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Business Litigation & Law.


Worried about a deal your business is negotiating?  Need a non-disclosure agreement? Confused about the best business entity (Corporation, LLC, Partnership, etc.) for your operation? Trying to protect your trade secrets? Thinking about terminating an employee and concerned about possible business litigation? Has your business been sued or threatened with a lawsuit and you need to figure out how to respond? We have all the answers


For immediate help, call 323.529.3660.


Dealing with Civil Demand Letters. 



According to California Penal Code 490.5, a merchant is permitted to demand up to $500 from a shoplifter, even if the item they stole was of nominal value – such as a $10 tube of lipstick or a $2 candy bar. In addition to the $500, the accused shoplifter is usually asked to pay the cost of the filing fee (about $30) and the price of the item(s) they are accused of stealing. 

If you make the payment demanded in a civil demand letter,  the merchant can still pursue further criminal or civil action against you or your child. The letter does not take the place of a lawsuit, nor does paying the fee make you immune from criminal charges. Making the payment is admitting that you or your child did something wrong.

Instead, you should consult an attorney, who can potentially negotiate a lower payment and more importantly, work to reduce or eliminate the risk of additional criminal charges and/or a lawsuit by the merchant. It’s important to seek the advice of a lawyer quickly, before you are targeted with additional letters or other action.


Individuals who illegally download copyrighted movies, music, or videos (from peer-to-peer network or a piracy-oriented file-sharing website) can receive civil demand letters. Downloading these works without paying the copyright holders is a violation of civil and criminal law.

With the prevalence of online piracy, copyright enforcement companies are aggressively identifying illegal downloaders and send civil demand letters in an effort to collect payment.

Copyright litigation is expensive and the damages you are required to pay can be as much as $30,000 per work. For example, the penalty for an album with eight songs could be as high as $240,000, plus attorney’s fees and court costs.

If you receive a piracy-related civil demand letter, consult with an attorney as soon as possible. An attorney can often negotiate a lower fee, and work to protect you from additional criminal or civil penalties.










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Should I file a lawsuit? 


Successful lawsuits can bring monetary rewards and satisfaction, but lawsuits take time, energy, and money. Consider the following seven factors when deciding whether or not to sue.

1. What type of suit do you have?

  • Contract claims to enforce the terms of a contract
  • Civil claims for monetary damages to compensate a victim of a criminal act
  • Property claims, such claims for damage caused be intentional or negligent acts
  • Personal injury claims such as “slip and falls” and premises liability claims against stores
  • Product liability claims against manufacturers of dangerous products.
  • Discrimination and harassment claims, usually brought by an employee against an employer
  • Proceedings to end a marriage or change a custody or spousal or child support order

2. Do you actually need to sue?

A lawsuit can be a lengthy and costly process. Before suing, consider whether or not you may be able to resolve your issue out of court with a negotiated settlement. A lawyer can help you draft a “demand letter,” which is a letter to the other side identifying your claim and the remedy you seek, to get the settlement process started.

3. Can you sue?

In order to successfully bring a lawsuit, you need a legal cause of action brought within a certain time period (called the “statute of limitations”). For example, just because you slipped in the grocery parking lot six years ago does not mean you have a viable negligence claim against the store for your injury. 

5. Could you be counter-sued?

Will your adversary bring a counterclaim against you if you sue? A counterclaim could reduce or eliminate your award or make a trial longer, more complicated, and more expensive.

6. Can the other side pay?

If the business or individual you are suing is insolvent, bankrupt, or hard to track down, winning a lawsuit might cost you more than you can recover. In certain situations, an insurance company or employer may be responsible for paying a judgment against the defendant, which increases the likelihood of collecting.

7. Are your judgment expectations realistic? 

Although no two cases are identical, it’s a good idea to research similar cases to find out what kind of judgment is typical. 


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