Taryn Phaneuf News

Some want to see restrictions on local-government use of private attorneys

By Taryn Phaneuf | Feb 5, 2017

SANTA ANA, Calif. — While district attorneys and attorneys general who sometimes hire private attorneys to help bring consumer-protection cases see it as a way to match resources with business giants, some civil-justice reform groups continue to scrutinize the practice in California.

In consumer fraud cases, OC DA hires help to take on biggest opponents

By Taryn Phaneuf | Feb 4, 2017

SANTA ANA, Calif. — In its quest to protect Orange County citizens from consumer fraud, the district attorney’s office has come up against some deep-pocketed opponents over the years.

To pension reformers, California's only hope is a friendly Supreme Court ruling

By Taryn Phaneuf | Jan 26, 2017

SAN FRANCISCO — California has a pension-debt problem, with a combined unfunded liability sitting close to $1 trillion, according to estimates.

Surprise Attorney General nominee raises concerns among business advocates

By Taryn Phaneuf | Dec 16, 2016

SACRAMENTO — After 24 years in Congress, Rep. Xavier Becerra, Gov. Jerry Brown’s pick for attorney general, has the experience to oppose the Trump administration. But small business advocates in California aren’t expecting an ally in the new top law enforcement officer.

District court in California considers litigation funding disclosure rule

By Taryn Phaneuf | Nov 23, 2016

A proposed rule in the Northern District of California could require parties in civil suits to disclose the presence of litigation funders. And reactions to the proposal demonstrate just how far apart groups in the legal community are on the issue of third-party investment in lawsuits.

Industry experts, elder advocates say $15 million MetLife verdict sends clear message

By Taryn Phaneuf | Nov 7, 2016

LOS ANGELES — Sending the message that MetLife should have stopped agents who referred clients to an unauthorized investment scheme that could help them buy insurance, a jury awarded approximately $15.6 million to the first of many individuals’ claims earlier this fall.

Federal lawsuits over glyphosate's cancer risk consolidated, moved to California district

By Taryn Phaneuf | Oct 22, 2016

SAN FRANCISCO — A U.S. district judge in Northern California will oversee the consolidated cases against Monsanto, which faces claims that its most widely used herbicide, Roundup, can cause cancer.

Law aimed at protecting against surprise medical bills misses mark, physicians group says

By Taryn Phaneuf | Sep 30, 2016

SACRAMENTO – A group of physicians oppose a bill signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown that they say allows insurance companies to set price controls that spill over network boundaries.

Legal services matchmaker website expands to pair California litigants and attorneys

By Taryn Phaneuf | Sep 26, 2016

SACRAMENTO – An idea hatched in Miami for helping individuals find an attorney who fits their budget has expanded to northern California.

Judge rules Coastal Commission overreached in forcing mobile homeowner to waive property protection right

By Taryn Phaneuf | Sep 21, 2016

SAN CLEMENTE – A judge has ruled that the state agency responsible for overseeing land use and public access to the California coast overreached when it tried to force a beachfront homeowner to waive his rights to repair and maintain a rock wall that protects his and other homes from erosion and storms.

Lawyer says NLRB ruling imposed 'radical, new standard' for use of replacement workers

By Taryn Phaneuf | Sep 16, 2016

OAKLAND – A long-term care facility is waiting to see which court of appeals will hear its case after the National Labor Relations Board refused Aug. 24 to reconsider a previous ruling that the facility violated the National Labor Relations Act.

Appeals court breathes new life into auto manufacturer conspiracy case

By Taryn Phaneuf | Sep 16, 2016

SAN FRANCISCO – Plaintiffs in a decade-long lawsuit may finally take their case to trial after an appellate decision revived claims against an automaker’s Canadian affiliate.

Unanimous verdict sides with plaintiff in suit against MetLife, awards $15.6 million

By Taryn Phaneuf | Sep 1, 2016

LOS ANGELES – The jury has awarded $15.6 million to the plaintiff in the lawsuit against MetLife, its subsidiaries and a former managing partner, holding the insurance giant responsible for the losses of a woman who invested in what turned out to be a Ponzi scheme.

Attorneys make final arguments in MetLife lawsuit

By Taryn Phaneuf | Aug 28, 2016

LOS ANGELES – After weeks of testimony in the lawsuit against MetLife and its subsidiary, attorneys delivered their closing arguments and handed the case over to the jury for deliberation, rehashing the facts and pleading for justice.

Judge dismisses cities' claims against Monsanto over PCB contamination in bay

By Taryn Phaneuf | Aug 26, 2016

SAN JOSE – A U.S. district court judge has dismissed several cities’ claims attempting to hold Monsanto responsible for PCB contamination in the San Francisco Bay.

Defense wraps up testimony in MetLife case

By Taryn Phaneuf | Aug 26, 2016

LOS ANGELES – A key MetLife policy that prohibits insurance agents from referring clients to anyone selling unapproved securities should have pulled the plug on any referrals to Diversified Lending Group for premium financing, but corporate manuals didn’t instruct supervisors and agents on how to identify which products were off limits, according to testimony in the trial against MetLife.

Office assistant testifies Russon pushed DLG as an opportunity for insurance customers

By Taryn Phaneuf | Aug 26, 2016

LOS ANGELES — Two witnesses in the trial against MetLife offered glimpses of what workdays looked like in the financial services office that became entangled with a fraudulent real estate investment fund.

Insurance agent, DLG rep who pitched fund to plaintiff testifies in MetLife trial

By Taryn Phaneuf | Aug 19, 2016

LOS ANGELES – Before introducing prospective clients to an investment fund promising a 12-percent return, Scott Brandt always started by pitching insurance. Dating back to a meeting for insurance agents in his office in 2004, he made an association between Diversified Lending Group’s premium financing program and MetLife insurance products.

If Clinton is elected president, California judges could be SCOTUS nominees

By Taryn Phaneuf | Aug 19, 2016

SAN FRANCISCO – California Supreme Court Justice Goodwin Liu is reportedly included in a shortlist of Hillary Clinton’s top choices for the U.S. Supreme Court, according to advocates.

Investment fund employee testifies that he didn't know DLG was a Ponzi scheme

By Taryn Phaneuf | Aug 16, 2016

LOS ANGELES – After Diversified Lending Group (DLG) became associated with MetLife and one of its subsidiaries in 2004, the number of investment accounts in the real estate fund grew from fewer than 20 to about 800, according to an employee of the company’s marketing arm.

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