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Brown & Gessell Blog

Failure To Have Minimum Auto Liability Coverage – Ensure You Have Insurance!

In the late 1990’s, legislation was passed in California called the Personal Responsibility Act, what is commonly referred to as Proposition 213. This law is now established under Civil Code, Section 3333.4. Now, the bottom line is that you should always carry at least the minimum amount of liability insurance required in California. Liability insurance is the auto insurance that provides for payment to someone else when your negligence injures another while you are using your vehicle. In other words, it covers you if someone sues you. In California, the minimum liability insurance required is $15,000 per person and $30,000 [...]

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Insuring Against The Uninsured Driver

One of the most frustrating scenarios for a personal injury attorney is beginning a case for a client injured in an auto accident and finding out that the defendant driver has little or no liability insurance. Unfortunately, drivers with no insurance typically have no assets or other means to pay for the harm. While a personal injury attorney can obtain a civil judgment for all of the damages caused, that judgment is only as good as the defendant’s ability to pay. In most cases, if the defendant files for bankruptcy, the civil judgment will be discharged or erased. This will [...]

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Cell Phones Cause Accidents

Over the past several years, I have noticed a sharp increase in the number of car accidents involving distracted drivers. The scenario is almost always the same. The victim drives down the road or highway and traffic begins to slow. The victim slows his vehicle with the traffic and often times comes to a stop. A car that is behind the victim has a driver that is distracted by a cell phone. Once the victim starts to slow, the distracted driver fails to notice the change in traffic speed and slams his car into the rear of the victims car. [...]

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Cycling Safety Legislation

AB 1371 Safe Passing of Cyclists LawAB 1371, dubbed the "Safe Passing Law," has reached the Governor's desk, having passed the State House and Senate. This law prescribes specific action that is required of a motorist when passing a cyclist. A driver approaching a cyclist must allow 3 feet between the vehicle and the cyclist when passing. There is accommodation for the driver to cross over double-yellow lines and other traffic limiting lines, when safe, to accomplish this. If the road or traffic conditions do not permit this safe distance, the driver may pass with less distance once slowed to [...]

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Garcia v. Chen, M.D. (Plaintiff’s Verdict)

In April, 2012, A Yolo County Jury returned a medical malpractice verdict on behalf of Moises Garcia against Yolo County General Surgeon, Emery Chen, M.D. Steven L. Brown and Douglas A. Gessell, of the Law Offices of Brown & Gessell, represented Mr. Garcia. The verdict exceded the last settlement demand made by plaintiff, and the defendant paid additional costs as a result. The October 22, 2009 laparoscopic cholecystectomy (gallbladder) surgery was performed by defendant, Dr. Emery Chen, at Woodland Memorial Hospital. In the course of the surgery, Dr. Chen negligently placed four surgical clips across the common hepatic duct, which [...]

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Personal Injury Verdict

Matamoros v. Sosnowski In October, 2012 a jury in the Eastern District of California (Sacramento) returned an approximately $800,000 verdict in favor of the surviving mother of a 23 year-old son who was struck while walking down Donner Pass Road in Truckee by a drunk driver. Brown & Gessell represented Mrs. Matamoros in a two week trial before Federal District Court Judge John Mendez. Doug Gessell and Steve Brown co-tried the case that featured experts in accident reconstruction and toxicology.

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