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Michaela Jester - Associate

Michaela Jester is an Associate in Tyson & Mendes’ San Diego office. Her practice primarily focuses on civil litigation, including intellectual property and personal injury defense. In addition to managing a full caseload, Ms. Jester is actively pursuing the enhancement of her intellectual property skillset by preparing for an upcoming Patent Exam in order to practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) as a patent practitioner.

Ms. Jester’s experience includes contributing to the drafting and filing of patent applications on behalf of clients through the unique opportunities presented to her during law school. She has diversified her legal experience profile by working with attorneys across a spectrum of practice specialties including personal injury, property, and employment law.

Ms. Jester serves as a Member at Large on the 2019 Executive Committee of the San Diego County Bar Association’s New Lawyers Forum. In addition to overseeing the collective aims and objectives of the Committee alongside the Executive team, Ms. Jester’s leads the NLF’s Community Outreach subcommittee.

Ms. Jester earned her L.LM in International Law from the University of San Diego in 2018, during which she was invited to publish her research on the Chinese Social Credit System as part of a treatise on international business transactions. Ms. Jester obtained her J.D. from Thomas Jefferson School of Law in 2017, where she served in the Small Business Law Center’s Patent Clinic, a pilot program sponsored by the USPTO. During law school, she was an Intellectual Property Fellow and received a CALI Award in Constitutional Law and Patent Clinic Seminar. Ms. Jester earned her B.S. in biology and a minor in English from the University of Arkansas, Fort Smith in 2012. During her undergraduate studies, Ms. Jester spent a year studying abroad and teaching English in South Korea at the University of Ulsan.

Outside the practice of law, Ms. Jester enjoys traveling in pursuit of her passion for landscape photography and spending time at the beach with her Goldendoodle, Moose. She also enjoys regularly attending the San Diego Symphony, skiing, taking on new photography projects, and is currently attempting to learn how to surf.

Recent Posts

Temporal Proximity of Intentional and Unintentional Acts in the Course of Conduct within the Context of Coverage Determination

Last week, a California appellate court upheld a summary judgment granted in favor of an insurance carrier brought into court by the assignee of an insured’s rights to enforce the duty to defend or indemnify. The court ruled the insurer had no such duties in light of the facts of the case. Namely, the court’s decision validated the insurer’s choice in declining to extend coverage pursuant to the insured’s attempted robbery of a jewelry store…

“Sweat Equity” in California Garage Startups: A Heartwarming and Illegal Story of Innovation

California’s Silicon Valley is known world-wide as the home of successful startup companies with humble beginnings in garages. People find stories about entrepreneurs delaying monetary reward and pouring all assets into fledgling their company while forgoing wages inspiring. Instead, these founders and their initial employees labor in exchange for “sweat equity”, or cheap stock grants, and take a gamble on the return of their investments…

Florida Med. Malpractice Settlements and the Three Strikes Rule: How Action by Insurance Carriers Could Benefit the Bottom Line and Patients

The Three Strikes Rules

In 2004, Florida voters passed “The Three Strikes Rule” as an effort to curb repetitive medical malpractice by an individual physician.  The Rule allowed the Board of Medicine to revoke a physician’s license after three verdicts against the physician pursuant to medical malpractice claims. However, many believe the law has not served its purpose. Most claims settle and thereby avoid any rendering of a jury verdict. In some instances, despite having settlements in the double-digits, many of these physicians continue to treat patients in Florida. Balancing the protection of qualified physicians who work in high-risk specialties and are, by the nature of their practice, subjected to malpractice claims with legal reform to protect patients is complicated. Insurers providing malpractice coverage in Florida may assume a large responsibility, and benefit, in assessing the standards of accountability on the part of the insured physicians, the carriers, and even the Medical Board.

Could Nevada provide a “Safe Zone” for Insurers to Test Cannabis Coverage Pilot Programs?

Cannabis insurance coverage in Nevada: Timing is everything

Public perception of cannabis use has undergone significant change in a very short span of time. However, while a strong majority of Americans favor cannabis legalization for all purposes (i.e. – medical and recognition), the federal government’s classification of cannabis has yet to reflect its social acceptance. Because cannabis is still considered a schedule one drug at the federal level, alongside LSD and heroin, many cannabis entrepreneurs are hesitant to invest in the market just yet. As a result, the “green mine” awaiting to be excavated by way of the normalized commercial activity of cannabis sales remains untapped due to the fear rooted in breaking federal law. The American banking and insurance industries, along with property owners and service providers, are eagerly waiting on the sidelines to take advantage of the lush economic opportunities.

Proposition 65 Warning Requirements: Compliance Considerations for Landlords, Building Owners, And Counsel

Beginning July 1, 2019, California residential rental properties will be subject to Proposition 65 Warning requirements. The warning requirements will be incorporated into lease agreements, letters, and e-mails, thereby replacing the warning signs plastered across the state. Pursuant to the new California law, landlords and building owners will be required to warn tenants and all known adult occupants of chemicals detected at the premises…

Florida Legislature Provides Long-Awaited on Legal Contours of AOB Provisions

Law makers in the Sunshine State have long been entrenched in mediating the dispute over “Assignment of Benefits” (“AOB”) provisions in homeowners insurance policies. Multi-faceted with even more perspectives to consider, an epidemic of AOB litigation plagued without resolution for too long. Finally, Florida Legislature passed a bill which offers some closure and direction on the legality of AOB provisions. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis intends to sign the legislation into law which will go into effect July 1, 2019.

Nevada: At the Crossroads of UTSA Preemption and Policy Exclusions for Trade Secret

While laws concerning patent protection are addressed at the federal level and are uniform across the country, states are given latitude in regulating trade secret misappropriation. As heavy interstate commerce developed, a special challenge for the regulation of trade secret laws emerged: the balance between state autonomy and uniform application of the law across state lines. To balance state power and the need for consistency for trade secret protection holders, the Uniform Trade Secrets Act (“UTSA”) was offered to the states for adoption. Nevada, along with every other state, has adopted the USTA either directly or by enacting substantially similar language.

AV Technology and Patent Litigation: A Survey of the Road Ahead

Autonomous vehicle patents: the next theater of [litigation] war? The burgeoning innovation of autonomous vehicle (“AV”) technology has spurred a precipitous race to secure corners of the market by the acquisition of intellectual property rights. An unprecedented volume of AV patent applications are flooding patent-granting offices around the globe; with AV technology advancing daily, the growth of proprietary claims is exponential.

At the Intersection of Intellectual Property and Autonomous Vehicles: Options, Considerations, and Management

For those investing in the Autonomous Vehicle (“AV”) market by securing intellectual property (“IP”) rights, savvy management of an IP portfolio will require, at a minimum, an understanding of the expansive range of benefits and risks associated with each IP investment option. The emergence of AV technology brings intricacies and nuances, many of which are yet to be fully realized. To avoid downstream litigation and disputes, those…

Avoiding Excessive Bad-Faith Damages: A Pocket Brief

While an award of bad-faith damages depends on the nature of the insurer’s conduct and the insured’s injury, counsel should implement damage control to ensure the constitutionality of any damage award. Simply stated, it is far too easy for damage awards to become excessive, and even unconstitutional, without managing the contours of one’s case as applied to the law. Fortunately, the United States Supreme Court has, in assessing many damages but not all, looked to the Constitution in suggesting damage ratios and mandating damage ceilings. The lead has been picked up by California courts, guiding lawyers in determining worst (and best) case damages scenarios for their clients. This article serves as an enabling tool for lawyers with clients in first-party bad-faith insurance cases governed by California law.

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