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  • For California’s Farmers and Vintners Who Have Lost Their Insurance, Help Is On The Way: Senate Bill 11 Is Signed Into Law

    By Procopio Senior Associate Alexandra "Sasha" Selfridge Following 2020’s disastrous fire season, many of California’s farmers and vintners expected their commercial insurance rates would skyrocket.  What came as an unpleasant surprise were the notices that the insurance policies for these agribusinesses would not be renewed at all, leaving policyholders uninsured. Many in this valuable industry have been left without protection in the face of drought, unprecedented heat waves, a...

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  • California Supreme Court Decides New Formula For Meal and Rest Break Premium Payments – And it’s Retroactive! What Employers Need to Do

    By Procopio Partner Marie Burke Kenny In a decision anxiously awaited by employers, the California Supreme Court ruled, on July 15, 2021, that the correct rate for paying meal and rest period premiums is one additional hour of pay at an employee’s “regular rate of pay,” which is the same method used for calculating overtime wages. The decision in Ferra v. Loews Hollywood, LLC overturned a contrary decision by a California state appellate court which held that the additional hou...

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  • Catch Me If You Can: Serving A China-Based Defendant in Cross-Border Litigation

    By Procopio Associate Lianlian Wu and Partner Laurence Phillips U.S. companies increasingly enter into contracts with Chinese companies, which makes sense given the two countries are the largest markets in the world. It won’t surprise anyone that China’s legal system differs from the U.S. in many ways. Given that parties in contracts may sometimes find themselves in a disagreement, if the U.S. company chooses to litigate claims it needs to understand the unique requirements of serving...

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  • Electronic Discovery Considerations in 2021

    By Procopio Senior Counsel Elaine F. Harwell and Legal Intern Phyillis Wanjiru Macharia As the world increases its reliance on technology, many of our tools continue to grow and evolve, including Electronic Discovery (“eDiscovery”). eDiscovery refers to identifying, collecting and producing electronically stored information (“ESI”) in response to a request for production in a lawsuit or investigation. While eDiscovery has been around for many years, recent changes have altered the...

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  • Case Study: Preserving Patent Claims at the USPTO

    How a U.S. patent owner was able to fight off a competitor’s attempt to invalidate their patent before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board, and thus thwart unfair competition by a potential infringer. THE CLIENT: Anli Spring Co. Ltd., a Taiwanese metal spring manufacturer, faced competition from an overseas competitor looking to flood the U.S. market with below-market window blinds that infringed on its U.S. patent. Anli Spring has a patented spring fo...

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  • To Mask Or Not To Mask? California Employers Receive Cal/OSHA’s Answers to This and Other Important COVID-19 Workplace Safety Questions

    By Procopio Partner Marie Burke Kenny Fully vaccinated employees in California do not have to wear a face covering (mask) indoors, thanks to revised emergency temporary standards (ETS) issued by Cal/OSHA on June 17, 2021. The ETS took effect immediately when Governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order waiving the normal ten-day review process. For those employers covered by the ETS* who have been waiting for guidance from Cal/OSHA, here are some answers to your questions: Ques...

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  • Understanding the Reach of California’s Cap-and-Trade Program

    By John J. Lormon and Matthew L. Abbot Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions regulation continues to intensify across California, impacting companies operating in the state or seeking to do so. Ensuring full regulatory compliance can be quite confusing, often requiring legal counseling. A critical regulatory tool that is economy-wide in its impact is the state’s Climate Change Scoping Plan. The Scoping Plan was initially created in response to Assembly Bill (AB) 32, which required the Cali...

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  • Maintaining a Brewery’s Trade Secrets While Complying with Formula Disclosure Requirements

    By Procopio Partner Sean M. Sullivan The craft beer market is now a multibillion-dollar industry. The historical culture of microbrew collaboration has been tested as the market has matured from weekend hobbyists to intense competitors. Central to any successful brewery is, of course, a good brew. Protecting your brew’s unique proportion and variation of four key ingredients—malted grain (usually barley), hops, yeast and water—as well as other creative flavorings can be the differen...

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  • 9 Steps to Take with Outside Counsel to Keep Your IP Litigation Budget in Check

    By Procopio Partners Lisel Ferguson and Frederick Taylor “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.” — Mike Tyson Any in-house counsel who has managed intellectual property litigation knows that even after you receive a budget, there can be significant sticker shock once the bills start coming in. Then it is left to that in-house counsel to break the bad news to the CEO of spiraling litigation costs that could wreak havoc on a company’s bottom line. Some of the ...

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  • Recent Court Decisions Provide Clarity in Disgorgement Disputes with Unlicensed Contractors

    By Procopio Partner Mary A. Salamone Should a contractor in California undertake any construction-related project while failing to be properly licensed at any stage during the project, state law allows the client to recoup all compensation paid to the contractor, even if the client knew the contractor was unlicensed. This draconian action, known as disgorgement, is a severe incentive for contractors to proactively ensure all licenses are valid whenever performing work. Two recent Californ...

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