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A Contractor’s Change In Business Form Does Not Create A Gap In Licensing Or Require Disgorgement Under Business And Professions Code Section 7031, If The Contractor Remains Duly Licensed At All Times During The Performance Of Work Under The Construction Contract

From 1982 through 2015, John D. S. Stone (Stone) held a California general contractor’s license and did business under that license as Stone Construction Company, a fictitious business name for his sole proprietorship.  In early 2015, Stone and Yosef Manela (Manela) began discussing a major home...

Should The District Or Its Auxiliary Organization Receive Private Monetary Donations?

Last month, billionaire MacKenzie Scott, announced another massive round of donations, totaling hundreds of millions of dollars, to colleges and universities that are not the usual beneficiaries of major philanthropy in higher education.  Scott wrote in a blog post that her latest gifts totaled...

When A Contract Designates A Third Person To Certify Performance Under A Contract, That Third Person’s Decision Is Conclusive In the Absence Of Fraud Or Mistake

Three neighboring property owners in San Juan Capistrano incurred varying damages due to a mudslide.  Coral Farms, L.P.; Paul and Susan Mikos; and Thomas and Sonya Mahony own the three neighboring properties.  In the first lawsuit, the property owners sued and countersued each other for negligence...

A Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) Cannot Condition Its Performance On Applicant Agreeing To Reimburse Litigation Expenses

Central Coast Development Company (Developer) owned a 154-acre parcel of property within the City of Pismo Beach (City).  The Developer wanted to construct 252 single-family residences and 60 senior housing units on the parcel.  The City approved the Developer’s application for a development permit...

An Exculpatory Clause in a Commercial Lease May Shield a Property Owner From Liability for Personal Injuries That Occur Because of Passive Negligence or Nonfeasance

Richard Garcia (“Garcia”) owned an office furniture business.  In 2009, he leased premises for his business.  The original lease contained a clause that held the property owner not liable for personal injuries to Garcia, whether resulting from conditions on the premises or other sources.

Lease-Leaseback Arrangements Must Be Genuine; Otherwise, a Contractor May Face Disgorgement of Monies Even After Project Completion

A common method of California public school districts to award contracts for new construction and improvements to existing facilities is the lease-leaseback method.  Authorized under Education Code section 17406, the lease-leaseback method permits builder-financed construction.  A school district...

When A Company Modifies A Contract, It Must Provide Notice To All Parties And Allow The Parties To Consent To The New Term

In 2014, Rachel Stover purchased Experian’s credit score subscription service. The terms of the service required Stover to arbitrate all claims arising out of the subscription service and contained a change-of-terms provision stating that each time Stover accessed Experian’s website, she consented...


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