On 02/11/2020 ERICK TORRES BAUTISTA filed a Personal Injury - Motor Vehicle lawsuit against PEDRO CANDELARIO ARZU. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Spring Street Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judge overseeing this case is SERENA R. MURILLO. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.
Pending - Other Pending
SERENA R. MURILLO
BAUTISTA ERICK TORRES
ARZU PEDRO CANDELARIO
CHIN ANDREW D
SEEGER MARTIN LESLEY
3/24/2021: Proof of Personal Service - Proof of Personal Service
3/26/2021: Request for Entry of Default / Judgment - Request for Entry of Default / Judgment
4/1/2021: Notice of Rejection Default/Clerk's Judgment - Notice of Rejection Default/Clerk's Judgment
4/19/2021: Declaration (name extension) - Declaration Declaration of Martin L. Seeger, IV, As to Informal Conference Prior to Filing Demurrer to Complaint
4/19/2021: Demurrer - without Motion to Strike - Demurrer - without Motion to Strike
4/19/2021: Memorandum of Points & Authorities - Memorandum of Points & Authorities
4/19/2021: Request for Judicial Notice - Request for Judicial Notice
5/6/2021: Declaration (name extension) - Declaration of Attorney in support of Opposition to Defendant's Demurrer
5/6/2021: Opposition (name extension) - Opposition to Demurrer; Memorandum of Points and Authorities
5/12/2021: Reply (name extension) - Reply to Opposition to Demurrer to Complaint
5/19/2021: Minute Order - Minute Order (Hearing on Demurrer - without Motion to Strike)
5/27/2021: Answer - Answer
7/9/2021: Stipulation and Order (name extension) - Stipulation and Order for Continuance of Trial and FSC
2/11/2020: Summons - Summons on Complaint
2/11/2020: Civil Case Cover Sheet - Civil Case Cover Sheet
2/11/2020: Complaint - Complaint
2/11/2020: Notice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case - Notice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case
2/11/2020: First Amended Standing Order - First Amended Standing Order
Hearing02/14/2023 at 08:30 AM in Department 26 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Order to Show Cause Re: Failure to File Proof of ServiceRead MoreRead Less
Hearing12/08/2021 at 08:30 AM in Department 26 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Non-Jury TrialRead MoreRead Less
DocketStipulation and Order for Continuance of Trial and FSC; Signed and Filed by: Erick Torres Bautista (Plaintiff); Juan Navarrete (Plaintiff); As to: Pedro Candelario Arzu (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
DocketPursuant to written stipulation, Non-Jury Trial scheduled for 08/10/2021 at 08:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 26 Not Held - Advanced and Continued - by Court was rescheduled to 12/08/2021 08:30 AMRead MoreRead Less
DocketAnswer; Filed by: Pedro Candelario Arzu (Defendant); As to: Erick Torres Bautista (Plaintiff); Juan Navarrete (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
DocketMinute Order (Hearing on Demurrer - without Motion to Strike)Read MoreRead Less
DocketHearing on Demurrer - without Motion to Strike scheduled for 05/19/2021 at 10:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 26 updated: Result Date to 05/19/2021; Result Type to HeldRead MoreRead Less
DocketReply to Opposition to Demurrer to Complaint; Filed by: Pedro Candelario Arzu (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
DocketOpposition to Demurrer; Memorandum of Points and Authorities; Filed by: Erick Torres Bautista (Plaintiff); Juan Navarrete (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
DocketDeclaration of Attorney in support of Opposition to Defendant's Demurrer; Filed by: Erick Torres Bautista (Plaintiff); Juan Navarrete (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
Docket; Default not entered as to Pedro Candelario Arzu; On the Complaint filed by Erick Torres Bautista, et al. on 02/11/2020Read MoreRead Less
DocketProof of Personal Service; Filed by: Erick Torres Bautista (Plaintiff); As to: Pedro Candelario Arzu (Defendant); Service Date: 02/21/2021; Service Cost: 63.00; Service Cost Waived: NoRead MoreRead Less
DocketNon-Jury Trial scheduled for 08/10/2021 at 08:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 26Read MoreRead Less
DocketOrder to Show Cause Re: Failure to File Proof of Service scheduled for 02/14/2023 at 08:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 26Read MoreRead Less
DocketCase assigned to Hon. Serena R. Murillo in Department 26 Spring Street CourthouseRead MoreRead Less
DocketComplaint; Filed by: Erick Torres Bautista (Plaintiff); Juan Navarrete (Plaintiff); As to: Pedro Candelario Arzu (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
DocketSummons on Complaint; Issued and Filed by: Erick Torres Bautista (Plaintiff); Juan Navarrete (Plaintiff); As to: Pedro Candelario Arzu (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
DocketCivil Case Cover Sheet; Filed by: Erick Torres Bautista (Plaintiff); Juan Navarrete (Plaintiff); As to: Pedro Candelario Arzu (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
DocketNotice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case; Filed by: ClerkRead MoreRead Less
DocketFirst Amended Standing Order; Filed by: ClerkRead MoreRead Less
Case Number: 20STLC01448 Hearing Date: May 19, 2021 Dept: 26
Bautista, et al. v. Arzu, et al.
(CCP §§ 430.31, et seq.)
Defendant Pedro Candelario Arzu’s Demurrer to the Complaint is OVERRULED.
The Complaint filed by Plaintiffs Erick Torres Bautista and Juan Navarrete (“Plaintiffs”) in this action against Defendant Pedro Candelario Arzu is filed stamped February 11, 2020. Defendant was personally served with the Complaint on February 21, 2021. (Proof of Service, filed 03/24/21, ¶5.) On April 19, 2021, Defendant filed the instant Demurrer to the Complaint. Plaintiffs filed an opposition on May 6, 2021 and Defendant replied on May 12, 2021.
Defendant’s Meet and Confer Effort
Concurrent with the filing of the Demurrer, Defendant filed a Declaration as to Informal Conference regarding defense counsel’s meet and confer efforts. The meet and confer declaration does not demonstrate compliance with the requirements of Code of Civil Procedure section 430.41. Under this statue, the meet and confer is to take place at least five days before the responsive pleading is due, but if the parties are unable to do so, “the demurring party shall be granted an automatic 30-day extension of time within which to file a responsive pleading, by filing and serving, on or before the date on which a demurrer would be due, a declaration stating under penalty of perjury that a good faith attempt to meet and confer was made and explaining the reasons why the parties could not meet and confer.” (Code Civ. Proc., § 430.41, subd. (a)(2).)
The responsive pleading was due 30 days after service of the Complaint, or by March 23, 2021. (Code Civ. Proc., § 430.40, subd. (a).) Accordingly, the meet and confer effort should have been taken place by March 18, 2021 unless a declaration for extension of time was filed. No declaration for an extension of the time to respond has been filed.
Furthermore, regardless of the fact that the meet and confer effort was significantly untimely, defense counsel’s declaration does not demonstrate that the meet and confer effort was made in good faith. Defense counsel called Plaintiff’s counsel on April 15, 2021 and left a message with a member of the office. (Decl., Seeger Decl., ¶4.) Following no response, defense counsel emailed a meet and confer letter at 11:07 am on April 19, 2021. (Id. at ¶5 and Exh. A.) The instant Demurrer was filed just a few hours later, on the same date. (Notice of Demurrer, time-stamped 3:32 pm on April 19, 2021.) Given that April 15, 2021 was a Thursday, defense counsel gave Plaintiff’s counsel less than three full business days to respond the meet and confer effort before rushing to file the Demurrer.
Without showing that Defendant’s meet and confer effort was in good faith, the Court would not be inclined to consider the merits of the Demurrer. However, the arguments raised in opposition to the Demurrer concern the correct filing date of the Complaint. As this is the basis of the Demurrer, the Court will address the parties’ arguments. The Court does additionally take note that the opposition papers were not served on Defendant. (Reply, § I.) However, the reply makes a full argument on the merits, demonstrating that Defendant was not prejudiced. (Carlton v. Quint (2000) 77 Cal.App.4th 690, 697 [“It is well settled that the appearance of a party at the hearing of a motion and his or her opposition to the motion on its merits is a waiver of any defects or irregularities in the notice of motion.”].)
Request to Change Filing Date of Complaint
Plaintiffs move to have the filing date of the Complaint changed from February 11, 2020 to February 10, 2020 on the grounds that the pleading was presented for filing on February 10, 2020. Specifically, Plaintiffs present evidence that their counsel sought to file the Complaint on February 7, 2020. (Motion, Chin Decl., ¶7 and Exh. A.) The status of the filing as of February 7, 2020 at 4:42 pm was “accepted” as to the Complaint, Civil Cover Sheet and Summons. (Id. at Exh. A.) In fact, the clerk’s memo states that all pages of the filings were present and viewable. (Ibid.) After that, however, the filing was rejected because “Reject Reason Other: For some reason, all but one page from both the Complaint and Civil Case Cover Sheets + Addendum showed up in our queues. Summons is fine. Correct uploading of docs issue, then resubmit.” (Id. at ¶9 and Exh. B.) The Notice of Court Rejection was generated at 2:59 pm on February 10, 2020 but was not received by the electronic service provider until 10:59 p.m. on that date. (Id. at ¶10 and Exh. C.) When Plaintiff’s counsel received the Notice of Rejection, he re-filed the Complaint and Civil Cover Sheet on February 10, 2020 exactly as he had done on February 7, 2021. (Id. at ¶11.) The filing was accepted with a time-stamp of February 11, 2020 at 12:00 a.m. (Ibid.)
Based on this evidence, the Court finds the Complaint was filed on February 7, 2020, or at the latest, on February 10, 2021. The court clerk’s function is purely ministerial and he or she cannot reject a complaint that substantially complies with the rules. As explained in Carlson v. State of California Dept. of Fish and Game (1998) 68 Cal.App.4th 1268, 1270, “Government Code section 69846.5 provides that ‘[t]he clerk of the superior court shall endorse on each paper filed with the court the day, month, and year it is filed.’” For purposes of the statute of limitations, “filing” means delivery to the clerk during business hours. (Carlson v. State of California Dept. of Fish and Game (1998) 68 Cal.App.4th 1268 (citing United Farm Workers of America v. Agricultural Labor Relations Bd. (1985) 37 Cal.3d 912, 918).)
The Complaint was delivered to the clerk on February 7, 2020 during business hours. The Complaint should have been deemed filed on that date, or at the latest on February 10, 2020, and the failure to do so was a clerical error. Accordingly, the Complaint is deemed filed on February 10, 2020 and the clerk’s office is to correct the filing date.
Statute of Limitations
The Complaint was timely filed for purposes of the statute of limitations. The Complaint alleges the action arises out of a motor vehicle accident that occurred on February 8, 2018. (Compl., ¶MV-1.) The statute of limitations to file a personal injury action is two years. (Code Civ. Proc., § 335.1.) The deadline to file the Complaint, therefore, was February 8, 2020, which fell on a Saturday. When the date to file a pleading falls on a designated holiday, the filing must be made by the next Court day. (Code Civ. Proc., § 12a, subd. (a).) The Complaint was filed by the next day that was not a holiday.
Defendant Pedro Candelario Arzu’s Demurrer to the Complaint is OVERRULED.
THE COMPLAINT IS DEEMED FILED ON FEBRUARY 10, 2020.
DEFENDANT IS TO FILE AND SERVE AN ANSWER TO THE COMPLAINT WITHIN 20 DAYS’ SERVICE OF THIS ORDER.
Plaintiff to give notice.
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