May 2017 Archives

Feel like you need to nap at work? Read this post

With how early we get up in the morning, and how late at night we go to bed, it is natural to feel like needing a nap during the day. That’s why many workers (especially in the tech industry) swear by their coffee breaks. Some employers acknowledge this and welcome coffee chains such as Starbucks and Caribou in their workplaces.

HSR Obtains $5 Million Settlement in Civil Rights Case on Behalf of Inmate in Sacramento County Jail

HSR partners Dan Stormer, Lori Rifkin and Joshua Piovia-Scott secured a $5 million settlement in a civil rights case on behalf of a former inmate in the Sacramento County Jail. Plaintiff James Joshua Mayfield was left paralyzed after a suicide attempt in the Jail that was caused by defendants' unlawful denial of treatment for his mental illness and repeated beatings. After obtaining a pre-trial, $2.5 million settlement from the University of California Davis Health Systems, which had been hired by the County to provide mental health treatment in the Jail, Plaintiffs secured an additional $2.5 million from Sacramento County and Sheriff Scott Jones the day before the parties were to resume trial after HSR obtained an unusual order finding that defendants had improperly excluded African American jurors because of their race pursuant to the Supreme Court decision in Batson v. Kentucky. HSR litigated the case for more than two years before finally settling after the trial had begun.

Another example of public employees' First Amendment rights

In a prior post, we warned our readers of the dangers of social media rants, particularly after being terminated. We also wrote on how a union member was wrongfully fired after an expletive laced post circulated among his fellow employees and up to management.

Employers allowed to use salary history to set new salaries

Whether you are looking for a new job or are recruited to take a new position, chances are that you are looking for an increase in salary. To that extent, salary history could be used in setting your new salary. But when salary history is used to pay someone less than their peers, such a practice should be actionable.

HSR Settles Civil Rights Case on Behalf of Formerly Incarcerated Plaintiff Against California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation for $950,000

After seven days of trial, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) Defendants offered to settle the case brought by HSR on behalf of Plaintiff Jermaine Padilla, a formerly incarcerated man whom CDCR officials and doctors unlawfully denied mental health treatment and subjected to horrific use of force involving 82 ounces of Oleoresin Capsicum pepper spray and three days of full-body restraints. HSR's trial team of partners Dan Stormer and Lori Rifkin and associate Caitlan McLoon were still in the process of putting on plaintiff's case when Defendants agreed to settle Mr. Padilla's legal claims for $950,000.

HSR Obtains Court Order Finding Defendants Improperly Excluded Two African American Jurors In Civil Rights Case Because of Their Race

HSR partners Dan Stormer, Josh Piovia-Scott and Lori Rifkin obtained an unusual order from the Eastern District of California finding that defendants County of Sacramento and Sheriff Scott Jones improperly excluded two African American jurors because of their race. HSR's case on behalf of a young, mentally ill, African American man who was badly beaten, denied mental health care and subsequently paralyzed in a suicide attempt in the Sacramento County Jail began trial on Monday May 1, 2017. U.S. District Judge John A. Mendez ruled that the defendants had improperly discriminated on the basis of race in the jury selection and ordered that a new jury be selected. HSR has already obtained a $2.5 million settlement from one of the defendants in the case and will continue with the trial against the remaining defendants on May 8, 2017.

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