Decisions In Insurance, Tax Law, Administrative, Family Law & Employment Matters - Contract Law - California Case Law
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Decisions In Insurance, Tax Law, Administrative, Family Law & Employment Matters

Stevenson v. Bd. of Ret. of the Orange County Employees' Ret. Sys., G041816, concerned a challenge to the trial court's denial of plaintiff's petition for administrative mandate challenging the decision of the Board of Retirement of the Orange County Employees Retirement System  (Board), excluding his overtime in calculating his pension allowance.  In affirming the trial court's decision, the court held that the administrative record contains substantial evidence showing plaintiff's grade or class within the meaning of section 31461 was that of investigator, and as such, the overtime he worked that was unique to investigators in the narcotics bureaus was properly excluded from his "compensation earnable".

People v. Disandro, E049726, concerned a challenge to the superior court's appellate division's affirmance of the traffic court's judgment finding defendant guilty of driving at an unsafe speed and driving with a load obstructing her control of the vehicle.  The court affirmed, but for a different reason, as the traffic court erred when it proceeded with trial in defendant's absence without making appropriate inquiries into the reasons for the absence in order to determine whether it was both knowing and voluntary.  However, the record indicates the error was harmless as defendant has not even presented a colorable argument as to why she would not have been found guilty of both traffic infractions if she had been present at trial.

Nordstrom Comm'n Cases, G042772, concerned class action suits against Nordstrom, claiming that the department store's policy of paying net sales commission to its commissioned sales employees violated section 221 and 203 of the Labor Code.  In affirming the trial court's order overruling a class member's objection to the parties' settlement, the court held that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in overruling the objection and approving the settlement as the court's analysis of the settlement's terms correctly considered the merits of the class's claims and Nordstrom's defenses.

Jackson v. County of Amador, C060845, concerned a challenge to the trial court's dismissal of a suit after sustaining a demurrer without leave to amend in plaintiff's suit against a county and its recorder, claiming that the county recorder breached a duty to plaintiff by failing to determine that she did not sign the power of attorney or direct her brother to sign it on her behalf in recording two quit claim deeds.  In affirming the dismissal, the court held that the county recorder did not have a duty to determine whether the power of attorney and quit claim deeds were fraudulent despite the fact that they were acknowledged by a notary public.

In re Marriage of Schopfer, C060549, concerned a trial court's denial of a father's motion to reduce his child support obligation to zero from the $900 that he paid to the child's stepfather each month.  In affirming the denial, the court held that neither Family Code section 3951(a) nor Plumas County Dept. of Child Support Services v. Rodriguez required the trial court to modify father's child support obligation to zero because father agreed to pay guideline child support to stepfather a year earlier, and thus section 3951(a) was satisfied.  The court also held that a guideline child support order made during a child's minority that remains in effect after the child's 18th birthday because the child is a full-time high school student need not be modified simply because neither party has custody of the child after she turns 18.

Clarendon Am. Ins. Co. v. N. Am. Capacity Ins. Co., E048176, concerned a plaintiff's suit for declaratory relief, equitable contribution, and partial equitable indemnity, seeking a proportionate or equitable share of sums it spent to defend an insured in a construction defect action.  In reversing the trial court's grant of defendant's motion for summary judgment, the court held that the defendant did not meet its burden of showing there was no potential for coverage under the terms of its policy, or no duty to defend the insured in the underlying action, as a matter of law.  Court also held that the defendant failed to show that the insured had no reasonable expectation that at the time the policy was issued, a $25,000 SIR would apply only once to the underlying action as a whole, rather than to each eight homes constructed after November 30, 2002, as a matter of law, and all of the papers submitted on the motion leave this possibility open.

City of Alhambra v. County of Los Angeles, B218347, concerned a petition for a writ of administrative mandate challenging a county's method of calculating property tax administration fee (PTAF) charged to plaintiffs starting in fiscal year 2006-2007, claiming that the PTAF the county charged each plaintiff and retained by the county was in excess of that permitted by Revenue and Taxation Code section 97.75.  In reversing the trial court's entry of a referee's judgment that the county's interpretation did not violate section 97.75, the court remanded in holding that the statute is clear on its face and the county's method of calculating its fee under section 97.75 was unlawful.

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