April 21, 2019

Archives for December 23, 2015

Top Ten Employment Law Programs and Homestudies

As the end of the year draws nigh, we are reviewing the Top Ten Programs and Homestudies in several substantive areas of law. Previously, we covered ethics, family law, trust & estate law, real estate law, litigation, and business law. We continue our review with employment law. And now, without further ado, here are the Top Ten Employment Law Programs and Homestudies:

10. Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transgender (LGBT) Law Institute — Dignity to All Persons. Although not strictly an employment law program, the LGBT Law Institute included topics of interest to employment law attorneys, including a session called “GLBTQ Employment Law Issues, FMLA, Sensitivity Training and Discrimination.” Eleven general credits; available as CD homestudy, MP3 audio download, and Video OnDemand.

9. Employment Law Fall Update 2013 — New Cases, New Legislation, and Tools Every Employment Lawyer Needs. Highly experienced employment lawyers discuss what’s new in the field in this informative program. Topics covered include stock options with mergers & acquisitions, arbitration, workplace violence, FLSA, retaliation, and more. Seven general credits; available as CD homestudy, MP3 audio download, and Video OnDemand.

8. Independent Contractor or Employee? Softrock‘s and Western Logistics‘ Effect. In 2014, the Colorado Supreme Court issued two important employment law decisions, ICAO v. Softrock and Western Logistics v. ICAO, reversing decades of case law regarding the test for whether a worker is an independent contractor or employee. This program discusses the two decisions and their impact on employment law in Colorado. One general credit; available as MP3 audio download and Video OnDemand.

7. Discipline, Documentation, and Discharge of Problem Employees. Performance reviews strike dread into the hearts of employers and employees alike, but the consequences of poor disciplinary practices can be disastrous. This program provides practical tools for navigating the disciplinary process, including coaching, warnings, performance improvement plans, and last chance agreements. Eight general credits; available as CD homestudy, MP3 audio download, and Video OnDemand.

6. Non-Compete Agreements, Confidentiality Agreements, and Other Restrictions on Employee Competition. Many employers of entry level workers force their employees to sign non-compete agreements as a condition of employment. Is this legal? In this program, learn about the proper use of non-compete agreements and the law of restrictive employment covenants, as well as the necessity of and limitations on confidentiality agreements, statutory protection of trade secrets, common law rights of employers and employees, and litigation risks and realities. Four general credits; available as CD homestudy, MP3 audio download, and Video OnDemand.

5. Workplace Discrimination. Many employment law cases have an element of discrimination, and the important topic is the center of this program. Learn about the intersection of religious freedom and anti-discrimination laws, what really happens during mediations, bias and discrimination within the legal profession, Colorado’s Anti-Discrimination Act, employment testing and the ADA, and much more. Seven general credits, including one ethics credit; available as CD homestudy, MP3 audio download, and Video OnDemand.

4. Employment Law 2014. Whether you are interested in state or federal issues, the plaintiff or defense perspective, or whether you are new to employment law or a seasoned professional – the 2014 Employment Law Conference is a must-have. This two-day program offers a litigation track and a counseling track, with sessions on associational discrimination, workplace privacy, premises liability, corporate compliance, and more. Nineteen general credits, including 1.2 ethics credits; available as CD homestudy and MP3 audio download.

3. Whistleblower Litigation, Discrimination, and the First Amendment — Employment Law Fall Update 2014. The hottest topics in employment law are featured in this program, including the Federal Whistleblower Protection Act, free speech, non-compete agreements, ADEA update, labor law for employment lawyers, and more. Eight general credits; available as CD homestudy, MP3 audio download, and Video OnDemand.

2. Intellectual Property in the Workplace — Employment Law Fall Update 2015. Regardless of a company’s business model, its IP assets are important in sustaining growth and fostering robust employment. But overly controlling a company’s ownership of the intellectual product of its employees can stifle the creativity of the workforce. This program discusses protection of employer and employee rights in intellectual property, workplace privacy concerns, defending employees against claims of trade secret theft, human capital as intellectual property, and much more. Six general credits; available as CD homestudy, MP3 audio download, and Video OnDemand.

1. 2015 Employment Law. This annual conference discusses everything employment law, regardless of whether you represent plaintiffs or the defense, are a solo or member of a large firm or in-house counsel, or are new to employment law or are a seasoned professional. Topics covered in the 2015 program include the cat’s paw theory, the Affordable Care Act, transgender issues in employment law, common investigation mistakes and how to avoid them, an update from the Division of Labor, and much more. Eighteen general credits, including 1.2 ethics credits; available as CD homestudy and MP3 audio download. NOTE: This program is repeated annually. Click here for the 2014 program and click here for the 2013 program.

Colorado Court of Appeals: Ample Evidence in Record Supported Trial Court’s Findings of No Easement

The Colorado Court of Appeals issued its opinion in Gold Hill Development Co., L.P. v. TSG Ski & Golf, LLC on Thursday, December 22, 2015.

R.S. 2477—Easement Claims—Public Prescriptive Easement

Plaintiff (GHDC) owned several mining lode properties in the vicinity of various properties owned by defendants (collectively, TSG). GHDC alleged that access to its mining properties was historically made by means of the Gold Hill Road (route), which traverses a portion of TSG’s properties. GHDC claimed the right to use and maintain the route where it crossed over TSG’s mining lode properties.

GHDC brought claims against TSG, including express easement, implied easement, implied easement by prior use, way of necessity, public road pursuant to R.S. 2477, and public road pursuant to CRS §§ 43-2-201(1) and 43-1-202. San Miguel County (SMC) was added as a party and defended against some of the claims regarding a public highway.

Following a bench trial, the court granted TSG’s motion for a directed verdict as to GHDC’s express easement claim and dismissed all of GHDC’s other claims. The court also granted SMC’s R.S. 2477 counterclaims for a public road as to a portion of the road and a public prescriptive easement as to another portion of the road. On appeal, GHDC contended that the trial court erred in imposing additional requirements not supported by Colorado law for its R.S. 2477 claim across the TSG properties.

GHDC argued that the trial court erred in concluding that GHDC failed to show the public was using the route. However, the Court of Appeals found ample evidence in the record to support the court’s finding and perceived no error.

GHDC argued that the trial court was inconsistent because at times it credited the absence of certain trails to deny public use, while at other times it failed to acknowledge the absence of other trails on surveys and maps presented at trial. The trial court’s findings were based on maps and mineral surveys, as well as on extensive testimony regarding the use and nonuse of the various routes. Because there was support in the record for the trial court’s findings, the Court perceived no error.

GHDC contended that the trial court erred in finding a public prescriptive easement across GHDC’s properties. CRS § 43-2-201(1)(c) requires showing (1) a “claim of right,” (2) public use adverse to the landowner’s interest, (3) such use continued for 20 years, and (4) actual or implied knowledge of the public use by the landowner and no objection to such use. Again, the Court found ample support for the trial court’s findings in the record.

GHDC argued that trial court erred in failing to find a public highway across TSG’s property under CRS §§ 43-2-201(1)(e) and 43-1-202. The Court agreed with the trial court that GHDC had essentially the same burden of proof as for its RS 2477 claim and for the same reasons (lack of public use on the route before the relevant removal dates) it failed to meet its burden.

GHDC argued that it was error to dismiss its express easement claim for failing to demonstrate the intent to convey an express easement. The Court found no error in the trial court’s interpretation of the unambiguous language in the patents.

GHDC argued that the trial court had effectively created USFS trails. The Court disagreed. The finding that these were public roads granted no rights in them to the USFS. The judgment and order were affirmed.

Summary and full case available here, courtesy of The Colorado Lawyer.

Colorado Court of Appeals: Arrest in California Not Enough to Show Defendant Procured Prosecution There

The Colorado Court of Appeals issued its opinion in People v. Giem on Thursday, December 19, 2015.

Double Jeopardy Clause—Out-of-State prosecution—Aggravated Motor Vehicle Theft.

Giem approaching the victim in a parking lot in Jefferson County, pointed a gun at him, demanded his car keys, and took his car. The car was equipped with an antitheft transmitter. The next day, law enforcement officials in California found Giem driving the victim’s car. In February 2012, Giem pleaded guilty to unlawful driving or taking of a vehicle and DUI in California. He was later prosecuted in Colorado for this same incident, and his motion to dismiss the charges based on the Double Jeopardy Clause and CRS § 18-1-303 were denied.

On appeal, Giem challenged only the court’s ruling on his motion to dismiss, arguing that the Double Jeopardy Clause and CRS § 18-1-303 barred his prosecution in Colorado. CRS § 18-1-304(1)(b), however, creates an exception that allows a prosecution to proceed even if § 18-1-303 would otherwise bar it if the former prosecution “[w]as procured by the defendant without the knowledge of the appropriate prosecuting official and with the intent to avoid the sentence that otherwise might be imposed.” Here, the court’s factual findings do not support its legal conclusion that Giem procured his California prosecution. Merely being present in California with a stolen car stops short of procuring a prosecution there. Therefore, the trial court incorrectly determined that CRS § 18-1-304(1)(b) prevented Giem from taking advantage of § 18-1-303. Giem’s Colorado prosecutions for menacing, theft, and aggravated robbery, however, were not based on the same conduct that resulted in his conviction in California for unlawful driving or taking of a vehicle. Therefore, Giem’s prosecutions in Colorado for these crimes were not barred by his prior conviction in California for unlawful driving or taking of a vehicle. Conversely, Giem’s prosecution in Colorado for aggravated motor vehicle theft was based on the same conduct as the California conviction for unlawful taking of a vehicle, as both offenses were based on the taking and retention by Giem of the victim’s vehicle. Therefore, the People in Colorado were barred from prosecuting Giem for aggravated motor vehicle theft because it is not clear that the law of California and the law of Colorado for this crime were intended to prevent a substantially different harm or evil. The judgment was affirmed as to all counts except the count of aggravated motor vehicle theft, which was reversed.

Summary and full case available here, courtesy of The Colorado Lawyer.

Tenth Circuit: Unpublished Opinions, 12/22/2015

On Tuesday, December 22, 2015, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued five published opinions and one unpublished opinion.

Russell v. New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission

Case summaries are not provided for unpublished opinions. However, published opinions are summarized and provided by Legal Connection.