Fremond product liability attorneyJust as one may seek compensation from a business, individual, or institution which was responsible for personal injuries suffered, whether these injuries occurred because of negligence or intentionally wrongful conduct, one may seek compensation for injuries caused by a defectively manufactured or designed product. While product-related injuries may not spring to mind as quickly as others in the personal injury law context, such as those resulting from vehicle collisions, construction accidents, or slip-and-falls, they are common, and they represent a valid basis for seeking compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, lost income due to missed work, losses stemming from short- or long-term disabilities, and in some cases, punitive damages.

All Parties in the Retail Chain May Be Held Liable for Injuries Suffered

“How did this happen? How could a dangerous product like this be allowed to be sold in stores?” These are often the first questions that come to mind when one has suffered injuries due to a defective product, whether it be a hair dryer, bottle of cough syrup, lawnmower, toaster, space heater, or literally any other product sold in any store in California and beyond. 

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b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-38.jpgWhether driving to visit family and friends or shopping on busy streets and plazas, the holiday season, with its increased traffic, congestion, activity, and inclement weather is a time of exposure to increased risk of personal injuries. Auto accidents, slip-and-falls (whether as a customer or employee), and mishaps with defective holiday gifts and other products are all possibilities. Injuries, whether short or long-term, can upend not just holiday plans but also one’s employment and educational goals and responsibilities. When you have suffered personal injuries as a result of the negligent or intentionally wrongful conduct of an individual, business, or institution, and experienced Fremont personal injury attorney will advocate for your legal right to compensation for the harms and losses you have suffered.

Negligence is a Common Cause of Personal Injuries

With so many Californians on the state’s roads and highways in late December, there is an increased opportunity for auto accidents – especially when conditions are slick and dangerous on account of rain and low visibility due to fog in the Bay Area or snow in areas of increased altitude and lower temperatures. Importantly, no matter the amount of traffic or severity of the weather, all drivers, whether individual or on-the-job, owe a duty of safe driving to one another. This duty includes driving in accordance with the rules and regulations (e.g. speed limit) of the road and never getting behind the wheel when under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or prescription medications. When this duty is abrogated and an auto accident results, personal injury victims may rightfully seek compensation for injuries and vehicle damage sustained. The legal basis for doing is the tort doctrine of negligence. Negligence is a breach of a duty owed that causes damages. In the auto accident context, the breach is unsafe driving, the duty is that of safe driving, causation is the collision (the accident), and the damages vary depending upon the nature of the accident.  An experienced Fremont personal injury attorney will work to prove the occurrence of each of these elements in one of the state’s civil courts.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-31.jpgWith the passage of the Tax Cut and Jobs Act and the Healthcare mandate in limbo, it is a difficult time to make big decisions concerning business, finance, and health in the United States. Whether you are already engaged in commerce or planning your entry into business operations (in California or anywhere in the U.S.), you need to know where you stand financially. That goes for both the present and the future. Taxation is obviously a key part of a business’s financial outlook. As such, it is imperative that you utilize the type of business entity that best suits your individual and business needs and goals with regard to income earned over time. General partnerships, traditional corporations, and the increasing popular and oft-mentioned “limited liability” entities are different in important ways. In discerning the entity that is best for you and your business, rely on an experienced Fremont business law attorney.

A Limited Liability Business Entity is a Pass-Through Business Entity

You may have heard of or are already familiar with “limited liability” entities, such as the Limited Liability Company (LLC) and Limited Liability Partnership (LLP). In such entities, income is not taxed at both the business level and the individual level.  Rather, income earned by the business “passes through” the entity to the individual without being subject to taxation. The individual’s income is subject to taxation.  However, the reporting of income and calculation of taxation on pass-through income factors in business expenses and losses. Depending on the complete picture of profits and losses specific to a given limited liability entity, pass-through income may not be taxed as highly as if the income were employment-based, for example, and not passed through from entity to individual. 

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b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-25.jpgIf you are active in commerce, whether as a part of a sizeable corporation or small business, or merely planning an entrance into the business world, you need to understand how the proposed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will affect your bottom line. The percentage of tax your business will pay, or the percentage that you as an individual will pay on income passed through a business entity, bears on the scale and scope of your yearly operations. In planning for your financial future in business, count on an experienced Fremont business law attorney.

The Tax Cut and Jobs Act Intends to Permanently Lower the Corporate Tax Rate

If you are on the board of a successful large corporation, you will likely benefit from the Tax Cut and Jobs Act. This is because the legislation intends to permanently lower the corporate tax rate from 35% down to 20%. The President has alluded to a compromise in the 22% range, but this remains to be seen. Either way, with the bill in the final conference-related stage, traditional corporations could soon benefit from a substantial decrease in taxes owed. The philosophy behind this at least initially deficit-increasing measure: to encourage business to remain in the U.S., investing savings in expanded domestic operations and the jobs that would propel them, rather than looking abroad.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-37.jpgToo many individuals associate estate planning with death and in doing so turn away from what is truly valuable instrument of asset protection and financial management. A great place to begin learning about and utilizing estate planning is what is known as a “living trust.” This estate planning resource can allow you to both protect assets from taxation and entanglement in government programs and transfer your estate to your loved ones when the time is right and through a mechanism that bypasses the time and expense of probate. To begin benefiting from estate planning, whether through a living trust, will, or other resource, rely on an experienced Fremont estate planning attorney.

Asset Protection is One Function of a Living Trust

Unlike a will, which becomes effective only upon your death, a living trust is effective while you are living (thus the name “living trust”). For many, a primary reason to create a living trust is to protect assets from taxes and government health care programs such as Medicare and Medicaid. This form of lawful asset protection is accomplished when legal title is transferred from you (the “Grantor”) to a “trustee.” The trustee holds the assets in trust for those who have selected to benefit from them (the “beneficiaries”).  Importantly, the law even allows for you to be the trustee of your own living trust, which allows you to retain full control of the assets held in the trust. While you are living, whether as both grantor and trustee or merely grantor, the transfer of title from yourself as an individual to a separate trustee or to yourself as trustee facilitates the protection of trust assets from taxes and government health care programs like Medicaid and Medicare. Such asset protection, naturally, allows you to bequeath more to your loved ones and other intended beneficiaries at the time of your death.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_632562152.jpgIf you have saved money and acquired assets, you likely know firsthand the work it takes to do so. To make that work matter as much as it can for as long as it can, you need to engage in intelligent, active estate planning. Broadly speaking, wills and trusts are the core components of estate planning, with your will taking effect upon your death and a trust taking place, depending on its type, before or after your death. A living trust, which can go into effect during your lifetime, may be designed to protect assets from taxation and government healthcare programs such as Medicaid and Medicare—thus allowing you to better protect assets for future generations. To create a living trust in California, contact an experienced Fremont estate planning attorney.

A Revocable Living Trust May Be Altered During Your Lifetime

There are two types of living trusts: 1) a revocable living trust, and 2) an irrevocable living trust. With regard to each, if you are the designer of the trust (i.e. the protector of the assets), the legal term for your role is “grantor.” As the grantor of a revocable living trust, you have the power of revocation (another legal term, for change or alteration). The power of revocation allows you, even after creating the trust and filling it with initial assets, to change the trust’s beneficiaries (those you intend to benefit from the assets of the trust) as well as add or remove assets at your discretion. As such, the flexibility inherent in a revocable living trust functions as a tool of asset management to be utilized while you are alive—looking out for the best interests of family and other loved ones in real time as life happens.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-8.jpgIt can be traumatic when the loss of a loved one is coupled with shock and surprise over a will that descends the contents of an estate in a way that appears inconsistent with the intentions of the deceased testator. If this scenario has taken the unfortunate turn from hypothetical to real in the wake of the loss of your parent, spouse, child, or other close relative, you may have the option to formally contest the validity of the will in question. In doing so, work closely with an experienced Fremont wills and trusts attorney.

A Will Must Comply With Applicable State Laws to be Valid

Wills and trusts are serious business. As such, a will must comply with all formalities imposed by state law in order to be regarded as valid. For example, the will must be signed by the person whose estate it concerns (the “Testator”). In addition, the Testator’s signing of the will occur in the presence and hearing of two valid witnesses. In most cases, in order to be a valid witness of a will, one must not be a beneficiary of the will. 

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b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-4.jpgWhile northern California’s roads and highways are less inclement weather-afflicted than those of the Midwest and northeastern United States, car accidents are an unfortunate inevitability of daily life and especially during the high-traffic, high-stress periods of holiday travel. While tending the health of your passengers and yourself is obviously the first priority in the aftermath of any auto accident, it is appropriate for subsequent action to concern the issue of compensation for the damage to your vehicle, personal injuries sustained, pain and suffering, lost income due to missed work, and other relevant losses. In matters of representation, an experienced Fremont personal injury attorney is equipped to handle personal injury claims arising from minor to severe injuries.

Types of Car Accident-Related Injuries Eligible for Compensation

Due to the high speeds and heavy weights of cars and other vehicles traveling on northern California’s streets and freeways, injuries sustained in an accident may be severe and include:

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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_648882850.jpgIf you have lost a loved one to the negligent or intentionally wrongful conduct of another, you know that the tragedy is one of continual unfolding. First, there is the shock over a life taken too soon. Then, there is the grief over the loved one’s suffering and the loss of companionship and affection. And at some point for many loved ones of a wrongful death victim, there is the stress and difficulty of facing financial obligations without the income once earned by that victim. This sudden shift in one’s financial foothold in the world, at a time when one is still grieving, is to add tragedy upon tragedy. When mourning and already dealing with funeral and burial expenses, you should not have to be worrying about mortgage payments, medical bills, and other debts and expenses. This is why it is so important for you to know that compensation may be sought by survivors of a wrongful death victim from those responsible for the wrongful death. For sensitive assistance in pursuing wrongful death compensation as you grieve, know that an experienced Fremont wrongful death attorney is there.

Wrongful Death Survivors are Eligible to Seek Compensation

The California Code of Civil Procedure specifies what constitutes a wrongful death, and which survivors of a wrongful death victim are eligible to seek financial compensation in a relevant state civil court. In Chapter four, Article six of the code, the state legislature has defined a wrongful death as “the death of a person caused by wrongful act or neglect of another.” Continuing, the state of California makes clear that certain enumerated individuals related to the decedent (the deceased) have a legal cause of action for the wrongful death in question:

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Fremont wills and trusts lawyerEstate planning is a highly personalized process, so no two estate plans are the same. For example, one person may benefit more from a simple will. The other may need a more comprehensive plan, complete with a living trust and other important documents. How do you decide which option is right for you? The following information explains, and it provides details on where to find assistance with your California living trust or will.

The Importance of Choosing the Right Estate Planning Documents

Any estate plan – even a poorly created one – is better than none. However, there are several reasons why it is important to ensure you have chosen the right documents. First, improper estate planning can complicate matters for your heirs, and it could cost them both time and money. Poor planning can also increase the risk of a family feud. In contrast, careful planning can mitigate against the risk of probate and decrease the risk of contention among family members. It can even decrease the amount of time, money, and energy that heirs must expend while trying to obtain their inheritance – so do not just give the gift of money and assets; give your family the gift of a carefully thought-out estate plan as well.

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Fremont slip and fall injury attorneySlip and fall accidents are thought to be the most common cause of injury in the United States. In fact, statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicate that over 8 million visits to the emergency room each year are due to injuries experienced in slip and falls. Learn more about the most commonly experienced injuries, and discover how an experienced personal injury lawyer can help you seek damages for lost wages, medical expenses, and other losses associated with a slip and fall accident injury.

Traumatic Brain Injury

Traumatic brain injuries (TBI) are, by far, the most commonly experienced slip and fall injury. Most are either minor or moderate injuries, but they still have the potential to cause lost wages and medical expenses. Severe brain injuries, though less common, are a real and serious threat to a victim’s life. In either scenario, victims may be entitled to compensation.

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Fremont business law attorneyConfidentiality agreements can protect a company’s secrets, ensure an employee knows what is expected of them, and they can mitigate against problematic employees, right from the date of hire – but are they ever a violation of the federal labor law? If so, when, why, and how? Learn the answers to these questions, and discover how an experienced business law attorney can protect your company’s interest with help from the following information.

Confidentiality Agreements Must Meet Certain Criteria

Although employers are within their rights to request a confidentiality agreement from their employees, there are certain requirements to which they must adhere. For example, a confidentiality agreement cannot be so restrictive that it violates an employee’s rights – and that includes their rights to whistleblower protections.

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Fremont brain injury attorneyIt is estimated that some 1.7 million people experience a traumatic brain injury (TBI) per year. Of those, approximately 52,000 experience a fatality. The rest must endure time away from work, financial loss, and the possibility of long-term complications, such as poor memory or gaps in cognitive function. Studies also suggest that TBI victims may be at an increased risk of developing Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, and depression.

Sadly, science still does not understand why these links may exist, nor do they know how to mitigate against them. Instead, they continue to search for answers about the brain and its ability to recover – either with medication, on its own, or through various forms of treatment. One group believes they may have just made a monumental discovery, and it could explain why all other forms of treatment are not working.

New Cell Growth After Traumatic Brain Injury

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Fremont wills and trusts lawyerWhile both men and women are encouraged to have an estate plan in place, the two often have distinctly different needs. Much of this is due to life expectancy, but there are several other factors, such as limited work history, that may impact a woman’s financial portfolio or estate. Learn more about the unique estate planning needs of women, and discover how an experienced wills and trusts lawyer can help with your estate planning needs.

Why Women’s Estate Planning Needs Are Unique

Although women of today are the primary breadwinners about as often as men are, things were not always this way. Instead, women of the past usually stayed home and cared for their children, once they were born, and those that did work may not have received fair pay or benefits. Most also experienced a disruption in their work history during their childbearing years, which may have reduced their nest egg (if they even managed to save for one).

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Fremont personal injury attorneySidewalks can provide safety to pedestrians, bicyclists, and children. Because they redirect slower road users to a place that is all their own, sidewalks can also reduce congestion on busy city streets. What happens, though, when the sidewalk starts to deteriorate? Who is liable if someone falls and is injured on a broken, uneven, or damaged sidewalk? Learn more about sidewalks, their liability, and your legal rights with help from the following.

Property Owners Hold Liability in Most Places

In most instances, property owners are responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of an adjacent public sidewalk. Any failure to do so could also make them liable if an injury or death occurs. Keep in mind, however, that many property owners are not aware of their liability. Furthermore, there are exceptions to this rule – especially in California, where public outcry has led to extensive sidewalk issues and confusion about who is truly responsible for them.

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California small business lawyerWhen small businesses start up or begin to grow, they may have limited funds to hire outside help. Some may find relief through a telecommuting employee – or someone that works remotely. However, this option is not right for every business or every business owner. Learn more about hiring employees for telecommuting positions, including how to discover if it may be the appropriate choice for your small business.

The Challenges of Hiring New Employees

Small businesses that need to hire outside help may find that wages, along with the additional costs that are typically associated with hiring physical employees, are too much of a burden to bear. Hiring physical employees can also mean moving to a physical location for those that have previously worked from home. Add in the stressors of ensuring that a business is adequately protected from discrimination issues, harassment issues, and other legal matters, and the hiring of a physical employee may be downright impossible for some business owners.

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Fremont auto accident attorneyBefore compensation can be awarded to a car accident victim, investigators must first determine who was at fault. While this process is fairly straightforward in accidents involving one or two vehicles, accidents involving more than two vehicles are typically far more complex, with varying factors and circumstances that may deem multiple parties at fault. You can learn more about determining fault in a multi-car accident in the following sections.

Understanding the Complexity of Multi-Car Accidents

In an accident involving just one or two vehicles, there may be several factors used to determine who is at fault, but the liability typically falls mostly on one party. The same cannot be said about multi-car accidents. Instead, there may be varying degrees of fault, spread over one or more road users. Other, external factors, such as weather and road conditions, may have also had a part in the accident; these factors, though not necessarily anyone’s fault, could also set a standard regarding driving behaviors of any involved drivers (i.e. if a driver was going too fast for road or weather conditions, they may be considered partially at fault).

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California wills and trusts lawyerEstate planning is a complex legal process, and it requires some specific knowledge on the various methods and strategies. For example, one should know the difference between a will and a living trust, and how those differences may impact their heirs. Learn more, including where you can find assistance with your estate planning needs, with help from the following.

What is a Will?

In the loosest of terms, wills are legal documents that allow you to state how your assets and possessions are to be distributed. They can also name a legal guardian for any minor children. More specifically, however, wills are revocable and amendable documents that you control until the time of your death. It can be updated, altered, or changed to accommodate changing situations, such as the death of an heir or divorce. Keep in mind, however, that there are some major limitations in a will – particularly when it comes to the amount of control you have over your estate after your death – and the tax burden for heirs may be higher for larger estates.

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California whiplash injury lawyerOf all the car accident injuries, whiplash is, by far, the most commonly reported in the United States. In fact, recent statistics from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety indicate that some 66 percent of all claimants file an injury related to the neck, and over 800,000 whiplash injuries have been reported over the last 12 years. What can accident victims with whiplash expect after a crash, and what kind of compensation might they be entitled to receive? The following explains.

What is Whiplash?

A soft tissue injury that involves the tendons, ligaments, and surrounding tissues of the neck, whiplash occurs when the head is suddenly and violently thrust backward, and then forward. It might sound as though it takes a high-speed crash to create this type of motion. However, whiplash is often seen in even low-speed crashes (perhaps as little as six miles per hour, if going by the cut-off limits in the UK). There is also a common misconception that whiplash occurs only in rear-end crashes, but front-on collision victims are also at risk.

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California business transaction lawyerBusiness mergers, when done right, can be mutually beneficial for all involved parties. However, there are some serious challenges that companies must overcome when dealing with mergers and acquisitions. If not planned for and mitigated against, these obstacles can lead to financial loss, a lack of shareholder returns, and possibly even complete financial devastation. Whether you are interested in purchasing an existing business or believe your business may fare better with a larger brand name behind it, the following information can help.

The Importance of a Unified Vision

When examining a possible merger, companies may find that certain elements are difficult (if not impossible) to measure. However, even when measurements are possible, and data and projections look great on paper, they may not translate into real or actual success. Failure to ensure both companies share a unified vision is often the cause of disastrous outcomes.

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Willett Law Firm

39300 Civic Center Drive, Suite 310
Fremont, CA 94538

Phone: 510-791-2244

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