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This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 06/07/2021 at 01:26:47 (UTC).

JEANETTE PEREZ, ET AL. VS JIMMIE R. LANDS, ET AL.

Case Summary

On 06/12/2019 JEANETTE PEREZ filed a Contract - Other Contract lawsuit against JIMMIE R LANDS. 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 Disposed - Judgment Entered.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    *******5622

  • Filing Date:

    06/12/2019

  • Case Status:

    Disposed - Judgment Entered

  • Case Type:

    Contract - Other Contract

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Spring Street Courthouse

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Judge

JAMES E. BLANCARTE

 

Party Details

Plaintiffs

PEREZ JEANETTE DBA INK HEAD DESIGN AND PRINTS

PEREZ DANIEL DBA INK HEAD DESIGN AND PRINTS

Defendants

THE PRINT COMPANY

LANDS JIMMIE R.

LANDS NOAH

KIDS ARTISTIC REVUE INC.

RAINBOW DANCE COMPETITION INC.

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorney

BUNNETT JOHN ALLEN

Defendant Attorney

RUPAL MANDEEP

 

Court Documents

Memorandum of Points & Authorities - Memorandum of Points & Authorities

5/17/2021: Memorandum of Points & Authorities - Memorandum of Points & Authorities

Declaration (name extension) - Declaration Declaration of John A. Bunnett re Tardy Filing of Opposition

5/18/2021: Declaration (name extension) - Declaration Declaration of John A. Bunnett re Tardy Filing of Opposition

Answer - Answer

4/16/2021: Answer - Answer

Default Judgment - Default Judgment

12/18/2020: Default Judgment - Default Judgment

Request for Dismissal - Request for Dismissal

12/2/2020: Request for Dismissal - Request for Dismissal

Declaration Pursuant to 585 CCP in Support of Default Judgment - Declaration Pursuant to 585 CCP in Support of Default Judgment

12/2/2020: Declaration Pursuant to 585 CCP in Support of Default Judgment - Declaration Pursuant to 585 CCP in Support of Default Judgment

Statement of the Case - Statement of the Case

12/2/2020: Statement of the Case - Statement of the Case

Request for Entry of Default / Judgment - Request for Entry of Default / Judgment

12/2/2020: Request for Entry of Default / Judgment - Request for Entry of Default / Judgment

Notice of Rejection Default/Clerk's Judgment - Notice of Rejection Default/Clerk's Judgment

11/19/2019: Notice of Rejection Default/Clerk's Judgment - Notice of Rejection Default/Clerk's Judgment

Request for Entry of Default / Judgment - Request for Entry of Default / Judgment

11/19/2019: Request for Entry of Default / Judgment - Request for Entry of Default / Judgment

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

11/19/2019: Proof of Service by Substituted Service - Proof of Service by Substituted Service

Request for Entry of Default / Judgment - Request for Entry of Default / Judgment

11/19/2019: Request for Entry of Default / Judgment - Request for Entry of Default / Judgment

Proof of Personal Service - Proof of Personal Service

11/19/2019: Proof of Personal Service - Proof of Personal Service

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

11/19/2019: Proof of Service by Substituted Service - Proof of Service by Substituted Service

Request for Entry of Default / Judgment - Request for Entry of Default / Judgment

11/19/2019: Request for Entry of Default / Judgment - Request for Entry of Default / Judgment

Civil Case Cover Sheet - Civil Case Cover Sheet

6/12/2019: Civil Case Cover Sheet - Civil Case Cover Sheet

Summons - Summons on Complaint

6/12/2019: Summons - Summons on Complaint

First Amended Standing Order - First Amended Standing Order

6/12/2019: First Amended Standing Order - First Amended Standing Order

18 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 06/29/2021
  • Hearing06/29/2021 at 10:00 AM in Department 25 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Hearing on Motion to Set Aside/Vacate Default and Default Judgment (CCP 473.5)

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  • 05/26/2021
  • DocketHearing on Motion to Set Aside/Vacate Default and Default Judgment (CCP 473.5) scheduled for 06/29/2021 at 10:00 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25

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  • 05/26/2021
  • DocketMinute Order (Hearing on Motion to Set Aside/Vacate Default and Default Jud...)

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  • 05/26/2021
  • DocketOn the Court's own motion, Hearing on Motion to Set Aside/Vacate Default and Default Judgment (CCP 473.5) scheduled for 05/26/2021 at 10:00 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25 Held - Continued was rescheduled to 06/29/2021 10:00 AM

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  • 05/19/2021
  • DocketReply to Plaintiffs Opposition to Defendants Motion to Set Aside Default; Filed by: Kids Artistic Revue, Inc. (Defendant)

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  • 05/18/2021
  • DocketDeclaration Declaration of John A. Bunnett re Tardy Filing of Opposition; Filed by: Jeanette Perez (Plaintiff); Daniel Perez (Plaintiff)

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  • 05/17/2021
  • DocketMemorandum of Points & Authorities; Filed by: Jeanette Perez (Plaintiff); Daniel Perez (Plaintiff)

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  • 04/19/2021
  • DocketHearing on Motion to Set Aside/Vacate Default and Default Judgment (CCP 473.5) scheduled for 05/26/2021 at 10:00 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25

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  • 04/16/2021
  • DocketMotion to Set Aside/Vacate Default and / or Default Judgment; Filed by: Jimmie R. Lands (Defendant); Kids Artistic Revue, Inc. (Defendant); Noah Lands (Defendant); The Print Company (Defendant); Rainbow Dance Competition, Inc. (Defendant)

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  • 04/16/2021
  • DocketAnswer; Filed by: Jimmie R. Lands (Defendant); Kids Artistic Revue, Inc. (Defendant); Noah Lands (Defendant); The Print Company (Defendant); Rainbow Dance Competition, Inc. (Defendant)

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32 More Docket Entries
  • 11/19/2019
  • DocketRequest for Entry of Default / Judgment; Filed by: Jeanette Perez (Plaintiff); Daniel Perez (Plaintiff); As to: Rainbow Dance Competition, Inc. (Defendant)

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  • 11/19/2019
  • DocketDefault entered as to The Print Company; On the Complaint filed by Jeanette Perez, et al. on 06/12/2019

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  • 06/14/2019
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause Re: Failure to File Proof of Service scheduled for 06/15/2022 at 08:30 AM in Stanley Mosk Courthouse at Department 94

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  • 06/14/2019
  • DocketNon-Jury Trial scheduled for 12/09/2020 at 08:30 AM in Stanley Mosk Courthouse at Department 94

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  • 06/14/2019
  • DocketCase assigned to Hon. James E. Blancarte in Department 94 Stanley Mosk Courthouse

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  • 06/12/2019
  • DocketFirst Amended Standing Order; Filed by: Clerk

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  • 06/12/2019
  • DocketNotice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case; Filed by: Clerk

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  • 06/12/2019
  • DocketSummons on Complaint; Issued and Filed by: Jeanette Perez (Plaintiff); Daniel Perez (Plaintiff); As to: Jimmie R. Lands (Defendant); Kids Artistic Revue, Inc. (Defendant); Noah Lands (Defendant) et al.

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  • 06/12/2019
  • DocketCivil Case Cover Sheet; Filed by: Jeanette Perez (Plaintiff); Daniel Perez (Plaintiff); As to: Jimmie R. Lands (Defendant); Kids Artistic Revue, Inc. (Defendant); Noah Lands (Defendant) et al.

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  • 06/12/2019
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by: Jeanette Perez (Plaintiff); Daniel Perez (Plaintiff); As to: Jimmie R. Lands (Defendant); Kids Artistic Revue, Inc. (Defendant); Noah Lands (Defendant) et al.

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: 19STLC05622    Hearing Date: May 26, 2021    Dept: 25

PROCEEDINGS: MOTION TO SET ASIDE DEFAULT

MOVING PARTY: Defendants Jimmie R. Lands, Kids Artistic Revenue, Inc., Noah Lands, The Print Company, and Rainbow Dance Competition, Inc.

RESP. PARTY: Plaintiffs Jeanette Perez and Daniel Perez dba Ink Head Design and Prints

MOTION TO SET ASIDE DEFAULT AND DEFAULT JUDGMENT

(CCP § 473(b))

TENTATIVE RULING:

Defendants Jimmie R. Lands, Kids Artistic Revenue, Inc., Noah Lands, The Print Company, and Rainbow Dance Competition, Inc.’s Motion to Set Aside Default is CONTINUED TO JUNE 29, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. in Department 25 at the SPRING STREET COURTHOUSE. At least 16 court days before the next scheduled hearing, Defendants must file supplemental papers addressing the issues discussed herein. Failure to do so may result in the Motion being placed off calendar or denied.

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: Filed on May 17, 2021 [X] Late [ ] None

REPLY: Filed on May 19, 2021 [ ] Late [ ] None

ANALYSIS:

I. Background

On June 12, 2019, Plaintiffs Jeanette Perez and Daniel Perez dba Ink Head Design and Prints (collectively, “Plaintiffs”) filed an action alleging breach of contract, common counts, intentional interference with prospective economic advantage, negligent interference with prospective economic advantage, and defamation against Defendants Jimmie R. Lands, Kids Artistic Revenue, Inc., Noah Lands, The Print Company, and Rainbow Dance Competition, Inc. (“collectively, “Defendants”).

Following Defendants’ failure to respond, default was entered against them on November 19, 2019. A default judgment of $15,042.95 was entered on December 18, 2020.

On April 16, 2021, Defendants filed the instant Motion to Set Aside Default (the “Motion”). Plaintiffs filed a late opposition on May 17 and Defendants filed a reply brief on May 19.

II. Legal Standard & Discussion

A. CCP § 473(b)

Defendants seek relief pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure section 473, subdivision (b). (Mot., p. 2.) Under this statute, an application for relief must be made no more than six months after entry of the judgment, dismissal, order, or other proceeding from which relief is sought and must be accompanied by an affidavit of fault attesting to the mistake, inadvertence, surprise or neglect of the moving party or its attorney. (Code Civ. Proc., § 473, subd. (b); English v. IKON Business Solutions (2001) 94 Cal.App.4th 130, 143.)

Defendants’ counsel, Mandeep Rupal (“Rupal”), submits a declaration stating his former employee, who has been terminated, failed to file an answer after Defendants’ counsel’s office received Plaintiffs’ request for entry of default judgment. (Mot., Rupal Decl., ¶¶ 4, 5.) However, Rupal’s declaration does not admit his own fault in the entry of default judgment.

In addition, the moving papers conflate the entry of default and default judgment and do not specifically reference the default entered on November 19, 2019. Indeed, where the default was not the attorney’s fault, an affidavit of fault relating to the subsequent default judgment does not warrant mandatory relief. (Cisneros v. Vueve (1995) 37 Cal.App.4th 906. 911.) Relief is not mandatory based on an attorney affidavit of fault for “neglectful clients who allow their default to be entered simply because that neglect is compounded by attorney neglect in permitting the judgment to be perfected.” (Id.) Defendants have not submitted an affidavit of fault from Defendants attesting to their mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable neglect that resulted in the entry of default on November 19, 2019.

Notably, in their reply papers, Defendants argue that the Law Offices of Mandeep Rupal were retained on or around November 2019, that Plaintiff’s counsel granted Defendants’ counsel an extension to file an answer during settlement talks, and that Plaintiffs’ counsel did not grant an additional extension after the parties were unable to reach an agreement. (Reply, p. 4.) Defendants vaguely argue that “[d]espite further attempts to settle the matter privately, Plaintiffs’ counsel followed through with entering default judgment against Defendants on December 18, 2020.” (Id.) Curiously, Defendants provide no evidence or even a declaration from counsel Rupal attesting that Defendants’ representation began in November 2019. Defendants have also not explained why this was not mentioned in their moving papers or discussed why this constitutes mistake, inadvertence, excusable neglect, or surprise.

When relief from default and default judgment is the attorney’s fault, the six-month period starts to run from the date of the entry of the default judgment. (Code Civ. Proc., § 473, sub. (b); Sugasawara v. Newland (1994) 27 Cal.App.4th 294, 295.) In the interest of resolving this action on the merits, if warranted, the matter is CONTINUED so that Defendants’ counsel may clarify the situation and submit additional evidence.

B. Equitable Relief

In their reply brief, Defendants argue that even if relief under Section 473, subdivision (b), is unavailable, they are entitled to equitable relief from the default and default judgment. (Reply, pp. 3-4.)

“When a default judgment has been obtained, equitable relief may be given only in exceptional circumstances.” (Rappleyea v. Campbell (1994) 8 Cal.4th 975, 981.) (Italics in original.) “Even where relief is no longer available under statutory provisions, a trial court generally retains the inherent power to vacate a default judgment…where a party establishes that the judgment or order was void for lack of due process or resulted from extrinsic fraud or mistake.” (County of San Diego v. Gorham (2010) 186 Cal.App.4th 1215, 1228.) “To set aside a judgment based upon extrinsic mistake one must satisfy three elements. First, the defaulted party must demonstrate that it has a meritorious case. Second, the party seeking to set aside the default must articulate a satisfactory excuse for not presenting a defense to the original action. Last, the moving party must demonstrate diligence in seeking to set aside the default once ... discovered.” (Id., at p. 982.)

Extrinsic fraud occurs when a party is deprived of the opportunity to present a claim or defense because it was kept in ignorance or was in some other way fraudulently prevented from participating in the proceeding by the opposing party. (County of San Diego v. Gorham (2010) 186 Cal.App.4th at p. 1228-29.) Extrinsic mistake is “a term broadly applied when circumstances extrinsic to the litigation have unfairly cost a party a hearing on the merits.” (Rappleyea v. Campbell (1994) 8 Cal.4th 975 at p. 981.) “A false return of summons may constitute both extrinsic fraud and mistake” and when a judgment is based on a false return of summons, the court has the inherent power to set the judgment aside, even if the statutory period to get aside judgment on other grounds has run. (County of San Diego v. Gorham (2010) 186 Cal.App.4th at p. 1229.)

“The law ‘favor[s] a hearing on the merits whenever possible, and…appellate courts are much more disposed to affirm an order which compels a trial on the merits than to allow a default judgment to stand.’ [Citation.]” (Mechling v. Asbestos Defendants (2018) 29 Cal.App.5th 1241, 1246.)

Because this basis for relief was raised for the first time in reply, Plaintiffs did not have an opportunity to respond to this argument. As the matter has already been continued for the reasons discussed above, Plaintiffs may file a supplemental brief addressing Defendants’ equitable relief argument, as well as any other argument raised in Defendants’ supplemental brief (if they choose to file one), at least nine (9) court days before the next scheduled hearing.

III. Conclusion & Order

For the foregoing reasons, Defendants Jimmie R. Lands, Kids Artistic Revenue, Inc., Noah Lands, The Print Company, and Rainbow Dance Competition, Inc.’s Motion to Set Aside Default is CONTINUED TO JUNE 29, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. in Department 25 at the SPRING STREET COURTHOUSE. At least 16 court days before the next scheduled hearing, Defendants must file supplemental papers addressing the issues discussed herein. Failure to do so may result in the Motion being placed off calendar or denied.

Moving parties are ordered to give notice.

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