Jun 17, 2018

TENTATIVE RULINGS

LAW & MOTION CALENDAR

Wednesday, June 13, 2018, 2:00 p.m.

Courtroom 19 – Hon. Allan D. Hardcastle

3055 Cleveland Avenue, Santa Rosa

 

 

CourtCall is available for all Law & Motion appearances, EXCEPT motions for claims of exemption which are mandatory appearances.  Please contact CourtCall directly at (888) 882-6878.

 

The following tentative rulings will become the ruling of the Court unless a party desires to be heard.  If you desire to appear and present oral argument as to any motion, YOU MUST notify the Court by telephone at (707) 521-6602, and all other opposing parties of your intent to appear by 4:00 p.m. today, Tuesday, June 12, 2018.  Parties in motions for claims of exemption are exempt from this requirement.

 

PLEASE NOTE:  The Court WILL provide a Court Reporter for this calendar.  If there are any concerns, please contact the Court at the number provided above.

 

  1.         MCV-235722, Spaulding v. BCJ

 
This matter is on calendar for Plaintiff’s unopposed Motion for Entry of a Court Judgment against Defendant based on Defendant’s purported breach of a “Stipulation for Settlement or Judgment” agreement that the parties entered into on September 3, 2015. 
Plaintiff’s motion is DENIED, without prejudice. Although Plaintiff has not cited a single authority, statutory or otherwise, in its moving papers, Plaintiff is presumably bringing the motion under Code of Civil Procedure section 664.6, which states in relevant part that “[i]f parties to pending litigation stipulate, in a writing signed by the parties outside the presence of the court or orally before the court, for settlement of the case, or part thereof, the court, upon motion, may enter judgment pursuant to the terms of the settlement.” (Code Civ. Proc. §664.6; see also, Leeman v. Adams Extract & Spice, LLC (2015) 236 Cal.App.4th 1367, 1373-1374.)   Here, Plaintiff’s motion refers to a “Stipulation for Settlement or Judgment” and purports to attach a copy of that stipulation as Exhibit A to the Declaration of Kaipo Young. However, although the referenced Declaration also purports to attach the stipulation as Exhibit A, there are no exhibits attached to Mr. Young’s Declaration and therefore, the Court cannot properly determine if judgment should be entered. Accordingly, the motion is denied, without prejudice to Plaintiff’s right to refile the motion with the referenced exhibits. 
Plaintiff’s counsel shall submit a written order to the Court consistent with this tentative ruling and in compliance with Rule of Court, rule 3.1312.
           
2.         SCV-261028, Banthrall v. Tovar
 
This matter is on calendar for Plaintiff and Cross-Defendant Michael Banthrall’s (“Banthrall”) motion to deem admitted the requests for admissions, set one, propounded to Defendant and Cross-Complainant Enrique Estrada Tovar (“Tovar”) or in the alternative, for an order compelling Tovar to provide responses to the requests within ten (10) days of the Court’s final order. Banthrall brings this motion pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure sections 2033.280(b) or alternatively, Code of Civil Procedure section 2033.290 and on the grounds that Banthrall served requests for admissions to Tovar on March 7, 2018 and despite his efforts to meet and confer, Tovar has failed to provide any response to the requests. Additionally, Banthrall requests that monetary sanctions be imposed against Tovar in the amount of $454.26, which includes three hours of attorney time at $131.42 per hour and the $60 filing fee. Tovar has not filed an opposition to the motion and has not objected to the requested sanctions.
Banthrall’s motion to deem admitted his requests for admissions, set one, propounded to Tovar is GRANTED. Code of Civil Procedure section 2033.280 provide in relevant part that if a party to whom requests for admissions are directed fails to serve a timely response, that party “waives any objection to the requests” and “[t]he requesting party may move for an order that…the truth of any matters specified in the requests be deemed admitted.” (Code Civ. Proc. §2033.280(a)-(b).) The court must grant this relief unless it finds that the party to whom the requests for admission have been directed has served, before the hearing on the motion, a proposed response that is in “substantial compliance” with the Code. (Code Civ. Proc. §2033.280(c).) In this case, Banthrall has sufficiently demonstrated that he served requests for admissions, set one, to Tovar on March 7, 2018 and that Tovar has failed to provide any responses. (Liang Dec. at ¶¶5-8, Exs. B, D.) Accordingly, Banthrall’s motion is granted. Banthrall’s request in the alternative that Tovar be compelled to provide further responses is denied. A party may bring a motion to compel further responses only “[o]n receipt of a response to requests for admissions…” (Code Civ. Proc. §2033.290(a).) Here, because Tovar never provided any response, a motion to compel “further” responses is inapplicable.     
Banthrall’s Request for Sanctions is also GRANTED. The Code provides that “[i]t is mandatory that the court impose a monetary sanction…on the party or attorney, or both, whose failure to serve a timely response to requests for admission necessitated this motion.” (Code Civ. Proc. §2033.280(c).) Accordingly, Tovar is ordered to pay to Banthrall $454.26 within fifteen (15) days of service of the Court’s final ruling on this motion.   
Banthrall’s counsel shall submit a written order to the Court that is consistent with this tentative ruling and in compliance with Rule of Court, rule 3.1312.
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