This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 07/05/2019 at 01:41:39 (UTC).

BHRAT PATEL VS DR. PRAKASH PATEL

Case Summary

On 02/14/2018 BHRAT PATEL filed a Contract - Other Contract lawsuit against DR PRAKASH PATEL. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Pomona Courthouse South located in Los Angeles, California. The Judges overseeing this case are PETER A. HERNANDEZ and DUKES, ROBERT A.. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****0042

  • Filing Date:

    02/14/2018

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Contract - Other Contract

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judges

PETER A. HERNANDEZ

DUKES, ROBERT A.

 

Party Details

Plaintiffs

PATEL DINESH

PATEL BHRAT

Defendants

PATE DR.PRAKASH

PATEL DR. PRAKASH

PATEL PRAKASH DR.

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorneys

LACEY KEVIN S. ESQ.

LACEY KEVIN SHANE ESQ.

Defendant Attorney

TILLER AHREN A. ESQ.

 

Court Documents

Notice

5/22/2019: Notice

Order to Show Cause re: Dismissal (Settlement)

5/2/2019: Order to Show Cause re: Dismissal (Settlement)

Order to Show Cause re: Dismissal (Settlement)

5/2/2019: Order to Show Cause re: Dismissal (Settlement)

Notice of Case Reassignment and Order for Plaintiff to Give Notice

10/2/2018: Notice of Case Reassignment and Order for Plaintiff to Give Notice

Notice of Ruling

7/23/2018: Notice of Ruling

Minute Order

7/9/2018: Minute Order

Case Management Statement

7/5/2018: Case Management Statement

Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

6/29/2018: Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

Case Management Statement

6/29/2018: Case Management Statement

Answer

5/4/2018: Answer

Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

5/4/2018: Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

Legacy Document

4/3/2018: Legacy Document

Notice of Case Management Conference

2/16/2018: Notice of Case Management Conference

Civil Case Cover Sheet

2/14/2018: Civil Case Cover Sheet

Summons

2/14/2018: Summons

Complaint

2/14/2018: Complaint

Notice of Case Assignment - Unlimited Civil Case

2/14/2018: Notice of Case Assignment - Unlimited Civil Case

5 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 05/22/2019
  • Notice (NOTICE OF OSC RE: SETTLEMENT); Filed by BHRAT PATEL (Plaintiff); DINESH PATEL (Plaintiff)

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  • 05/21/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department O, Peter A. Hernandez, Presiding; Jury Trial - Not Held - Vacated by Court

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  • 05/09/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department O, Peter A. Hernandez, Presiding; Final Status Conference - Not Held - Vacated by Court

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  • 05/02/2019
  • Notice of Settlement; Filed by BHRAT PATEL (Plaintiff); DINESH PATEL (Plaintiff)

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  • 05/02/2019
  • Order to Show Cause re: Dismissal (Settlement); Filed by Clerk

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  • 05/02/2019
  • Order to Show Cause re: Dismissal (Settlement); Filed by Clerk

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  • 10/02/2018
  • Notice of Case Reassignment & Ord; Filed by Clerk

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  • 10/02/2018
  • Notice of Case Reassignment and Order for Plaintiff to Give Notice

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  • 10/02/2018
  • Notice of Case Reassignment and Order for Plaintiff to Give Notice; Filed by Clerk

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  • 10/02/2018
  • Notice of Case Reassignment and Order for Plaintiff to Give Notice; Filed by Clerk

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14 More Docket Entries
  • 05/04/2018
  • Answer to Complaint Filed; Filed by Attorney for Defendant

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  • 04/03/2018
  • Rtn of Service of Summons & Compl; Filed by Attorney for Plaintiff

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  • 04/03/2018
  • Rtn of Service of Summons & Compl; Filed by BHRAT PATEL (Plaintiff); DINESH PATEL (Plaintiff)

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  • 02/16/2018
  • Notice of Case Management Conference; Filed by Clerk

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  • 02/16/2018
  • Notice-Case Management Conference; Filed by Clerk

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  • 02/14/2018
  • Complaint Filed

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  • 02/14/2018
  • Summons (on Complaint)

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  • 02/14/2018
  • Notice of Case Assignment - Unlimited Civil Case; Filed by Clerk

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  • 02/14/2018
  • Civil Case Cover Sheet; Filed by BHRAT PATEL (Plaintiff); DINESH PATEL (Plaintiff)

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  • 02/14/2018
  • Complaint; Filed by BHRAT PATEL (Plaintiff); DINESH PATEL (Plaintiff)

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: KC070042    Hearing Date: March 02, 2021    Dept: O

Plaintiffs Bhrat Patel and Dinesh Patel’s Motion for Enforcement of Settlement Agreement is GRANTED.

Plaintiffs Bhrat Patel and Dinesh Patel (“Plaintiffs”) move to enforce a Settlement Agreement pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure section 664.6 against Defendant Dr. Prakash Patel (“Defendant”).

Legal Standard

Under Code of Civil Procedure section 664.6:

If parties to pending litigation stipulate, in a writing signed by the parties outside the presence of the court or orally before the court, for settlement of the case, or part thereof, the court, upon motion, may enter judgment pursuant to the terms of the settlement. If requested by the parties, the court may retain jurisdiction over the parties to enforce the settlement until performance in full of the terms of the settlement.

(CCP § 664.6.) The agreement must be sufficiently definite to enable courts to give it an exact meaning. If an essential element is reserved for future agreement, it is not sufficiently definite. (See Weddington Productions, Inc. v. Flick (1998) 60 Cal.App.4th 793, 810-812.)

The court finds that the settlement agreement (“Settlement Agreement”) is sufficiently definite and signed by Plaintiffs and Defendant. (Declaration of Bharat Patel [Baharat Decl.], ¶ 13, Exs. B & C.) The parties further agreed that the court retain jurisdiction over this action and the Settlement Agreement pursuant to section 664.6. (See Id. at Ex. C, ¶ 12.)

The Agreement provides, in pertinent, part that:

(1) Plaintiffs agreed to purchase the Bentley Way Property from Defendant for $1,900,000.00. (See Id. at Ex. B, ¶ 2; and Ex. C, ¶ 2.)

(2) These payments included:

a. Paying the payoff balance of Defendant’s Wells Fargo loan which was estimated to be $503,000 (Account #0534224282). Plaintiffs are also paying taxes and insurance.

b. Paying the payoff balance on Defendant‘s Amalgamated Bank loan which was estimated to be $174,000 (Account #145675590).

c. Forgiveness of debt in the amount of $1,215,766.32, which includes payment by Plaintiffs of $150,000.00 toward Defendant’s debt with the IRS and Best Western.

d. Payment of $75,000.00 to Best Western to release Defendant’ debt.

e. Payment of up to $77,000.00 to release IRS lien. (The plaintiffs agreed to pay more than $77,000.00, but the excess was to be a loan to Defendant Prakash secured by other real property.)

(Bharat Decl. ¶ 13, Exs. B & C.)

Plaintiffs contend that they have complied with their part of the Settlement Agreement but Defendant now refuses to transfer the Bentley Way Property to Plaintiffs. Thus, Plaintiffs’ money is now tied up in escrow indefinitely as interest continues to accrue.

Defendant contends that the Settlement Agreement is unenforceable because Defendant was the only party to sign the agreement, and that necessary party Hardika Patel, Defendant’s wife, did not sign the agreement. Defendant contends that the agreement to transfer the Bentley Way Property, a property owned by both Defendant and Hardika Patel as their primary residence, is therefore unenforceable because both owners of the Bentley Way Property need to agree to the transfer of the property.

The court agrees with Plaintiffs regarding the suspicious nature of Defendant’s agreement to settle the case using the Bentley Way Property as a bargaining chip in settlement negotiations. As Plaintiffs point out, Plaintiffs did not seek ownership of the Bentley Way Property initially in their Complaint, and the court finds that there was no mention of this property as a means to enforce the prior contract/settlement. Plaintiffs contend that Defendant himself raised the sale of the Bentley Way Property to Plaintiffs during the settlement negotiations. Plaintiffs reasonably believed that in making the offer to sell the Bentley Way Property to Plaintiffs, Defendant had the authority to do so and that his wife was aware and consented to what was happening. Defendant does not deny any of these contentions in his Opposition.

Furthermore, as the court stated already above, the terms of the Settlement Agreement are sufficiently definite. Defendant has not shown that the terms are indefinite that would prevent this court from enforcing the terms. If there are any indefinite terms, it was solely caused by Defendant’s own actions in possibly making a promise he can’t keep. He cannot claim to suddenly be blindsided by the supposed impossibility of selling this property to inequitably nullify this Settlement Agreement.

Finally, Defendant’s contention that the Settlement Agreement was entered into by fraud is without evidence. Defendant’s own declaration fails to state any facts that suggests that Plaintiffs committed any fraud against Defendant in getting Defendant to sign this Agreement. The only statement of fraud is a conclusory and unhelpful statement that “[b]ased on the fraud committed by PLAINTIFFS, [Defendant] refused to complete the escrow transaction.” (Declaration of Prakash Patel, ¶ 23.) If Defendant is contending that the amount sued for was incorrectly inflated, this is now irrelevant under the Settlement Agreement which has superseded any allegations made in the Complaint. Defendant had the opportunity to negotiate down the supposed amount of debt he owed Plaintiffs during the settlement talks.

Thus, the court agrees with Plaintiff that the Settlement Agreement is enforceable. At the very least, the court can enforce the sale of Defendant’s interest in the Bentley Way Property to Plaintiffs, an interest which Defendant had the authority to give away when the parties executed the Settlement Agreement. The court will discuss this further with the parties at the hearing.

Accordingly, the motion is GRANTED.

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