Practice Area
Commercial Liability Defense
Legal Alert
From the Desk of Melanie Rose: Plaintiffs do not have endless time to file their legal actions. Rather civil claims are subject to statutes of limitation, which require a lawsuit to be filed within a specified amount of time based on the type of action—personal injury, wrongful death, breach of contract, etc. However, there are instances where these limitation periods…
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Monday February 22, 2021 By: Melanie Rose
Webinar
Smith Freed Eberhard partners Josh Hayward and Melanie Rose discuss significant cases of the past year in Washington, with a focus on Personal Lines claims management. Why Watch This Webinar? This webinar is designed for claims professionals and provides a basic overview of significant cases over the last year and their impact on Personal Lines claims management. This webinar will prepare you…
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Friday January 29, 2021 By: Josh Hayward
Legal Alert
From the desk of Bill P. Taaffe: In Oregon, to prove negligence, a plaintiff must show the harm he or she suffered was foreseeable.  How one characterizes the harm—i.e., “a head injury” versus just “an injury”—clearly has a significant impact on what can be considered foreseeable. This case asks the question: Can a head injury, caused by walking into a…
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Wednesday January 27, 2021 By: William Taaffe
Legal Alert
From the desk of Ashley Nagrodski: Washington has a recreational use immunity statute that shields landowners from liability for injuries that occur on their property. However, there is an exception to this immunity which means a qualifying defendant may still face liability. What exactly is required to come within the protection of this statute? Read on to find out. Claims…
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Thursday January 7, 2021 By: Firm Authorship
Success Story
Claims Alleged: Appeal from Summary Judgment Dismissal of Adverse Possession and Prescriptive Easement Claims The Overview: Smith Freed Eberhard partner, Ashley Nagrodski, and associate, Jessica Kamish, achieved a compelling win for their clients in the Washington Court of Appeals when the court affirmed the trial court’s dismissal of the claims against their clients. Ashley and Jessica were assigned the case during the late stages of…
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Tuesday December 1, 2020 By: Firm Authorship
Legal Alert
From the desk of Thomas McCurdy: Generally, if a driver loses consciousness and causes an auto accident, they are not held liable. The driver can be held liable, however, if they were aware that there was a possibility they could suddenly lose consciousness. This case addresses the question, does a driver’s prior knowledge of their multiple health conditions make them…
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Tuesday December 1, 2020 By: Thomas McCurdy
Webinar
Smith Freed Eberhard Partners Jeff Eberhard and Bill Taaffe discuss major cases of the past year in Oregon, with a focus on Commercial Lines claims management during this one hour presentation. Why Watch This Webinar? This webinar is designed for claims professionals and provides a basic overview of significant cases over the last year and their impact on Commercial Lines claims management. This…
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Thursday November 19, 2020 By: Jeff Eberhard
Legal Alert
From the desk of Josh Hayward: In UM and UIM claims, attorney fees may be recoverable by the insured. However, there is a statutory safe harbor provision that prevents an insured from being awarded fees if certain criteria are met. Part of the criteria is that the insurer must accept coverage and only contest liability of the uninsured and damages.…
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Thursday November 19, 2020 By: Josh Hayward
Legal Alert
From the desk of Jeff Eberhard: Under the ORLTA, during an eviction action for nonpayment of rent, a tenant may counterclaim. If that happens, the ORLTA provides a withholding remedy where the tenant may pay their rent into a court fund. At the end of the proceedings, if this fund contains enough to cover the outstanding rent, the tenant may…
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Friday November 6, 2020 By: Jeff Eberhard
Legal Alert
From the desk of Josh Hayward: How many cats is too many?  The jury is still out on that, but a recent Oregon Court of Appeals opinion suggests that it is probably not wise to allow a tenant to keep 100 cats.  In this case, Plaintiff filed suit against State Farm after the company denied coverage under a “domestic animal”…
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Friday October 23, 2020 By: Josh Hayward
Legal Alert
From the desk of Jeff Eberhard: Oregon Rule of Civil Procedure (“ORCP”) 54(E) provides that a defendant may serve an offer on the plaintiff for a judgment that can be entered against the defendant and the plaintiff has the right to decline the offer. However, if the ultimate judgment obtained by the plaintiff is not more favorable than the offer,…
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Tuesday October 13, 2020 By: Jeff Eberhard
Legal Alert
From the desk of Thomas McCurdy: We here at Smith Freed Eberhard understand the importance an individual’s Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) can play in our ability to win a case.  Indeed, SFE is at the forefront of Oregon’s dram shop frontier, meaning that BACs hold something of a special place in our hearts.  For that reason, we are excited to…
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Wednesday September 30, 2020 By: Thomas McCurdy
Legal Alert
From the desk of Kyle Riley: When a consumer purchases a policy of insurance, there is little doubt that they expect to be able to rely on their coverage when disputes arise.  Washington courts have made the state’s policy clear: when there is a potential for coverage, any uncertainty must be resolved in favor of providing coverage to the insured,…
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Monday September 21, 2020 By: Kyle Riley
Legal Alert
From the desk of Jeff Eberhard: Hear Ye Hear Ye! Read all about it. The Oregon Supreme Court has issued a landmark opinion addressing once and for all a topic of heated debate between Oregon’s plaintiff and defense bars. No matter the side, plaintiff or defendant, attorneys will agree that parties who can prove they were injured by a defendant’s…
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Monday August 17, 2020 By: Jeff Eberhard
Legal Alert
From the desk of Gordon C. Klug: It should come as no surprise that a lawyer is prohibited from representing a new client where that new client’s interests are adverse to the interests of a former client and the matters are closely related. From a business standpoint, lawyers are also well-served to avoid these scenarios; especially in the case of…
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Wednesday August 12, 2020 By: Gordon Klug
Legal Alert
From the desk of Thomas McCurdy: Washington has a track record of working to criminalize discrimination in public spaces.  Since the early 1900s, the state has been developing legislation prohibiting discrimination on a number of bases – the list of which continues to grow to this very day.  In 1957, the Washington legislature enacted the Washington Law Against Discrimination (WLAD) which made discrimination based on…
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Friday July 17, 2020 By: Thomas McCurdy
Legal Alert
From the desk of Jeff Eberhard: Plaintiffs have an interest in being able to bring lawsuits to recover for damages they believe were caused by a defendant. Defendants have a countervailing interest in ensuring that they are not forever exposed to a potential claim. The legislature’s answer to protecting both of these interests? Statutory time limitations within which a plaintiff must bring their claim following an injury or damaging…
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Thursday July 16, 2020 By: Jeff Eberhard
Legal Alert
From the desk of Jeff Eberhard: Health plan contracts may provide broad rights that an injured plaintiff must repay any liability and/or UIM payments received.  If Oregon PIP/health insurance statutes are applied, the likelihood of repayment is much less.  However, as the Oregon Court of Appeals recently found, the activities of the third-party administrator play a role in determining whether they are or are not an actual insurer for purposes of…
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Thursday July 16, 2020 By: Jeff Eberhard
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