This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 06/25/2019 at 13:31:04 (UTC).

HAMLET MINASVAND ET AL VS MARTIN MINASYAN

Case Summary

On 07/27/2015 HAMLET MINASVAND filed a Personal Injury - Other Personal Injury lawsuit against MARTIN MINASYAN. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judges overseeing this case are RALPH C. HOFER, LAURA A. MATZ and BENNY C. OSORIO. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****9353

  • Filing Date:

    07/27/2015

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Personal Injury - Other Personal Injury

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Stanley Mosk Courthouse

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judges

RALPH C. HOFER

LAURA A. MATZ

BENNY C. OSORIO

 

Party Details

Plaintiffs and Petitioners

HADJIBEKIAN GAYANE

MINASVAND HAMLET

MINASVAND SOPHIA BROOKLYN

Defendants and Respondents

DOES 1 TO 10

MINASYAN MARTIN

TSATURYAN MARIETA

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff and Petitioner Attorneys

LAW OFFICES OF ARMAND TINKERIAN

TINKERIAN ARMAND

ARMAND TINKERIAN LAW OFFICES OF

Defendant and Respondent Attorneys

WILSON MARCELLA I. ESQ.

WILSON MARCELLA IRENE

HARTSUYKER STRATMAN & WILLIAMS-ABREGO

 

Court Documents

Civil Case Cover Sheet

7/27/2015: Civil Case Cover Sheet

Application

8/4/2015: Application

Unknown

3/7/2016: Unknown

Unknown

3/24/2016: Unknown

Unknown

3/24/2016: Unknown

Unknown

10/3/2016: Unknown

Minute Order

1/18/2017: Minute Order

Notice of Ruling

3/23/2018: Notice of Ruling

Response

8/15/2018: Response

OPPOSITION TO MOTION TO COMPEL DEPOSITION OF BOOHOS BABADJANIAN AND REQUEST FOR SANCTIONS; DECLARATIONS OF ARMAND TINKERIAN; BOGHOS BABADJANIAN AND ATTACHED EXHIBITS

9/11/2018: OPPOSITION TO MOTION TO COMPEL DEPOSITION OF BOOHOS BABADJANIAN AND REQUEST FOR SANCTIONS; DECLARATIONS OF ARMAND TINKERIAN; BOGHOS BABADJANIAN AND ATTACHED EXHIBITS

Minute Order

9/21/2018: Minute Order

Opposition

11/28/2018: Opposition

Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

12/6/2018: Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

Motion for Summary Adjudication

3/22/2019: Motion for Summary Adjudication

Request for Judicial Notice

3/22/2019: Request for Judicial Notice

OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER; REQUEST FOR MONETARY SANCTIONS AGAINST PLAINTIFF ATTORNEY ARMAND TINKERIAN IN THE AMOUNT OF $750.00; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIES; DECLARATION OF MAR

11/30/2016: OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER; REQUEST FOR MONETARY SANCTIONS AGAINST PLAINTIFF ATTORNEY ARMAND TINKERIAN IN THE AMOUNT OF $750.00; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIES; DECLARATION OF MAR

REPLY TO OPPOSITION TO MOTION TO STRIKE; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIES IN SUPPORT THEREOF

12/6/2016: REPLY TO OPPOSITION TO MOTION TO STRIKE; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIES IN SUPPORT THEREOF

NOTICE OF TRANSFER ORDER

12/16/2016: NOTICE OF TRANSFER ORDER

97 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 06/11/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department D; Status Conference (reMediation and Discovery) - Not Held - Clerical Error

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  • 06/11/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department D; Final Status Conference - Not Held - Rescheduled by Court

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  • 06/07/2019
  • at 09:00 AM in Department D; Order to Show Cause Re: Dismissal (pursuant to Section 583.410(a) of the Code of Civil Procedure) - Not Held - Continued - Court's Motion

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  • 06/07/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department D; Hearing on Motion for Summary Adjudication (filed on behalf of Defendant Martin Minasyan) - Held - Motion Granted

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  • 06/07/2019
  • Minute Order ( (Hearing on Motion for Summary Adjudication filed on behalf of...)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 05/16/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department D; Status Conference (re Mediation and Discovery) - Held

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 05/16/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department D; Status Conference (reMediation and Discovery) - Not Held - Vacated by Court

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  • 05/16/2019
  • Minute Order ( (Status Conference re: Mediation and Discovery)); Filed by Clerk

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 05/09/2019
  • at 4:00 PM in Department D; Nunc Pro Tunc Order (Minute Order of 3/12/2019 for Department D;) - Held

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 05/09/2019
  • Certificate of Mailing for (Minute Order (Nunc Pro Tunc Order Minute Order of 3/12/2019 for Department D;) of 05/09/2019); Filed by Clerk

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199 More Docket Entries
  • 08/04/2015
  • Application ; Filed by Plaintiff/Petitioner

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  • 08/04/2015
  • APPLICATION AND ORDER FOR APPOINTMENT OF GUARDIAN AD LITEMCIVIL

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  • 07/27/2015
  • Complaint; Filed by GAYANE HADJIBEKIAN (Plaintiff); HAMLET MINASVAND (Plaintiff); SOPHIA BROOKLYN MINASVAND (Plaintiff)

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  • 07/27/2015
  • SUMMONS

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  • 07/27/2015
  • Complaint

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  • 07/27/2015
  • Summons (on Complaint)

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  • 07/27/2015
  • Civil Case Cover Sheet

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  • 07/27/2015
  • COMPLAINT FOR 1) STRICT LIABILITY CALIFORNIA CIVIL CODE SECTION 3342; ETC

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  • 04/01/2007
  • First Amended Complaint; Filed by GAYANE HADJIBEKIAN (Plaintiff); HAMLET MINASVAND (Plaintiff); SOPHIA BROOKLYN MINASVAND (Plaintiff)

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  • 04/01/2007
  • First Amended Complaint; Filed by Attorney for Plaintiff

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: BC589353    Hearing Date: February 28, 2020    Dept: BCD

TENTATIVE RULING

Calendar: 10

Date: 2/28/20

Case No: BC 589353 Trial Date: None Set

Case Name: Minasvand, et al. v. Minasyan

MOTION TO RECLASSIFY CASE AS LIMITED

CIVIL CASE

MOTION TO COMPEL PRODUCTION OF DOCUMENTS AT DEPOSITION

Moving Party: Defendant Martin Minasyan

Responding Party: Plaintiffs Hamlet Minasvand, Gayane Hadijibekian, and

Sophia Brooklyn Minasvand (No Opposition)

RELIEF REQUESTED:

Order reclassifying this action from an unlimited civil case to a limited civil case

Order compelling plaintiff to serve verified responses, without objection, to demand to produce documents at deposition, and to pay monetary sanctions of $540.

SUMMARY OF FACTS:

Plaintiffs Hamlet Minasvand and Gayane Hadjibekian allege that they were out walking in a public place with their daughter, plaintiff Sophia Brooklyn Minasvand, who was in a stroller, and were also walking with their dog, when defendant Martin Minasyan’s daughter, who was walking a dog in the street, let the dog free, so that it was not on a leash. Plaintiffs allege they were attacked by the subject dog, which also bit Minasvand and injured him, and attacked and injured plaintiff’s dog. It is also alleged that plaintiff Hadjibekian witnessed the attack on her husband and daughter and suffered serious emotional distress and that plaintiff Minasvand witnessed the attack on his wife and daughter and suffered serious emotional distress. Plaintiffs allege that the subject dog has attacked, menaced, bitten other persons before, and that defendant Minasyan was aware of the previous conduct.

The file shows that on June 7, 2019, the court heard an unopposed motion for summary adjudication of the punitive damages claim as against defendant Minasyan, which was granted.

ANALYSIS:

Reclassify

Defendant seeks relief under CCP § 403.040(b), which provides, in pertinent part:

“If a party files a motion for reclassification after the time for that party to ...respond to a complaint, ... the court shall grant the motion and enter an order for reclassification only if both of the following conditions are satisfied:

(1) The case is incorrectly classified.

(2) The moving party shows good cause for not seeking reclassification earlier.”

The California Supreme Court in construing when a case could be transferred to a municipal court under previous CCP § 396 held that a matter could be transferred when it would “necessarily” result in a verdict below the jurisdictional amount. Walker v. Superior Court (1991) 53 Cal.3d 257, 262. The Court stated that this standard “requires a high level of certainty that a damage award will not exceed $25,000 and is not satisfied by a finding that such an award is merely ‘unlikely’ or ‘not reasonably probable’.” Walker, at 269.

Walker authorizes the trial court to conduct a pretrial hearing to obtain information about whether the amount of a judgment to be rendered will justify reclassification. See Walker, at 268; Stern v. Superior Court (2003 2nd Dist.) 105 Cal.App.4th 223, 231.

The appellate court reviews a reclassification order “according to an abuse of discretion standard, i.e., whether the court made an informed decision within its discretion or whether the order exceeded the bounds of reason.” Stern v. Superior Court (2003, 2nd Dist.) 105 Cal.App.4th 223, 231; citing Walker at 272.

The Second District in Ytuarte v. Superior Court (2005) 129 Cal.App.4th 266, set forth the standard to be applied when considering reclassification of cases, noting:

“ ‘The trial court may believe it highly unlikely that plaintiff will recover the amount demanded, but this is not enough to defeat jurisdiction, unless it appears to a legal certainty that plaintiff cannot recover the amount of the demand.’”

Ytuarte, at 277, quoting Walker, at 270.

The Second District in Ytuarte also relied on Maldonado v. Superior Court (1996) 45 Cal. App.4th 397, in which court of appeal reversed the trial court’s transfer of a case to limited jurisdiction in an automobile accident case where plaintiff demonstrated $7,000 in medical expenses and the possibility of future surgery, even though there was in that case no loss of earnings claim, and an arbitration award of less than $25,000. See Maldonado, at 401-402.

The Second District in Ytuarte reiterated that reclassification orders should be sparingly made:

“The high threshold required to reclassify a case from an unlimited action to a limited action is warranted in view of the circumscribed procedures and recovery available in the limited civil courts. “A transfer must be made only when the lack of jurisdiction is clear on the face of the record before the court because the transfer [i.e., reclassification as a limited case] deprives the plaintiff from attempting to prove damages greater than those available in [the limited civil] court.” (Williams v. Superior Court (Gemco/Lucky Stores) (1990) 219 Cal.App.3d 171, 175–176, 268 Cal.Rptr. 61, emphasis added.) To that end superior courts have long been cautioned to order transfers sparingly and only in the clearest of circumstances after a thorough review of the facts of the case. (Walker v. Superior Court, supra, 53 Cal.3d at pp. 270–271, 279 Cal.Rptr. 576, 807 P.2d 418, [calling for “[C] aution ... in this context” and “the transfer power {should not be used} as ‘an unfettered means of clearing crowded ... calendars....' ”].)

Ytuarte, at 278, italics in original.

Defendant here argues that this matter should be reclassified to a limited jurisdiction matter, as plaintiff Hamlet Minasvand has not submitted any medical specials or loss of earnings documentation for this dog incident, and the other two plaintiffs incurred no medical bills or received any medical care for the incident, so that recovery in excess of $25,000 is virtually unattainable.

However, this is a dog bite case, for which strict liability would be available, and the discovery submitted indicates that the plaintiff who was bitten experiences “Anxiety, insomnia, physical pain in fingers and ankle area,” and claims he “developed arthritis as a direct result of the dog bite.” [Ex. A, Response to Interrogatory No. 6.2]. It does not appear at this point that it has been established that plaintiff has no evidence to support such claimed damages, which could easily involve expense in excess of $25,000. In fact, although documents to support claimed damages, expenses and loss of earnings in plaintiff’s self-employment were not produced at deposition as requested, the representation was evidently that such documents exist, but the plaintiff has never produced such documents despite repeated requests to do so. The motion is denied.

In addition, plaintiffs have failed to file timely opposition to the motion, or to submit any evidence supporting that their claimed damages in this matter are more than $25,000 in essentially short-lived fear and anxiety and temporary pain, which required no medical treatment, other than a brief consult with plaintiff’s sister, a medical professional. The court considers the lack of opposition as a concession by plaintiffs that the court is incorrectly classified. Therefore the court grants the motion.

Compel Production of Documents

The motion does not mention, but seeks relief under CCP§ 2025.480, which provides, in pertinent part:

(a) If a deponent fails to answer any question or to produce any document, electronically stored information, or tangible thing under the deponent's control that is specified in the deposition notice or a deposition subpoena, the party seeking discovery may move the court for an order compelling that answer or production.

(b) This motion shall be made no later than 60 days after the completion of the record of the deposition and shall be accompanied by a meet and confer declaration under Section 2016.040.”

(Emphasis added).

The motion concedes that the deposition took place on January 11, 2019, and attaches a copy of the transcript, so the record was evidently promptly prepared. [Ex. B]. The parties evidently agreed to the production of the documents by the following Friday but did not agree to an extension of time to file a motion to compel. [Ex. B, p. 233:7-20]. It would appear that the record for a January 11, 2019 deposition was completed well more than sixty days before this motion was filed on November 25, 2019, and there is no meet and confer addressed in the declaration, other than the discussion on the record. [Wilson Deco. ¶ 4]. The motion could be denied for failure to comply with the procedures, but the court elects not to do so.

Moreover, there is no timely opposition to the motion, it is not clearly established when the record was completed, and the court construes the lack of opposition as a concession on the part of plaintiff Hamlet Minasvand that the motion has merit, and the plaintiff has no objection to being ordered to produce documents responsive to the requests. The requests appear to seek information relevant to the incident, including photographs, witness statements, and documents supporting damages claimed, so they are required to be produced. [Ex. A]. The motion does not cite any authority under which a verified response to the demands is required or can be ordered by the court.

Under CCP § 2025.480 (j):

“(j) The court shall impose a monetary sanction under Chapter 7 (commencing with Section 2023.010) against any party, person, or attorney who unsuccessfully makes or opposes a motion to compel an answer or production, unless it finds that the one subject to the sanction acted with substantial justification or that other circumstances make the imposition of the sanction unjust.”

Under CRC Rule 3.1348(a):

“The court may award sanctions under the Discovery Act in favor of a party who files a motion to compel discovery, even though no opposition to the motion was filed, or opposition to the motion was withdrawn, or the requested discovery was provided to the moving party after the motion was filed.”

Although no opposition has been filed, the court awards sanctions for the expense of bringing the motion. The sanctions sought are $540 (1 hour preparing motion, 2 hours attending hearing @$120 per hour, plus $60 filing fee). These amounts appear reasonable and are awarded.

RULING:

[No Opposition]

UNOPPOSED Motion to Reclassify is GRANTED. The Court finds from the pleadings, file and the showing made in the motion that the verdict in this case would necessarily result in a verdict below this court’s jurisdictional amount. See Walker v. Superior Court (1991) 53 Cal.3d 257, 262; Ytuarte v. Superior Court (2005, 2nd Dist.) 129 Cal.App.4th 266, 277. There is no opposition to this motion, which the court sees as a concession that the matter is incorrectly classified, and that recent discovery responses have revealed that circumstance, explaining why reclassification was not sought earlier. The matter is ordered reclassified and transferred to limited jurisdiction.

Defendant’s UNOPPOSED Motion to Compel Plaintiff, Hamlet Minasvand’s Production of Documents at Deposition is GRANTED. Plaintiff Hamlet Minasvand is ordered to produce all responsive documents for inspection and copying within ten days. Objections have been waived.

Monetary sanctions in the sum of $540.00 [$540 requested] are awarded in favor of defendant Martin Minasyan and against plaintiff Hamlet Minasvand payable within thirty days. CCP § 2030.480(j).