Experienced Business
and Litigation Attorneys

of crucial importance in relation
to the development or success of something else.

The Pivotal Law Blog

Case Law Update: Is a Male Sheep an “Abnormally Dangerous” Animal?

Posted Wednesday, January 6, 2016 by Christopher L. Thayer

In Rhodes v. MacHugh (No. 32509-1, 11.3.15), a case that feels like it could only come out of Division III (which covers Eastern Washington), the Court of Appeals was asked to decide whether a ram (male sheep) could be considered “abnormally dangerous”…

Harvard study links flavor in e-cigarettes to "popcorn lung"

Posted Monday, December 21, 2015 by Pivotal Law Group

Researchers from Harvard University warn that many flavored e-cigarettes and e-liquid flavor canisters contain chemicals known to cause respiratory problems. One of those chemicals, diacetyl, has been directly linked to "bronchiolitis…

Family Law: Relocating With Children

Posted Monday, December 14, 2015 by Pivotal Law Group

What happens if you and your spouse are divorced and one of you wants to move, taking your child along? This is a difficult situation for families, and it can be a very contentious proceeding. The rules surrounding the relocation of a child come into…

Moving a Law Firm - a Managing Partner’s Point of View

Posted Monday, December 7, 2015 by Christopher L. Thayer

As many of you know, Pivotal Law Group has moved our offices. After nearly 20 years at One Union Square we have moved into a brand new suite in the IBM Building (1200 5th Ave., Suite 1217, Seattle, WA 98101). The IBM Building was completed in 1964 and…

"Mild" Traumatic Brain Injury? Univ. of Penn. study says no such thing

Posted Thursday, December 3, 2015 by Pivotal Law Group

A study led by researchers from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and the University of Glasgow found that "seemingly mild, concussion-type head injuries lead to long-term cognitive impairments surprisingly often" and "can…

Assumption of Risk Doctrine Limited by Recent Court Decision

Posted Wednesday, August 19, 2015 by Christopher L. Thayer

border left In an unpublished decision, Division I of the Washington State Court of Appeals, re-visited the doctrine of Assumption of Risk in Gray v. Ida Culver House (August 10, 2015). In Gray, an 84-year-old resident of an assisted living facility…

Do It Yourself Dissolution

Posted Tuesday, August 11, 2015 by Pivotal Law Group

While it may be strange for the first family law post on this blog to be about how you may not need a lawyer at all, the truth is that many people are able to handle their divorce on their own. All of the forms that are needed to start and finish a…

Tracking Proposed Real Estate Development in Seattle

Posted Friday, July 24, 2015 by Christopher L. Thayer

border left Have questions about a proposed development in your neighborhood? New townhomes or condos going in? Wondering what is happening with that vacant lot down the street? These questions and more can now be answered via a new website which allows…

$15/hour Minimum Wage - Washington State Attorney General Issues Guideline for Surcharges

Posted Friday, July 10, 2015 by Christopher L. Thayer

Seattle and SeaTac have recently decided to increase their hourly minimum wage to $15.00/hour. As local businesses react to this change, some have considered adding a line item charge for their service to cover this increased labor cost. In particular…

Case Law Update: Father Trying to do the Right Thing, Ends up Serving Daughter with Lawsuit

Posted Tuesday, March 24, 2015 by Christopher L. Thayer

Contrary to popular belief, lawsuits in Washington do not necessarily have to be served in person. Washington law allows for substitute service, where a party can obtain service of process of the lawsuit by serving a “person of suitable age and…

Case Law Update: Property Owners Liability for Criminal Acts of a Third Party

Posted Monday, March 16, 2015 by Christopher L. Thayer

In McKown v. Simon Property, the Washington Supreme Court was asked to review the scope of a landowner’s responsibility for harm when strangers commit criminal acts against “business invitees” on business premises. On November 20, 2005, Dominick S…

Social Media Updates Off Duty Can Cost You Your Job

Posted Wednesday, February 18, 2015 by Pivotal Law Group

In a recent Washington State Court of Appeals, Division I case, the court in Kirby et al v. Dept. of Employment Security (No. 70738-8-I) analyzed whether an employee who is discharged for alleged misconduct based on her social media post disqualifies her…

Case Law Update: CPAs Can Owe Duty of Care to Non-clients

Posted Thursday, February 12, 2015 by Christopher L. Thayer

In Dewar v. Smith, No. 69701-3-1 (January 26, 2015), the Washington Court of Appeals recently addressed the question of whether a CPA could be liable to a third party (non-client) for alleged negligence or misrepresentation. This question is usually…

Case Law Update: Homestead Exemption Cannot Be Use to Facilitate Unjust Enrichment

Posted Wednesday, December 17, 2014 by Christopher L. Thayer

In a recent decision by Division I of the Washington Court of Appeals, Gass v. Abdel-Wahed, the Court addressed the “abuse” of the homestead exemption in the context of a divorce proceeding. The court specifically held that, where a party has wrongfully…

Seattle’s New Minimum Wage Ordinance

Posted Wednesday, November 12, 2014 by Michael J. Warren

On June 2, 2014, the Seattle City Council adopted a minimum wage ordinance that applies to all employees within the City of Seattle. In short, beginning April 1, 2015, the Ordinance requires all Seattle employers to raise the minimum they pay to their…


Posted Wednesday, November 5, 2014 by Christopher L. Thayer

Millions of vehicles in the United States sold by a wide-range of automobile manufacturers are being recalled as a result of potentially defective and dangerous airbags manufactured by Japanese supplier, Takata. The National Highway Traffic Safety…

Liability for Dog Bites under Washington Law

Posted Wednesday, October 1, 2014 by Christopher L. Thayer

Dog bite injuries are unfortunately a fairly common occurrence. These injuries can be quite severe, gruesome, and are frequently complicated by infection. We often get questions about what your options may be if you have been bitten by a dog; or, as a…

Case law update: can a child sue his or her parents for negligence? Yes, in certain circumstances.

Posted Thursday, September 18, 2014 by Christopher L. Thayer

In a recent decision from Division II of the Washington Court of Appeals, Woods v. H.O. Sports, et al, the court addressed the issue of whether a child can bring a tort claim for personal injuries against a parent. In Woods, the father Michael Woods was…

Why All Employers Should Have an Employee Handbook

Posted Wednesday, September 10, 2014 by Pivotal Law Group

In Washington, there is no law requiring employers to have an employee handbook, but for obvious reasons, it’s a good idea to have one—even a short one. A handbook allows employers to inform its employees about the rules enforced at the workplace in an…

How to Collect on a Judgment in Washington: Garnishments and Supplemental Proceedings

Posted Wednesday, September 3, 2014 by Pivotal Law Group

You were awarded a nice judgment by the court, great! Now what? A money judgment does not necessarily mean you will be able to collect on it yourself. Maybe the debtor is actively trying to avoid payment. This is where we come in. There are several…

DISCLAIMER: This blog is not legal advice. This site and any information contained herein are intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice under any circumstances, nor should it be construed as creating an attorney-client relationship. The information on this blog is a general statement of the law and may not be up to date, accurate or applicable to your specific circumstances. Prior success in litigation is not an indication of future results; each case is unique and past results cannot predict future outcomes.

Send Us An E-Mail

For more information, or to set up an initial consultation and case evaluation, please call us at 206-340-2008 or use our contact form:

Pivotal Law Group, PLLCPivotal Law Group, PLLC
Suite 1217, 1200 5th Avenue, Seattle, WA 98101 US
Phone: 206-340-2008
Toll Free: 866-884-2417
Fax: 206-340-1962
Pivotal Law Group, PLLC
Mon - Fri 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM