Mountain Flowers

Mountain Flowers

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Our Past Client on National Geographic 'Filthy Riches' 2014

One of our past clients Al De Silva, a burl hunter and wood veneer guy, is one of several unusual businesses shown on National Geographic 'Filthy Riches'...Al and his friend Mr. Dahl are shown scouting  burlwood in Utah.... We have seen Al use a chainsaw on burls so large, you almost need a crane to move them. It is a known fact that Al is in litigation in Butte County over the veneer business dispute that arose several years ago. And yes, Al does resemble Tommy Lee Jones the actor.

The show has different men in rural areas in various parts of the USA doing things like digging for giant worms used for fishing, hunting for a quota of certain plant species, capturing eels on a beautiful river, and generally, some pretty macho type of labor that doesn't involve a 9-5 desk job but can be pretty gritty.

http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/filthy-riches/videos/slip-sliding-away/
(this one shows Al driving the truck with burl pulling truck-- you gotta see it!)

Note: This past client has a very expensive lawsuit against the people that sold his machinery and ousted him from the Oroville location he had for wood burl veneer. Litigation is ongoing.His attorney is in real property litigation.



http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/filthy-riches/





                       http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/filthy-riches/videos/going-out-on-a-limb/


Thursday, January 29, 2015

Bullying in Schools

http://education.findlaw.com/school-safety/legal-issues-and-laws-relating-to-school-safety.html

Below is an overview of legal issues and laws pertaining to school safety that parents, guardians, and educators should be aware of.
Bullying in Schools
Bullying in schools is a growing and serious problem that occurs on school campuses across the nation. Bullying not only comprises the overall learning goals of educational environments, it threatens a student's right to attend classes on school campuses that are safe.
Both state and federal governments have recognized a student's need for school safety. Several states have passed anti-bullying laws, including California, Arkansas, and Colorado, aimed at making schools safe for learning. In addition, the federal government has laws in place, such as the First Amendment, Establishment Clause, and others aimed at making sure school districts provide equal protection of federal and state constitutional rights to all citizens, including students.
While parents of children who are bullied or harassed may file lawsuits against a school or school district for failing to stop the harmful behavior, students who bully are often suspended or expelled if a school determines his or her behavior violates student conduct codes and other laws. Schools can help minimize potential violations by enforcing codes of conduct that typically address various types of behavior.
Premises Liability at Schools
There are a growing number of lawsuits arising out of some school's failure to keep students safe while on school property. Under the theory of "premises liability", occupiers and owners of land (including schools) are legally required to keep premises safe for those who are legally allowed to be there. The law generally requires owners and occupiers of land to exercise a "reasonable amount of care" in providing a safe environment on their premises. However, because schools are typically utilized by young children, the law requires a greater amount of care to be taken in situations where students are present.
Parents of children who are injured may file a claim against a school or school district for contributing to a student's harm or failing to keep premises safe at school. This may include common situations where a child falls or injures themselves in some way due to a school's negligence, but may also include situations where a child is bullied, harassed, or becomes ill and the school fails to come to the aid of the student, or control the situation.
First Amendment Concerns
The U.S. Supreme Court has declared that students attending public schools do not "shed their constitutional rights to freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse gate". (Tinker vs. Des Moines School Dist. 393 U.S. 503 upholding the right of students to wear black armbands in school in protest of the Vietnam War). Even so, while students are afforded First Amendment freedoms, their rights may be restricted. There have been a variety of free speech lawsuits involving public schools over the years. The Court has ruled that certain types of speech, including the wearing of certain clothing and religious symbols (for example, t-shirts with suggestive language or a necklace with the symbol of a cross) and participation in groups or associations must be applied in a manner that attempts to balance a student's free speech rights and a school's need to provide a safe learning environment.
Student Codes of Conduct/Discipline Policies
Most schools have some sort of student codes of conduct and other discipline policies which generally outline a student's rights and responsibilities within the student body. These policies also typically include types of behavior that are acceptable or inappropriate on school campuses (or even beyond school doors). Parents (or guardians) should read through these policies with their child to ensure awareness of important safety and discipline guidelines.
School-Related Product Safety
Because students often need various school-related items, it is important to know whether certain items or products pose any harmful risks. For example, over the years there have been important recalls on school-related items, such as BPA-lined plastic containers, clothing with drawstrings, non-insulated lunch boxes, and so on. To find information on these and other products, click here for a listing of U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission standards. You also may wish to visit the CPSC website directly to find the information you may be looking for.
Conclusion
School safety is an important issue. Not only is it important for students to feel safe and secure in their school surroundings, it is important for their learning growth as well. If you are a parent, guardian, or educator who has school safety concerns, you may wish to contact your school's district and ask whether there are existing safety guidelines and policies in place. Otherwise, you may wish to contact an attorney to learn more about a particular law in question.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Custody and TRO Temporary Restraining Orders


Domestic violence related Restraining Orders are a huge problem, and if you either need to fight one, or obtain one, be forewarned-- it's very easy to GET a TRO, and defending against them is best reserved for defense attorneys or at least attorneys who know litigation and not just "settlement."

Very few TRO claims are readily settled--clients are either too upset, too physically harmed, or they made up facts in order to get back at a spouse. Attorney has seen plenty of vindictive TROs over the years. Often Judges just rubberstamp them, and issue them for 3 years.

Beware if you need to defend against a DV TRO, because a vindictive spouse is the most difficult to work with. Knowing that, you will need a lot of help to prevail.
Make sure your attorney can properly defend and fight for you.  If not, you stand to lose quite a bit, both financially, and emotionally.

If the DV TRO is issued against a party, that party cannot presumptively be the custodial parent.
This means that automatically, unless proven otherwise, you are out of the picture as custodial parent, even if you already were the custodial parent. This would likely require a trial to change that.

The best defense in such a case is to be prepared ahead of time, not after the fact. Make sure your attorney is not simply focused on settling everything while you lose out. Much of divorce these days requires the ability to litigate for the client. Settling does not always work.