In light of David Letterman’s recent announcement of retirement, I thought Judge Dino Inumerable’s enrobing a fitting occasion for a top 10.

#10 You can see the ocean from the fourth floor.
#9 Free parking.
#8 This is the first step to have your picture on these hallowed walls of Courtroom 22.
#7 You get to add your personal touch to jury duty by greeting the jury pool.
#6 It’s such a small community that you’ll see your jurors at Vons and your kids’ soccer coach sitting on the bench down the hall.
#5 You don’t have to fight LA traffic.
#4 From your family: It’s 2 in the afternoon and you’re still in your robe?
#3 Our courthouse isn’t a bomb shelter.
#2 Michael Planet.
And the #1 Reason Ventura County judges have it better than other county judges … #1 The Ventura County Bar Association, which is involved, supportive and cares.

Ventura County Bar Association President Laura Bartels delivered this list as a speech at the April 19 enrobing ceremony of Judge Dino Inumerable in the Ventura Superior


Barrister’s Trivia Night Raises $110.00 for the VLSP. On April 17 the Barristers held their annual trivia night at Garman’s Pub in Santa Paula. The team “Judicial Restraint” led by Judges Bruce Young and James Cloninger are this year’s champs. Judicial Restraint beat out Mixed Bag, the Smith/Ostlers and the Vexacious Litigants on their path to victory. The Barristers raised $110.00 for the Ventura County Bar Association, VLSP program.

People sometimes ask me “why do you  network with other attorneys? Do you really get anything out of it?” Yes. I actually do, but not in the way that most people think of when they attend formal “networking” events expecting to get some business out of those efforts.

I have been a member of the Ventura County Bar Association and Barristers for more than six years. In that time, I have fostered great personal and professional relationships with attorneys, paralegals and other legal professionals in our county. It has been beneficial to me because I am able to count some of those relationships among my close friends. It has also been extremely helpful to get to know attorneys who practice in different areas and at different levels of experience. Barristers and the VCBA provide me with an array of legal referrals that provide me and, most importantly, my clients, with access to almost any type of attorney they could possibly need. Natural
resource attorney? I know a guy. Estate planning attorney? Sure! Appellate attorney? Done. And the list goes on.

Like many attorneys, I often run into legal  issues that are outside of my practice area. Instead of telling a client “I can’t help you, I don’t practice in that area,” a quick email or call to one of the many experienced attorneys
in our community results in a helpful and often very rewarding response: “Although I am not able to provide you with legal advice in the area, I have a colleague that is very knowledgeable in that area and is more than willing to discuss it with you, here’s her information.” I see it as an additional service  that I can provide to my clients that other non-connected attorneys may not be able to provide. Anyone can Google an attorney, but not everyone can make a personal referral of someone that they know will be able to provide excellent legal representation.

If you are an attorney under the age of 36 or one with 7 or less years in practice under your belt, contact Rachel Coleman at rachel@ to sign up for Barristers. This is a great opportunity to start getting to
know the legal community and make lasting professional relationships.

Barristers’ Bowling Night Our annual Barristers Bowling Night will take place July 17 at Harley’s Bowl in Camarillo. This is a great opportunity for you to spend an evening of fun with co-workers, colleagues, judges and family.
There is a minimum $10 donation to Makea- Wish, who will be present and we will have some Wish families bowling with us.   This is a great opportunity to give back and have some fun. Slaughter & Reagan, LLP and Pacific Western Bank will be some of our sponsors for this event. If you are interested in sponsoring and/or attending please contact Nadia at


Mentorship is a crucial component of a person’s personal and professional life. Many of us are first-generation attorneys who need or have been helped by mentors. Mark your calendars for our annual Wine and Cheese mixer to be held on August 21 at 5:30 p.m. in Ferguson Case Orr Paterson’s fabulous courtyard. Picture locally-brewed craft beer courtesy of Anacapa Brewing, Co., a wonderful selection of wine and gourmet cheeses, pulled pork sandwiches and other delicacies. Did I mention wine and cheese? If you have ever been a mentor or been mentored and want to learn about how you can get involved with our mentorship program please let me know. We are looking for mentors. It is a great opportunity to give back and help contribute to the advancement of the legal professionals in our community.

Rennee R. Dehesa practices business and bankruptcy law with Schneiders & Associates in Oxnard.

Letters to the Editor: Lawyers Behaving Badly

I share Kate Neiswender’s frustrations with the seeming lack of accountability for lawyers lying to the court (Citat ions Nov. 11, 2013). After 35 years of practice, I have borne witness to a numerous incidences where opposing counsel is either putting an outrageous spin on his client’s case, blatantly misrepresenting the facts or law of his client’s case or just bold face lying. I don’t necessarily believe that this behavior has gotten worse over the years. I recollect conversations early in my career where older and wiser lawyers nursing their whiskies, sadly lamenting the lack of professional cordiality and veracity of opposing counsel. These short-comings unfortunately required costly CYA letters because you just couldn’t trust opposing counsel. This has probably been complained of since the days of Cicero, with each successive generation of lawyers complaining about how matters have deteriorated. I do not agree. It has always been so. Because of the nature of our profession this situation is unlikely to improve, but that is not to say that we aren’t trying.

In January 2014 the California Supreme Court denied Stephan Glass admission to  the Bar. Stephen Glass was an infamous reporter for the New Republic who became confused between journalism and creative writing. He fabricated over 40 articles and provided contrived supporting materials  designed to fool the magazine’s fact checkers.  He was also a law student at the time. After withdrawing his New York Bar application, Mr. Glass filed a California application of moral character in 2007, after passing the California Bar. After concluding that California’s cupboard was already too full of Glasses, Mr. Glass’s application was denied.

Over the last decade, I have seen a persistent endeavor to promote congeniality, and cooperation between counsel. The Inns of Court’s guiding principles stress civility. The recent push for civility, consensus, and the
relatively recent field of collaborative family law, seems to overlook the reality that the adversarial system actually works. The trier of fact, whether a jury or a judge, listens to both parties, considers the spin, exaggerations, or
absolute lies, relative veracity and then they make a decision. Our system is, of course, adversarial. The best way to seek truth is to engage the services of highly educated, zealous, and creative advocates to argue one’s position. The problem is when advocacy devolves into duplicity. Is truth actually best obtained through lies? The judge calls them like he sees them and for the most part that’s the adversarial game. Ms. Neiswender’s complaint that lawyers lie in the Court room with impunity, is no surprise to most experienced trial lawyers. That is the system.

I am moderately confident that most judges of a witness or an attorney. They exercise this judgment on a daily basis. When it comes to chastising counsel for misrepresentations to the court, I do not doubt judges are well aware of the lies, but it does appear that the courts have a hands off approach; kind of like a referee of a rough and tumble basketball game letting the teams play.

I have brought at least half a dozen § 128.7 motions in situations that were quite egregious; not a single one resulted in sanctions. The judges just tie themselves in knots trying to avoid sanctioning counsel, except for very specific, mandatory requirements set forth in the discovery code. But when a lawyer lies to a judge it seems to me, and I share Kate Neiswender’s experience and perception, that they do so with impunity.

In arguing for CCP § 128.7 sanctions in cases of clear misrepresentations to the Court, I’ve had one judge complain that I was essentially seeking a summary judgment; well, that’s right. But she refused to grant sanctions even after the actual motion for  summary judgment was granted. A Superior Court Judge in Van Nuys, in response to my §128.7 motion, made an observation that the whole scheme is a legislative joke designed to frustrate and punish attorneys. The judge observed that the procedural steps of a § 128.7 motion made it almost impossible to satisfy.

My last sanction motion (and I think I am going to give up using this particular tactic) involved a declaration under penalty of perjury by a local lawyer concerning a ruling by the court at a hearing he did not attend. His declaration stated unequivocally that he was at that hearing. After reading the declaration and concerned that I was having a dreaded senior moment, I checked the transcript and confirmed that the lawyer had not attended the hearing, despite his declaration that he did. When confronted with the transcript and a request for sanctions for these blatant misrepresentations of the proceedings, the judge avoided the whole distasteful situation, ignored the transcript
and claimed that she didn’t remember it that way. The court also commented that the motion was “not very helpful.” I beat a strategic retreat.

The premise for CCP § 128.7 sanctions is that attorneys are officers of the court and, as such, certify the reasonableness of the facts pled and law asserted. CCP § 128.7 requires a safe harbor warning to opposing counsel to correct his adversarial flaws as a condition for the imposition of sanctions. It is interesting to note that the professional duties set forth in CCP § 128.7 expressly do not apply in criminal representation. There is an interesting dichotomy between  the duty of the lawyer as an officer of the  Court and the litigation privilege embodied  in CC 47(b). The allegations of the client are privileged but the lawyer’s duty to advocate those allegations are not.

I embrace the adversarial contest and the system. As a trial lawyer, I just assume that the other side is not going to be particularly truthful and that as a lawyer I need to protect my client from unscrupulous attorneys
and parties. Trial work, like politics, is the equivalent of war by other means. We should all remember that clients want a zealous, aggressive attorney representing their interests and in all cases they just want to win. The State Bar rules require zealous representation. Clients don’t care if you’re polite, professional, conciliatory or collaborative. That means you must assume the other side and their counsel will lie and your job, as an advocate, is not to be civil, collaborative, cooperative but aggressive and prepared. It makes the process unpleasant, expensive, inefficient and tiresome but it’s the system we have. To a large extent, lawyers make a living based on human character flaws. The profession reflects human nature and values as well as its flaws. Our culture’s irresistible mandate to prevail at all costs, be it in competitive sports, bicycle racing, baseball or commercial transactions the reward for lying and cheating often outweigh the consequences. Unfortunately, that is the reason for the profession. If people would wake up tomorrow embracing the Golden Rule, we would all have to sell hardware for a living.

discussions about the relative obnoxiousness of attorneys, a Midwest attorney told me he found Los Angeles lawyers much more obstreperous and obnoxious. He observed that the New York legal market is highly stratified. You met the same lawyers concentrated in specific practice areas. The fact that you would undoubtedly encounter the same attorney, in multiple matters, had a self-regulating reciprocal effect on lawyer’s behavior. He
found Los Angeles to be like the Wild West with little concern with obnoxious behavior because there was little likelihood of dealing with that lawyer again and, of course, no consequences. As long as the Bar and the Bench tolerate that behavior, or ail to address it, it will continue. It is to be  expected that judges will continue to focus on the issue at hand, and ignore the side drama of lawyers behaving badly.



The Ventura River Trail, an extension of the Ojai Valley Trail, is a path through our local history. Beginning in Downtown Ventura and meandering northward between the Avenue and State Route 33, the trail exhibits
a dynamic array of agricultural, semi-urban, industrial, and natural scenery. The easy 6.3 mile path also encounters a series of unique. art installations commissioned by the city’s public art program to encapsulate cultural
and historical themes, and structural points of interest that are quintessentially Ventura. At Foster Park in Oak View, the River Trail connects with the Ojai Valley Trail, which provides a more rural experience.
Departing at times from Route 33, the 9.5 mile trail travels quiet neighborhoods, shady oak groves, and citrus orchards, while providing breathtaking views of the Topatopa mountains.

Both the Ventura River Trail and the Ojai Valley Trail traverse the location of the former Ventura and Ojai Valley Railroad. Constructed by Captain John Cross in the 1890s for a total cost of approximately $240,000, and purchased by the Southern Pacific Transportation Company soon after, the new line was uniformly heralded as an important contribution to the valley’s development and prosperity. Before, more  than 5,000 people a year would travel by
wagon or horseback to enjoy the region’s natural hot springs and bountiful fishing and hunting. When active, the railroad extended from the Ventura Junction rail  station (connected to Santa Barbara and Los Angeles), north to Mira Monte, then east, ending in the center of the village of Nordhoff, now Ojai. Actual use of the railway line was abandoned in 1975.

In 1995, the City of San Buenaventura filed with the Interstate Commerce Commission a notice of interim trail use under the National Trails System Act, 16 U.S.C. § 1247(d). This so-called “Rails-to-Trails” law allows
railroad owners wishing to cease operations along a particular route to negotiate with a state, municipality, or private group prepared to assume financial and managerial responsibility for the right of way, subject to future reactivation of rail service along the route. With support from the Rails-to- Trails Conservancy (, an agreement was reached with Southern Pacific for use of the abandoned Ventura and Ojai Railroad as a recreational right-ofway, and the Ventura River Trail formally opened in 1999.

The prominence of “rails-to-trails” conversion activity such as this has grown exponentially in recent decades, as our nation’s rail use has declined. The legal framework is, to a large extent, one of common property law.
The General Railroad Right-of-Way Act of 1875, 43 U.S.C. §§ 934-939, was enacted to promote the appeal of what seemed at the time to be boundless westward expansion, by granting a right of way through public lands
to any railroad company meeting certain requirements. Because the Act “clearly grants only an easement, and not a fee,” (Great Northern R. Co. v. U.S., 315 U.S. 262, 271 (1942)), the logical conclusion is that when a railroad line is abandoned, the underlying land would simply become unburdened by the easement.

So thought the Brandt family, who in 1976 received, by a federal land patent, fee simple title to land in Fox Park, Wyoming, subject to an existing railroad easement granted pursuant to the 1875 Act. The railroad proved unprofitable, and, after an equally unsuccessful attempt to turn the line into a tourist attraction, notified the Surface Transportation Board of its intent to abandon the right of way. It tore up the tracks and ties and in 2004
the abandonment was official. Soon after, the United States sued the Brandts and their neighbors to quiet title in the United States to the abandoned right-of-way, asserting the 1875 Act granted the railroads something “tantamount to a limited fee with an implied reversionary interest” to the government. Marvin M. Brandt Revocable Trust v. U.S., 134 S.Ct. 1257, 1268 (2014).

On March 10, the U.S. Supreme Court summarily rejected the government’s argument in Brandt, supra. Relying on basic principles of property law, the high court held that “[w]hen the [railroad] abandoned the right of way in 2004, the easement referred to in the Brandt patent terminated. Brandt’s land became unburdened of the easement, conferring on him the same full rights over the right of way as he enjoyed over the rest of the Fox Park parcel.” Brandt, supra, 134 S.Ct. at p. 1265 (citing, e.g., Smith v. Townsend, 148  U.S. 490, 499 (1893) (“…if ever the use  of that right of way was abandoned by the railroad company the easement would cease, and the full title to that right of way would vest in the patentee of the land”)).

The Fifth Amendment provides that “private property [shall not] be taken for public use, without just compensation.” The Supreme Court confirmed decades ago that “railsto- trails” conversion of an abandoned rail
line to recreational use satisfies the Fifth Amendment and may create federal liability for just compensation to a private landowner. Preseault v. I.C.C., 494 U.S. 1 (1990). With more than 20,000 miles of rail-trails across
the country today, the number of cases brought in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims by landowners seeking just compensation is growing. Whether compensation is due in rails to trails cases will likely turn on the often archaic deeds or patents by which the  land was first conveyed from the government to a private person. Brandt provides litigants guidance by confirming the nature of a property interest conveyed to a railroad pursuant to the 1875 Act as an easement, not a fee, which upon abandonment returns to the owner, not the public.

Here in Ventura, the Ventura River Trail and Ojai Valley Trail run across 17 miles of land, at least some of which may be private property. Hopefully, these landowners can appreciate the historical, cultural, and recreational value the trails continue to provide our community.

Joshua S. Hopstone is an attorney at Ferguson Case Orr Paterson LLP in Ventura and Westlake Village specializing in real estate and land use litigation and appeals. He can be reached at (805) 659-6800 and


Twiggy is a stunning 13-year-old black purebred German Shepherd who comes to my office every day. Last week, as I was closing up Santa Clara Valley Legal Aid for the night and because it was getting dark and I was by myself, I retrieved the dog from the car and brought her in as I closed down and locked up. A small girl and boy had been playing in the nearby yard and were fascinated and mesmerized when they saw the large black dog. They ran over toward the fence. I opened it and encouraged them to meet and pet her. While petting, the small girl saw her tags and asked what they were for. I told her the silver tag was her license and the red tag listed her name and phone number. The little girl was incredulous and full of wonder: “She has a PHONE?” The concept of this is closer than we think as pets are being accepted into more places previously only used by people.

Twiggy sleeps so quietly on the navy blue rug next to my desk that clients are often surprised when I ask them if they are okay with dogs because there’s one by their feet. Twiggy is lovely and calming to clients. She patiently tolerates the child trying to sit on her or ride her as her mother is working through her legal predicament. For those people who are not “dog people” she senses that and has a place she can be. It is amazing to watch the calming effect she has on the wife reeling from the grief of the death of her husband and sits patiently while the client strokes Twiggy’s head, solidly absorbing the sadness. Her calming presence creates a safe atmosphere for people to let down. Twiggy is not a service dog, she is our pet.

The ADA rule defines “service animal” as a dog (miniature horses count too) that has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability. Dogs that are not trained to perform tasks that mitigate the effects of a disability, including dogs that are used purely for emotional support, are not service animals.

Individuals with mental disabilities who use service animals that are trained to perform a specific task are protected by the ADA (source: Highlights of the Final Rule to Amend the Department of Justice’s Regulation Implementing Title II of the ADA Fact Sheet, March, 2011).

Recently, on an airplane, the woman next to me took her snack-sized dog (that’s big dog language for little dogs) out of the carrier, “He lowers my anxiety,” she explained. As it walked amongst the seats I pondered if it is inconsiderate to the hundreds of other people cooped up in a metal tube 30,000 feet high for her dog to be loose.

I later turned to my computer to look up what makes a “service dog” and found numerous recent articles about the proliferation of “service dogs” and the fuzzy line people create when they turn a pet into a “service dog.” Old time service dog people call the newly surfacing service dogs “fakers.”

How can you tell if you’re dealing with the Real Rover or Fido Faker?

“Sometimes it’s difficult to distinguish a legitimate disability,” said Kelton Lee Gibson, whose daughters trained a Guide Dog of America and a K-9 for Independence, “There is tension in the various laws.” The ADA laws say business owners can ask only two questions: “Is it a service dog?” and “What task does it perform?” Any other questions are a violation of privacy.

Last month, while in line at the Ventura County Clerk’s office, a woman with a huge 140-pound Burmese Mountain dog wearing an ill-fitting “service dog in training” vest waited in line next to me. Admiring the animal, I was quietly surprised at the lack of control the owner had with the two-year-old canine who was jumping and wagging for attention and affection. The clerk politely asked about the dog and the woman gushed that the dog goes “EVERYWHERE” with her, and of course it was okay to pet the dog because she’s not “THAT” kind of service dog (the kind you’re not supposed to pet). Her service dog provides companionship as she completes her errands.

Upon answering a summons to jury duty, as I waited in the jury pool, another prospective juror waded through the throng of eager jurors, arms full of poodle, water bowl, treats, chew toy, stuffed pink Piglet and daisy-colored carrier. Both owner and dog wore laminated tags proclaiming “Service Dog.”

When asked about the service qualifications of the playful poodle she answered that the poodle served to lower her anxiety, and also, as she was recently diagnosed a diabetic, the poodle was able to fetch medication if her blood sugar drops to a dangerous level. Watching as the dog rarely actually retrieved the regularly tossed Piglet stuffed toy, preferring instead to come to the beckoning, friendly hands of juror strangers, she was asked if the dog  actually fetched the meds for her.

“No,” she admitted, “but we are working on that.” She has had the eight-year-old dog since she was a two-month-old puppy.

The California State Senate held hearings in February regarding the United Grocers complaints about the recent proliferation of service animal pets. Where is the line drawn?

Laura Bartels practices estate law at Taylor, Scoles & Bartels in Fillmore and the current president of the Ventura County Bar Association.

Women Lawyers of Ventura County Mary Sullivan Scholarship Application

The WLVC Mary Sullivan Scholarship is an award (minimum – $500.00) given to a law student or recent law school graduate.

Please submit your completed application as a single PDF file attachment to Jodi Prior at The deadline to submit your scholarship application is
July 21, 2014. Late applications will NOT be considered. Decisions on Grant Recipients will be made no later than August 22, 2014.


WLVC- Scholarship App 2014final

ECBA Meets on Thursday, April 10th @ Noon




Presented by Expert Witness Marc A. Firestone, Phd

An Accident Reconstructionist and Forensic Engineer expert in criminal and civil cases

Hosted by East County Bar Association

 Open to All Attorneys


Members of the Ventura County Paralegal Association

Come Meet & Network with Other Local Attorneys in the East County Bar Association

Enjoy a Lunch Buffet & Door Prizes!

DATE:            Thursday April 10, 2014

TIME:             12:00 P.M. – 1:30 P.M.


                        1 W. Los Angeles Ave.

                        Moorpark, CA 93021

                        (805) 529-2288

            COST:           $35.00 Members and $40.00 Non-Members who register before April 8, 2014

                        $40.00 Registration at the Door

                                    Lunch & MCLE

 Please RSVP to by Tuesday April 8, 2014


This activity has been approved for Minimum Continuing Legal Education by the State Bar of California in the amount of 1 hour of GENERAL credit. VCBA verifies that this Activity conforms to the standards for approved education activities prescribed by the rules and regulations of the State Bar of California governing Minimum Continuing Legal Education.


Exec’s Dot …Dot …Dot …

A really nice story about Barbara Macri- Ortiz appeared in the Ventura County Star March 15 detailing her efforts fighting for the farmworker housing community over the last 25 years –…In what is being billed as a question of first impression anywhere in the U.S., a New Jersey judge has held that a woman may ban the father of her unborn child from a  hospital delivery room. Upholding the mother’s right of privacy, Superior Court Judge Sohail Mohammed ruled in February that she is neither required to notify the baby’s father – from who she is estranged – that she is going into labor nor required to admit him into the delivery room against her wishes…I have it on good authority David Tredway watched a few good baseball games in the desert…

Recommended Movie of the Month: Puncture, A David and Goliath law drama about a drug-addicted lawyer who takes on a health supply corporation while battling his own personal demons.  2011… University of California at Irvine law dean Erwin Chemerinsky has a request for one and possibly two justices. Chemerinsky says in a L.A. Times op-ed that Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg,  who turned 81 last month, should retire this summer so President Obama can appoint a successor. “Indeed, Justice Stephen Breyer, who will turn 76 this summer, should also carefully consider the possibility of stepping down this year,” Chemerinsky writes…Victoria Borgesson, Court Executive Assistant, is soliciting public comment regarding the proposed changes to the Local Rules & Forms of the Superior Court of California. You may view the proposed rules by going to www. or calling Borgesson at 654.2965…

Iceland? Tina Rasnow  at tina@rasnowpeak. com or 236.0266 …A Texas l awyer who represents poor clients is wearing jailhouse orange scrubs for Lent to promote discussions
about the lack of jobs for ex-cons. Kent McKeever is a part-time youth minister and a lawyer at Mission Waco, a Christian group that provides programs for the poor. He told the Waco Tribune he is wearing the orange scrubs to show solidarity with prisoners and former inmates returning to society. McKeever is writing about his experiences in a blog called “40 Days in Orange. A Lenten Journey in the Uniform of the Imprisoned”…Recommended Book of the Month: Johnny Carson, by Henry  Bushkin. (Houghton Mifflin, 2013). Johnny Carson is also a law book by his best friend and lawyer for several decades and calls into question attorney-client privilege and celebrity clients… “We are not sure how a parent should teach his child a lesson. But
we are sure how not to do it. Do not pull the trigger of a firearm held to the child’s head, even if the firearm is unloaded,” from Justice Kenneth Yegan, writing for a unanimous panel of the  California Court of Appeal affirming convictions on threat a weapons charges for the way a defendant disciplined his teenage son and stepson in People v. Culbert …

Deborah Vierra has decided that after over eighteen years in service, she is hanging up the proverbial hat. She feels that Ventura lawyers are the highest quality anywhere. She is donating state and federal employment law and civil practice publications. Most of them are indeed outdated, but available free on a first-come, first-serve basis. Call her at 648.1047. Deborah will continue her legal efforts by volunteering at Santa Clara Valley Legal Aid in Fillmore…A man who took cellphone photos up the skirts of women riding the Boston subway did not violate state law because the women were not nude or part nude, Massachusetts’ highest court ruled March 6. The Supreme Judicial Court overruled a lower court that had upheld charges against Michael Robertson, who was arrested in August 2010 by transit police who set up a sting after getting reports that he was using his cellphone to take photos and videos of female riders’  skirts and dresses… Past VCBA President John Howard has joined Lowthorp, Richards, McMillian, Miller & Templeman as Of Counsel. John may be reached at 981.8555 or…Former Ventura County lawyer Kassandra McQuillen is one of the tribe  members on the current season of CBS’s Survivor. Kass has survived the first four
tribal councils….

Judge F. Dino Inumerable’s formal installation ceremony will be Friday, April 18 beginning at 4 p.m. inside Courtroom #22. RSVP to dawn.schneider@ventura. or 654.2965…BIG kudos to the bar’s Member Relations Director, Nadia Avila, who continues to serve the bar loyally and exceedingly well… Loyola Law School graduate Lane Lopez,
who holds an LL.M. in taxation, returns to his Ventura County roots when he joins Ferguson Case Orr Paterson, LLP April 1. Speaking of FCOP, Michael Case, David Shain, Bret Anderson, and Josh Hopstone staff the firm’s new Westlake Village office, which opened in March— 2801 Townsgate Rd., Suite 215. Phone will remain (805)659-6800.

Steve Henderson has been the executive director and chief executive officer of the Ventura County Bar Association and its affiliated organizations since November 1990. He won Warren Buffet’s Billion Dollar Challenge and his last day at the bar will be April 1. Henderson may be reached at steve@, Twitter at stevehendo1, LinkedIn, FB or better yet, 650.7599.


Help Wanted

Westlake Village niche boutique family law firm looking to hire legal secretary/paralegal. The position will be 24 to 30 hours per week to start. Salary DOE. Must have family law experience and ability to do phone intakes. Please email:

Services Offered

New Attorney seeking contract or fulltime job opportunity. Graduated cum laude from Indiana University School of Law, Indianapolis in May 2013 and passed the July Bar Exam. Articles editor on the Indiana Health Law Review  and internships with small PI firm, hospital network, and county counsel. Excellent writing skills, attention to detail, and willingness to learn. Please contact William Starr at, or (805)415-3421.

Office Space

Subtenancy wanted – new firm seeks 2-3 offices, will share economies of scale. East County preferred. Contact:

Sublease Ideal for startup/satellite office in central Westlake Village location, $500/ month including utility/internet; close to 101 Fwy and postal office. Contact:

River Park executive suites – Elegant ffordable single furnished offices full time offices, part time offices, hourly offices, daily offices, three conference rooms, training rooms up to 80 people. Video conferencing $45 Per Hour. *Conference Room rental additional. Call Us Today!! (805)351-3700

For Sale

Konica Minolta Bizhub C-250 all-in-one copy/scan/fax machine. High speed (25 ppm) black & white, and color output. Accepts originals up to 11”x17”, one-sided or two-sided originals. Can be networked. Meter: Under 31,000 copies. All manuals included. $2,500. Call (805)648-1047 or e-mail


The Barristers Paint Ball event was a huge success! Thank you all for participating! In case you missed it, 1,848 people showed up, including barristers, non-barrister lawyers, judges, and family and friends.

The Barristers board took home first place!  (Of course, the Navy SEAL training did not hurt.) The Barristers would like to give a special thanks to the NRA for sponsoring the event, and of course, a special thank you to the Navy SEALS who took a day out of their busy schedules to help train the Barristers Board – we could not have done it without you.

Whether you are a barrister or not, you are welcome to attend these upcoming fun events: Trivia Night at Garman’s Pub in Santa Paula on April 17, Bowling Night on July 17, or Wine and Cheese Night on August 21. For further information, give the Barristers board secretary, Melanie Ely, a call at (805)643-2200.

Melanie Ely practices at Engle Carobini & Coats in Ventura. She holds the U.S. all-time female record for guinea pig juggling.