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Latest from The Velvet Hammer

Two months ago we file a dozen tort claims with the city and state. For peaceful protesters who were hurt by the police or in Summer Taylor’s case – killed – while protesting for BLM. We then need to wait 60 days before filing the suit. Instead of having down time, we begin drafting the complaint. I have the great role of being the boss of all and hand out assignments. Lisa – history and…
7:30 am Get up. Take out Nala. It’s cool outside. Mountain air. 8:00 Eat raspberries. Clean up and pack. 8:45 Cristina, Sol and Liam come from little cabin to big one to say bye. And take away a bike. 8:50 Dance while Liam bangs on piano to the Latin drum beat. They finish. Say goodbye. 9:00 Firm meeting – give covid protocol update. 9:25 Leave firm meeting. 9:30 Zoom mediation with Keith Kubic. 2:30 End…
The new client’s brother had a list of news media reporters who had left their numbers. My first job was to get that all handled as quickly as possible. The issue of timeliness in the news has dramatically changed over the past decade. When I first learned how to work with the media, Sue Evans media consultant, used to advise us not to immediately take a reporter’s call. To get the messaging straight first, sometimes…
The media wants his story. Collect a list from his relatives. Call first reporter. Tell her 11:00 tomorrow. At my office. We will have social distance protocols in place. She says no can do. We are still in phase 1.5 and they cannot come inside for a story. Hmmm. Outside the office is an ugly parking lot. Puzzle for a second. Look at weather app. It will be raining tomorrow. Tell her we will do…
With the exception of cell phone videos, has there been any change in the 50 years since Marvin Gaye wrote What’s Going On. Mother, mother There’s too many of you crying Brother, brother, brother There’s far too many of you dying You know we’ve got to find a way To bring some lovin’ here today Father, father We don’t need to escalate You see, war is not the answer For only love can conquer hate…
As the courthouse doors clanged shut, the plaintiff bar and our clients watched helplessly as civil trials were pushed into the unforeseeable future, A general sense of gloom descended upon us. Now what, we wondered.. Three months later, little has changed in terms of resurrecting the civil trial. Various committees have been formed by the judges who are consulting with groups of attorneys. There have been whispers about zoom, or moving to the now unused…
Head out from the cabin with Nala. Turn right. Go down the long hill that follows the path of the river. The roadway is empty. Cabins mainly vacant. It is off season. The county is just coming off of an executive order banning Airbnb rentals due to the pandemic. It is a cloudy but pleasant day. We reach the end of that road. Turn left and begin our way up Kinnikinik street. The river is…
Long before the coronavirus caused a world wide crisis that shut down courthouses, our civil jury trials had been slowly disappearing. Corporate America discovered that forced arbitration clauses could be used to try to wipe out the right to a jury trial in everything ranging from consumer actions to sexual assaults in the workplace to mass transit disasters when trains derail because of admitted fault by the company. Insurance companies used super lobby groups to…
Insurance companies pinched themselves over their good fortune as the courthouse doors pretty much closed in response to the coronavirus. The third prong of their mantra had suddenly and without precedence become their main weapon of choice to defeat claims brought by injured people. Oh Karen, you are being overly dramatic and biased, you may be thinking. But let me tell you a story. Mr. X was killed on the job eight years ago due…