most current legal developments and does not constitute legal advice. The transmission of information in this post (or any transmission or exchange of information over the Internet), or by any of the included links, is not intended to create and does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. The opinions expressed in this post are the opinions of the author only and may not reflect the opinions of the author’s law firm. No representations are made as to the completeness, accuracy or validity of any information contained in this post.

Attorney Advertisement
Copyright 2015 Gibbs Giden ©