Calvin House won a summary judgment dismissing a claim by a benefit recipient who claimed that a County social worker raped her in her home. The social worker’s actions were beyond the scope of his employment as a matter of law. Osorio v. County of Los Angeles, Case No. 20STCV37153 (L.A. Superior Ct. Aug. 21, 2023). Read the Daily Journal report of the decision.
In a big win for public entities facing sexual abuse claims, the California Supreme Court ruled that that treble damages remedy established by AB 218 for plaintiffs who prove that they were subjected to childhood sexual abuse as a result of a coverup of wrongdoing. The ban on recovery of punitive damages from public entities found in Government Code section 818 barred that remedy. Calvin House wrote the brief and argued the case in the Supreme Court. Read the Supreme Court’s decision.
Nohemi Ferguson and Clif Baker won a defense verdict on claims by a bus operator that The MTA did not accommodate her after she suffered minor injuries, if any, when her bus was rear-ended by a small SUV. They showed that the MTA had bent over backwards to find assignments that would accommodate the bus operator’s claimed limitations. Graham v. Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Case No. BC658722 (L.A. Superior Ct. Jun. 9, 2022). Read the Daily Journal report of the decision.
Calvin House and Paul DiPietro won a court trial on a claim by a resigning employee that he was entitled to an enhanced severance package because he hoped to save the job of on of his fellow employees. They convinced Judge Michael Vicencia in the Long Beach Superior Court that the employee had submitted his resignation without conditioning it on saving another employee’s job. Ofilas v. Molina Healthcare, Inc. Case No. NC061472 (L.A. Superior Ct. Oct. 29, 2018).
Art Preciado was part of a trial team that defeated a wrongful death lawsuit brought on behalf of a student who was stabbed to death on a middle school campus. The jury decided that any negligence there may have been on the part of school staff did not cause the assault. Rather, the attacker was the sole cause of the death. Gonzalez v. Los Angeles Unified School District, Case No. BC597032 (L.A. Superior Ct. May 15, 2018).
Nohemi Ferguson obtained summary judgment on a whistle blower claim by a county employee. Although the employee had complained about the way that her employer had treated two vendors, Mrs. Ferguson showed that there were legitimate reasons for the employer’s actions. Hays v. County of Los Angeles, Case No. BC655988 (L.A. Superior Ct. Mar. 22, 2018).
Nohemi Ferguson successfully challenged a pharmacy supervisor’s claims that he was the victim of age and disability discrimination. Their summary judgment motion showed that his employer had discharged him for misconduct. Shah v. County of Los Angeles Department of Health Services, Case No. BC637238 (L.A. Superior Ct. Mar. 22, 2018).
Nohemi Ferguson convinced a Superior Court jury that a psychiatrist was discharged, not because she complained about violations of patient rights, but because she had committed many violations of the employer’s anti-discrimination policy. Sepah v. County of Los Angeles, Case No. BC622387 (L.A. Superior Ct. Feb. 26, 2018).