Lack of expert testimony leads to judgment in favor of Indiana attorney

first_imgOlivia Covington for www.theindianalawyer.comThe lack of expert testimony in a yearslong bankruptcy case led to the appropriate grant of summary judgment to an Indiana attorney, the Indiana Court of Appeals found Tuesday.In what the appellate court referred to as a “seemingly never-ending bankruptcy saga” arising from “a simple slip and fall personal injury claim,” Anna May Webb filed a personal injury claim premised on the slip and fall that occurred in Dr. P. Kevin Barkal’s office in 2000 against Barkal and the San Diego Pain Management Consultants. The parties reached a settlement of $138,000 to be paid out by SDPMC, with Barkal personally guaranteeing payment.When the two parties stopped making payments, a California court entered judgment against Barkal and SDPMC for $151,971.21. Then, after having difficulty collecting judgment, the California trial court ordered Barkal to turn over all keys, leases, books, records, ledgers and all other business records relating to 12 entities, including Pemcor.In January 2008, Barkal moved to Munster and filed bankruptcy in Indiana with the assistance of attorney Daniel Freeland. Additionally, Gordon Gouveia, from the firm Gouveia & Associates, (referred to in the opinion as Attorney Gouveia) was hired separately to represent Barkal Entities to prevent conflict of interest.In March 2008, Freeland moved for turnover against a California post-judgment limited receiver and requested that the receiver deliver all items from the collection against Barkal and Barkal Entities. Then, Gouveia intervened, claiming that Barkal Entities had an interest in the accounts receivables the receiver was seeking to collect.After the receiver was ordered to turn over $9,494, the bankruptcy court determined that the accounts receivables of Barkal Entities were not property of the Chapter 13 bankruptcy estate and denied for motion for turnover.Barkal and his attorneys then decided to withdraw the Chapter 13 bankruptcy and Barkal, writing to Gouveia’s associate, Shawn Cox, demanded that Gouveia filed the necessary corporate bankruptcy to stay the foreclosure of his house in California. However, Cox informed Barkal that he was not in a position to represent Barkal Entities to file Chapter 7 bankruptcies, and further wrote, “We did not ever agree to file bankruptcies on behalf of the entities … and we are not accepting such an engagement at this time.”In January 2009, Barkal hired attorney David Welch to file Chapter 11 bankruptcy for several Barkal Entities. No Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition had been filed for Pemcor. Then in 2010, Barkal and Pemcor filed suit in Lake Superior Court against Gouveia, alleging due to legal malpractice, they lost “meritorious bankruptcy cases and the attendant bankruptcy protection available to (them) under federal law.” Specifically, Barkal alleged malpractice because Gouveia failed to advise him against Chapter 13 bankruptcy, waived an evidentiary hearing to support a motion for turnover and failed to advise or take any additional action once the Chapter 13 bankruptcy was dismissed.The trial court granted summary judgment to Gouveia, finding that Barkal and Pemcor failed to present expert testimony to establish the appropriate standard of care and subsequent breach.Barkal appealed, arguing that the deposition testimonies of two attorneys, Welch and Mark Zuckerberg, were properly designated as expert testimony. But Gouveia pointed out that both Welch and Zuckerberg admitted in their depositions that they were not retained as experts in the case because they had not thoroughly reviewed the case.“Accordingly, while Attorneys Welch and Zuckerberg may be well versed in bankruptcy, here, in the absence of having reviewed the appropriate documentation, their knowledge cannot assist the ‘trier of fact to understand’ whether Attorney Gouveia committed legal malpractice when representing the Barkal Entities in the Chapter 13 proceedings,” Judge Patricia Riley wrote for the unanimous panel.FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

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Bureau Veritas wins contract to support North Sea drilling operations

first_imgBureau Veritas, a provider of testing, inspection, and certification services, has been awarded a six-figure contract to support drilling operations in the North Sea.BV said on Monday that the long-term frame agreement would see it provide inspection and verification services for nine rigs.The project will be coordinated out of Bureau Veritas’ Aberdeen base.Paul Shrieve, the regional CEO of North Sea Offshore Operations, said: “Bureau Veritas has always been committed to the North Sea region, viewing it as a viable business area where we intend to continue to grow, expand and support our clients.“Our faith is echoed in Oil & Gas UK’s recently published 2018 Business Outlook, which suggests at least 12 new developments worth around £5 billion are expected to be sanctioned this year – the healthiest forecast for new projects for three years.”The company added that the client, an undisclosed “global drilling contractor”, would receive the streamlined data tracking and reporting from its projects through Bureau Veritas’ Compliance System.The cloud-based system has been developed by Bureau Veritas to gather clients’ disparate maintenance, inspection, and verification data into one centralized hub, giving the client full detailed visibility at any time, in one view.“It is important that technology is used to bring practical solutions to challenges faced by the modern energy industry, not just for the sake of technology, and that is core to the development of this system.“Simplification, real-time answers to questions and risk reduction are all delivered through this, and we look forward to supporting more clients with it,” added Shrieve.last_img read more

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Modric ‘not for sale’

first_imgQPR have joined the chase for Birmingham defender Liam Ridgewell, the Daily Mirror reports.Ridgewell, who requested a move in August, is expected to leave St Andrews when the transfer window reopens in January. Related story: QPR boss targets Birmingham defender (August 2011)Meanwhile, the Daily Mail say Arsenal are planning a cut-price bid for Chelsea’s transfer-listed centre-back Alex.Italian giants Juventus are also believed to be interested in the Brazilian, who has been told he has no future at Stamford Bridge.The Daily Star reports that Tottenham as well as the Gunners are keen to sign him.And Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp has insisted his club will not sell Luka Modric in January.Chelsea tried to sign the Croatian last summer and are expected to make another offer next month, but Spurs remain determined to keep him.“Luka’s future is here. No one is for sale,” the Evening Standard quote Redknapp as saying.This page is updated throughout the day. Follow West London Sport on Twitterlast_img read more

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Transfer gossip: Galatasaray in talks to sign Austin, reports claim

first_imgA round-up of the latest transfer speculation involving QPR…Turkish media reports now claim Galatasaray have held contract talks with Charlie Austin.Reports on Tuesday suggested that Turkey’s champions were keen to sign the QPR striker, whose contract expires at the end of the season.Now it is claimed that Galatasaray have had discussions with him and are looking to sign him this month.Rangers have received no approaches for Austin, who is hoping to eventually join a top Premier League club.Several clubs have been linked with Austin in recent monthsMeanwhile, the Daily Mail have picked up on recent reports linking QPR with Crystal Palace striker Dwight Gayle.It has been claimed that Rangers are pursuing a deal to take the player to Loftus Road during this month’s transfer window.The Mail say QPR are looking to take Gayle on loan, while Norwich City are said to be keen to sign him on a permanent basis. He is said to be rated at £8m.And The Sun claim QPR could get £8m for Matt Phillips from either West Brom or Bournemouth. West London Sport recently revealed that both clubs are interested in a potential deal to sign the winger.Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

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Warning! Top 10 Valentine’s Day Scams [Infographic]

first_imgWhy Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market nick statt Tags:#cybersecurity#privacy#security Related Posts Image courtesy of Shutterstock.  Nothing says “I love you” like falling for a fake diamond ring sale and getting your identity stolen in the process. Bitdefender, an antivirus solutions provider, has sent out an alert to online Valentine’s Day gift buyers, warning of rampant scams aimed at extortion, phishing for personal information and luring unsuspecting loverbirds to malware-infected sites.Bitdefender’s Top 10 infographic (below) stresses that men are the top target of V-Day scams because they spend 75% more on gifts than women, according to CreditDonkey.com.Among the scams to watch out for are malicious Valentine’s Day cards that use blackhat SEO techniques to redirect buyers to search results that may install viruses, Valentine’s Day wallpaper downloads that contain malware, and ‘love calculator’ and other relationship-themed apps from unofficial Android app stores that infect your devices and steal personal info.With the astronomical number of fake profiles floating around social media, Bitdefender stressed the dangers of giveaways and information soliciting through phony social media profiles promising love.Some of the more blatant cons can be easy to spot, such as phony flower sales and cheap limousine offers. But the last scam on Bitdefender’s list should be a dead giveaway: “heart experts.” Specializing in healing one’s relationship wounds, these online offers sound like antivirus ads from a decade ago, but resurface every February alongside an array of these other scams.The number one rule leading up to this Thursday? Stay smart and trust your spam filter.last_img read more

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Experts cops weigh in on the intersection of violence and video games

first_imgTORONTO — A spate of recent high-profile crimes allegedly perpetrated by young men with a passion for video games is prompting industry watchers to raise cautions against reading too much into their hobbies.A growing body of research suggests video gaming is no longer the niche pursuit it’s been widely considered for decades, but rather a common pastime involving the majority of Canadians to at least some degree.Law enforcement officials, scholars and industry analysts all agree the stereotypes that have long attended discussion of the “gamer” demographic are reductive and fail to capture the various complexities at play in the growing network of game-oriented communities.Richard Lachman, a Ryerson University associate professor studying digital cultures and online ethics, said drawing a link between a suspect’s virtual activities and alleged criminal acts is becoming an increasingly fruitless exercise.“It’s one component in a huge range,” Lachman said in a telephone interview. “You might as well suggest, ‘what about unemployment, is that a factor? What about economic disparity?’”Video games have formed a key part of the emerging narrative in two recent Canadian crimes.A 23-year-old man currently charged in an alleged quadruple homicide north of Toronto reportedly shared details of the killings with friends made through an online game he’d played for two years.Police have said at least one of the teens accused of killing three people in northern British Columbia and currently the subject of a cross-country manhunt is believed to have sent photos of Nazi paraphernalia to one of his fellow gamers.But the fact that both young men played video games put them squarely among the majority of the population, according to researchers.Lachman said recent studies estimate that 80 to 90 per cent of North Americans partake in video games to some degree.In Canada, a March 2019 online survey of 2,000 participants found 65 per cent were gamers, with the number climbing to 96 per cent among men aged 18 to 24.Scott Stewart, senior research analyst in the tech and media division of global market research firm Mintel, said the sample was the latest to suggest that gaming has entered the mainstream.He likened its place in society to that occupied by film and television, with a broad spectrum of engagement among those who use the medium.But he said society as a whole has struggled to wrap its head around gaming and the place it occupies in today’s culture.Stewart pointed to the example of e-sports, or competitive video-game playing. He said it’s evolved into a multimillion dollar industry complete with lucrative tournaments and sold-out arenas, yet no one knows whether to classify such events as video game symposiums or traditional sports matches.Stewart said video games are similarly misunderstood in many aspects of society, theorizing that the frequent misconceptions associated with them make them a go-to explanation for those trying to make sense of violent criminals.“I think the fact that it’s constantly something we come back to highlights the general lack of understanding we all have about what it is and the role it plays,” he said.One misconception was highlighted in a University of Montreal study published in the journal Jama Pediatrics earlier this month.The study of nearly 4,000 teens tracked their screen time use over four years. It found that while higher social media use and TV consumption were strong predictors of depression, video game activity was not. Nor were video games found to be associated with those feeling social isolation, the study found.But Lachman said that since video games give rise to a legitimate type of community, mental health concerns do get expressed among its members.He said mental health professionals have yet to find an effective way to connect with gamers in the spaces where they’re most at home, calling for more concerted efforts to establish resources that appeal to people comfortable with online interactions.Lack of resources also plague law enforcement professionals trying to keep an eye on virtual platforms.Const. Scott Mills, social media officer with the Toronto Police Service, has spent nine years “walking the digital beat” and educating officers on how to navigate online spaces.The gaming world is particularly complex, he said, adding it’s comprised of both the gaming platforms themselves and third-party apps often enlisted to facilitate chatter among players.Adding to the complication, Mills said, is the fact that platforms come and go according to the whims of the day.Mills said policing online activity is growing in popularity among officers, but noted that even the surge in interest has not been enough to keep up with the rising demand for online policing. “My biggest fear is, what if something came in where I could have saved a life and I didn’t see it,” Mills said. “We’re police officers. We care.” Michelle McQuigge, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

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Mourinho meets Thai football team

first_imgManchester United manager Jose Mourinho met with the rescued Thai Football team on Saturday.The 12 boys of the Thai football team rescued from a cave after 17 days were excited to meet the under-fire United boss at the club’s training ground.The former Chelsea manager hugged the 12 lads and their coach as they visited the Carrington training facility today ahead of our Pride of Britain Awards.The Premier League giants had invited the Wild Boars, to visit when news of their safe recovery broke.harry maguire, manchester UnitedMaguire says United need to build on today’s win George Patchias – September 14, 2019 Harry Maguire wants his United teammates to build on the victory over Leicester City.During the summer, Harry Maguire was referred to as the ultimate…The team travelled to England to thank British cave divers John Volanthen and Rick Stanton, who helped rescue them in July.The 12 boys, their coach and both cave divers will all be reunited at the awards ceremony at Grosvenor House in London tomorrow.For Jose Mourinho, he must now turn his attention to Manchester United’s game against Everton on Sunday, as the club go in search of points to lift them from mid-table into the top six.United are currently 10th on the table, twelve points behind league leaders, Liverpool and have only won two Premier League games at Old Trafford this season.last_img read more

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