Julie Brook

Julie Brook

CEB®

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Size Up Your Adversary

When it comes to litigating a case, your client’s objectives are only half the story. If you want to gain an advantage, you’ll also need to successfully assess your adversary’s goals, capabilities, and willingness to fight. ...more

4/23/2015 - Litigation Strategies

6 Things to Know About Interrogatory Responses

So, you’ve been hit with interrogatories. Before you start working on responses, review these 6 points. 1. You have a duty to respond. A party who has been served with interrogatories under CCP §§2030.010–2030.410 has...more

4/21/2015 - Discovery Interrogatories Trial Preparation

Divorce Papers Served by Facebook: Cold or Practical?

Calling social media “the next frontier in the developing law of the service of process over the internet,” a New York judge has allowed service of divorce papers via Facebook private messaging. This is either a cold invasion...more

4/20/2015 - Divorce Facebook Service of Process Social Media Social Networks

Who’s an Independent Contractor in the New Economy?

Deciding whether to treat workers as employees or independent contractors is tricky in general and even more so in the context of the new so-called sharing economy. In recent decisions, courts have refused to resolve whether...more

4/16/2015 - Drivers Employee Definition Employer Liability Issues Independent Contractors Lyft Uber

Using Fiduciary Accountings as a Client Management Tool

When representing a fiduciary such as a conservator or personal representative, you’re often dealing with a lay person who may be feeling overwhelmed by unfamiliar responsibilities. One way to bring the situation under...more

4/14/2015 - Accounting Client Services Conservators Guardians

4 Tips on How to Be Both Assertive and Effective in Settlement Negotiations

One of the key components of the opening phase of a negotiation is articulating your client’s intentions, needs, and hopes regarding a settlement. You can strongly assert your client’s point of view in a way that also fosters...more

4/13/2015 - Settlement Negotiations

Splitting Fees? Get Client Consent ASAP

Common scenario: You do some work for a client and then pass off the client to another attorney, agreeing to split the attorney fees. Later you want to get your share of the fees. The Rules of Professional Conduct require...more

4/9/2015 - Ethics Fee-Splitting Law Practice Management Rules of Professional Conduct Written Consent

4 Questions to Ask Before Moving for a Discovery Protective Order

In California, civil discovery is “self-executing,” i.e., a party demanding discovery doesn’t need prior court approval, and the responding party may object instead of providing the requested information. An objection often...more

4/6/2015 - Discovery Protective Orders Risk Assessment

To Tweet or Not to Tweet?

As more attorneys are dipping their toes into the social media waters to network through LinkedIn and reach potential clients through Facebook, many are wondering whether they should also be using Twitter. There are...more

3/26/2015 - Business Development Social Networks Twitter

Demonstrative Evidence: When You Want to Show and Tell

An episode of This American Life described the failed effort to get a Tic-tac-toe-playing chicken into evidence in the death penalty case of a mentally ill man with a very low IQ. Defense counsel was trying to rebut a...more

3/23/2015 - Audio Recording Evidence Jury Trial Video Recordings

Nine Fiduciary Accounting No Nos

When you’re a fiduciary under California’s Probate Code, such as a guardian or conservator, you’ll be required to prepare some type of fiduciary accounting for the court. You’ll probably hire an accountant to crunch the...more

3/19/2015 - Accounting Standards Fiduciary Duty Probate

Should You Use Tactical Dismissals?

As plaintiff’s counsel, you always want to analyze how best to present your client’s case in the most efficient and persuasive way. Sometimes doing that means dismissing certain parties or causes of action....more

3/17/2015 - Dismissal With Prejudice Dismissals Motion to Dismiss

Capacity at Issue? Consider Making a Video

When you’re preparing a will or trust for someone for whom capacity might later be raised as an issue, you have a potentially powerful tool that can help avoid later disputes: video. There’s nothing like a judge seeing a...more

3/16/2015 - Estate Planning Incapacity Testators Trusts Undue Influence Claims Video Recordings Wills

5 Tips for Preparing Your Witness for Video Deposition

Preparing your witness for a video deposition has a few more wrinkles—or more accurately, the ironing out of a few more wrinkles—than a deposition recorded only by stenography....more

3/10/2015 - Depositions Video Recordings Witness Preparation Witnesses

Should We Worry about Marijuana DUIs?

The number of drivers with alcohol in their system has has gone down significantly while the number of drivers using marijuana has gone way up. Safety-wise this doesn’t seem to be a bad trade. A recent National Highway...more

3/9/2015 - Car Accident Drunk Driving Marijuana NHTSA

Inadmissible Evidence May Still Get In for a Limited Purpose

It may not be favored by courts or be the parties’ preference, but there’s a place for evidence to be admitted for a limited purpose. It can be seen as either a creative solution to an evidence admissibility problem or a way...more

3/5/2015

Should You Check a Job Applicant’s Social Media Posts?

Employers are wondering whether browsing public social media sites to learn more about a job applicant is worth the potential risks. A CareerBuilder survey found that 39% of employers use social networking sites to research...more

3/3/2015 - Employer Liability Issues Hiring & Firing Popular Screening Procedures Social Networks

Keep Cross-Examination Short (Unless You Shouldn’t)

A successful evangelist once said about his sermons: “Nobody ever got religion after the first twenty minutes.” His time estimate may be wrong, but every evangelist and trial attorney has wrestled with the short attention...more

3/2/2015 - Cross Examination Litigation Strategies

5 Things to Do to Prepare for Voir Dire

When next faced with preparing for jury voir dire examination before trial, consider these five practical suggestions. - Determine the types of jurors that you do and don’t want. Rather than selecting jurors through...more

2/24/2015 - Trial Preparation Voir Dire

Revenge Porn Victims Have New Rights

In 2013 and again in 2015, California amended its disorderly conduct statute to include instances of “revenge porn.” See Pen C §647(j)(4). The first convictions are coming down with more likely to follow....more

2/23/2015 - Amended Legislation Criminal Prosecution Revenge Porn

Contract Drafting 101

Do you feel like you learned a lot about contract law in law school, but very little on how to actually draft one? You’re not alone. Check out these principles of contract structure and organization, and you’ll have no...more

2/19/2015 - Contract Drafting Legal Writing

Shacking Up May Shake Up Support

It’s popular knowledge that remarriage is the death knell to spousal support, but did you know that cohabiting can also affect spousal support? With love and plans to live together floating around on this Valentine’s Day,...more

2/16/2015 - Alimony Cohabitation

8 Things to Consider Before Opposing a Motion to Consolidate

In response to a plaintiff’s motion for consolidation, the court can combine two or more separately filed lawsuits for simultaneous disposition. This promotes efficiency, but there are very big downsides for a defendant in a...more

2/12/2015 - Case Consolidation Litigation Strategies

Checklist to Keep Employee Discipline on a Legal Track

Employers walk a fine line when it comes to employee discipline: they must enforce their rules while also protecting employee rights. Target seems to have missed the mark recently—a lawsuit alleges an employee committed...more

2/10/2015 - Best Management Practices Disciplinary Proceedings Discipline Employer Liability Issues Target

Come Together? 10 Things to Consider Before Moving to Consolidate

Consolidation can be a useful efficiency technique because it allows the court to combine two or more separately filed lawsuits for simultaneous disposition. This efficiency is not without danger—consolidation may produce an...more

2/9/2015 - Case Consolidation Litigation Strategies Risk Assessment

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