SBCBA Employment Law Section Presents: “Understanding the Nuts and Bolts of Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI)”

When: November 10th, 2022 at 12:00 PM (Lunch included)

Where: Santa Barbara School of Law – Library

MCLE: 1.0 Hours (General)

About the Event: Employment-related claims have exploded in recent years and can pose an existential risk, particularly for small employers. Statistics suggest employment-related lawsuits represent at least one fifth of all suits filed in the US, and three out of four companies will face an allegation of employment practices liability.

One-way employers can manage the risk and cost posed by this growing trend is to purchase Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI). However, while EPLI unquestionably offers protections, it is crucial for employers (and their counsel) to possess a minimum understanding of this product, including limitations of coverage, deductibles, choice of counsel and other important provisions. This approved 1-hour MCLE presentation will provide an understanding of the nuts and bolts of EPLI.


  • Alex Craigie, Esq. The Law Offices of Alex Craigie

Alex is an AV-Preeminent rated lawyer who practices exclusively employment law on behalf of business entities. His top priority is ensuring his clients are never targeted by employment claims through careful advice and counseling. When claims or lawsuits arise, however, he calls upon his 29+ years of experience as a top-tier national trial lawyer to reach the best possible outcome for business clients, with particular attention to controlling both defense costs and risk.

  • Ken Newendorp, Brashears & Newendorp Insurance Agency

Ken is an insurance professional with over 12 years’ experience helping clients understand how to avoid or mitigate the risks of running a business through insurance products. He specializes in property and casualty insurance products, including EPLI insurance. A Santa Barbara native, Ken graduated from UC Santa Barbara and holds a Masters degree in Organizational Management.

Price: $25 SBCBA Members/$35 Non-Members (Lunch included)

Contact Information/R.S.V.P.: Please RSVP by November 7, 2022 to: Alex Craigie, The Law Offices of Alex Craigie, 1482 East Valley Road, Suite 511, Santa Barbara, CA 93108,, (805) 845-1752.

SBCBA ADR Section Presents: “In the Room, On Zoom & the Hybrid Room”

Online and online/hybrid dispute resolutions are here to stay. Maximize engagement and success using psychology and technology.

When: September 28th, 2022 at Noon

Where: Zoom

MCLE: 1.0 Hours General

Speaker: Susan Guthrie, Esq. has been a leading family law and dispute resolution professional for more than 30 years. In 2020 Susan partnered with mediation legend, Forrest “Woody” Mosten, to create the Mosten Guthrie Academy which provides cutting edge, gold-standard virtual trainings for attorneys, mediators, and other professionals.

As a leading dispute resolution professional herself, Susan is honored to serve on the Executive Council of the American Bar Association’s (ABA) Section of Dispute Resolution. Susan is also an internationally well-regarded expert in online mediation and has been training colleagues and other professionals in the practical and ethical considerations of conducting their mediations online with her innovative programs and webinars for years. Susan founded Learn to Mediate Online™ in 2018 and she just launched The Make Money Mediating Podcast to support legal and dispute resolution professionals in building a profitable and enjoyable practice.

Susan has been featured in and on media outlets such as CNBC, Market Watch, Forbes, Eye on Chicago, WGN, the ABA’s Just Resolutions Magazine, Thrive Global, The Nook Online, Medium, Authority Magazine and She Knows among others.

She is licensed to practice law in the States of California and Connecticut as well as before the Supreme Court of the United States.

About the Event: Online communication of all sorts – and especially dispute resolution – has its own unique set of advantages and pitfalls. Learn tips, tricks, and best practices to succeed in online and online/hybrid dispute resolution from a nationally-recognized leader and tech-pioneer.

Price: $15 Members/$25 Non-Members

Please mail checks by Wednesday, September 21st, 2022 payable to Santa Barbara Bar Association, 15 W. Carrillo Street Suite 106, Santa Barbara, CA 93101.Or call to pay via credit card: 805-569-5511.

Contact Information/R.S.V.P.: To RSVP, contact Matthew Moore, ADR Section Head at or Marietta Jablonka at for the registration link

2022 Past Presidents Luncheon

When: Thursday September 22nd, 2022 at Noon

Where: University Club of Santa Barbara

Cost: $50 per person

We are in the process of organizing the annual Past Presidents Luncheon. The purpose of the luncheon is to introduce new Bar Admittees and Attorneys who are new to the Santa Barbara area to judges in Santa Barbara County.

If you have an attorney in your office that is newly admitted to the Bar (from 2020-present) or new to the area, that would like to attend please contact Marietta Jablonka at the SBCBA office (805) 569-5511 or

SAVE THE DATE: SBCBA 2022 Virtual Bench & Bar Conference

Join us as we explore emerging legal and social justice issues from 2021, including cryptocurrency, constitutional law, trust and estates, and family law.

When: Friday, January 21st, 2022 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM

Cost: $25 for Members/$35 for Non-Members

Featuring Keynote Speaker: 

Justin Brooks
Director and Co-Founder of the California Innocence Project

Up to six hours of MCLE credit, including mandatory subject units.

Special thank you for our sponsor:

Amherst 1031

Click the link here to register and view the schedule or here to view the flyer.

Diversity & Inclusion Resource Guide

Diversity in the legal profession is a necessity that helps to improve the overall focus of the profession. A group of culturally, racially, ethnically, and gender-diverse legal practitioners can attract and effectively connect with a broader network of clients than can their non-diverse counterparts. Such diversity strengthens the belief in the fair delivery of justice, regardless of the background of the client.

Attached here is the Diversity and Inclusion Resource Guide for legal professionals.

2021 Virtual Bench & Bar Conference

When: Friday, January 22, 2021 from 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM

Where: Pheedloop – click the link here to register

MCLE: 6 Hours (including mandatory subject units)

Featuring Keynote Speaker:

Erwin Chemerinsky

Join us as we explore emerging legal and social issues from 2020, including immigration, housing, employment and environmental law.

Registration is now open!

Click the link here to register

Cost: $25 for Members $35 for Non-Members

Online registration is encouraged. If registering by mailing a check, please email to confirm by January 15, 2021.

Click the link here to view the flyer/schedule.

Santa Barbara Superior Court COVID-19 Updates

Santa Barbara Superior Court Implementation Order

The Santa Barbara Superior Court has released a new general order regarding the implementation of emergency relief.

Click the link here to view the document on the court website.

Chief Justice’s Extension Order

The Chief Justice has released a new extension order on May 26th, 2020.

Click the link here to view the document on the court website.

Criminal Law Calendar

Below you will find links to an interim criminal calendar for North and South County, along with an explanation sheet for the different calendar days. These interim calendars will begin on Tuesday, May 26, and continue until the stay at home order has been lifted. Please note all hearings, except Preliminary Hearings, will be by Zoom. Please use the link to the Zoom Meeting Information document  below to log into the appropriate courtroom. The Zoom password will be changed on a monthly basis so be sure to use the correct password for the month when logging into the meeting.

Here is the calendar for South County and here is the calendar for North County.

Click here to view the interim calendar explanation and here for the Zoom meeting information.

Civil Law Calendar

Below appear the links to a synopsis of the planned civil calendars in North and South Counties.

Click here for Santa Barbara and here for Santa Maria.

Superior Court News

Calendar changes have been published on the Santa Barbara Superior Court website. Click the link here for further details.

Additionally, the Court has posted the plan to resume civil, probate, and family law matters on the Court website. The link to the court website can be found here.

2019 Reception with the Appellate Justices of Division Six

When: October 23rd, 2019 from 5:30 – 7:30 PM

Where: Viva, Santa Barbara – 1114 State St.

Cost: $50 for Members ($60 after October 11th)
$60 for Non-Members ($70 after October 11th)
$20 for Students/Paralegals

MCLE Credit:

1 Hour General credit


Please call 805-569-5511 to pay via credit card or mail completed form along with your check payable to:

Santa Barbara County Bar Association
15 West Carrillo Street, Suite 106
Santa Barbara, CA 93101

Click here to pay via Venmo!

Click here to view the flyer!

Making the Most of the 30 Minute Consultation with the Referred Family Law Attorney

Time marches on, quickly for some, slowly for others. When referred by the Santa Barbara
Lawyer Referral Service to a family law attorney for a 30 minute consultation, it’s wise to make
the most of that time.

Consider your divorce case consultation, for example. Do you have minor children? Will
support for those children or support from/for your spouse be an issue also? Do you have an
ownership interest in a business? Is that business a sole proprietorship or some other form that
may have other owners besides yourself and your spouse? What about real property? How is it
titled? Do you and your spouse have a family trust? These are the types of issues that you may
wish to have the answers to before meeting with the family law attorney.

It’s helpful to bring your most recently-filed tax return (and corporation returns if filed
separately). Pay-stubs for you and your spouse are also helpful if you are both wage-earning
employees. Your tax return and a working knowledge of the cash flow you and your spouse may
enjoy (or not as the case may be) can be great tools in providing you with a ballpark figure of
what spousal support payable to you or by you might look like so you can prepare yourself
accordingly. Yes, you’ll need to begin thinking in terms of budget, both for you and your new
household, which may or may not include minor children.

If you have any type of co-parenting relationship with your spouse regarding your minor
child(ren), be prepared to articulate the amount of time your child(ren) spends in each spouse’s
care and what the custody or visitation arrangement (if there is one in place) looks like on a wall
calendar. While it’s important to have a percentage of time your child spends with you in mind
for purposes of calculating child support, saying “I want/have 50% custody” really doesn’t lay
out the day-to-day in your post-separation life, particularly in your child(ren)’s new normal.
Maybe one of the most useful documents you can bring is a chronology of events leading up to
and after your separation. If you have this typed up, bring a copy for the attorney to follow
along and make notes, as necessary.

In making the appointment, the attorney might request these and other documents. The above
is just intended as suggestions to get you thinking about the issues you may wish to discuss in
the 30 minute consultation. Come prepared to make the most of that time!

Please contact the Santa Barbara County Bar Association Lawyer Referral Service to find a
lawyer to help with your legal issue or to find out if you have a viable legal issue – (805) -569-

What is the Medical Injury Compensation Reform Act?

In 1975 California enacted the Medical Injury Compensation Reform Act,
better known as MICRA. In a nut shell, MICRA sets a maximum award of $250,000
for pain and suffering in a lawsuit for medical negligence. That limit is for the entire
lawsuit, no matter how many plaintiffs are involved.

Not surprisingly, the main backers of the law are insurance companies. Their
argument was that health care costs were so high because doctor’s malpractice
insurance rates were high. It’s those nasty lawyers with their frivolous lawsuits and
runaway juries awarding huge amounts to plaintiffs who don’t deserve it.
It’s a tactic meant to distract attention away from those who created the
problem in the first place, the insurance companies themselves. The same tactic
was once commonly used by sexual predators who accused their victims of being
loose woman. “Don’t judge me, judge her.”

In the first 12 years after MICRA took effect, medical malpractice rates in
California were 8% higher than in states with no such law, and malpractice
insurance rates had increased 190%. (Medical Liability Monitor, 2001). While the
number of lawsuits has decreased and the overall amount of jury awards has
decreased, medical malpractice insurance rates and your health care costs have
skyrocketed. So too have insurance company profits.

Here is a real-life example of how MICRA works. (Names have been changed).
In 2015, Kelly Smith gave birth to her third child with husband Ray Smith. The
delivery was perfect, and the happy couple now had a 10-year-old, a one year old
and a newborn.

The following morning Kelly had a tubal ligation. The procedure started at
10:45 a.m. By noon Kelly was brain dead from massive internal bleeding. She died a
few days later. The lawsuit brought by Ray Smith on behalf of himself and his
children alleges negligence on the part of the surgeon and others.

The attorney representing the Smith family will get nothing if she does not
win. But she will shell out $50,000 in expenses before the case goes to trial, and she
will spend countless hours on behalf of her clients. If a case is truly frivolous, the
chance of success is small. Therefore, no attorney in her right mind will take that
risk, MICRA or no MICRA.

As for the Smith family’s emotional distress, if the lawsuit is successful the
jurors can award any amount they think is appropriate. Yet no matter how much
that is, the judge will have no choice but to cut it down to $250,000.
It gets worse. Kelly Smith was a stay-at-home mom. She could have worked,
but she chose to raise her children rather than hire someone else to do it. In the
eyes of the law, that has no value. Sure, Ray and his children can receive up to
$1,050,000 for the loss of Kelly’s household services: cooking, cleaning, laundry, etc.
(calculated at $14.37 per hour). But under MICRA, the emotional value of Kelly – as
mother to her children and wife to her husband – comes under the pain and
suffering category and is limited to $250,000.
# Me Too, anyone?

Please contact the Santa Barbara County Bar Association Lawyer Referral
Service to find a lawyer to help with your legal issue or to find out if you have a
viable legal issue – (805) -569-9400.