On May 9th and 10th, 2019, Ray Gates and Paul Cardinale attended the USAA California Defense Counsel Summit in Phoenix, Arizona. The Summit included discussion of the current trends in California law and venues. While at USAA, Ray and Paul gave a presentation to USAA managers and adjusters regarding the handling of conditional demands and a reasonable approach to responding to time limit conditional demands. They also discussed the recent holding in Licudine v. Cedars-Sinai Medical Center regarding evaluating cases when an Offer of Judgment has been served.
On March 2 and 3, 2019, Ray Gates presented a case summary of the Barker v. Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe trial to participant members at the Association of Ski Defense Attorneys (ASDA) in Lake Louise, Alberta. ASDA is an international association of defense attorneys recognized for their expertise and experience in defending ski resorts as well as water sports and recreational venues and participants. Ray’s presentation focused on issues peculiar to the Barker trial including in-bound closure operating procedures and mountain operations as well as ski patrol guidelines, regulations, training, signage, and boundary line/gate usage. Ray also discussed the trial presentation of resort online material available to the public as well as ski ticket release of liability language and state and county rules regarding assumption of the risk. Ray also discussed the use of technology and animation as well as photography and videography presented to the jury, consisting of non-skiers, regarding the risks of downhill skiing and why skiers should familiarize themselves with available information including trail maps.
On January 23, 2019, Ray Gates and Artak Paskevichyan presented a case summary of the Barker v. Mt. Rose trial to participants at the National Ski Areas Association (NSAA) 2019 Western Winter Conference and Trade Show in Snowbird, Utah. Their presentation examined the legal issues regarding in bound avalanches including closure issues, ski safety and inherent risk, legal issues, snow safety mitigation, guest education, incident investigations, Forest Service permit and relationships as well as applicable mountain operations. The presentation also included guest safety considerations and interplay with the inherent risk of alpine skiing.
In October 2018, Ray Gates, Tony Lauria and Artak Paskevichyan, successfully defended Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe in a wrongful death case involving an in-bounds avalanche occurring in December 2016 while decedent was skiing in an area known as “The Chutes”. Plaintiffs argued that Mt. Rose failed to place rope lines along a boundary line and failed to have conspicuous boundary signage to properly notify skiers of the danger. Plaintiffs also argued that the resort trail map was inaccurate and the ski patrol was not properly trained. Plaintiffs’ sought in excess of $5,000,000. Defendant was able to refute plaintiffs’ contentions with ski industry/avalanche experts utilizing animations, photos and videos as well as attacking the credibility of plaintiffs’ experts. The jury ultimately returned a defense verdict finding that the deceased assumed the risks of downhill skiing and failed to familiarize himself with available information, warnings and signage provided by the resort. The case was tried in the Second Judicial District Court in Reno, Nevada.
We are pleased to announce that Esther Ismayelyan has joined our Sacramento office as an Associate. Esther received her Juris Doctor degree from McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento, California in 2017. In June 2018, she was admitted to the California State Bar. Esther will focus on civil litigation, particularly personal injury defense, professional negligence liability defense and general and tort liability defense.
Tony Lauria was invited to speak at a Business of Dentistry Seminar on September 13, 2018. In his presentation, he spoke about dental malpractice, how to prevent it, what to do if it happens and recordkeeping.
In March 2018, Ray Gates and Robert Smith defended a Las Vegas periodontist with the jury determining no violation of the standard of care during the dental treatment of the plaintiff.
We are pleased to announce that Artak Paskevichyan has joined our Sacramento Office as an Associate. Artak received his Juris Doctor degree from the Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego, California, in 2015. In May 2016, he was admitted to the California State bar. Artak will primarily focus on civil litigation practice emphasizing automobile personal injury defense, premise liability defense, medical malpractice defense, general and tort liability defense, and professional negligence liability defense.
In January 2018, Anthony Lauria and Paul Cardinale successfully defended and obtained a unanimous defense verdict in the Fourth Judicial District Court in Elko, Nevada. The case involved a bowel perforation during exploratory laparoscopy.
In November 2017, Ray Gates obtained a directed verdict in favor of a general dentist after plaintiff failed to prove their allegations of negligent dental treatment. The case was tried in the Eight Judicial District Court in Las Vegas, Nevada.