This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 06/03/2020 at 03:23:54 (UTC).

PAULA KAVALIS VS LEE RODRIGUEZ

Case Summary

On 06/07/2019 PAULA KAVALIS filed a Contract - Other Contract lawsuit against LEE RODRIGUEZ. 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 Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    *******5484

  • Filing Date:

    06/07/2019

  • 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

JAMES E. BLANCARTE

 

Party Details

Plaintiff

KAVALIS PAULA

Defendant

RODRIGUEZ LEE

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorney

KERNS BENNETT

Defendant Attorney

GROSSMAN OFER

 

Court Documents

Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint) - Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

1/21/2020: Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint) - Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

Declaration (name extension) - Declaration of Ofer M. Grossman In Support of Motion to Quash - No Opposition to Motion Received

1/21/2020: Declaration (name extension) - Declaration of Ofer M. Grossman In Support of Motion to Quash - No Opposition to Motion Received

Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint) - Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

1/22/2020: Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint) - Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

Declaration (name extension) - Declaration of Ofer M. Grossman In Support of Motion to Quash Notice of Non- Opposition to Motion Received from Plaintiffs Counsel

1/22/2020: Declaration (name extension) - Declaration of Ofer M. Grossman In Support of Motion to Quash Notice of Non- Opposition to Motion Received from Plaintiffs Counsel

Minute Order - Minute Order (Hearing on Motion to Quash Service of Summons)

1/27/2020: Minute Order - Minute Order (Hearing on Motion to Quash Service of Summons)

Notice (name extension) - Notice Of Ruling on Motion to Quash Service of Summmons

1/28/2020: Notice (name extension) - Notice Of Ruling on Motion to Quash Service of Summmons

Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint) - Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

1/28/2020: Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint) - Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

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

11/1/2019: Notice of Rejection Default/Clerk's Judgment - Notice of Rejection Default/Clerk's Judgment

Motion to Quash Service of Summons - Motion to Quash Service of Summons

11/22/2019: Motion to Quash Service of Summons - Motion to Quash Service of Summons

Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint) - Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

11/22/2019: Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint) - Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

Proof of Personal Service - Proof of Personal Service

10/8/2019: Proof of Personal Service - Proof of Personal Service

Ex Parte Application (name extension) - Ex Parte Application FOR AN ORDER EXTENDING TIME FOR SERVICE OF SUMMONS AND COMPLAINT; DECLARATION OF BENNETT KERNS

9/11/2019: Ex Parte Application (name extension) - Ex Parte Application FOR AN ORDER EXTENDING TIME FOR SERVICE OF SUMMONS AND COMPLAINT; DECLARATION OF BENNETT KERNS

Order (name extension) - Order ORDER GRANTING EX PARTE APPLICATION FOR EXTENSION OF TIME TO EFFECT SERVICE OF SUMMONS AND COMPLAINT

9/13/2019: Order (name extension) - Order ORDER GRANTING EX PARTE APPLICATION FOR EXTENSION OF TIME TO EFFECT SERVICE OF SUMMONS AND COMPLAINT

Complaint - Complaint

6/7/2019: Complaint - Complaint

Civil Case Cover Sheet - Civil Case Cover Sheet

6/7/2019: Civil Case Cover Sheet - Civil Case Cover Sheet

Summons - Summons on Complaint

6/7/2019: Summons - Summons on Complaint

Notice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case - Notice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case

6/7/2019: Notice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case - Notice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case

First Amended Standing Order - First Amended Standing Order

6/7/2019: First Amended Standing Order - First Amended Standing Order

6 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 06/10/2022
  • Hearing06/10/2022 at 10:30 AM in Department 25 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Order to Show Cause Re: Failure to File Proof of Service

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  • 12/04/2020
  • Hearing12/04/2020 at 08:30 AM in Department 25 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Non-Jury Trial

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  • 01/28/2020
  • DocketNotice Of Ruling on Motion to Quash Service of Summmons; Filed by: LEE RODRIGUEZ (Defendant); As to: PAULA KAVALIS (Plaintiff)

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  • 01/28/2020
  • DocketProof of Service (not Summons and Complaint); Filed by: LEE RODRIGUEZ (Defendant); As to: PAULA KAVALIS (Plaintiff)

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  • 01/27/2020
  • DocketMinute Order (Hearing on Motion to Quash Service of Summons)

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  • 01/27/2020
  • DocketHearing on Motion to Quash Service of Summons scheduled for 01/27/2020 at 10:30 AM in Spring Street Courthouse at Department 25 updated: Result Date to 01/27/2020; Result Type to Held - Motion Granted

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  • 01/22/2020
  • DocketDeclaration of Ofer M. Grossman In Support of Motion to Quash ? Notice of Non- Opposition to Motion Received from Plaintiff?s Counsel; Filed by: LEE RODRIGUEZ (Defendant)

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  • 01/22/2020
  • DocketProof of Service (not Summons and Complaint); Filed by: LEE RODRIGUEZ (Defendant); As to: PAULA KAVALIS (Plaintiff)

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  • 01/21/2020
  • DocketProof of Service (not Summons and Complaint); Filed by: LEE RODRIGUEZ (Defendant); As to: PAULA KAVALIS (Plaintiff)

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  • 01/21/2020
  • DocketDeclaration of Ofer M. Grossman In Support of Motion to Quash - No Opposition to Motion Received; Filed by: LEE RODRIGUEZ (Defendant)

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9 More Docket Entries
  • 09/11/2019
  • DocketEx Parte Application FOR AN ORDER EXTENDING TIME FOR SERVICE OF SUMMONS AND COMPLAINT; DECLARATION OF BENNETT KERNS; Filed by: PAULA KAVALIS (Plaintiff); As to: LEE RODRIGUEZ (Defendant)

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  • 09/11/2019
  • DocketHearing on Ex Parte Application FOR AN ORDER EXTENDING TIME FOR SERVICE OF SUMMONS AND COMPLAINT; DECLARATION OF BENNETT KERNS scheduled for 09/13/2019 at 01:30 PM in Stanley Mosk Courthouse at Department 94

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  • 06/11/2019
  • DocketNon-Jury Trial scheduled for 12/04/2020 at 08:30 AM in Stanley Mosk Courthouse at Department 94

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  • 06/11/2019
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause Re: Failure to File Proof of Service scheduled for 06/10/2022 at 08:30 AM in Stanley Mosk Courthouse at Department 94

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  • 06/11/2019
  • DocketCase assigned to Hon. James E. Blancarte in Department 94 Stanley Mosk Courthouse

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  • 06/07/2019
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by: PAULA KAVALIS (Plaintiff); As to: LEE RODRIGUEZ (Defendant)

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  • 06/07/2019
  • DocketSummons on Complaint; Issued and Filed by: PAULA KAVALIS (Plaintiff); As to: LEE RODRIGUEZ (Defendant)

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  • 06/07/2019
  • DocketCivil Case Cover Sheet; Filed by: PAULA KAVALIS (Plaintiff); As to: LEE RODRIGUEZ (Defendant)

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  • 06/07/2019
  • DocketNotice of Case Assignment - Limited Civil Case; Filed by: Clerk

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  • 06/07/2019
  • DocketFirst Amended Standing Order; Filed by: Clerk

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: 19STLC05484    Hearing Date: January 27, 2020    Dept: 25

MOTION TO QUASH SERVICE OF SUMMONS AND COMPLAINT

(CCP § 418.10)

TENTATIVE RULING:

Defendant Lee Rodriguez’s Motion to Quash Service of Summons and Complaint is GRANTED. The service of Summons and Complaint on Defendant is hereby QUASHED.

ANALYSIS:

I. Background

On June 7, 2019, Plaintiff Paula Kavalis (“Plaintiff”) filed an action for breach of contract against Defendant Lee Rodriguez (“Defendant”). The action stems from an oral contract entered into by the parties on or about June 19, 2017 for the sale of a vehicle located in Texas. The vehicle was advertised on Craigslist for the Houston area and was to be shipped to California.

On September 13, 2019, the Court granted Plaintiff’s ex parte application for an order extending time for service of the summons and complaint because she was having difficulty locating Defendant, whom she believed resided in Texas. (9/13/19 Order.)

On October 8, 2019, Plaintiff filed a proof of service, which appears to be on a form used in Texas, indicating Defendant was personally served by Deputy Perri Marsh on September 20, 2019. (10/08/19 Proof of Service.)

On November 22, 2019, Defendant filed the instant Motion to Quash Service of Summons and Complaint or, in the Alternative, to Dismiss Action (the “Motion”). To date, no opposition or reply briefs have been filed.

II. Legal Standard & Discussion

A. Timeliness

“A defendant, on or before the last day of his or her time to plead or within any further time that the court may for good cause allow, may serve and file a notice of motion for one of the following purposes: (1) [t]o quash service of summons on the ground of lack of jurisdiction of the court over him or her.” (Code Civ. Proc., § 418.10, subd. (a).) A defendant has 30 days after the service of the summons to file a responsive pleading. (Code Civ. Proc., § 412.20, subd. (a)(3).) (Italics added.)

Here, Defendant brought the instant Motion over two months after he was personally served with the Summons and Complaint. Defendant argues he acted diligently under the circumstances and thus good cause exists for the Court to allow this Motion beyond the 30-day deadline to file a responsive pleading. (Mot., p. 9-10.) Specifically, he states that, as a Texas resident, he did not know when a response was due under California law. (Mot., Rodriguez Decl., ¶ 8.) He also states he began looking for an attorney in California “as quickly as [he] could” while running his business and supporting his family, and retained one soon after receiving a referral. (Id.) The Court finds this constitutes good cause and thus turns to the merits of the Motion.

B. Merits

Defendant argues he has insufficient contacts with the state to properly subject him to the jurisdiction of California courts. (Mot., p. 1-2.)

A motion to quash service of summons lies on the ground that the court lacks personal . . . jurisdiction over the moving party.” (Greener v. Workers’ Comp. Appeals Bd. (1993) 6 Cal.4th 1028, 1036, citing to CCP § 418.10.) “A court of this state may exercise jurisdiction on any basis not inconsistent with the Constitution of the United States.” (Code Civ. Proc., § 410.10.) “The exercise of jurisdiction over a nonresident defendant comports with these Constitutions if the defendant has such minimum contacts with the state that the assertion of jurisdiction does not violate traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice.” (Elkman v. National States Ins. Co. (2009) 173 Cal.App.4th 1305, 1313.) “An essential criterion in all cases is whether the ‘quality and nature’ of the defendant’s activity is such that it is ‘reasonable’ and ‘fair’ to require him to conduct his defense in that state.” (Kulko v. Superior Court of California In and for City and County of San Francisco (1978) 436 U.S. 84, 92.) If a nonresident’s activities are “extensive or wide-ranging” or “substantial, continuous, and systematic” then jurisdiction is warranted. (Elkman v. National States Ins. Co., 173 Cal.App.4th at 1314.) If the activities are not so pervasive, then jurisdiction depends on the “quality and nature of his activity in the forum state as it relates to the particular cause of action. [Citation.]” (Ibid.) In that case, “[a] court may exercise specific jurisdiction over a nonresident defendant only if: (1) the defendant has purposefully availed himself or herself to the forum benefits; (2) the controversy is related to or arises out of the defendant’s contacts with the forum; and (3) the assertion of personal jurisdiction would comport with fair play and substantial justice. [Citation.]” (Ibid.) (Italics in original.)

Although Defendant is the moving party, the burden of proof is on Plaintiff to demonstrate sufficient minimum contacts exist. (Milhon v. Superior Court (1985) 169 Cal.App.3d 703, 710 [“[W]hen jurisdiction is challenged by a nonresident defendant, the burden of proof is upon the plaintiff to demonstrate that ‘minimum contacts’ exists between defendant and the forum state to justify imposition of personal jurisdiction.”]; see also Floveyor International, Ltd. V. Superior Court (1997) 59 Cal.App.4th 789, 793.)

Here, because Plaintiff failed to file an opposition to this Motion, she has not carried her burden to demonstrate sufficient minimum contacts between Defendant and California exist.

The Court additionally finds that Defendant has demonstrated his single contact with California arising from the sale of one vehicle in an advertising that was not directed to California is insufficient to justify an exercise of jurisdiction over him.

Defendant is a resident of Harris County, Texas (Mot., Rodriguez Decl., ¶ 1) and has never lived in, owned property, or done business in California (Id., ¶ 2). In addition, the vehicle Defendant put up for sale was only advertised in the Craigslist internet page for the Houston, Texas area (Id., ¶ 3). Furthermore, Defendant states he is not a motor vehicle dealer (Id., ¶ 3), and that he has never had a website offering vehicles for sale (Id. ¶ 3). Defendant also submits a copy of the Vehicle Inspection and Registration Notice from the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles demonstrating that in 2017, the vehicle was registered in Texas. (Id., ¶ 4, Exh. 2.)

Additionally, Defendant submits a declaration from his employee, Adrian Caballero (“Caballero”), stating that Caballero created the listing for the vehicle on Craigslist, only did so for the Houston area, and was not aware of an advertisement for the vehicle on any other website. (Mot., Caballero Decl., ¶ 3.) Caballero also attaches copies of the listings for the vehicle demonstrating the advertisement for sale of the vehicle was posted on the Craigslist page for the Houston, Texas area. (Id., Exh. 1.)

Accordingly, Defendant’s Motion is GRANTED.

III. Conclusion & Order

For the foregoing reasons, Defendant’s Motion is GRANTED. The service of Summons and Complaint on Defendant is hereby QUASHED.

Moving party to give notice.