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Firm partner Tyler M. Paetkau and Associate Jay Withee will be panel speakers at the Arbitration in Employment Cases Webinar , presented by the Continuing Education of the Bar, California.  This seminar will take place on July 19, 2016.  Please click on the link for more information.

As demonstrated by a number of significant cases recently handed down by the courts, the use of arbitration agreements in employment cases remains a hotly debated issue in California. Join Tyler Paetkau and Jay Withee for a discussion of how arbitration is used in employment cases, the pros and cons of pursuing arbitration, and recent court decisions concerning employment arbitration agreements. You will also learn practical tips on drafting and reviewing arbitration clauses for enforceability.

2016 07 19 Arbitration in Employment Cases



Firm partner Tyler M. Paetkau will be a panel speaker at the The Basics 2015:  Employment Law seminar in Monterey, California, presented by the Continuing Education of the Bar, California.  This seminar will take place on September 3 and 4.  Please click on the link for more information.

In Recent News:


When disaster seemed to strike a highly successful California corporation in 2013, partner Jim Hartnett was called to join a team already representing the corporation in matters involving shareholder ownership disputes and corporate governance.  There were sensitive legal, practical and financial issues involved, including three law suits pending in San Mateo County Superior Court, and ultimately three federal law suits.  The parties had a history of discord with aggressive lawyering on all sides, and failed mediation attempts.

Mr. Hartnett gained the trust and confidence of the parties, Attorneys and the court, working closely with the senior executives in the company and other team members.  With determined efforts of the San Mateo County Superior Court Settlement Judge, and with Mr. Hartnett emerging as the primary lawyer leading the settlement discussions, a confidential settlement was ultimately reached in 2014 to the satisfaction of all parties.

In Recent News:

On Friday, August 1, 2014, partner Charles J. Smith achieved his 3rd consecutive civil trial victory in 2014 in the matter of Salume vs. Salume, case no. CIV 506970, tried before the Hon. Gerald J. Buchwald in San Mateo County Superior Court. Mr. Smith defeated the single cause of action for breach of contract by a 10-2 vote of the jury. The case was an inter-family dispute where two wealthy brothers from El Salvador were suing the widow of their deceased brother for $250,000.00.

Our firm’s 3rd consecutive trial victory demonstrates our unique position in the legal market on the San Francisco Peninsula. Unlike the vast majority of law firms that do litigation, our firm regularly takes cases to trial in the courts of the Bay Area and achieves victories for our clients. In modern litigation, the trend is certainly towards arbitration or mediation of disputes. Our demonstrated prowess in the courtroom allows us to achieve excellent results in these alternative dispute resolution modalities since our opponents understand that, unless a matter can be resolved to the satisfaction of our clients, we have the ability and the proven track record of convincing both judges and juries of the correctness of our clients’ position.

In Recent News:

Firm Client Prevails in California Court of Appeal regarding enforceability of employment arbitration agreement.  To find our more information, please click on the following link.

Press Release:

Super Bowl champion, Stanford graduate Doug Baldwin, by a unanimous verdict in 49er country, was found not guilty on April 4, 2014 of assault charges arising from a shoving match in a pick-up basketball game at the Stanford University gymnasium. The Seattle Seahawks wide receiver, represented by Redwood City attorney Chuck Smith of Law Offices of Charles J. Smith III, refused to compromise on his principles by pleading to something he did not do, going to trial in Palo Alto, California, in the heart of 49er country. “He is such a quality, upstanding individual, who is a great role model” according to Attorney Smith. “This incident resulted from a spirited pick-up basketball game in which another player was the aggressor and Doug handled himself with great restraint. He should have never been charged,” according to Smith, who regularly represents professional athletes.

Attorney Smith, a well-known criminal and civil trial attorney, says that going to trial, especially for a high profile individual, is always a risk. “But”, he said, “We were able to show that the alleged victim was just not telling the truth.” “I want the 49ers to crush the Seattle Seahawks but I will always be a fan of Doug’s” according to Smith.

Recent Publications:

Partner Tyler Paetkau & Associate Jay Withee contribute to the California State Bar Labor & Employment Law Section Law Review.  Read this article here: CA State Bar Law Review Labor & Employment Concepcion & Armendariz

If you would like to see a full version of this Special Edition of the Review Newsletter, please contact the California State Bar.


Seek Experienced Legal Counsel

If you are facing a civil or criminal legal problem in San Mateo or anywhere in the San Francisco Bay Area, it is important that you seek trusted advice from knowledgeable and experienced trial lawyers. Contact Law Offices of Charles J. Smith III today.

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Our Office
  • Redwood City Office
    777 Marshall Street
    Redwood City, California 94063
    Phone: 650.568.2820
    Fax: 650.568.2823
Representative Cases
  • "Stephen Simmons v. PCR Technology, 209 F. Supp. 2d 1029 (C.D. Cal. 2002) Represented employer in race discrimination action; removal to federal court based on diversity of citizenship and amount in controversy upheld. "

  • "Wayne Perry v. U.S. Bank, 2001 WL 34920473 (N.D. Cal. 2001) Represented national bank in putative wage-hour class action, involving alleged misclassification of employees under the administrative exemption; defeated plaintiffs' motion for class certification. "

  • "U.S. v. Raimund Wersching (2005) U.S. District Court San Francisco Dismissal of five felony financial fraud charges against former SF 49ers placekicker. Read more"