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  Monday, December 3, 2018  
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The following caselaw summaries are provided as a courtesy to Los Angeles County Bar Association members by the Metropolitan News-Enterprise www.metnews.com. Summaries from the past 90 days are archived and searchable on the LACBA Web site at www.lacba.org/news-and-publications/daily-ebriefs.
NINTH U.S. CIRCUIT COURT OF APPEALS
Election Law
California's refusal to allow a candidate's preference for a non-qualified political party to appear on ballots burdens the candidate's First and Fourteenth Amendment rights. The burden is not severe, but it is more than "slight". While avoiding voter confusion is an important government interest, without a fully developed factual record, a court cannot evaluate whether California's decision to identify members of non-qualified political parties as having no party preference furthers that goal.

Soltysik v. Padilla - filed Dec. 3, 2018
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 16-55758
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Securities
A payday loan lender's "note" was deceptive where it did not accurately disclose the loan's terms. Federal Trade Commission Act Sec. 13(b) empowers a court to order equitable monetary relief for such conduct.

Federal Trade Commission v. AMG Capital Management, LLC - filed Dec. 3, 2018
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 16-17197
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Order
Close v. Sotheby's, Inc. - filed Dec. 3, 2018
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 16-56234
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CALIFORNIA SUPREME COURT
Criminal Law and Procedure
Penal Code Sec. 1018 does not foreclose an interpretation of "counsel" that encompasses advisory counsel who has been assigned to fulfill the responsibilities of counsel under Sec. 1018. A trial judge did not abuse its discretion in finding a manifest need to physically restrain a defendant who had a history of multiple violent incidents outside the courtroom.

People v. Miracle - filed Dec. 3, 2018
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 5663
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Criminal Law and Procedure
Penal Code Sec. 1367(a) is not facially invalid. Because professional psychologists and psychiatrists are permitted to render an opinion on the ultimate issue of the defendant's competence, their adherence to or disregard of professional standards in forming those opinions is relevant to their credibility as experts. A prospective juror's failure to provide responses to all the questions on the jury questionnaire provided a reason for the trial court to voir dire her, but not to excuse her for cause. The potential for delay and disruption is an important factor in the analysis of whether a defendant should be allowed to go pro per, but it is not the only factor.

People v. Buenrostro - filed Dec. 3, 2018
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 5682
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CALIFORNIA COURT OF APPEAL
Criminal Law and Procedure
California case law does not require a conspiracy to obstruct justice be founded upon a separate, specific criminal statute to survive a Penal Code Sec. 995 motion to dismiss. There need only be some showing that the defendant's actions would obstruct justice.

People v. Garcia - filed Dec. 3, 2018, Sixth District
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 5706
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Criminal Law and Procedure
When a statute posits ability to pay as a precondition of a requirement to pay a fee, the defendant has the right to a determination of his ability to pay the fee before the court may order payment. Unless waived by the defendant, it is for the court, not the probation officer, to make the final determination.

People v. Neal - filed Nov. 30, 2018, First District, Div. Two
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 5710
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Insurance Law
An insurer may not file its own action to assert claims solely as a subrogee of a suspended corporation.

Travelers Property Casualty Company of America v. Engel Insulation, Inc. - filed Nov. 30, 2018, Third District
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 5714
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Tax Law
A county tax board's unexplained rejection of a property owner's evidence of a decline in value for the property, with knowledge that the assessor's valuation analysis would result in a valuation significantly lower than the enrolled value, was arbitrary, as was its decision to leave in place an enrolled value that had been repudiated by the assessor and was unsupported by any evidence.

Next Century Associates v. County of Los Angeles - filed Nov. 30, 2018, Second District, Div. One
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 5717
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Tax Law
Granting a co-tenant a life estate in a tenancy-in-common interest is a "change in ownership" for property tax purposes.

Durante v. County of Santa Clara - filed Nov. 30, 2018, Sixth District
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 5722
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MEMBER BENEFIT SPOTLIGHT


 

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