This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 07/08/2020 at 08:01:30 (UTC).

LOUIS HUITRON, ET AL. VS CARL CHUDNOFSKY

Case Summary

On 05/16/2019 LOUIS HUITRON filed a Personal Injury - Motor Vehicle lawsuit against CARL CHUDNOFSKY. 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 - Dismissed.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    *******4748

  • Filing Date:

    05/16/2019

  • Case Status:

    Disposed - Dismissed

  • Case Type:

    Personal Injury - Motor Vehicle

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Spring Street Courthouse

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Judge

JAMES E. BLANCARTE

 

Party Details

Plaintiffs

TERRIQUEZ MARIANA

HUITRON LOUIS

Defendant

CHUDNOFSKY CARL

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorney

WILLOUGHBY ANTHONY

Defendant Attorney

TOSCHI STEVEN CRAIG

 

Court Documents

Certificate of Mailing for - Certificate of Mailing for (Court Order Re: Hearing on Motion to Compel Discovery (not "F...) of 03/24/2020

3/24/2020: Certificate of Mailing for - Certificate of Mailing for (Court Order Re: Hearing on Motion to Compel Discovery (not "F...) of 03/24/2020

Notice of Motion - Notice of Motion

3/24/2020: Notice of Motion - Notice of Motion

Proof of Service by Mail - Proof of Service by Mail

3/24/2020: Proof of Service by Mail - Proof of Service by Mail

Notice (name extension) - Notice of Continued Motion

3/12/2020: Notice (name extension) - Notice of Continued Motion

Notice of Ruling - Notice of Ruling

1/17/2020: Notice of Ruling - Notice of Ruling

Notice of Motion - Notice of Motion

1/17/2020: Notice of Motion - Notice of Motion

Proof of Service by Mail - Proof of Service by Mail

11/4/2019: Proof of Service by Mail - Proof of Service by Mail

Memorandum of Points & Authorities - Memorandum of Points & Authorities

11/4/2019: Memorandum of Points & Authorities - Memorandum of Points & Authorities

Proof of Service by Mail - Proof of Service by Mail

11/4/2019: Proof of Service by Mail - Proof of Service by Mail

Declaration (name extension) - Declaration of Michael Wellen in Support of MTC

11/4/2019: Declaration (name extension) - Declaration of Michael Wellen in Support of MTC

Motion to Compel Discovery (not Further Discovery) - 1 moving party, 1 motion - Motion to Compel Discovery (not Further Discovery) - 1 moving party, 1 motion

10/15/2019: Motion to Compel Discovery (not Further Discovery) - 1 moving party, 1 motion - Motion to Compel Discovery (not Further Discovery) - 1 moving party, 1 motion

Declaration (name extension) - Declaration of Michael Wellen in Support of MTC

10/15/2019: Declaration (name extension) - Declaration of Michael Wellen in Support of MTC

Proof of Service by Mail - Proof of Service by Mail

10/15/2019: Proof of Service by Mail - Proof of Service by Mail

Motion to Compel Discovery (not Further Discovery) - 1 moving party, 1 motion - Motion to Compel Discovery (not Further Discovery) - 1 moving party, 1 motion

10/15/2019: Motion to Compel Discovery (not Further Discovery) - 1 moving party, 1 motion - Motion to Compel Discovery (not Further Discovery) - 1 moving party, 1 motion

Declaration (name extension) - Declaration of Michael Wellen in Support of MTC

10/15/2019: Declaration (name extension) - Declaration of Michael Wellen in Support of MTC

Memorandum of Points & Authorities - Memorandum of Points & Authorities

10/15/2019: Memorandum of Points & Authorities - Memorandum of Points & Authorities

Complaint - Complaint

5/16/2019: Complaint - Complaint

Civil Case Cover Sheet - Civil Case Cover Sheet

5/16/2019: Civil Case Cover Sheet - Civil Case Cover Sheet

27 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 07/07/2020
  • DocketNotice of Entry of Dismissal and Proof of Service; Filed by: Carl Chudnofsky (Defendant)

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  • 07/06/2020
  • DocketOn the Complaint filed by Louis Huitron, et al. on 05/16/2019, entered Order for Dismissal without prejudice as to the entire action

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  • 07/06/2020
  • DocketMinute Order (Hearing on Motion for Terminating Sanctions; Hearing on Motio...)

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  • 07/06/2020
  • DocketHearing on Motion for Terminating Sanctions scheduled for 07/06/2020 at 10:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25 updated: Result Date to 07/06/2020; Result Type to Held

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  • 07/06/2020
  • DocketHearing on Motion to Compel Discovery (not "Further Discovery") scheduled for 07/06/2020 at 10:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25 updated: Result Date to 07/06/2020; Result Type to Held

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  • 07/06/2020
  • DocketNon-Jury Trial scheduled for 11/12/2020 at 08:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25 Not Held - Vacated by Court on 07/06/2020

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  • 07/06/2020
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause Re: Failure to File Proof of Service scheduled for 05/19/2022 at 10:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25 Not Held - Vacated by Court on 07/06/2020

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  • 03/24/2020
  • DocketHearing on Motion for Terminating Sanctions scheduled for 07/06/2020 at 10:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25

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  • 03/24/2020
  • DocketNotice of Motion; Filed by: Carl Chudnofsky (Defendant)

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  • 03/24/2020
  • DocketMemorandum of Points & Authorities; Filed by: Carl Chudnofsky (Defendant)

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36 More Docket Entries
  • 08/02/2019
  • DocketDemand for Jury Trial; Filed by: Carl Chudnofsky (Defendant)

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  • 08/02/2019
  • DocketAnswer; Filed by: Carl Chudnofsky (Defendant); As to: Louis Huitron (Plaintiff); Mariana Terriquez (Plaintiff)

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  • 05/17/2019
  • DocketNon-Jury Trial scheduled for 11/12/2020 at 08:30 AM in Stanley Mosk Courthouse at Department 94

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  • 05/17/2019
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause Re: Failure to File Proof of Service scheduled for 05/19/2022 at 08:30 AM in Stanley Mosk Courthouse at Department 94

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  • 05/17/2019
  • DocketCase assigned to Hon. James E. Blancarte in Department 94 Stanley Mosk Courthouse

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  • 05/16/2019
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by: Louis Huitron (Plaintiff); Mariana Terriquez (Plaintiff); As to: Carl Chudnofsky (Defendant)

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  • 05/16/2019
  • DocketCivil Case Cover Sheet; Filed by: Louis Huitron (Plaintiff); Mariana Terriquez (Plaintiff); As to: Carl Chudnofsky (Defendant)

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  • 05/16/2019
  • DocketSummons on Complaint; Issued and Filed by: Louis Huitron (Plaintiff); Mariana Terriquez (Plaintiff); As to: Carl Chudnofsky (Defendant)

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  • 05/16/2019
  • DocketNotice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case; Filed by: Clerk

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  • 05/16/2019
  • DocketFirst Amended Standing Order; Filed by: Clerk

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: 19STLC04748    Hearing Date: July 06, 2020    Dept: 25

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

(CCP §§ 2023.030; 2031.300)

TENTATIVE RULING:

Defendant Carl Chudnofsky’s Motion for Terminating Sanctions is GRANTED. However, Defendant’s request for sanctions is DENIED. In addition, Defendant’s Motion to Compel Plaintiffs to Provide Verified Responses to Requests for Production of Documents Set One and Request for Sanctions is PLACED OFF CALENDAR AS MOOT.  

SERVICE

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

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

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

Motion to Compel Production of Documents

OPPOSITION: None filed as of July 1, 2020   [   ] Late [X] None

REPLY: None filed as of July 1, 2020 [   ] Late [X] None

Motion for Terminating Sanctions 

OPPOSITION: None filed as of July 1, 2020   [   ] Late [X] None

REPLY: None filed as of July 1, 2020 [   ] Late [X] None

ANALYSIS:

  1. Background

On May 16, 2019, Plaintiffs Louis Huitron (“Huitron”) and Mariana Terriquez (“Terriquez”) (collectively, “Plaintiffs”) filed the instant action for motor vehicle negligence against Defendant Carl Chudnofsky (“Defendant”). On August 2, 2019, Defendant filed an Answer.  

On October 15, 2019, Defendant filed (1) Motion to Compel Plaintiffs to Provide Verified Responses to Form Interrogatories, Set One and Request for Sanctions (the “Interrogatories Motion”) and (2) Motion to Compel Plaintiffs to Provide Answers to Request for Production of Documents, Set One, and Request for Sanctions (the “Production Motion”) (collectively, the “Discovery Motions”). No opposition briefs were filed.

The Discovery Motions were initially heard on January 13, 2020. At that time, the Court granted Defendant’s Interrogatories Motion, but continued the Production Motion due to Defendant’s failure to pay the appropriate number of filing fees. (1/13/20 Minute Order.) The Court ordered Defendant to pay two additional filing fees and warned that failure to do so could result in the Production Motion being placed off calendar or denied. (Id.)

On March 24, 2020, Defendant filed the instant Motion for Terminating Sanctions Due to Plaintiff’s Failure to Obey the Order of the Court. To date, no opposition has been filed.

  1. Legal Standard & Discussion

A. Motion for Terminating Sanctions

Where a party willfully disobeys a discovery order, courts have discretion to impose terminating, issue, evidence, or monetary sanctions. (Code Civ. Proc., §§ 2023.010, subd. (g); 2023.030, subds. (b)-(d).)  Ultimate discovery sanctions are justified where there is a willful discovery order violation, a history of abuse, and evidence showing that less severe sanctions would not produce compliance with discovery rules.  (Van Sickle v. Gilbert (2011) 196 Cal.App.4th 1495, 1516.)  “[A] penalty as severe as dismissal or default is not authorized where noncompliance with discovery is caused by an inability to comply rather than willfulness or bad faith.”  (Brown v. Sup. Ct. (1986) 180 Cal.App.3d 701, 707.)  The court may impose a terminating sanction by one of the following orders:

(1) An order striking out the pleadings or parts of the pleadings of any party engaging in the misuse of the discovery process.

(2) An order staying further proceedings by that party until an order for discovery is obeyed.

(3) An order dismissing the action, or any part of the action, of that party.

(4) An order rendering a judgment by default against that party.

(Code Civ. Proc., § 2023.030, subd. (d).)

The Court finds that terminating sanctions are warranted here. Following the Court’s January 13, 2020 Order granting Defendant’s Interrogatories Motion as to both Plaintiffs, Defendant served notice of the order on January 17, 2020 by regular mail. (Mot., Wellen Decl., ¶ 4, Exh. C.) Despite the Court’s order, Plaintiffs have not provided Defendant with any responses to the Form Interrogatories. (Id. at ¶ 5.) Given the notice provided, the Court finds this to be a willful failure to comply with the Court’s January 13, 2020 Order. Furthermore, Plaintiffs were properly served with this Motion for Terminating Sanctions, but have not opposed it. The Court additionally notes that Plaintiffs did not oppose the previously filed Interrogatories Motion and Production Motion, and did not appear for hearing on January 13, 2020. (1/13/20 Minute Order.) Although terminating sanctions are a harsh penalty, the evidence above demonstrates that Plaintiffs are not interested in prosecuting this action. However, the Court declines to award Defendant monetary sanctions as such an order would be futile.

B. Production Motion

As the Court has granted Defendant’s Motion for Terminating Sanctions, the previously continued Production Motion is PLACED OFF CALENDAR AS MOOT.

  1. Conclusion & Order

Defendant Carl Chudnofsky’s Motion for Terminating Sanctions is GRANTED. However, Defendant’s request for sanctions is DENIED. In addition, Defendant’s Motion to Compel Plaintiffs to Provide Verified Responses to Requests for Production of Documents Set One and Request for Sanctions is PLACED OFF CALENDAR AS MOOT. 

Moving party is ordered to give notice.

Case Number: 19STLC04748    Hearing Date: July 02, 2020    Dept: 25

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

(CCP §§ 2023.030; 2031.300)

TENTATIVE RULING:

Defendant Carl Chudnofsky’s Motion for Terminating Sanctions is GRANTED. However, Defendant’s request for sanctions is DENIED. In addition, Defendant’s Motion to Compel Plaintiffs to Provide Verified Responses to Requests for Production of Documents Set One and Request for Sanctions is PLACED OFF CALENDAR AS MOOT.

SERVICE:

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

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

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

Motion to Compel Production of Documents

OPPOSITION: None filed as of July 1, 2020 [ ] Late [X] None

REPLY: None filed as of July 1, 2020 [ ] Late [X] None

Motion for Terminating Sanctions

OPPOSITION: None filed as of July 1, 2020 [ ] Late [X] None

REPLY: None filed as of July 1, 2020 [ ] Late [X] None

ANALYSIS:

  1. Background

On May 16, 2019, Plaintiffs Louis Huitron (“Huitron”) and Mariana Terriquez (“Terriquez”) (collectively, “Plaintiffs”) filed the instant action for motor vehicle negligence against Defendant Carl Chudnofsky (“Defendant”). On August 2, 2019, Defendant filed an Answer.

On October 15, 2019, Defendant filed (1) Motion to Compel Plaintiffs to Provide Verified Responses to Form Interrogatories, Set One and Request for Sanctions (the “Interrogatories Motion”) and (2) Motion to Compel Plaintiffs to Provide Answers to Request for Production of Documents, Set One, and Request for Sanctions (the “Production Motion”) (collectively, the “Discovery Motions”). No opposition briefs were filed.

The Discovery Motions were initially heard on January 13, 2020. At that time, the Court granted Defendant’s Interrogatories Motion, but continued the Production Motion due to Defendant’s failure to pay the appropriate number of filing fees. (1/13/20 Minute Order.) The Court ordered Defendant to pay two additional filing fees and warned that failure to do so could result in the Production Motion being placed off calendar or denied. (Id.)

On March 24, 2020, Defendant filed the instant Motion for Terminating Sanctions Due to Plaintiff’s Failure to Obey the Order of the Court. To date, no opposition has been filed.

  1. Legal Standard & Discussion

A. Motion for Terminating Sanctions

Where a party willfully disobeys a discovery order, courts have discretion to impose terminating, issue, evidence, or monetary sanctions. (Code Civ. Proc., §§ 2023.010, subd. (g); 2023.030, subds. (b)-(d).) Ultimate discovery sanctions are justified where there is a willful discovery order violation, a history of abuse, and evidence showing that less severe sanctions would not produce compliance with discovery rules. (Van Sickle v. Gilbert (2011) 196 Cal.App.4th 1495, 1516.) “[A] penalty as severe as dismissal or default is not authorized where noncompliance with discovery is caused by an inability to comply rather than willfulness or bad faith.” (Brown v. Sup. Ct. (1986) 180 Cal.App.3d 701, 707.) The court may impose a terminating sanction by one of the following orders:

(1) An order striking out the pleadings or parts of the pleadings of any party engaging in the misuse of the discovery process.

(2) An order staying further proceedings by that party until an order for discovery is obeyed.

(3) An order dismissing the action, or any part of the action, of that party.

(4) An order rendering a judgment by default against that party.

(Code Civ. Proc., § 2023.030, subd. (d).)

The Court finds that terminating sanctions are warranted here. Following the Court’s January 13, 2020 Order granting Defendant’s Interrogatories Motion as to both Plaintiffs, Defendant served notice of the order on January 17, 2020 by regular mail. (Mot., Wellen Decl., ¶ 4, Exh. C.) Despite the Court’s order, Plaintiffs have not provided Defendant with any responses to the Form Interrogatories. (Id. at ¶ 5.) Given the notice provided, the Court finds this to be a willful failure to comply with the Court’s January 13, 2020 Order. Furthermore, Plaintiffs were properly served with this Motion for Terminating Sanctions, but have not opposed it. The Court additionally notes that Plaintiffs did not oppose the previously filed Interrogatories Motion and Production Motion, and did not appear for hearing on January 13, 2020. (1/13/20 Minute Order.) Although terminating sanctions are a harsh penalty, the evidence above demonstrates that Plaintiffs are not interested in prosecuting this action. However, the Court declines to award Defendant monetary sanctions as such an order would be futile.

B. Production Motion

As the Court has granted Defendant’s Motion for Terminating Sanctions, the previously continued Production Motion is PLACED OFF CALENDAR AS MOOT.

  1. Conclusion & Order

Defendant Carl Chudnofsky’s Motion for Terminating Sanctions is GRANTED. However, Defendant’s request for sanctions is DENIED. In addition, Defendant’s Motion to Compel Plaintiffs to Provide Verified Responses to Requests for Production of Documents Set One and Request for Sanctions is PLACED OFF CALENDAR AS MOOT.

Moving party is ordered to give notice.

Case Number: 19STLC04748    Hearing Date: January 13, 2020    Dept: 94

MOTION TO COMPEL RESPONSES TO INTERROGATORIES, REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION; REQUEST FOR SANCTIONS

(CCP §§ 2030.290; 2031.300)

TENTATIVE RULING:

Defendant Carl Chudnofsky’s Motion For Order Compelling Plaintiffs To Respond to Form Interrogatories; Request for Sanctions is GRANTED.

Defendant Carl Chudnofsky’s Motion For Order Compelling Plaintiffs to Respond to Request for Production of Documents; Request For Sanctions is CONTINUED TO MARCH 17, 2020 AT 10:30 AM IN DEPARTMENT 94.

ANALYSIS:

Plaintiffs Louis Huitron and Mariana Terriquez (“Plaintiffs”) filed the instant action for motor vehicle negligence against Defendant Carl Chudnofsky (“Defendant”) on May 16, 2019.

On August 8, 2019, Defendant served Form Interrogatories and Request for Production of Documents on each Plaintiff. (Motions, Wellen Decl. ¶2 and Exh. A.) To date, Defendant has not received any verified responses to the discovery requests from Plaintiffs. (Id. at ¶¶3-4.) Defendant filed the instant Motions to Compel Plaintiffs’ Discovery Responses on October 15, 2019. To date, no opposition has been filed.

Discussion

Due to Plaintiffs’ failure to respond to the propounded discovery requests, the Court is inclined to grant the Motions. However, the Court addresses the fact that Defendant has only filed two discovery motions while seeking orders with respect to four different sets of discovery: (1) Form Interrogatories, Set One served on Plaintiff Louis Huitron; (2) Form Interrogatories, Set One served on Plaintiff Mariana Terriquez; (3) Request for Production, Set One served on Plaintiff Louis Huitron; and (4) Request for Production, Set One served on Plaintiff Mariana Terriquez.

The statutes under which Defendant moves are Code of Civil Procedure section 2030.290 and 2031.300. Each states in relevant part: “If a party to whom interrogatories are directed fails to serve a timely response, the following rules apply. . . .” (Code Civ. Proc., § 2030.290 (emphasis added)); “If a party to whom a demand for inspection, copying, testing, or sampling is directed fails to serve a timely response to it, the following rules shall apply . . . .” (Code Civ. Proc., § 2031.300 (epmphasis added).) Based on this language, it is clear the Civil Discovery Act contemplates that the motions filed under these separate statutory provisions will be separate for each party against whom they are sought. Also, filing discovery motions as joint motions negatively impacts the court’s calendar by placing more motions on the calendar than slots have been provided by the online reservation system. Furthermore, it allows the moving party to avoid paying the requisite filing fees. Statutorily required filing fees are jurisdictional and “it is mandatory for the court clerks to demand and receive statutorily required filing fees.” (See Duran v. St. Luke’s Hospital (2003) 114 Cal.App.4th 457, 460.) One of Defendant’s joint discovery motions, therefore, cannot be heard in full until two additional filing fees are paid.

Accordingly, the Court rules only on Defendant’s joint Motion For Order Compelling Plaintiffs To Respond to Form Interrogatories; Request for Sanctions at this time. Plaintiffs are ordered to serve verified responses, without objections, to Defendant’s Form Interrogatories within twenty (20) days from the date of Defendant serving a notice of this Order. (Code Civ. Proc., § 2030.290.) Monetary sanctions are also awarded under Code of Civil Procedure sections 2030.290. Given the simplicity of the Motion and the lack of opposition and reply, the Court finds that sanctions are appropriate in the amount of $260.00 based on one hour of attorney time billed at $200.00 per hour, plus one filing fee of $60.00. (Motion, Wellen Decl., ¶5.) Sanctions of $260.00, awarded jointly and severally against Plaintiffs, are to be paid within thirty (30) days from the date of Defendant serving notice of this Order.

As to the Motion For Order Compelling Plaintiffs to Respond to Request for Production of Documents; Request For Sanctions, the hearing is continued to March 17, 2020 at 10:30 am in Department 94. At least 16 days prior to the continued hearing date Defendant is to pay two additional filing fees and submit proof of the same to the Court. Failure to do so may result in the Motion For Order Compelling Plaintiffs to Respond to Request for Production of Documents; Request For Sanctions being placed off calendar or denied.

Moving party to give notice.