This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 06/05/2019 at 20:35:28 (UTC).

TA SIU VS LIAN WANG

Case Summary

On 02/25/2016 TA SIU filed a Contract - Other Contract lawsuit against LIAN WANG. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Pomona Courthouse South located in Los Angeles, California. The Judge overseeing this case is GLORIA WHITE-BROWN. The case status is Disposed - Judgment Entered.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****8248

  • Filing Date:

    02/25/2016

  • Case Status:

    Disposed - Judgment Entered

  • Case Type:

    Contract - Other Contract

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Pomona Courthouse South

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judge

GLORIA WHITE-BROWN

 

Party Details

Plaintiffs and Appellants

SUI TA

SIU TA

Defendants and Respondents

WANG LILLIAN

AMERICAN NEW ERA TV MEDIA GROUP INC

WANG LIAN

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorney

LI BIN LAW OFFICES OF

Respondent Attorneys

CHANG STEVEN P. ESQ.

BELL JEFFREY T. ESQ.

 

Court Documents

Tentative Ruling

9/14/2018: Tentative Ruling

Order Appointing Court Approved Reporter as Official Reporter Pro Tempore

9/14/2018: Order Appointing Court Approved Reporter as Official Reporter Pro Tempore

Unknown

10/4/2018: Unknown

Notice

10/11/2018: Notice

Unknown

10/26/2018: Unknown

Unknown

10/30/2018: Unknown

Unknown

11/5/2018: Unknown

Unknown

11/13/2018: Unknown

Unknown

11/20/2018: Unknown

Unknown

11/28/2018: Unknown

Unknown

11/29/2018: Unknown

Unknown

12/3/2018: Unknown

Unknown

3/4/2019: Unknown

Unknown

4/2/2019: Unknown

2 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 05/10/2019
  • Appeal Record Delivered; Filed by Clerk

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  • 05/08/2019
  • Appeal - Original Clerk's Transcript 1 - 5 Volumes Certified; Filed by Clerk

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  • 04/02/2019
  • Notice of Default; Filed by Clerk

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  • 03/18/2019
  • Appeal - Clerk's Transcript Fee Paid (PAID BY RESPONDENT)

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  • 03/04/2019
  • Appeal - Notice of Fees Due for Clerk's Transcript on Appeal

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  • 11/29/2018
  • Ntc Designating Record of Appeal APP-003/010/103

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  • 11/28/2018
  • Ntc Designating Record of Appeal APP-003/010/103

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  • 11/20/2018
  • Notice of Default; Filed by Clerk

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  • 11/13/2018
  • Appeal - Ntc Designating Record of Appeal APP-003/010/103 (Respondent's/ with proof of service); Filed by LILLIAN WANG (Respondent); LIAN WANG (Defendant); LILLIAN WANG (Defendant) et al.

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  • 11/05/2018
  • Appeal - Ntc Designating Record of Appeal APP-003/010/103; Filed by TA SIU (Appellant)

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72 More Docket Entries
  • 06/15/2016
  • Minute order entered: 2016-06-15 00:00:00; Filed by Clerk

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  • 05/09/2016
  • Default Entered; Filed by TA SIU (Plaintiff)

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  • 05/09/2016
  • Default Entered; Filed by TA SIU (Plaintiff)

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  • 04/26/2016
  • OSC-Failure to File Proof of Serv; Filed by Clerk

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  • 03/28/2016
  • Rtn of Service of Summons & Compl; Filed by TA SIU (Plaintiff)

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  • 03/24/2016
  • Rtn of Service of Summons & Compl; Filed by TA SIU (Plaintiff)

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  • 03/07/2016
  • First Amended Complaint; Filed by TA SIU (Plaintiff)

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  • 03/07/2016
  • Summons Issued; Filed by TA SIU (Plaintiff)

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  • 02/26/2016
  • Notice of Case Management Conference; Filed by Clerk

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  • 02/25/2016
  • Complaint; Filed by TA SIU (Plaintiff)

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: KC068248    Hearing Date: September 10, 2020    Dept: J

HEARING DATE: Thursday, September 10, 2020

NOTICE: OK

RE: Siu v. Wang (KC068248)

______________________________________________________________________________

1. Defendant Lian Wang’s MOTION FOR ATTORNEYS FEES

Responding Party: Plaintiff, Ta Siu

2. Plaintiff Ta Siu’s MOTION TO TAX COSTS

Responding Party: Defendant, Lian Wang

Tentative Ruling

1. Defendant Lian Wang’s Motion for Attorney’s Fees is DENIED.

2. Plaintiff Ta Siu’s Motion to Tax Costs is GRANTED in part (i.e., as to Item No. 10) and

DENIED in part (i.e., as to Item No. 9.).

Background

Plaintiff Ta Siu (“Plaintiff”) alleges as follows: Plaintiff and Lian Wang aka Lilian Wang

(“Wang”) were friends. On April 15, 2014, Plaintiff loaned Wang $10,000.00, which was

documented in a written “Loan Agreement.” On January 10, 2015, Plaintiff loaned Wang another

$40,000.00 for American New Era TV Media Group, Inc.’s (“American New Era”) business

cash flow as set forth in a second written “Loan Agreement.” Wang and American New Era

failed to repay the loans.

On March 7, 2016, Plaintiff filed a First Amended Complaint, asserting causes of action against

Wang, American New Era and Does 1-10 for:

1. Breach of Contract

2. Fraud—Promises Made Without Intention of Performing

3. Conversion

On May 9, 2016, Wang’s and American New Era’s defaults were entered. On June 21, 2016, Plaintiff obtained a court default judgment. On October 18, 2017, Wang’s motion to set aside default and default judgment was denied without prejudice. On January 26, 2018, Wang’s motion to set aside entry of default and default judgment was denied.

On March 8, 2018, the court received Plaintiff’s “Memorandum of Costs After Judgment, Acknowledgment of Credit, and Declaration of Accrued Interest.”

On May 17, 2018, the court denied a motion for attorney’s fees and costs purportedly brought by Plaintiff’s counsel. On May 22, 2018, the court received a second “Memorandum of Costs After Judgment, Acknowledgment of Credit, and Declaration of Accrued Interest” from Plaintiff. On September 14, 2018, the court denied Plaintiff’s motion for attorney’s fees and costs.

On October 26, 2018, Plaintiff filed a Notice of Appeal. On March 16, 2020, an “Acknowledgement of [Full] Satisfaction of Judgment” was filed. On June 12, 2020, the remittitur was filed.

1. Motion for Attorney’s Fees

Legal Standard

“[T]he party prevailing in the Court of Appeal in a civil case . . . is entitled to costs on appeal” (California Rules of Court [“CRC”] Rule 8.278(a)(1).) “The prevailing party is the respondent of the Court of Appeal affirms the judgment without modification or dismisses the appeal” (CRC Rule 8.278(a)(2).) “Unless the court orders otherwise, an award of costs neither includes attorney’s fees on appeal nor precludes a party from seeking them under rule 3.1702.” (CRC Rule 8.278(d)(2).)

As in trial court litigation, attorney fees on appeal are recoverable if authorized by contract, statute or law. (CCP § 1033.5(a)(10)(A)-(C).)

Discussion

Wang moves the court for an order awarding attorney fees in her favor and against Plaintiff in the amount of $32,753.00, on the basis that the Court of Appeal ruled that Wang was entitled to recover costs.

Entitlement to Fees

 

Here, Wang seeks attorney’s fees on appeal pursuant to the Loan Agreements dated April 15, 2014 and January 10, 2015. The April 15, 2014 Loan Agreement reads, in relevant part, as follows:

“4. Attorney fees and costs In the event that Lender has to take legal action to recover the above $10,000 plus related damages, Borrowers are liable for all legal fees and costs involved, including but not limited to attorney fees, court costs and other related costs.” (Bell Decl., ¶8, Exh. 2.)

The January 10, 2015 Loan Agreement reads, in relevant part, as follows:

“5. Attorney fees and costs In the event that Lender has to take legal action to recover the above $40,0000 plus related damages, Borrowers are liable for all legal fees and costs involved, including but not limited to attorney fees, court costs and other related costs.”

Again, on June 21, 2016, Plaintiff obtained a court default judgment against Wang and American New Era in the amount of $59,525.16. On October 18, 2017, Wang’s motion to set aside default and default judgment was denied without prejudice. On January 26, 2018, Wang’s motion to set aside entry of default and default judgment was denied.

On September 14, 2018, the court denied Plaintiff’s motion for attorney’s fees and costs. On October 26, 2018, Plaintiff filed a Notice of Appeal of the court’s September 14, 2018 order. On June 12, 2020, the remittitur was filed, affirming the court’s September 14, 2018 order.

 

In Wood v. Santa Monica Escrow Co. (2009) 176 Cal.App.4th 802, plaintiff personal representative filed an elder abuse complaint against defendant escrow company. After plaintiff voluntarily dismissed the complaint against defendant with prejudice, defendant moved for an award of attorney fees based on a provision in the escrow instructions. The trial court denied the motion, which was affirmed on appeal. Plaintiff then filed a motion for attorney’s fees on the basis that he prevailed in the appeal. The trial court denied the motion, finding that overall the defendant was the prevailing party in the action. The Second District, Division 6 Court of Appeal affirmed; in doing so, the court looked to Presley of Southern California v. Whelan (1983) 146 Cal.App.3d 959 (Presley) and Mustachio v. Great Western Bank (1996) 48 Cal.App.4th 1145 (Mustachio) and noted that, in both cases, the trial and appeal were treated as parts of a single proceeding, such that the party prevailing on appeal was not necessarily the prevailing party for the purpose of awarding contractual attorney fees. The court rejected Plaintiff’s argument that Presley and Mustachio meant that an appeal was a continuance of a lower court proceeding only if further court proceedings were required to decide the lawsuit:

“Neither case states that an appeal is a continuance of a lower court proceeding only if further court proceedings are required. Nor does [plaintiff] cite any case that holds as party who prevails on appeal is, solely by virtue of having prevailed on appeal, entitled to a contractual fee award if no further proceedings are required.

Here, as in Presley and Mustachio, [plaintiff’s] success on [defendant’s] appeal of the denial of attorney fees ‘[did] not decide who wins the lawsuit . . . [Citations.]’ Instead, [defendant] was the prevailing party because [plaintiff] dismissed his lawsuit against [defendant] with prejudice.” (Id. at 807 [citations omitted].)

Similarly, although Wang prevailed in the appeal since the Court of Appeal affirmed the court’s denial of Plaintiff’s attorney’s fees, Plaintiff is still considered to be the prevailing party as a whole because judgment was entered in his favor in the amount of $59,525.16. Wang, then, has not shown an entitlement to fees. The motion is denied.

2. Motion to Tax Costs

Legal Standard

“Except as provided in this rule a party prevailing in the Court of Appeal in a civil case . . . is entitled to costs on appeal. (California Rules of Court [“CRC”] Rule 8.278(a)(1).) “The prevailing party is the respondent if the Court of Appeal affirms the judgment without modification or dismisses the appeal. The prevailing party is the appellant if the court reverses the judgment in its entirety.” (CRC Rule. 8.278(a)(2).)

“Within 40 days after issuance of the remittitur, a part claiming costs awarded by a reviewing court must serve and file in the superior court a verified memorandum of costs under rule 3.1700.” (CRC Rule 8.278(c)(1).) “A party may serve and file a motion in the superior court to strike or tax costs claimed under (1) in the manner required by rule 3.1700.” (CRC Rule 3.1700(c)(1).)

CRC Rule 3.1700(a)(1) provides that “[t]he memorandum of costs must be verified by a statement of the party, attorney, or agent that to the best of his or her knowledge the items of cost are correct and were necessarily incurred in the case.” The losing party may dispute any or all of the items in the prevailing party’s memorandum of costs by serving and filing a motion to strike or tax costs 15 days after service of the cost memorandum (extended by Code of Civil Procedure § 1013 for mail service and Code of Civil Procedure § 1010.6(a)(4) for electronic service). (CRC 3.1700(b).)

“If the items appearing in a cost bill appear to be proper charges, the burden is on the party seeking to tax costs to show that they were not reasonable or necessary. On the other hand, if the items are properly objected to, they are put in issue and the burden of proof is on the party claiming them as costs.” (Ladas v. California State Auto. Assn. (1993) 19 Cal. App. 4th 761, 774.)

“[T]he mere filing of a motion to tax costs may be a ‘proper objection’ to an item, the necessity of which appears doubtful, or which does not appear to be proper on its face. However, if the items appear to be proper charges, the verified memorandum is prima facie evidence that the costs, expenses and services therein listed were necessarily incurred by the defendant [citations], and the burden of showing that an item is not properly chargeable or is unreasonable is upon the [objecting party].” (Nelson v. Anderson (1999) 72 Cal.App.4th 111, 131 [internal quotations and citation omitted].)

Discussion

Siu moves for an order to strike Wang’s memorandum of costs in its entirety.

At the outset, the motion is granted with respect to Item No. 10 (i.e., attorney’s fees), based upon the ruling made above.

The motion is otherwise denied (i.e., as to Item No. 9 [court-ordered transcripts].) A party may recover the amount the party paid for any portion of the record, whether an original or a copy or both. (CRC Rule 8.278(d)(1)(B.) Wang has attached a copy of the “Notice of Fee Due for Clerk’s Transcripts on Appeal” as Exhibit 4 to the Declaration of Jeffrey Bell (“Bell”), which reflects the $11.07 charge to Wang. Bell represents that Wang paid this cost. (Bell Decl., ¶2.)