Picture of Zev Rubinstein
Picture of Zev Rubinstein
Picture of Zev Rubinstein
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A California Appeals Court recently reached a decision in a car accident case clarifying the extent to which a defendant can require a plaintiff to submit to a particular kind of examination during the course of a personal injury lawsuit. The case involved a lower court’s decision to allow the defendant to have the plaintiff undergo a vocational rehabilitation examination during the course of evidence gathering, called discovery, so that the defendants’ expert could reach an opinion as to whether and to which extent the plaintiff could pursue gainful employment.car accident

The underlying incident occurred in November 2012 when the plaintiff was delivering packages at a university in his capacity as an employee of On Trac. As he was delivering packages from his parked truck, the car owned by one of the co-defendants, which was parked by the other co-defendant, an employee of the university (later added as an additional defendant), purportedly rolled down a hill and struck the plaintiff. As a result of the accident, the plaintiff sustained multiple fractures to his right femur and pelvis, requiring surgery. At the time of the decision, he had not returned to work since the accident.

In September 2013, the plaintiff filed suit against the owner of the car and the individual who had been driving the car that day. He later amended his complaint to add the university as a defendant. The plaintiff sought compensatory damages for wage loss and loss of earning capacity, among other claims.

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In a decision published at the end of last month, E.M. v. Lounge, Cal. Ct. App. (2017), a California appeals court clarified the reach of the liability of venues for serving alcohol to patrons who later become injured as a result of intoxication. The clarification, however, was not based solely upon the claim that the furnishing of the alcohol was responsible for the resultant accident. Instead, the claim was based on a respondeat superior theory of law. Respondeat superior is a legal concept whereby an employer can be held accountable for the negligent acts of its employee, if the conduct occurred within the scope of the employment.

liquor bottlesIn the case, a woman had reportedly consumed alcohol that was furnished by the defendant “Lounge.” She was then involved in a car accident and died. Her family brought the wrongful death lawsuit on her behalf. The initial complaint and second amended complaint pursued negligence theories, but the third amended complaint included a respondeat superior claim against the Lounge, asserting that the decedent was an employee at the Lounge and that it was during the course of her attendance as an employee that she had consumed excessive amounts of alcohol. The defendant moved for a demurrer, claiming that the argument should not be allowed, since the claimants should have known when they originally filed the lawsuit whether or not the decedent was an employee, and further disputing that she was at all.

Generally speaking, California law provides extensive protection against civil liability for injuries that occur due to a person who has consumed alcohol. State law explicitly states that “the furnishing of alcoholic beverages is not the proximate cause of injuries resulting from intoxication, but rather the consumption of alcoholic beverages is the proximate cause of injuries.” (Civ. Code, § 1714, subd. (b).) Therefore, by law, the Lounge could not be held liable for serving the decedent alcohol because the serving of the alcohol was not the cause of the accident.

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Sandblasting1-199x300Last month, a California Appeals Court issued an updated opinion on the Component Parts Doctrine, a lesser discussed area of products liability law.

Procedural History

In the case, Uriarte v. Scott Sales Co., Cal. Ct. App. (2nd App. Dist., 1st Div. 2017), the plaintiff sued Scott Sales Co. and J.R. Simplot Company, and other defendants. The plaintiff alleged that the silica sand procured from the defendants by his employer was used as a sandblasting material, which resulted in the production of airborne toxins that caused him to develop interstitial pulmonary fibrosis and other illnesses.

The defendants moved for judgment on the pleadings on the basis of the component parts doctrine. The component parts doctrine states that, “the manufacturer of a component part is not liable for injuries caused by the finished product into which the component has been incorporated unless the component itself was defective and caused harm.”

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Carlsbad CA personal injury lawyer

We know that in the aftermath of a serious personal injury, the prospect of finding an injury lawyer isn’t easy. There are many attorneys in the Carlsbad area, and if you don’t have any experience in the legal system, it can be tough to choose from among them. How will you make this difficult but important decision?

Fortunately, while choosing an injury lawyer is important, you can do so by keeping a few simple factors in the front of your mind at all times. The Rubinstein Law Group recommends you consider the following factors when choosing an injury lawyer:

  • Experience is the most important consideration. Always choose an injury lawyer with ample experience in the field – there is simply no substitute for this.
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Carlsbad Car Accident LawyerIf you’re like many Carlsbad-area residents, you love Thanksgiving. It’s a chance to enjoy some delicious food and some invaluable family time. It’s also a holiday that often calls for a lot of time on the road.

And this is where a great holiday can become a little dangerous. Our car accident lawyers have handled entirely too many cases that occurred over the Thanksgiving holiday. There’s a reason the police are often on high alert around Thanksgiving.

You don’t have to be a victim. You’re never fully in control on the road, but there are still a few things you can do around Thanksgiving to protect yourself while in your car:

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At The Rubinstein Law Group, our nursing home abuse lawyers represent the victims of abuse and negligence. We most often hear from family members who discover the abuse and, horrified, seek hel for their victimized loved ones.

A beautifull middle aged couple being affectionate with each other. Focus on her.

We know how tragic this is, and we know that, while compensation is invaluable in this situation, it cannot erase what happened to your loved one. Legal action is right and just, but catching abuse early is by far the more preferable option.

How can you recognize the early signs of nursing home abuse? Visit your loved one regularly and keep an eye out for the following:

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truck-accident-lawyer-carlsbadOne of the reasons it’s so important to find an experienced Carlsbad truck accident lawyer to handle your case is that liability for your accident can be- and often is- exceptionally complicated. Discovering who is responsible for your accident, and who is responsible for your compensation, requires skill, experience and determination.

At The Rubinstein Law Group, we have those traits. We have decades of experience pursuing compensation for truck accident litigation, no matter where that pursuit leads.

Every truck accident is unique, but liability in these cases can reside with:

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spinal-cord-injury-attorney-CarlsbadEvery day in the United States, dozens of people suffer spinal cord injuries. Spinal cord injuries can have life-long consequences that can leave victims unable to work or perform normal tasks. When it comes to determining compensation for a spinal cord injury, there are many factors that must be considered by the courts and our experienced injury lawyer.

How Compensation is Determined

In any spinal cord injury lawsuit, the compensation that is awarded depends on the individual circumstances of the case. The primary factor that will determine the value of a case is the severity of the spinal cord injury. Compensation may be awarded for medical bills, loss of income, disability, long-term care requirements, or other harm. However, it is important to understand that it can be an expensive type of case to pursue. There may be fees for independent medical experts, court costs, and gathering evidence and witnesses.

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Have you or a loved one been involved in an auto accident due to someone else’s negligence? Have you been the victim of pain and suffering as a result of sustained injuries? If so, you may be entitled to consultation, but you might also be feeling overwhelmed and unsure what to do next. That’s where our experienced auto accident attorney can help.

Our experienced Carlsbad attorney understands the different circumstances for each type of vehicle involved in the accident. Our experienced attorneys know that commercial truck accidents require different litigation than motorcycle accidents. We have handled all types of auto accident claims for:

  • Cars and motorcycles
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personal-injury-attorney-escondidoFor those who’ve suffered a significant personal injury, choosing an attorney is often the farthest thing from your mind. You’re hurt, you’re trying to get back to work, you’re emotionally devastated- how are you going to choose the right personal injury attorney from all of your options in the Escondido area?

We understand how difficult this moment is. We understand how much pain you’re in. But we also understand how important the choice of personal injury attorney is. There are no guarantees in the law, but a capable attorney can make all the difference.

How do you make this decision? How can you choose between all of your options? The Rubinstein Law Group recommends keeping the following factors in mind: