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Riverside Attorney with 16 Years of Experience in Family and Criminal Law

Gary W. Conklin, Attorney P.C. has 16 years of experience resolving family and criminal law issues. We also assist with estate planning. Our firm can assist you in the following areas of the law:

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Family Law

We handle all major family issues such as adoption, alimony, child custody and visitation, child support, divorce, juvenile delinquency, mediation, pre- and post- nupital agreements

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Criminal Law

We have built our reputation on getting results. We are intimately familiar with all facets of the California criminal justice system, and have the knowledge and skill to make sure you understand your legal options.

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DUI Defense

Driving while under the influence of alcoholic beverages or a controlled substance is one of the most serious traffic violations you can commit.

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Wills, Trusts, and Estates

You work hard for your family, so knowing that you have planned for their long-term well-being and financial security can bring you comfort.

From Our Editor:

Orange County Class Actions – Things You Need to Know

orange county class actionWhy are class actions in Orange County different, what are they, and how do they work?

Class action is a kind of litigation wherein a group of people who suffer damages or injury due to the same cause sues the company or manufacturer as a group. Class action may also be called mass tort litigation and/or MDL or multi-district litigation. There are many circumstances when a class action can be used instead of individual lawsuits. In cases where injuries are minimal or when harmful effects takes time before they develop and show symptoms, a class action is considered a better choice. This is because proving the cause is easier if there are more people who back up the claim. All the people who have suffered the injury, minimal as it may be or even if the harmful effects took years to develop, stand as evidence to the claim.

In class actions, lawyers, evidence and all other aspects related to the cases are consolidated to be presented as one case to the court. The victims or plaintiffs who joined the class action will be represented by a “lead plaintiff” in the court. There is obviously lots of work involved so experience and expertise of the lawyers involved is very important to make a successful class action in court.

How can you join a class action?

Before a class action is officially litigated in the court, it is required for the class representative to inform the people who might be affected by this case. Though it is impossible to personally notify everyone, a public announcement is usually made in the television ad/or any print media like magazines and newspapers. Here’s a list of the most common types of cases that can become class actions in Orange County. The court will decide about what the content of this announcement will be. This way, those who were unaware victims or other victims of who are also planning to sue for the same case may “opt in” or join the class action. If they are uninterested, they have the choice to “opt out” or not join the class action as well.

Pros and Cons of Class Action

Class actions can be very complicated and it will need some very comprehensive research. Preparation is key in class actions since in most cases, class actions are taken against big companies and manufacturers who can afford top-notch and expert lawyers for their defense. So even if there are more evidence gathered when there are more people who opt in in class actions, it is still not certain that you will win in the litigation. Here are some pros and cons of joining class actions

Pros:

  • The case is stronger as a class action because of more evidence.
  • Litigation is more efficient for the court to hear the case as one against the same company or manufacturer compared to multiple plaintiffs against the same defendant.
  • The damage cost can become bigger with more plaintiffs since damages can be magnified.
  • It is more efficient to hire an expert team of lawyers than to have at least 1 lawyer for every plaintiff. Class actions have lower cost in terms of litigation.

Cons:

  • If you lose or the case gets dismissed, you lose the right to sue the defendant again as an individual for the same reason it was sued in the class action.
  • Whether you joined the class action or not, you cannot sue the same defendant for the issues the class action has already pointed out . Therefore, if you were affected of any class action that are being litigated or to be litigated, it is better to join than not.

 

Knowing the Basics of Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

The chapter 11 of Title 11 of Bankruptcy Code of the United States, also known as the Chapter 11 bankruptcy, allows for reorganization of business entities if it is found out that the business in question still has the capacity to profit despite its debts. Chapter 11 is preferable if the value of the business as a whole is higher than the value of the parts added together. And since the business is also still in operation, jobs are saved. However, business entities, like corporations, partnerships and others, are not the only ones that can file under Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Individuals can qualify as well.

How to Apply for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

  1. File for a petition. A business entity can file for a chapter 11 bankruptcy in the area where the business is registered. For individuals, they can file in the area where they reside. Along with thechapter 11 form, the debtor must also file documents that the court will need. For business entities, these documents include lists of assets and liabilities, lists of current income and expenses, lists of executor contracts and unexpired rental contracts and the statement of the company’s financial affairs. For individuals, they must provide documents like pay slips received 60 days before filing for the petition, a statement of net income per month and a perceived raise of income, if any. If there are unpaid student loans, documents must also be provided along with the certificate proving they have completed the credit counseling and the plan they have completed through the said counseling.
  2. Automatic stay. Under chapter 11, automatic stay or the halt of collection from creditors is immediately put in place once the petition for chapter 11 has been filed. This way, the debtor will be able to stay afloat while in the process of reorganization.
  3. Reorganization plan. The whole point for filing a chapter 11 for business entities is to have the opportunity to reorganize the business. Thus, the debtor must provide or formulate a plan to make the reorganization feasible for all parties involved. The debtor is given 120 days from the day the petition is filed to come up with the plan. If after 120 days no plan is provided, other parties involved can propose. If the plan is provided within the 120-day period of exclusivity, a 180-day exclusivity period from filing of petition is given for the plan to be approved.
  4. Debtor in possession. The debtor is usually given the opportunity to continue running the business unless proven that the debtor is involved in fraudulent practices, dishonesty and/or incompetent in his job. If that is the case, though it is very uncommon, a trustee is put in charge of the business.
  5. Confirmation of the reorganization plan. The judge will approve the plan when all parties involved agree of the plan put forward by the debtor. Once approved, the plan is put in motion and the business starts its operation as stated in the reorganization plan. If the plan is not approved, the business can either file for chapter 7 bankruptcy then proceed to liquidate the business, or the case will be dismissed and the business will be as it was before filing for chapter 11 bankruptcy.

Chapter 11 bankruptcy is an expensive and long process so you really have to know how chapter 11 works. It can be completed within a few months while some more complicated cases can last up to 2 years. It cannot be done alone and a help of an expert is definitely needed. It is advised that an expert lawyer help you through the process of it all.

Don’t be a Victim of False Product Labeling in your Food

false product labeligThese days, healthy lifestyle is becoming more popular largely due to campaigns that focus on the rampant products that contains large and unhealthy amount of sugars and trans fats in very popular foods and snacks. These unhealthy foods have contributed to more numbers of overweight children and the continuous rise of death due to diabetes and heart diseases. What’s even more alarming in the medical field is that people who get these types of illness has gotten younger and younger as years passed.

Because of this awareness, people have demanded to know what goes in their food in order to choose better options for their health. On the other hand, some companies have made changes to make their products more palatable to the more health conscious consumers. Unfortunately, some products only change their labels but not the contents. This is when false product labeling is a problem and this is very common problem in food products. Some of the commonly misused product labels on food products are as follows:

  • Contains No Trans fat – this does not really mean nothing, but rather it can contain less than 1 percent per serving. So if you are on a no- trans fat diet and has had more than two servings of
    a particular “no trans fat” product, you have still, in fact, take a substantial amount of trans fat.
  • All Natural – This label has been plastered to any kind of product but technically, “all natural” doesn’t really mean anything since anything that does not contain food coloring and artificial ingredients can be considered all natural. However, they may still contain a large amount of preservative like sodium and/or corn syrup. So all natural does not really mean less calories or healthier.
  • Organic – Right now, there is a National Organic Program that sets the standards that products must achieve in order for them to get a right to paste that organic label on their product. But organic does not really mean low calorie, it just means that there is no fertilizers or pesticides involved while growing the product.
  • Made with “real fruits” – There is no law that requires companies for include percentage of the ingredients they used so when they say “made with real fruit” it could just be flavoring. So unless you see a real fruit in there, don’t hold your breath that it can be true.
  • From “free-range” animal – After documentaries of animals in “farms” were seen to be very cruel, a new brand of animal products from “free-ranging” animals has arrived. But apparently, these products do not really mean they have a huge space to roam around in. They could just be outdoors. This does not really affect its health content at all, but if you are buying it for the principle it stands for, it could really be just all for naught.

Now all these could seem harmless, but to some people who are already suffering diseases that limits what they should be eating, they could be relying on these labels to choose food that can keep them healthy or further deteriorate their health. So proper labeling of food is really important and must be taken seriously by companies who make them. If you have been a victim of false product labeling, do not hesitate to call a lawyer to correct this problem. It is punishable under the law and must be corrected.

What Does an Employment Law Firm Do?

data-breachesAn employment law firm is a business unit formed through one or more lawyers to get people compensation for employment and consumer related issues. The 1st priority for a law firm is to advise clients and show them the right path to obtain justice through compensation as well as identify which types of legal advice are needed. There are many types of employment firms handling different practice areas. The Cooper Law Firm is a respected employment law firm in California that provides free case evaluations.

Data Breaches

        Hackers wreck databases maintained on an organization’s servers in order to hack the important information and use it to their benefit. Someone who has gained unauthorized entry to an employer’s laptop and downloads information from the PC to a flash drive may create a lot of damage. A thief would want to steal a computer that holds any important information. The sender of a “spoof email” or individuals in a phishing scheme use a false identity to influence someone to give them money or other valuables.

        Sometimes employees of the company sell passwords to hackers who can engage in illegal activity that affects those whose information was stolen. The latest analysis exposed information confirming that maximum class action court cases for information breaches are filed in opposition to a few corporations wrapped up in nicely-publicized cases. That may be because only a small percent of information breaches are publicly stated and revealed. A few groups refuse to inform consumers that their data has been stolen. Different organizations deliver that information quietly and urge clients to keep the whole thing confidential.

Faulty Product

        Hundreds of thousands of consumers get hold of emergency room remedy each 12 months because of injuries due to faulty products. Victims are entitled to repayment on every occasion a harm is related to an illness inside the design or production of a product, or to a failure to warn the consumer of the dangers related to the product. In a few cases, it makes sense for victims to pursue repayment together by way of a class motion lawsuit.

The Fair Credit Act

        California purchasers who’ve been denied their proper credit or housing can be dealing with the consequences of incorrect facts in a credit report. A high-quality credit report file is the key to taking advantage of good credit at an inexpensive interest fee. Coverage companies, employers, Landlords and other organizations also base critical selections on your credit report. Credit ratings are affected by credit reports, and they take a hit when reports include false data, at this stage customers may need to pursue class action lawsuits to make things right.

Cell Phone Spamming

        cell phone spammingPrevious to an enterprise sending communications to someone’s cell phone, they must acquire the written or electronic signature, called a person’s written consent. Consent is often acquired using an online submission form or over the phone. However, companies should virtually explain that individuals are giving their permission to be contacted by robot calls and texts once they put up their contact info. Moreover, consent cannot be required to purchase goods or services and cannot be collected from unrelated transactions, contracts of third-party, or receiving calls.  There are some great law firm to help you with these issues.