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  Monday, December 17, 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
Employment Law
The First Amendment's ministerial exception to generally applicable employment laws did not bar a teacher's claim against the Catholic elementary school that terminated her employment; factors to consider in whether an employee qualifies as a minister include whether the employer held the person out as a minister, whether her title reflected ministerial substance and training, whether she held herself out as a minister, and whether her job duties included important religious functions.

Biel v. St. James School - filed Nov. 17, 2018
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 17-55180
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CALIFORNIA SUPREME COURT
Real Property
In an unlawful detainer action brought by a landowner who has newly acquired title to the property under a power of sale contained in a deed of trust, the landowner must perfect the title before it can serve a three-day written notice to quit on the possessor of the property.

Dr. Leevill, LLC v. Westlake Health Care Center - filed Dec. 17, 2018
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 5945
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CALIFORNIA COURT OF APPEAL
Civil Procedure
Class certification is appropriate only if individual questions can be managed with an appropriate trial plan; certification is properly denied if a trial plan failed to address how the plaintiffs could fairly establish defendants' liability on a class-wide basis as to any claim.

McCleery v. Allstate Insurance Company - filed Dec. 14, 2018, Second District, Div. One
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 5949
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Constitutional Law
Penal Code Sec. 3604(a) is not an impermissible delegation of legislative authority to non-elected agency officials to determine the standards for carrying out the death penalty.

Sims v. Kernan - filed Dec. 14, 2018, First District, Div. Four
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 5956
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Criminal Law and Procedure
Evidence that a doctor's treatment departed from the medical standard of care alone would not be sufficient to support an implied malice finding, but evidence of a doctor's subjective awareness of the risk of death posed by her practice of prescribing opioid medications can support a finding of implied malice.

People v. Tseng - filed Dec. 14, 2018, Second District, Div. One
Cite as 2018 S.O.S.5960
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Criminal Law and Procedure
A trial court did not commit an abuse of discretion in refusing to offset the amount of restitution owed by a defendant to account for the fact that the defendant had returned some of the property he had stolen to the victim of his crime. There is a distinction between disallowing a victim to overprice the value of what is stolen and foisting upon the victim the burden of returning to the defendant property that is of no value to the victim, but could be of value to the defendant.

People v. Erickson - filed Dec. 17, 2018, Second District, Div. Six
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 5967
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Employment Law
A court's interest in appearing impartial as it carries out its role in administering justice provides sufficient justification for imposing a personnel rule prohibiting court employee from wearing clothing with insignia or symbols. A court's ban on soliciting during working hours and displaying images in areas visible to the public were not ambiguous or overbroad. The court's prohibition on the distribution of literature in "working areas" is ambiguous and the Public Employment Relations Board had the authority to invalidate this rule.

Fresno Superior Court v. Public Employment Relations Board (Service Employees International Union Local 521) - filed Dec. 14, 2018, Fifth District
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 5969
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SUPERIOR COURT APPELLATE DIVISION
Criminal Law and Procedure
Litigation concerning the constitutionality of a defendant's detention is not supported by either the plain meaning of Penal Code Sec. 991 or its purpose.

People v. Barajas; Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles - filed July 30, 2018
Cite as 2018 S.O.S. 5993
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