This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 10/18/2020 at 03:21:20 (UTC).

JERROD WASHINGTON, ET AL. VS NICK J. HALEKAKIS

Case Summary

On 07/20/2018 JERROD WASHINGTON filed a Contract - Other Contract lawsuit against NICK J HALEKAKIS. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Spring Street Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judge overseeing this case is JON R. TAKASUGI. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    *******9831

  • Filing Date:

    07/20/2018

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Contract - Other Contract

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Spring Street Courthouse

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Judge

JON R. TAKASUGI

 

Party Details

Plaintiffs and Cross Defendants

BORKES DAVID

WASHINGTON JERROD

Defendant and Cross Plaintiff

HALEKAKIS NICK J.

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorney

REYES CHRISTOPHER SEAN

Defendant Attorney

WONG LIBBY

 

Court Documents

Declaration (name extension) - Declaration Of Libby Wong In Response To Order To Show Cause Hearing RE Status Of Defendant's Filing Of An Answer

9/25/2020: Declaration (name extension) - Declaration Of Libby Wong In Response To Order To Show Cause Hearing RE Status Of Defendant's Filing Of An Answer

Substitution of Attorney - Substitution of Attorney

8/24/2020: Substitution of Attorney - Substitution of Attorney

Answer - Answer

8/24/2020: Answer - Answer

Cross-Complaint - Cross-Complaint

8/24/2020: Cross-Complaint - Cross-Complaint

Minute Order - Minute Order (Hearing on Motion to Set Aside/Vacate Default and Default Jud...)

8/12/2020: Minute Order - Minute Order (Hearing on Motion to Set Aside/Vacate Default and Default Jud...)

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

8/22/2019: Request for Entry of Default / Judgment - Request for Entry of Default / Judgment

Proof of Service by Mail - Proof of Service by Mail

8/22/2019: Proof of Service by Mail - Proof of Service by Mail

Request for Dismissal - Request for Dismissal

8/22/2019: Request for Dismissal - Request for Dismissal

Civil Case Cover Sheet - Civil Case Cover Sheet

5/13/2019: Civil Case Cover Sheet - Civil Case Cover Sheet

Summons - Summons on Complaint

5/14/2019: Summons - Summons on Complaint

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

10/25/2018: 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

11/1/2018: Notice of Rejection Default/Clerk's Judgment - Notice of Rejection Default/Clerk's Judgment

Summons - on Complaint

7/20/2018: Summons - on Complaint

Civil Case Cover Sheet

7/20/2018: Civil Case Cover Sheet

Complaint

7/20/2018: Complaint

Notice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case

7/20/2018: Notice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case

17 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 12/02/2020
  • Hearing12/02/2020 at 09:30 AM in Department 25 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Trial Setting Conference

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  • 10/01/2020
  • DocketTrial Setting Conference scheduled for 12/02/2020 at 09:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25

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  • 10/01/2020
  • DocketMinute Order (Order to Show Cause Re: Status of Defendant's Filing of an An...)

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  • 10/01/2020
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause Re: Status of Defendant's Filing of an Answer scheduled for 10/01/2020 at 09:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25 updated: Result Date to 10/01/2020; Result Type to Held

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  • 09/25/2020
  • DocketDeclaration Of Libby Wong In Response To Order To Show Cause Hearing RE Status Of Defendant's Filing Of An Answer; Filed by: Nick J. Halekakis (Defendant)

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  • 08/24/2020
  • DocketSubstitution of Attorney; Filed by: Nick J. Halekakis (Defendant)

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  • 08/24/2020
  • DocketCross-Complaint; Filed by: Nick J. Halekakis (Defendant); As to: Jerrod Washington (Plaintiff); David Borkes (Plaintiff)

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  • 08/24/2020
  • DocketAnswer; Filed by: Nick J. Halekakis (Defendant); As to: Jerrod Washington (Plaintiff); David Borkes (Plaintiff)

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  • 08/24/2020
  • DocketUpdated -- Libby Wong (Attorney): Organization Name changed from SCHIFFER & BUUS, APC to Schiffer & Buus, APC

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  • 08/12/2020
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause Re: Status of Defendant's Filing of an Answer scheduled for 10/01/2020 at 09:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25

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29 More Docket Entries
  • 10/25/2018
  • DocketRequest for Entry of Default / Judgment; Filed by: Jerrod Washington (Plaintiff); David Borkes (Plaintiff); As to: Nick J. Halekakis (Defendant)

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  • 10/25/2018
  • DocketNotice of Rejection - Fax Filing; Filed by: Clerk

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  • 08/23/2018
  • DocketProof of Service by Substituted Service; Filed by: Jerrod Washington (Plaintiff); David Borkes (Plaintiff); As to: Nick J. Halekakis (Defendant); Proof of Mailing Date: 08/04/2018; Service Cost: 120.00; Service Cost Waived: No

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  • 07/20/2018
  • DocketNotice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case; Filed by: Clerk

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  • 07/20/2018
  • DocketSummons on Complaint; Issued and Filed by: Clerk

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  • 07/20/2018
  • DocketCivil Case Cover Sheet; Filed by: Jerrod Washington (Plaintiff); David Borkes (Plaintiff)

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  • 07/20/2018
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by: Jerrod Washington (Plaintiff); David Borkes (Plaintiff); As to: Nick J. Halekakis (Defendant)

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  • 07/20/2018
  • DocketCase assigned to Hon. Jon R. Takasugi in Department 94 Stanley Mosk Courthouse

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  • 07/20/2018
  • DocketNon-Jury Trial scheduled for 01/17/2020 at 08:30 AM in Stanley Mosk Courthouse at Department 94

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  • 07/20/2018
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause - Failure to File Proof of Service scheduled for 07/23/2021 at 08:30 AM in Stanley Mosk Courthouse at Department 94

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: 18STLC09831    Hearing Date: August 12, 2020    Dept: 25

HEARING DATE:   Wed., August 12, 2020 JUDGE /DEPT: Blancarte/25

CASE NAME: Washington, et al. v. Halekakis  COMPL. FILED: 07-20-18

CASE NUMBER: 18STLC09831 DEFAULT: 08-22-19

NOTICE:   OK DEF. JDGMT: 09-11-19

PROCEEDINGS    MOTION TO SET ASIDE/VACATE DEFAULT AND DEFAULT JUDGMENT

MOVING PARTY:   Defendant Nick Halekakis, in pro per

RESP. PARTY: None

MOTION TO SET ASIDE/VACATE DEFAULT

(CCP § 473(b); Equitable Relief)

TENTATIVE RULING:

Defendant Nick Halekakis’ Motion to Set Aside/Vacate Default is GRANTED. Proposed answer to be filed within ten (10) days of 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 August 10, 2020 [   ] Late [X] None

REPLY: None filed as of August 10, 2020 [   ] Late [X] None

ANALYSIS:

  1. Background

On July 20, 2018, Plaintiffs Jerrod Washington (“Washington”) and David Borkes (“Borkes”) (collectively, “Plaintiffs”) filed an action for bad faith retention of security deposit, breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing, conversion, unfair business practices, and attorney’s fees against Nick J. Halekakis (“Defendant”). On August 22, 2019, default was entered against Defendant and on September 11, 2019, default judgment was entered in the amount of $5,720.44. (9/11/19 Judgment.)

On March 11, 2020, Defendant filed the instant Motion to Set Aside/Vacate Default and Default Judgment (the “Motion”). To date, no opposition has been filed.

  1. Legal Standard & Discussion

Defendant seeks relief pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure section 473, subdivision (b). (Mot., p. 1:25-27.) 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.)

Defendant’s request to set aside default judgment is timely. However, because this Motion was filed more than six months after entry of default, it is untimely. Indeed, without setting aside the default, Defendant cannot participate in this action or put forth a defense. (Sporn v. Home Depot USA, Inc. (2005) 126 Cal.App.4th 1294, 1301.)

However, the Court may treat a motion for relief under Section 473, subdivision (b) as a motion for equitable relief. (Rappleyea v. Campbell (1994) 8 Cal.4th 975, 981.) “[A] trial court may ... vacate a default on equitable grounds even if statutory relief is unavailable. [Citation.]” (Id.) “One ground for equitable relief is extrinsic mistake – a term broadly applied when circumstances extrinsic to the litigation have unfairly cost a party a hearing on the merits. [Citations.]” (Id. at p. 981.) “ ‘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.’ [Citation.]” (Id. at 982.)

As to the first element, Defendant has attached a copy of his proposed verified answer. “Ordinarily, a verifiedanswer to a complaint’s allegations suffices to show merit. [Citations.]” (Rappleyea v. Campbell (1994) 8 Ca.4th 975, 983.) (Italics added.) Thus, Defendant has satisfied the first element.

As to the second element, Defendant argues he was never properly served with the Summons and Complaint because he was served at an old address. (Mot., p. 4:10-20.) Defendant also argues that although he was aware of the action, he relied on Plaintiff’s counsel’s representations that default would not be entered against him and believed the parties were engaged in settlement negotiations. (Id. at p. 4:21-24, Exh. B.) As evidence Defendant attaches a copy of an August 30, 2018 email sent to abafamilylawgroup@gmail.com. (Id.) This is the same email on the documents Plaintiff has filed with the Court. In the email, Defendant confirmed to the attorney recipient he had not been served with the Summons and Complaint, confirmed that Plaintiff’s attorney agreed not to seek a default judgment, and provided a detailed settlement offer. (Id.) Thus, the Court finds that Defendant has satisfied the second element.

As to the third element, Defendant explains that, to help him in his search for legal representation, he obtained a copy of the Complaint from the Court in March 2020. (Id. at p. 5:28-6:8.) It was at this time that Defendant discovered the default and default judgment. (Id.)  This Motion was filed on March 11, 2020. Thus, the Court finds that Defendant was diligent in seeking relief once the default was discovered.

Notably, Plaintiffs have not filed an opposition. Thus, Defendant’s unopposed Motion is GRANTED.

 

  1. Conclusion & Order

For the foregoing reasons, Defendant Nick Halekakis’ Motion to Set Aside/Vacate Default is GRANTED. Proposed answer to be filed within ten (10) days of notice of this order.

Moving party is ordered to give notice.