On 04/11/2019 JOSE GABRERA filed a Labor - Other Labor lawsuit against EDUARDO RAMOS. 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.
Disposed - Judgment Entered
Spring Street Courthouse
Los Angeles, California
JAMES E. BLANCARTE
Gardena, CA 90247
GERAGOS MATTHEW J.
5/20/2021: Minute Order - Minute Order (Hearing on Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings)
5/20/2021: Notice of Ruling - Notice of Ruling
4/1/2021: Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings - Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings
12/9/2020: Substitution of Attorney - Substitution of Attorney
12/10/2020: Substitution of Attorney - Substitution of Attorney
12/10/2020: Certificate of Mailing for - Certificate of Mailing for [Minute Order (Non-Jury Trial)]
12/10/2020: Minute Order - Minute Order (Non-Jury Trial)
10/5/2020: Notice Re: Continuance of Hearing and Order - Notice Re: Continuance of Hearing and Order
4/11/2019: Civil Case Cover Sheet - Civil Case Cover Sheet
5/24/2019: Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint) - Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)
5/24/2019: Answer - Answer
4/11/2019: Complaint - Complaint
4/11/2019: Summons - Summons on Complaint
4/11/2019: Notice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case - Notice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case
4/11/2019: First Amended Standing Order - First Amended Standing Order
4/11/2019: Order on Court Fee Waiver (Superior Court) - Order on Court Fee Waiver (Superior Court)
DocketNotice of Ruling; Filed by: Eduardo Ramos (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
DocketMinute Order (Hearing on Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings)Read MoreRead Less
DocketHearing on Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings scheduled for 05/20/2021 at 10:00 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25 updated: Result Date to 05/20/2021; Result Type to Held - Motion GrantedRead MoreRead Less
DocketNon-Jury Trial scheduled for 08/16/2021 at 08:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25 Not Held - Vacated by Court on 05/20/2021Read MoreRead Less
DocketHearing on Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings scheduled for 05/20/2021 at 10:00 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25Read MoreRead Less
DocketMotion for Judgment on the Pleadings; Filed by: Eduardo Ramos (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
DocketSubstitution of Attorney; Filed by: Matthew Jay Geragos (Attorney); As to: Eduardo Ramos (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
DocketCertificate of Mailing for [Minute Order (Non-Jury Trial)]; Filed by: ClerkRead MoreRead Less
DocketMinute Order (Non-Jury Trial)Read MoreRead Less
DocketUpdated -- Matthew J. Geragos (Attorney): Middle Name changed from Jay to J.Read MoreRead Less
DocketRequest to Waive Court Fees; Filed by: Jose Gabrera (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
DocketComplaint; Filed by: Jose Gabrera (Plaintiff); As to: Eduardo Ramos (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
DocketUpdated -- Request to Waive Court Fees: Filed By: Jose Gabrera (Plaintiff); Result: Granted; Result Date: 04/11/2019; As To Parties: removedRead MoreRead Less
DocketOrder to Show Cause Re: Failure to File Proof of Service scheduled for 04/14/2022 at 08:30 AM in Stanley Mosk Courthouse at Department 94Read MoreRead Less
DocketNon-Jury Trial scheduled for 10/08/2020 at 08:30 AM in Stanley Mosk Courthouse at Department 94Read MoreRead Less
DocketCase assigned to Hon. James E. Blancarte in Department 94 Stanley Mosk CourthouseRead MoreRead Less
DocketFirst Amended Standing Order; Filed by: ClerkRead MoreRead Less
DocketNotice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case; Filed by: ClerkRead MoreRead Less
DocketSummons on Complaint; Issued and Filed by: ClerkRead MoreRead Less
DocketCivil Case Cover Sheet; Filed by: Jose Gabrera (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
Case Number: 19STLC03551 Hearing Date: May 20, 2021 Dept: 25
PROCEEDINGS: MOTION FOR JUDGMENT ON THE PLEADINGS
MOVING PARTY: Defendant Eduardo Ramos
RESP. PARTY: None
MOTION FOR JUDGMENT ON THE PLEADINGS
(CCP § 438, et seq.)
Defendant Eduardo Ramos’s Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings is GRANTED.
[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 May 18, 2021 [ ] Late [X] None
REPLY: None filed as of May 18, 2021 [ ] Late [X] None
On April 11, 2019, Plaintiff Jose Gabrera (“Plaintiff”), in pro per, filed an action alleging breach of contract and common count causes of action against Defendant Eduardo Ramos (“Defendant”). Defendant filed an Answer, in pro per, on May 24, 2019.
Defendant filed notice that he was being represented by attorney Matthew Geragos on December 9, 2020.
A non-jury trial was scheduled for December 10, 2020. On that date, the Court found the case was not ready to proceed to trial and continued the trial to August 16, 2021. (12/10/20 Minute Order.)
On April 1, 2021, Defendant filed the instant Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings (the “Motion”). No opposition was filed.
II. Legal Standard
The standard for ruling on a motion for judgment on the pleadings is essentially the same as that applicable to a general demurrer, that is, under the state of the pleadings, together with matters that may be judicially noticed, it appears that a party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. (Bezirdjian v. O'Reilly (2010) 183 Cal.App.4th 316, 321-322, citing Schabarum v. California Legislature (1998) 60 Cal.App.4th 1205, 1216.) Matters which are subject to mandatory judicial notice may be treated as part of the complaint and may be considered without notice to the parties. Matters which are subject to permissive judicial notice must be specified in the notice of motion, the supporting points and authorities, or as the court otherwise permits. (Id.) The motion may not be supported by extrinsic evidence. (Barker v. Hull (1987) 191 Cal.App.3d 221, 236.)
When the moving party is a defendant, he must demonstrate either of the following exist:
(i) The court has no jurisdiction of the subject of the cause of action alleged in the complaint.
(ii) The complaint does not state facts sufficient to constitute a cause of action against that defendant. (Code Civ. Proc., § 438, subd. (c)(a)(B)(i)-(ii).)
Additionally, a motion for judgment on the pleadings must be accompanied by a meet and confer declaration demonstrating an attempt to meet and confer in person or by telephone, at least five days before the date a motion for judgment on the pleadings is filed. (Code Civ. Proc., § 439.)
Defendant’s Motion is accompanied by a meet and confer declaration as required by Code of Civil Procedure section 439. (Mot., Geragos Decl., ¶ 1, Exh. A.)
Defendant argues Plaintiff’s causes of action are barred by the applicable statute of limitation and for this reason, the Motion should be granted in its entirety. (Mot., pp. 4-5.) “A pleading which on its face is barred by the statute of limitations does not state a viable cause of action and is subject to judgment on the pleadings.” (Hunt v. County of Shasta (1990) 225 Cal.App.3d 432, 440.)
A. First Cause of Action – Breach of Oral Contract
“To establish a cause of action for breach of contract, the plaintiff must plead and prove (1) the existence of the contract, (2) the plaintiff’s performance or excuse for nonperformance, (3) the defendant’s breach, and (4) resulting damages to the plaintiff. [Citation.]” (Maxwell v. Dolezal (2014) 231 Cal.App.4th 93, 97-98.) “The elements of a breach of oral contract are the same as those for breach of a written contract. [Citations.]” (Stockton Mortgage, Inc. v. Tope (2014) 223 Cal.App.4th 437, 453.) The statute of limitations for breach of an oral contract is two years. (Code Civ. Proc., § 339.)
As to the first cause of action, Plaintiff’s form Complaint alleges the following: (1) that, pursuant to an oral contract, Plaintiff worked with Defendant from June 2014 through November 2014; (2) that Defendant offered Plaintiff $400.00 per week for 8 hours of work per day; (3) that Plaintiff instead worked 12 hours per day, resulting in 4 hours of daily overtime; and (4) that in total, Plaintiff worked 480 hours of overtime amounting to $19,380.00. (Compl., ¶ BC-1.)
It appears the date of breach occurred, at the latest, on or around November 2014, when Plaintiff allegedly stopped working with Defendant. Because this action was filed over four years after Defendant’s alleged failure to compensate Plaintiff pursuant to their oral agreement, it is barred by the 2-year statute of limitations. (Code Civ. Proc., § 339.) Notably, Plaintiff has not filed an opposition demonstrating otherwise.
The Court notes that Plaintiff’s allegations could also support a wage and hour lawsuit against Defendant. However, wage and hour lawsuits have a statute of limitations of three years. (Code Civ. Proc., § 338.) Thus, any wage and hour claims would also be barred.
B. Second Cause of Action – Common Counts
“A common count is not a specific cause of action, however; rather, it is a simplified form of pleading normally used to aver the existence of various forms of monetary indebtedness…[Citations.] When a common count is used as an alternative way of seeking the same recovery demanded in a specific cause of action, and is based on the same facts, the common count is demurrable if the cause of action is demurrable. [Citations]” (McBride v. Boughton (2004) 123 Cal.App.4th 379-395 [affirming dismissal of a common counts cause of action, reasoning that a common count must “stand or fall” with the specific cause of action”].) “Where the “plaintiff is not entitled to recover under one count in a complaint wherein all the facts upon which his demand are specifically pleaded, it is proper to sustain a demurrer to a common count set forth in the complaint, the recovery under which is obviously based on the set of facts specifically pleaded in the other count. [Citations.]” (Jones v. Daly (1981) 122 Cal.App.3d 500, 510.)
Plaintiff’s form Complaint alleges the following: (1) Defendant became indebted to Plaintiff within the last four years; (2) that Defendant had and received money for the use and benefit of Plaintiff; (3) that money was paid out, laid out, and expended to or for Defendant and Defendant’s special instance and request, and (4) that $19,380.00 is the reasonable value due to Plaintiff for labor, services, and materials rendered at the special instance and request of Defendant and for which Defendant promised to pay Plaintiff, which remains unpaid despite Plaintiff’s demand. (Compl., ¶¶ CC-1, 2.)
Plaintiff’s second cause of action seeks to recover the same amount from Defendant as the first cause of action, $19,380.00 for labor and services. Thus, although Plaintiff’s form Complaint checks off the box stating that Defendant became indebted to Plaintiff within the last four years, it is clear from the identical damages sought he seeks to recover for the same 2014 injury alleged in the breach of contract cause of action, i.e., that Defendant did not pay Plaintiff $19,380.00 in wages. Plaintiff did not file an opposition demonstrating otherwise. Because this common count cause of action is based on the same injury, which occurred over four years ago, it is also time-barred.
For the reasons discussed, Defendant’s Motion is GRANTED.
IV. Conclusion & Order
Defendant Eduardo Ramos’s Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings is GRANTED.
Moving party is ordered to give notice.
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