This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 11/26/2019 at 16:29:57 (UTC).

ANA SILVIA ALVARADO ET AL VS CONTINENTAL TIRE THE AMERICAS L

Case Summary

On 08/17/2017 ANA SILVIA ALVARADO filed a Personal Injury - Other Product Liability lawsuit against CONTINENTAL TIRE THE AMERICAS L. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judges overseeing this case are DENNIS J. LANDIN, JOEL L. LOFTON and CHRISTOPHER K. LUI. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****2792

  • Filing Date:

    08/17/2017

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Personal Injury - Other Product Liability

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Stanley Mosk Courthouse

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judges

DENNIS J. LANDIN

JOEL L. LOFTON

CHRISTOPHER K. LUI

 

Party Details

Plaintiffs and Petitioners

ALVARADO ANA SILVIA

ALVARADO LAURA

SANCHEZ ASTRY

Defendants and Respondents

TROCHEZ YADIRA

DOES 1 TO 100

CONTINENTAL TIRE NORTH AMERICA INC

FORD MOTO COMPANY

CONTINENTAL TIRE THE AMERICAS LLC

FAIRMOUNT TIRE

FAIRMONT TIRE AND RUBBER INC.

CONTINENTAL TIRE NORTH AMERICA INC.

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff and Petitioner Attorneys

ROWELL JOHN D. ESQ.

ROWELL JOHN DAVID

Defendant and Respondent Attorneys

SNELL & WILMER LLP

YOKA & SMITH LLP

MOORADIAN ALINA

YOKA WALTER MICHAEL

HART JAMES PAUL

 

Court Documents

Reply - REPLY IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER

11/12/2019: Reply - REPLY IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER

Declaration - DECLARATION DECLARATION OF SHAUNA AVRITH IN SUPPORT OF CTA'S MOTION FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER

10/25/2019: Declaration - DECLARATION DECLARATION OF SHAUNA AVRITH IN SUPPORT OF CTA'S MOTION FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER

Notice of Ruling

8/6/2019: Notice of Ruling

Ex Parte Application - EX PARTE APPLICATION ON STIPULATION OF PARTIES TO CONTINUE TRIAL & FSC AND RELATED CUT-OFF DATES

7/16/2019: Ex Parte Application - EX PARTE APPLICATION ON STIPULATION OF PARTIES TO CONTINUE TRIAL & FSC AND RELATED CUT-OFF DATES

Minute Order - Minute Order (Informal Discovery Conference)

1/30/2019: Minute Order - Minute Order (Informal Discovery Conference)

Informal Discovery Conference

1/30/2019: Informal Discovery Conference

Informal Discovery Conference Form for Personal Injury Courts

1/30/2019: Informal Discovery Conference Form for Personal Injury Courts

Minute Order - Minute Order (Defendant Continental Tire The Americas, LLC's Ex-Parte appli...)

10/31/2018: Minute Order - Minute Order (Defendant Continental Tire The Americas, LLC's Ex-Parte appli...)

CIVIL SUBPOENA -

8/28/2018: CIVIL SUBPOENA -

PROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS -

1/16/2018: PROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS -

STIPULATION RE FILING OF FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT

1/31/2018: STIPULATION RE FILING OF FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT

STIPULATION RE ISSUANCE BY COURT OF SUBPOENA DUCES TECUM TO MARINE CORPS LOGISTICS BASE FIRE DEPARTMENT

2/27/2018: STIPULATION RE ISSUANCE BY COURT OF SUBPOENA DUCES TECUM TO MARINE CORPS LOGISTICS BASE FIRE DEPARTMENT

SUMMONS ON AMENDED COMPLAINT

3/12/2018: SUMMONS ON AMENDED COMPLAINT

Minute Order -

3/12/2018: Minute Order -

STIPULATION RE ISSUANCE BY COURT OF SUBPOENA DUCES TECUM TO MARINE CORPS LOGJSTJCS BASE FIRE DEPARTMENT

3/13/2018: STIPULATION RE ISSUANCE BY COURT OF SUBPOENA DUCES TECUM TO MARINE CORPS LOGJSTJCS BASE FIRE DEPARTMENT

STIPULATION AND ORDER RE ISSUANCE BY COURT OF SUBPOENA DUCES TECUM TO MARINE CORPS LOGISTICS BASE FIRE DEPARTMENT

4/4/2018: STIPULATION AND ORDER RE ISSUANCE BY COURT OF SUBPOENA DUCES TECUM TO MARINE CORPS LOGISTICS BASE FIRE DEPARTMENT

DEFENDANT FORD MOTOR COMPANY'S ANSWER TO PLAINTIFF'S FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT DEMAND FOR JURY TRIAL

4/13/2018: DEFENDANT FORD MOTOR COMPANY'S ANSWER TO PLAINTIFF'S FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT DEMAND FOR JURY TRIAL

NOTICE OF CHANGE OF FIRM NAME

7/5/2018: NOTICE OF CHANGE OF FIRM NAME

30 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 08/17/2020
  • Hearing08/17/2020 at 08:30 AM in Department 4A at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Order to Show Cause Re: Dismissal

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 05/13/2020
  • Hearing05/13/2020 at 08:30 AM in Department 4A at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Jury Trial

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 04/29/2020
  • Hearing04/29/2020 at 08:30 AM in Department 4A at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Final Status Conference

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 11/19/2019
  • Docketat 1:30 PM in Department 4A, Christopher K. Lui, Presiding; Hearing on Motion for Protective Order - Not Held - Taken Off Calendar by Party

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 11/12/2019
  • DocketReply (In Support of Motion for Protective Order); Filed by CONTINENTAL TIRE THE AMERICAS LLC (Defendant)

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 11/05/2019
  • DocketOpposition (to Motion for Protective Order); Filed by ANA SILVIA ALVARADO (Plaintiff)

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 11/04/2019
  • Docketat 1:30 PM in Department 4A, Christopher K. Lui, Presiding; Hearing on Motion for Protective Order - Not Held - Rescheduled by Party

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 10/25/2019
  • DocketMotion for Protective Order; Filed by CONTINENTAL TIRE THE AMERICAS LLC (Defendant)

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 10/25/2019
  • DocketDeclaration (Declaration of Volker Hildebrand in support of CTA's Motion for Protective Order); Filed by CONTINENTAL TIRE THE AMERICAS LLC (Defendant)

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 10/25/2019
  • DocketDeclaration (Declaration of Shauna Avrith in support of CTA's Motion for Protective Order); Filed by CONTINENTAL TIRE THE AMERICAS LLC (Defendant)

    Read MoreRead Less
56 More Docket Entries
  • 01/16/2018
  • DocketProof of Service (not Summons and Complaint); Filed by ANA SILVIA ALVARADO (Plaintiff); LAURA ALVARADO (Plaintiff); ASTRY SANCHEZ (Plaintiff)

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 01/10/2018
  • DocketProof of Service (not Summons and Complaint); Filed by ANA SILVIA ALVARADO (Plaintiff); LAURA ALVARADO (Plaintiff)

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 01/10/2018
  • DocketPROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 01/08/2018
  • DocketPROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 01/08/2018
  • DocketProof of Service (not Summons and Complaint); Filed by ANA SILVIA ALVARADO (Plaintiff); LAURA ALVARADO (Plaintiff); ASTRY SANCHEZ (Plaintiff)

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 01/08/2018
  • DocketProof of Service (not Summons and Complaint); Filed by ANA SILVIA ALVARADO (Plaintiff); LAURA ALVARADO (Plaintiff); ASTRY SANCHEZ (Plaintiff)

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 01/08/2018
  • DocketPROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 08/17/2017
  • DocketCOMPLAINT FOR DAMAGES FOR: (1) STRICT PRODUCTS LIABILITY; ETC

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 08/17/2017
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by ANA SILVIA ALVARADO (Plaintiff); LAURA ALVARADO (Plaintiff); ASTRY SANCHEZ (Plaintiff)

    Read MoreRead Less
  • 08/17/2017
  • DocketSUMMONS

    Read MoreRead Less

Tentative Rulings

Case Number: BC672792    Hearing Date: November 19, 2019    Dept: 4A

Motion for Protective Order

Having considered the moving, opposing, and reply papers, the Court rules as follows.

BACKGROUND

On August 17, 2017, Plaintiffs Ana Silvia Alvarado, Laura Alvarado, and Astray Sanchez filed a complaint against Defendants Continental Tire the Americas, LLC f.k.a. Continental Tire North America, Inc., Continental Tire the Americas, LLC f.k.a. Continental Tire North America, Inc., Ford Motor Company, and Yadira Trochez alleging strict products liability and negligence arising from an automobile collision that occurred on August 20, 2015.

On March 12, 2018, Plaintiff Ana Silvia Alvarado filed a first amended complaint.

On January 18, 2019, Plaintiff Ana Silvia Alvarado amended her complaint to rename Doe 21 as Defendant Fairmount Tire & Rubber, Inc.

On October 25, 2019, Defendant Continental Tire the Americas, LLC filed a motion for a protective order pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure section 2031.060, subdivision (a).

Trial is set for May 13, 2020.

PARTYS REQUEST

Defendant Continental Tire the Americas, LLC (“Moving Defendant”) asks the Court for an order limiting the disclosure of trade secrets.

LEGAL STANDARD

A protective order may be granted on a noticed motion of a party propounded with requests for production. (Code Civ. Proc. §§ 2031.060, subd. (a). The motion must be accompanied by a declaration stating facts showing a “reasonable and good faith attempt” to resolve the matter outside of court. (Ibid.)

The burden is on the moving party to establish good cause exists for protection from unwarranted annoyance, embarrassment, or oppression, or undue burden and expense. (See Code Civ. Proc. §§ 2031.060, subd. (b); Bridgestone/Firestone, Inc. v. Superior Court (1992) 7 Cal.App.4th 1394, 1393.)  

After, the party seeking discovery must make a “particularized showing that the information sought is relevant and necessary to the proof of, or defense against, a material element of one or more causes of action presented in the case, and that it is reasonable to conclude that the information sought is essential to a fair resolution of the lawsuit.  It is then up to the holder of the privilege to demonstrate any claimed disadvantages of a protective order.  Either party may propose or oppose less intrusive alternatives to disclosure of the trade secret, but the burden is upon the trade secret claimant to demonstrate that an alternative to disclosure will not be unduly burdensome to the opposing side and that it will maintain the same fair balance in the litigation that would have been achieved by disclosure.”  (Bridgestone, supra, 7 Cal.App.4th at p. 1393.)  

DISCUSSION

Existence of Trade Secrets

A trade secret is “information, including a formula, pattern, compilation, program, device, method, technique, or process that . . . [d]erives independent economic value, actual or potential, from not being generally known to the public or to other persons who can obtain economic value from its disclosure or use[] and . . . [i]s the subject of efforts that are reasonable under the circumstances to maintain its secrecy.”  (Civ. Code § 3426.1, subd. (d).)

Moving Defendant argues it has trade secrets that pertain to General AmeriTrac P255/70R16, which is the tire that Plaintiff claims was responsible for causing the collision that gives rise to this action.  (Hildebrand Decl., ¶ 7, 16.)  Mr. Hildebrand declares that the tire business is extremely competitive and competitors are always seeking to gain any advantage, including through understanding the competition’s design and manufacturing processes.  (Hildebrand Decl., 14.)  Information valuable to competitors includes the design and manufacturing information of the tire, development documents of the tire, quality assurance and testing data of the tire, and adjustment and warranty data of the tire.  (Hildebrand Decl., 22.)  Mr. Hildebrand further declares a protective order is necessary because a competitor could use this information to recreate aspects of the performance of tire without investing any time or incurring any expenses in the development cycle.  (Hildebrand Decl., ¶¶ 23-28.)  Mr. Hildebrand lastly declares that Moving Defendant maintains strict confidentiality through limited disclosure to employees, non-disclosure agreements with employees, and monitoring procedures at its facility.  (Hildebrand Decl., ¶¶ 18-20.)

The Court finds Moving Defendant has shown that it has trade secrets in the design and manufacturing information regarding the tire, documents about the development of the tire, quality assurance and testing data for the tire, and adjustment and warranty data relating to the tire.  Moving Defendant has provided a detailed description of why competitors desire this information and the steps that Moving Defendant takes to protect the disclosure of this information.  As such, Moving Defendant has met its initial burden and the burden shifts to Plaintiff.

Disclosure of Trade Secrets

The parties do not dispute that Moving Defendant’s trade secrets regarding the subject tire should be disclosed.  Instead, the parties dispute the proper scope of disclosure.

Moving Defendant has proposed a protective order.  It allows for the disclosure to the Court and the parties in this action, their counsel, and their experts.  (Avrith Decl., ¶ 2, Exh. A, p. 3:17-3:23.)  Plaintiff argues that the protective order should include a sharing provision that would allow the disclosure of the privileged information with other lawyers who are involved in litigating similar cases against Moving Defendant.  (Opposition, pp. 9:9-16:21.)

Plaintiff principally relies on Raymond Handling Concepts Corp. v. Superior Court (1995) 39 Cal.App.4th 584 in arguing a sharing provision is properly included in the protective order.  The Raymond court found the trial court did not abuse its discretion in issuing a protective order that allows the sharing of information to litigants in similar cases where: (1) the information is discoverable, (2) counsel executed a stipulation agreeing to be bound by the protective order, and (3) counsel notifies the trade-secret-holder’s counsel when disclosure was made.  (Id. at p. 590.)  The Raymond court found this sharing provision to have accommodated the public interest.  (Ibid.)

Moving Defendant argues Raymond does not give Plaintiff the ability to include a sharing provision in the protective order because it is over twenty years old and lacks precedential force.  A twenty-year-old appellate decision is not so old to have become stale.  Additionally, Raymond is good law.  Moving Defendant’s criticisms of Raymond are without merit.

Rather, the Court must consider the public’s interest in determining whether there is good cause for Moving Defendant’s protective order.  (See Stanish v. Superior Court (1999) 71 Cal.App.4th 1130, 1145.)  There is no suggestion that the tire that allegedly caused the accident underlying this action was one-of-a-kind.  As such, it appears that the subject tire may be in use by other consumers while this action is being litigated.  It is certainly in the public’s interest to allow for access of discoverable information covered by a protective order in this action if a similar circumstance were to arise in a future action.  Thus, a sharing provision is appropriate.

Plaintiff argues that the proposed protective order is overreaching in that it prevents the use of deposition testimony and written discovery responses to impeach witnesses at trial and the sharing of discovery responses with other counsel, and would withhold trial exhibits and court filings from the public.  (Opposition, pp. 16:25-18:10.)  The Court disagrees. There is no provision of the protective order that prevents deposition testimony and written discovery responses from being used to impeach witnesses at trial.  Rather, disclosure of privileged information may be made to the Court and all Court personnel as stated in paragraph E.  Additionally, the above-contemplated sharing provision will allow for the public’s use of the trade secrets in limited circumstances as was Raymond.

Thus, the motion is GRANTED.

Moving Defendant is ordered to file and serve an amended proposed protective order that will include a sharing provision that states as follows: “CONFIDENTIAL MATERIAL may be shared with litigants in similar cases where: (1) the information is discoverable, (2) the litigant receiving the CONFIDENTIAL MATERIAL has executed a stipulation agreeing to be bound by the protective order, and (3) the litigant receiving the CONFIDENTIAL MATERIAL notifies CTA when a disclosure is made.

Moving Defendant is ordered to give notice of this ruling.