On 12/20/2016 FARAHNAZ SHAHAM filed a Personal Injury - Other Personal Injury lawsuit against JUDITH DOUGLAS. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judge overseeing this case is JON R. TAKASUGI. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.
Pending - Other Pending
Los Angeles County Superior Courts
Stanley Mosk Courthouse
Los Angeles, California
JON R. TAKASUGI
DOES 1 THROUGH 10
SADEGHI HARRY HAMID R ESQ.
DOMINGUEZ MANUEL ESQ.
12/22/2017: ANSWER TO COMPLAINT
9/10/2018: Minute Order
1/2/2019: Motion in Limine
1/2/2019: Motion in Limine
1/7/2019: Motion in Limine
1/10/2019: Minute Order
1/14/2019: Witness List
1/22/2019: Trial Brief
1/22/2019: Witness List
1/23/2019: Minute Order
1/25/2019: Minute Order
2/8/2019: Witness List
2/11/2019: Minute Order
2/19/2019: Ex Parte Application
4/10/2019: Minute Order
12/20/2016: COMPLA1NT FOR PERSONAL INJURY
Notice of Ruling; Filed by Judith Douglas (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
at 08:30 AM in Department 3, Jon R. Takasugi, Presiding; Trial Setting Conference - Held - ContinuedRead MoreRead Less
at 08:30 AM in Department 3, Jon R. Takasugi, Presiding; Order to Show Cause Re: (Why Sanctions In An Amount Up To $1,500.00 Shouldn't Be Imposed Against Plaintiff and/or Plaintiff's Counsel For Violation of the Court's "First Amended Standing Order ReF.S.C. ("PI") Courts (Effective as of 04/16/2018)", Pursuant to C.C.P Section 177.5) - HeldRead MoreRead Less
Minute Order ( (Trial Setting Conference; Order to Show Cause Re: Why Sanctio...)); Filed by ClerkRead MoreRead Less
Substitution of Attorney; Filed by Farahnaz Shaham (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
at 08:30 AM in Department 3, Jon R. Takasugi, Presiding; Order to Show Cause Re: (Why Sanctions In An Amount Up To $1,500.00 Shouldn't Be Imposed Against Plaintiff and/or Plaintiff's Counsel For Violation of the Court's "First Amended Standing Order ReF.S.C. ("PI") Courts (Effective as of 04/16/2018)", Pursuant to C.C.P Section 177.5) - Held - ContinuedRead MoreRead Less
at 08:30 AM in Department 3, Jon R. Takasugi, Presiding; Final Status Conference - Not Held - Vacated by CourtRead MoreRead Less
at 08:30 AM in Department 3, Jon R. Takasugi, Presiding; Hearing on Ex Parte Application (to Continue Trial) - Held - Motion GrantedRead MoreRead Less
at 08:30 AM in Department 3, Jon R. Takasugi, Presiding; Jury Trial - Not Held - Vacated by CourtRead MoreRead Less
Minute Order ( (Jury Trial; Final Status Conference; Order to Show Cause Re: ...)); Filed by ClerkRead MoreRead Less
ORDER] AND STIPULATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL, FSC [AND RELATED MOTION/DISCOVERY DATES] PERSONAL INJURY COURTS ONLY (CENTRAL DISTRICT)Read MoreRead Less
CIVIL DEPOSITRead MoreRead Less
Miscellaneous-Other; Filed by Judith Douglas (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
ANSWER TO COMPLAINTRead MoreRead Less
DEMAND FOR TRIAL BY JURYRead MoreRead Less
Answer; Filed by Judith Douglas (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
Demand for Jury Trial; Filed by Judith Douglas (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
Complaint; Filed by Farahnaz Shaham (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
SUMMONSRead MoreRead Less
COMPLA1NT FOR PERSONAL INJURYRead MoreRead Less
Case Number: BC644468 Hearing Date: January 13, 2020 Dept: SWE
FARAHNAZ SHAHAM vs. JUDITH DOUGLAS BC644468
Motion Of Plaintiff Farahnaz Shaham To Strike Costs, Alternatively To Tax Costs.
Plaintiff seeks to Strike or Tax costs as follows:
ITEM 2 “Jury Fees” $1,293.00. Plaintiff merely contends that since plaintiff waived jury, she should not be required to pay defendant’s jury fees since defendant elected to have a jury. This is not a valid legal argument or contention. There is no authority supporting denial under these circumstances.
ITEM 4 “Deposition Costs” $2,267.00, granted in part. Plaintiff’s counsel testifies that two depositions were taken, plaintiff’s deposition ($486.00) and Dr. Douglas Collins (listed twice as $169.00 and $763.00), not the others on the cost memorandum such as Soraya Shaham, Bal Rajagopalan, M.D. and Jennie McNulty. CCP §1033.5(a)(3)(A) permits “Taking, video recording, and transcribing necessary depositions . . .”.
ITEM 5 “Service of Process” $1,700.00. Plaintiff argues costs for service of process must by reasonable and necessary. CCP §1033.5© (3) “Allowable costs shall be reasonable in amount” but defendant seeks an average of $200 for each four witnesses. Also, plaintiff argues that Monica Bruce was served but was not called to testify. Brooke Israel was served and called but needlessly because plaintiff agreed to stipulate to her records and no new information was elicited by her testimony.
ITEM 8 “Witness Fees” $2,750.00. Plaintiff challenges only $250.00 for the presence of the animal control officer for the entire day and $2,500.00 for Robert Collins, M.D. saying only that “no doctor charges that excessive rate.” Argument is not authority.
ITEM 9 “Court Ordered Transcripts” $8,035.00. CCP §1033.5(a)(9) permits only transcripts “ordered” by the court. It was defendant’s choice to have a court reporter, not plaintiff. There is an itemization provided by CSR Dianne McGivern for approximately $9,835.00. Plaintiff challenges but $8,035.00 of that $9835.00 CSR costs. It is noted that the cost memorandum does list $8,035.00 under “court ordered transcripts” but deletes that category in the detail behind the cover page and lists $8,035.00 as court reporter fees.
ITEM 16 “Other Experts” $24,975.00. Defendant’s expert Knox Attorney Services charged $20,800.00. CCP §1033.5(a)(8) allows for expert fees “ordered by the court” and CCP §1033.5(c )(3) requires such fees to be reasonable. Per CCP §1033.5(b)(1), expert fees not ordered by the court are not allowable as costs. Defendant’s expert Jason Snibbe, MD. Was not ordered by the court. Dr. Snibbe’s charge for 90 minutes of court time is $12,800.00. Plaintiff argues that plaintiff’s medical expert Dr. Collins, who reportedly is much older, more experienced merely charges $4,000.00 for one half day. Further, Plaintiff challenges that $2,480.00 for defendant’s private investigator Hodson to testify as to what plaintiff posted on Facebook. Hodson never testified. CCP §1033.5(b)(2) provides that investigation expenses in preparing for trial are not allowable costs.
ITEM 2 “Jury Fees”. CCP §631 provides, among others including the Constitutional right to a trial by jury (Article 1 §16) but that a party is not relieved by its waiver of jury of responsibility for another’s jury fees. CCP §631(b). There is no offset for paying costs of jury fees. See also Chaban v West Seal, Inc. (2012) 203 Cal.App.4th 49, 59. CCP §1033.5(a)(1) provides for recovery of jury fees.
ITEM 4 “Deposition Costs”.
Defendant argues that plaintiff’s mother Soraya Shaham evaded service of a deposition subpoena, per investigators report. After ultimately serving plaintiff’s mother with a deposition subpoena plaintiff’s counsel demanded a Farsi interpreter. At the deposition, plaintiff’s mother and counsel failed to appear, resulting in a late cancellation non-appearance fee of $115.00 and ½ day for the Farsi interpreter of $450.00.
Plaintiff’s physician Dr. Douglas Collins failed to appear for his noticed expert deposition on 11.27.2018 and a certificate of non-appearance was required for $169.00.
Plaintiff’s expert Jenny McNulty failed to appear for her property noticed deposition on 11.27.2018. A $169.00 non-appearance certificate was obtained.
After resetting expert depositions, plaintiff’s counsel cancelled plaintiff’s expert’s deposition of Bal Rajagopalan one day prior to the deposition and a late cancellation fee of $115.00 was incurred.
After the court reportedly warned plaintiff that her experts would be excluded if they don’t appear for deposition, plaintiff de-designated all experts except for Dr. Douglas Collins. His subsequent deposition was
Defendant served plaintiff with its CCP §998 Offer Of Compromise on 6.04.0218 in the amount of $15,001.00. The offer lapsed and plaintiff did not recover an award.
ITEM 5 Service of Process $1,600.00 instead of $1,700.00 per defense counsel.
Brooke Israel was duly served for $150.00 and testified at trial. Monica Bruce DDS, plaintiff’s employer, was served twice due to plaintiff’s trial continuances, placed on call and it was only during trial that plaintiff’s counsel stipulated that plaintiff did not lose work time at Dr. Bruce’s office. Carlos Alarcon, Beverly Hills Animal Control Officer, was served twice ($200.00) but plaintiff continued the trial twice. Mr. Alarcon was called to testify and was impliedly threatened by plaintiff’s mother Soraya Shaham during a recess in the courthouse hallway. As for Soraya Shaham, she evaded deposition subpoenas and also failed to appear while misrepresenting her identity to process servers. Her trial subpoena was $350.00 and her testimony at trial was of assistance to defendant in presenting defendant’s side of the case. Proof of service by a registered process server or public officer is recoverable pursuant to CCP §1033.5(a)(4) and B&P Code §22350D.
ITEM 8 Witness Fees. $2,750.00.
Carlos Alarcon $250.00 is mandated by City regulations. Plaintiff’s expert Dr. Collins would not appear for his deposition without first being paid $2,500.00. CCP §1033.59a) provides that costs are allowed pursuant to CCP §1032(3)(A) for “Taking, video recording, and transcribing necessary depositions, including an original and one copy of those taken by the claimant and one copy of depositions taken by the party against whom costs are allowed.”
ITEM 9 Court Ordered Transcripts $8,035.00. This is a mistake. Although defendant states that this cost item is not for TRANSCRIPTS but for the cost of the court reporter, the cost memorandum cover sheet lists $8,035.00 as court ordered transcripts and only in the subsequent detail pages is that line deleted and the $8,035.00 cost listed under court reporter fees. Defendant’s memorandum of costs does not seek this cost for court ordered transcripts but only for the separate category of court reporters which is an entirely different cost. CCP §1033.5(11) provides for court reporter fees under CCP §1032.
ITEM 16 Other Experts, Investigation $24,975.00. CCP §998(a) & (b)(1) provide that where a 998 offer is made, which is “. . . not accepted or plaintiff fails to obtain a more favorable judgment or award . . . plaintiff . . .shall pay the defendant’s costs from the time of the offer.” This includes “. . . a reasonable sum to cover post offer costs of the services of expert witnesses, who are not regular employees of any party, actually incurred and reasonably necessary in either, or both, preparation for trial . . . or during trial, of the case by the defendant.”
Defendant’s expert, Dr. Jason Snibbe, M.D., was questioned on cross examination for two hours after a brief direct examination. His rate for the day is $10,000.00 while plaintiff’s expert Douglas Collins, M.D. as $8,000.00 per day. Hodson, P.I., an impeachment witness, was disclosed during trial and was prepared to testify that plaintiff was driving a car while alone with someone else’s handicap license plates. Plaintiff’s counsel then stipulated to these facts and P.I. Hobson was relieved of his witness subpoena. Knox attorney Service obtained all of plaintiff’s records with due notice to consumer, all without objection. These included, among others, employment and medical records. First Legal, filing documents with the court, at which time the court did not have e-filing. These costs are for filing motions, ex parte motions, trial documents/notebooks and service on plaintiff’s counsel.
PLAINTIFF’S REPLY TO OPPOSITION
JURY FEES. Plaintiff restates his motion. DEPOSITION COSTS, plaintiff complains there are no valid proofs of service although there was trial testimony as to the process of serving plaintiff’s witnesses, some more than once. SERVICE OF PROCESS. Plaintiff urges that the difference between $1,600 and $1,700 is sufficient basis for denying this cost and repeats his motion. WITNESS FEES are “grossly excessive” repeating his motion. One of plaintiff’s arguments is that the animal control officer is not an expert who testified for 30 minutes. This ignores that fact that this witness was waiting in the courthouse for two days to testify. As to court reporter fees, plaintiff’s counsel misapprehends that cost category. OTHER EXPERTS, INVESTIGATION, plaintiff merely repeats his motion.
BASED ON THE FOREGOING, THE COURT’S TENTATIVE RULING:
ITEM 2 “Jury Fees” plaintiff moves to strike or tax $1,293.00, denied.
ITEM 4 “Deposition Costs” plaintiff moves to strike or tax $2,267.00, denied.
ITEM 5 “Service of Process” plaintiff moves to strike or tax $1,700.00, grant in part by striking $100.00 from the $1,700.00, otherwise, deny plaintiff’s motion to strike or tax $1,600.00.
ITEM 8 “Witness Fees” plaintiff moves to strike or tax $2,750.00, denied.
ITEM 9 “Court Ordered Transcripts” plaintiff moves to strike or tax $8,035.00. Grant motion to strike only $1,435.00 of defendant’s mistaken cost memorandum, which is the court reporter’s charge for transcripts which are not court ordered.
ITEM 16 “Other Experts” plaintiff moves to strike or tax $24,975.00, denied.
THEREFORE, GRANT MOTION TO STRIKE a total of $1,535.00. Otherwise, the motion to strike or tax the defendant’s costs is denied.
Attorney J. Owen Murrin
Murrin Law Firm
7040 E. Los Santos Drive
Long Beach, CA 90815
Attorney Manuel Dominguez
Law Office of Richardson, Fair & Cohen
3700 Central Avenue, 3rd Floor
Riverside, CA 92506-9816