This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 10/16/2021 at 08:11:59 (UTC).

BROT GROSS & FISHBEIN, LLP VS STEPHEN BERNARD

Case Summary

On 12/18/2019 BROT GROSS FISHBEIN, LLP filed a Contract - Other Contract lawsuit against STEPHEN BERNARD. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Spring Street Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judge overseeing this case is JAMES E. BLANCARTE. The case status is Other.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    *******1510

  • Filing Date:

    12/18/2019

  • Case Status:

    Other

  • Case Type:

    Contract - Other Contract

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Judge

JAMES E. BLANCARTE

 

Party Details

Plaintiff

BROT GROSS & FISHBEIN LLP

Defendant

BERNARD STEPHEN

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorney

FRIEDMAN IRA M.

Defendant Attorney

BERNARD STEPHEN

 

Court Documents

Request for Dismissal - Request for Dismissal

10/8/2021: Request for Dismissal - Request for Dismissal

Notice of Rejection of Electronic Filing - Notice of Rejection of Electronic Filing

9/29/2021: Notice of Rejection of Electronic Filing - Notice of Rejection of Electronic Filing

Notice of Continuance - Notice of Continuance

9/22/2021: Notice of Continuance - Notice of Continuance

Minute Order - Minute Order (Order to Show Cause Re: Dismissal (Settlement))

9/20/2021: Minute Order - Minute Order (Order to Show Cause Re: Dismissal (Settlement))

Motion to Compel (name extension) - Motion to Compel NOTICE OF MOTION; AND MOTION TO COMPEL AMENDED RESPONSES TO REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION OF DOCUMENTS AND DISCOVERY SANCTIONS OF $4,140

7/13/2020: Motion to Compel (name extension) - Motion to Compel NOTICE OF MOTION; AND MOTION TO COMPEL AMENDED RESPONSES TO REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION OF DOCUMENTS AND DISCOVERY SANCTIONS OF $4,140

Notice Re: Continuance of Hearing and Order - Notice Re: Continuance of Hearing and Order

1/8/2021: Notice Re: Continuance of Hearing and Order - Notice Re: Continuance of Hearing and Order

Notice (name extension) - Notice Court's Notice of Continuance

1/14/2021: Notice (name extension) - Notice Court's Notice of Continuance

Opposition (name extension) - Opposition Defendant's Opposition to Plaintiff's Motion for Discovery Sanctions

2/23/2021: Opposition (name extension) - Opposition Defendant's Opposition to Plaintiff's Motion for Discovery Sanctions

Minute Order - Minute Order (Hearing on Motion to Compel Discovery (not "Further Discovery"))

2/24/2021: Minute Order - Minute Order (Hearing on Motion to Compel Discovery (not "Further Discovery"))

Notice of Ruling - Notice of Ruling

2/26/2021: Notice of Ruling - Notice of Ruling

Notice of Settlement - Notice of Settlement

5/20/2021: Notice of Settlement - Notice of Settlement

Order to Show Cause re: Dismissal (Settlement) - Order to Show Cause re: Dismissal (Settlement)

5/21/2021: Order to Show Cause re: Dismissal (Settlement) - Order to Show Cause re: Dismissal (Settlement)

Answer - Answer

1/27/2020: Answer - Answer

Proof of Service by Substituted Service - Proof of Service by Substituted Service

1/14/2020: Proof of Service by Substituted Service - Proof of Service by Substituted Service

Complaint - Complaint

12/18/2019: Complaint - Complaint

Summons - Summons on Complaint

12/18/2019: Summons - Summons on Complaint

Civil Case Cover Sheet - Civil Case Cover Sheet

12/18/2019: Civil Case Cover Sheet - Civil Case Cover Sheet

First Amended Standing Order - First Amended Standing Order

12/18/2019: First Amended Standing Order - First Amended Standing Order

7 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 10/15/2021
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause Re: Dismissal (Settlement) scheduled for 11/29/2021 at 09:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25 Not Held - Vacated by Court on 10/15/2021

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  • 10/08/2021
  • DocketOn the Complaint filed by BROT GROSS & FISHBEIN, LLP on 12/18/2019, entered Request for Dismissal with prejudice filed by BROT GROSS & FISHBEIN, LLP as to the entire action

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  • 09/24/2021
  • DocketStipulation for Judgment - Rejected; Submitted by: BROT GROSS & FISHBEIN, LLP (Plaintiff); As to: STEPHEN BERNARD (Defendant)

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  • 09/22/2021
  • DocketNotice of Continuance; Filed by: BROT GROSS & FISHBEIN, LLP (Plaintiff)

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  • 09/20/2021
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause Re: Dismissal (Settlement) scheduled for 11/29/2021 at 09:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25

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  • 09/20/2021
  • DocketMinute Order (Order to Show Cause Re: Dismissal (Settlement))

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  • 09/20/2021
  • DocketPursuant to the request of plaintiff, Order to Show Cause Re: Dismissal (Settlement) scheduled for 09/20/2021 at 09:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25 Held - Continued was rescheduled to 11/29/2021 09:30 AM

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  • 05/21/2021
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause Re: Dismissal (Settlement) scheduled for 09/20/2021 at 09:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25

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  • 05/21/2021
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause re: Dismissal (Settlement); Filed by: Clerk

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  • 05/21/2021
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause Re: Failure to File Proof of Service scheduled for 12/21/2022 at 08:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25 Not Held - Vacated by Court on 05/21/2021

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11 More Docket Entries
  • 01/27/2020
  • DocketAnswer; Filed by: STEPHEN BERNARD (Defendant)

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  • 01/14/2020
  • DocketProof of Service by Substituted Service; Filed by: BROT GROSS & FISHBEIN, LLP (Plaintiff); As to: STEPHEN BERNARD (Defendant); Proof of Mailing Date: 01/07/2020; Service Cost: 147.65; Service Cost Waived: No

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  • 12/18/2019
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by: BROT GROSS & FISHBEIN, LLP (Plaintiff); As to: STEPHEN BERNARD (Defendant)

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  • 12/18/2019
  • DocketSummons on Complaint; Issued and Filed by: BROT GROSS & FISHBEIN, LLP (Plaintiff); As to: STEPHEN BERNARD (Defendant)

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  • 12/18/2019
  • DocketCivil Case Cover Sheet; Filed by: BROT GROSS & FISHBEIN, LLP (Plaintiff); As to: STEPHEN BERNARD (Defendant)

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  • 12/18/2019
  • DocketNotice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case; Filed by: Clerk

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  • 12/18/2019
  • DocketFirst Amended Standing Order; Filed by: Clerk

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  • 12/18/2019
  • DocketNon-Jury Trial scheduled for 06/16/2021 at 08:30 AM in Stanley Mosk Courthouse at Department 94

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  • 12/18/2019
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause Re: Failure to File Proof of Service scheduled for 12/21/2022 at 08:30 AM in Stanley Mosk Courthouse at Department 94

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  • 12/18/2019
  • DocketCase assigned to Hon. James E. Blancarte in Department 94 Stanley Mosk Courthouse

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: 19STLC11510    Hearing Date: February 24, 2021    Dept: 25

HEARING DATE: Wed., February 24, 2021 JUDGE /DEPT: Blancarte/25

CASE NAME: Brot Gross & Fishbein, LLP v. Bernard COMP. FILED: 12-18-19

CASE NUMBER: 19STLC11510 DISC. C/O: 05-17-21

NOTICE: OK MOTION C/O: 06-01-21

TRIAL DATE: 06-16-21

PROCEEDINGS: MOTION TO COMPEL RESPONSES TO REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION OF DOCUMENTS AND DISCOVERY SANCTIONS

MOVING PARTY: Plaintiff Brot Gross & Fishbein, LLP

RESP. PARTY: None

MOTION TO COMPEL RESPONSES TO REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION OF DOCUMENTS; REQUEST FOR SANCTIONS

(CCP §2031.300)

TENTATIVE RULING:

Plaintiff Brot Gross & Fishbein, LLP’s Motion to Compel Responses to Request for Production of Documents is GRANTED. Defendant Stephen Bernard is ordered to provide verified responses, without objections, to Plaintiff’s discovery request within thirty (30) days’ notice of this order. Plaintiff’s request for sanctions is also GRANTED in the amount of $765.00 to be paid to Plaintiff’s counsel within thirty (30) days’ notice of this order.

SERVICE:

[X] Proof of Service Timely Filed (CRC, rule 3.1300) OK

[X] Correct Address (CCP §§ 1013, 1013a) OK

[X] 16/21 Court Days Lapsed (CCP §§ 12c, 1005(b)) OK

OPPOSITION: None filed as of February 22, 2021 [ ] Late [X] None

REPLY: None filed as of February 22, 2021 [ ] Late [X] None

ANALYSIS:

  1. Background

On December 18, 2019, Plaintiff Brot Gross & Fishbein, LLP (“Plaintiff”) filed an action against Defendant Stephen Bernard (“Defendant”). Defendant filed his Answer, in pro per, on November 27, 2020.

Plaintiff filed the instant Motion to Compel Amended Responses to Request for Production of Documents and Discovery Sanctions (the “Motion”).

On the Court’s own motion, the hearing was continued to February 24, 2021 at 10:30 a.m. (1/8/21 Notice re Continuance of Hearing and Order.) Plaintiff served a notice of the continuance on January 13, 2021.

To date, no opposition has been filed.

  1. Legal Standard & Discussion

A. Request for Production

A party must respond to interrogatories and requests for production of documents within 30 days after service. (Code Civ. Proc., § 2031.260, subd. (a).) If a party to whom requests for production of documents are directed does not provide timely responses, the requesting party may move for an order compelling responses to the discovery. (Code Civ. Proc., § 2031.300, subd. (c).) The party also waives the right to make any objections, including one based on privilege or work-product protection. (Code Civ. Proc., § 2031.300, subd. (a).) There is no time limit for a motion to compel responses to interrogatories or production of documents other than the cut-off on hearing discovery motions 15 days before trial. (Code Civ. Proc., §§ 2024.020, subd. (a); Code Civ. Proc., § 2031.300.) No meet and confer efforts are required before filing a motion to compel responses to the discovery. (Code Civ. Proc., § 2031.300; Sinaiko Healthcare Consulting, Inc. v. Pacific Healthcare Consultants (2007) 148 Cal.App.4th 390, 411.)

Here, Plaintiff served a Demand for Inspection and Copying of Documents, Set One, on Defendant on January 31, 2020 via regular mail. (Mot., Friedman Decl., ¶ 2.) Plaintiff’s counsel states that tardy, unverified responses were received on May 20, 2020. (Id. at ¶¶ 3-4, Exh. B.) Unverified discovery responses are tantamount to no responses at all. (Appleton v. Superior Court (1988) 206 Cal.App.3d 632, 636.) Although not required, Plaintiff’s counsel’s office sent a meet and confer letter to Defendant regarding the unverified responses on June 2, 2020. (Id. at ¶ 5; Bleifer Decl., ¶ 2.) On June 30, Defendant sent Plaintiff a letter stating he did not have any responsive documents to the discovery, but did not provide any verified answers. (Friedman Decl., ¶ 7, Exh. D.) Plaintiff is entitled to an order compelling Defendant to provide verified responses without objections to the production demand. (Code Civ. Proc., § 2031.300.) Responses must comply with response requirements of Code of Civil Procedure section 2031.210, subdivision (a).

B. Sanctions

Code of Civil Procedure section 2023.030, subdivision (a) provides, in pertinent part, that the court may impose a monetary sanction on a party engaging in the misuse of the discovery process to pay the reasonable expenses, including attorney’s fees, incurred by anyone as a result of that conduct. A misuse of the discovery process includes failing to respond or submit to an authorized method of discovery. (Code Civ. Proc., § 2023.010, subd. (d).)

The Court finds Defendant’s failure to timely serve verified responses for the production demand a misuse of the discovery process.

Plaintiff’s counsel seeks a total of $4,140.00 in sanctions based on 6 hours of attorney time billed at $675 per hour, one filing fee of $60.00, and one court reporter fee of $30.00. (Mot., Friedman Decl., ¶ 9.) However, Plaintiff’s request is excessive given the simplicity of this Motion and the lack of opposition and reply. The court finds $765.00, based on one hour of attorney time and costs of $90.00, to be reasonable.

  1. Conclusion & Order

For the foregoing reasons, Plaintiff Brot Gross & Fishbein, LLP’s Motion to Compel Responses to Request for Production of Documents is GRANTED. Defendant Stephen Bernard is ordered to provide verified responses, without objections, to Plaintiff’s discovery request within thirty (30) days’ notice of this order. Plaintiff’s request for sanctions is also GRANTED in the amount of $765.00 to be paid to Plaintiff’s counsel within thirty (30) days’ notice of this order.

Moving party is ordered to give notice.

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