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This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 06/07/2019 at 03:26:21 (UTC).

CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT INC ET AL VS DOMINGUEZ INVESTM

Case Summary

On 10/23/2017 CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT INC filed a Contract - Other Contract lawsuit against DOMINGUEZ INVESTM. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****0707

  • Filing Date:

    10/23/2017

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Contract - Other Contract

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Stanley Mosk Courthouse

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

 

Party Details

Plaintiffs and Petitioners

CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT INC.

CALIFORNIA WATERS

CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT INC. DBA CALIFORNIA WATERS A CALIFORNIA CORPORATION

CALIFORNIA WATERS LLC

Defendants, Respondents and Cross Plaintiffs

NEWMARK GRUBB KNIGHT FRANK MANAGEMENT

G&E REAL ESTATE MANAGEMENT SERVICES INC.

DOES 1 TO 100

DOMINGUEZ INVESTMENT COMPANY LLC

Plaintiffs and Cross Defendants

CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT INC. DBA CALIFORNIA WATERS A CALIFORNIA CORPORATION

CALIFORNIA WATERS LLC

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff and Petitioner Attorneys

HINES HAMPTON LLP

HINES MARC STEPHEN

Defendant Attorney

ORLAND JAMES JOHN

 

Court Documents

NOTICE OF CASE REASSIGNMENT AND OF ORDER FOR PLAINTIFF TO GIVE NOTICE

6/21/2018: NOTICE OF CASE REASSIGNMENT AND OF ORDER FOR PLAINTIFF TO GIVE NOTICE

NOTICE OF CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT, INC.'S MOTION TO COMPEL RESPONSES TO REQUESTS FOR ADMISSIONS AND SANCTIONS

8/7/2018: NOTICE OF CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT, INC.'S MOTION TO COMPEL RESPONSES TO REQUESTS FOR ADMISSIONS AND SANCTIONS

SEPARATE STATEMENT IN SUPPORT OF CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT, INC.'S MOTION TO COMPEL RESPONSES TO REQUESTS FOR ADMISSIONS AND SANCTIONS

8/7/2018: SEPARATE STATEMENT IN SUPPORT OF CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT, INC.'S MOTION TO COMPEL RESPONSES TO REQUESTS FOR ADMISSIONS AND SANCTIONS

SEPARATE STATEMENT IN SUPPORT OF CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT, INC.'S MOTION TO COMPEL RESPONSES TO SPECIAL INTERROGATORIES AND SANCTIONS

8/7/2018: SEPARATE STATEMENT IN SUPPORT OF CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT, INC.'S MOTION TO COMPEL RESPONSES TO SPECIAL INTERROGATORIES AND SANCTIONS

SEPARATE STATEMENT IN SUPPORT OF CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT, INC.'S MOTION TO COMPEL RESPONSES TO REQUESTS FOR PRODUCTION OF DOCUMENTS AND SANCTIONS

8/7/2018: SEPARATE STATEMENT IN SUPPORT OF CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT, INC.'S MOTION TO COMPEL RESPONSES TO REQUESTS FOR PRODUCTION OF DOCUMENTS AND SANCTIONS

DECLARATION OF ELAN J. DUNAEV IN SUPPORT OF CALIFORMA WATERS DEVELOPMENT, INC.'S MOTION TO COMPEL RESPONSES TO SPECIAL INTERROGATORIES AND SANCTIONS

8/7/2018: DECLARATION OF ELAN J. DUNAEV IN SUPPORT OF CALIFORMA WATERS DEVELOPMENT, INC.'S MOTION TO COMPEL RESPONSES TO SPECIAL INTERROGATORIES AND SANCTIONS

Proof of Service

8/7/2018: Proof of Service

Proof of Service

8/7/2018: Proof of Service

Case Management Order

10/10/2018: Case Management Order

Other -

11/16/2018: Other -

Minute Order

11/19/2018: Minute Order

Minute Order

1/14/2019: Minute Order

Minute Order

2/19/2019: Minute Order

Cross-Complaint

4/3/2019: Cross-Complaint

REQUEST FOR DISMISSAL

11/29/2017: REQUEST FOR DISMISSAL

FIRST AMENDED COMPI AJNT OF PLAINTIFFS CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT, [NC. DBA CALIFORNIA WATERS AND CALIFORNIA WATERS, LLC: 1. BREACH OF WRITTEN CONTRACT; ETC

12/7/2017: FIRST AMENDED COMPI AJNT OF PLAINTIFFS CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPMENT, [NC. DBA CALIFORNIA WATERS AND CALIFORNIA WATERS, LLC: 1. BREACH OF WRITTEN CONTRACT; ETC

PROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

11/6/2017: PROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

COMPLAINT OF PLAINTIFF CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPIWENT, INC. DBA CALIFORNIA WATERS: 1. BREACH OF WRITTEN CONTRACT ;ETC

10/23/2017: COMPLAINT OF PLAINTIFF CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPIWENT, INC. DBA CALIFORNIA WATERS: 1. BREACH OF WRITTEN CONTRACT ;ETC

39 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 04/30/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 24; Status Conference (re Settlement) - Not Held - Continued - Stipulation

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  • 04/16/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 24; Non-Appearance Case Review (Plaintiff's Report re Settlement) - Not Held - Continued - Stipulation

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  • 04/11/2019
  • Summons (on Cross Complaint); Filed by Dominguez Investment Company, LLC (Cross-Complainant)

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  • 04/10/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 24; Hearing on Motion for Leave to File a Cross-Complaint - Not Held - Vacated by Court

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  • 04/03/2019
  • Cross-Complaint; Filed by Dominguez Investment Company, LLC (Cross-Complainant)

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  • 03/28/2019
  • Stipulation and Order (Stipulation and Proposed Order re Defendant Dominguez Investment Company LLC's Motion for Leave to File a Cross-Complaint; Discovery; and to Continue Trial); Filed by California Waters Development, Inc. (Plaintiff)

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  • 02/19/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 24; Hearing on Motion to Compel ((Motion to Compel)) - Held

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  • 02/19/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 24; Hearing on Motion to Compel ((Motion to Compel)) - Held

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  • 02/19/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 24; Hearing on Motion to Compel ((Motion to Compel)) - Held

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  • 02/19/2019
  • Minute Order ( (Hearing on Motion to Compel (Motion to Compel); Hearing on Mo...)); Filed by Clerk

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90 More Docket Entries
  • 11/29/2017
  • Request for Dismissal; Filed by California Waters Development, Inc. (Plaintiff); California Waters (Plaintiff)

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  • 11/29/2017
  • REQUEST FOR DISMISSAL

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  • 11/29/2017
  • REQUEST FOR DISMISSAL

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  • 11/06/2017
  • PROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

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  • 11/06/2017
  • Proof-Service/Summons; Filed by California Waters Development, Inc. (Plaintiff)

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  • 11/06/2017
  • PROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

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  • 11/06/2017
  • Proof-Service/Summons; Filed by California Waters Development, Inc. (Plaintiff)

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  • 10/23/2017
  • Complaint; Filed by California Waters Development, Inc. (Plaintiff)

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  • 10/23/2017
  • COMPLAINT OF PLAINTIFF CALIFORNIA WATERS DEVELOPIWENT, INC. DBA CALIFORNIA WATERS: 1. BREACH OF WRITTEN CONTRACT ;ETC

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  • 10/23/2017
  • SUMMONS

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: BC680707    Hearing Date: July 07, 2020    Dept: 24

Plaintiff California Waters Development Inc.’s motion to compel the deposition of Defendant Dominguez Investment Company’s affiliated witness Marc Seidner is GRANTED. Sanctions are imposed in the reduced total amount of $1,690.00 against Defendant and their counsel of record, jointly and severally.

On October 23, 2017, Plaintiff/Cross-Defendant California Waters Development Inc. (“Plaintiff” or “Cross-Defendant”) filed the instant action against Defendant/Cross-Complainant Dominguez Investment Company LLC (“Defendant” or “Cross-Complainant”). Plaintiff alleges that Defendant was the owner of a property known as Madrona Office Complex located at 20770 Madrona Avenue, Torrance, CA 90503 (the “Property”). Plaintiff alleges that the parties entered into two contracts. First, a repair contract whereby Plaintiff agreed to construct improvements at Defendant’s property in exchange for $86,763.00. Second, a service contract whereby Plaintiff agreed to perform monthly fountain maintenance at Defendant’s property for $1,200.00 a month. Plaintiff alleges that Defendant failed to pay under either contract. The operative First Amended Complaint (“FAC”) alleges four causes of action for: 1) breach of written contract; 2) quantum meruit; 3) account stated; and 4) open book account.

On April 3, 2019, Cross-Complainant filed a cross-complaint against Cross-Defendant, alleging seven causes of action for: 1) breach of contract; 2) negligence; 3) nuisance; 4) express indemnity; 5) implied indemnity; 6) equitable indemnity; and 7) declaratory relief. Cross-Complainant alleges that Cross-Defendant failed to maintain the water features on their property which led to a valve allowing water through the system while closed. This caused excessive pressure to the system, flooding the vault and causing damage to the water systems.

On January 23, 2020, Plaintiff filed the two motions to compel the deposition of party affiliated witnesses. The instant motion regards Marc Seidner (“Mr. Seidner”). The motion regarding Hanya Seidner is set for hearing on July 7, 2020.

Legal Standard

Service of a proper deposition notice obligates a party or “party-affiliated” witness (officer, director, managing agent or employee of party) to attend and testify, as well as produce any document, electronically stored information, or tangible thing for inspection and copying. (CCP § 2025.280(a).) If, after service of a deposition notice, a party deponent fails to appear, testify, or produce documents or tangible things for inspection without having served a valid objection under CCP § 2025.410, the deposing party may move for an order compelling attendance, testimony, and production. (CCP § 2025.450(a).) The motion must be accompanied by a meet and confer declaration, or, when a party deponent fails to attend the deposition, the motion must also be accompanied by a declaration stating that the moving party has contacted the party deponent to inquire about the nonappearance. (CCP § 2025.450(b)(2).) If the deposition notice included a request for production of documents, the motion to compel attendance must also show good cause to justify the production. (CCP § 2025.450(b)(1).)

Discussion

Plaintiff provides the following facts. On December 11, 2019, Plaintiff served Defendant with a notice of deposition of Mr. Seidner, the managing member of Defendant, set for January 22, 2020. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 3; Ex. 2.) On January 16, 2020, Defense counsel sent a letter to Plaintiff’s counsel stating that Mr. Seidner will not be available for a deposition until after February 20, 2020 because (1) he will be acting as the primary care giver of a family member and (2) he must be present for preparation and trial of another matter during the month of March 2020. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 4; Ex. 3.) Further, On January 20, 2020, Defense counsel indicated that Mr. Seidner would not be appearing for his deposition on January 22, 2020 as both Mr. Seidner and counsel were unavailable. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 5; Ex. 4.) On January 20, 2020, Plaintiff’s counsel sent an email to Defense counsel stating that considering the upcoming discovery cutoff, Plaintiff would proceed with taking the nonappearance of Mr. Seidner and move the Court to compel his deposition. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 6; Ex. 5.) In response, on January 21, 2020, Defense sent a letter advising that Mr. Seidner would not be appearing for his deposition due to unavailability and did not offer alternative dates. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 7; Ex. 6.) On January 22, 2020, the date of the noticed deposition, Mr. Seidner failed to appear for his deposition. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 8; Ex. 7.) Plaintiff and proceeded to take the nonappearance of Mr. Seidner. (Id.)

This adequately shows that Mr. Seidner failed to appear at his duly noticed deposition, and that the parties met and conferred regarding Mr. Seidner’s non-appearance, albeit preemptively. Given that Mr. Seidner has failed to appear at his duly noticed deposition without a code-compliant objection, Plaintiff's motion is GRANTED.

Sanctions

Code of Civil Procedure section 2025.450 requires the Court to sanction a party who unsuccessfully opposes a motion to compel compliance, unless the court finds that the one subject to the sanction acted with substantial justification or that other circumstances make the imposition of the sanction unjust. Here, Defendant has failed to justify their party affiliated witness’s non-appearance. Therefore, the Court finds sanctions are mandatory.

Plaintiff request $4820.00 in sanctions. Counsel’s declaration indicates they charge at the rate of $200.00/hour and performed the following work: (1) 1.1 hours to research for the motion, (2) 0.3 hours to draft the notice, (3) 2.6 hours to draft the memorandum; and (4) 0.9 hours to draft this declaration. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 8.) That is a total of 4.9 hours, for a fee of $980.00. Further, they anticipate an additional 5 hours of work to draft a reply and a 4 hour round-trip to attend the hearing, including time at the hearing. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 9.) Further, Counsel anticipated the need to file an ex parte application to shorten time to hear this motion prior to the cut-off date, for an additional $1,400.00 in fees. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 10.) Counsel also presents costs for $580.00 for the certificate of non-appearance and $60.00 filing fee.

This adequately shows that Mr. Seidner failed to appear at his duly noticed deposition, and that the parties met and conferred regarding Mr. Seidner’s non-appearance, albeit preemptively. Given that Mr. Seidner has failed to appear at his duly noticed deposition without a code-compliant objection, Plaintiff's motion is GRANTED. Mr. Seidner is ordered to appear at her deposition within 10 days. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the deposition will take place through remote electronic means. (See CRC Rules, Emergency Rule 11(a).)

Accordingly, Plaintiff’s request for sanctions is GRANTED in the reduced total amount of $1,690.00 against Defendant and Defendant’s counsel of record, jointly and severally.

Moving party is ordered to give notice.

_________________________________________________________________________________________

Plaintiff California Waters Development Inc.’s motion to compel the deposition of Defendant Dominguez Investment Company’s affiliated witness Hanya Seidner is GRANTED. Sanctions are imposed in the reduced total amount of $1,590.00 against Defendant and their counsel of record, jointly and severally.

On October 23, 2017, Plaintiff/Cross-Defendant California Waters Development Inc. (“Plaintiff” or “Cross-Defendant”) filed the instant action against Defendant/Cross-Complainant Dominguez Investment Company LLC (“Defendant” or “Cross-Complainant”). Plaintiff alleges that Defendant was the owner of a property known as Madrona Office Complex located at 20770 Madrona Avenue, Torrance, CA 90503 (the “Property”). Plaintiff alleges that the parties entered into two contracts. First, a repair contract whereby Plaintiff agreed to construct improvements at Defendant’s property in exchange for $86,763.00. Second, a service contract whereby Plaintiff agreed to perform monthly fountain maintenance at Defendant’s property for $1,200.00 a month. Plaintiff alleges that Defendant failed to pay under either contract. The operative First Amended Complaint (“FAC”) alleges four causes of action for: 1) breach of written contract; 2) quantum meruit; 3) account stated; and 4) open book account.

On April 3, 2019, Cross-Complainant filed a cross-complaint against Cross-Defendant, alleging seven causes of action for: 1) breach of contract; 2) negligence; 3) nuisance; 4) express indemnity; 5) implied indemnity; 6) equitable indemnity; and 7) declaratory relief. Cross-Complainant alleges that Cross-Defendant failed to maintain the water features on their property which led to a valve allowing water through the system while closed. This caused excessive pressure to the system, flooding the vault and causing damage to the water systems.

On January 23, 2020, Plaintiff filed the two motions to compel the deposition of party affiliated witnesses. The instant motion regards Hanya Seidner (“Ms. Seidner”). The motion regarding Marc Seidner was set for hearing on July 6, 2020.

Legal Standard

Service of a proper deposition notice obligates a party or “party-affiliated” witness (officer, director, managing agent or employee of party) to attend and testify, as well as produce any document, electronically stored information, or tangible thing for inspection and copying. (CCP § 2025.280(a).) If, after service of a deposition notice, a party deponent fails to appear, testify, or produce documents or tangible things for inspection without having served a valid objection under CCP § 2025.410, the deposing party may move for an order compelling attendance, testimony, and production. (CCP § 2025.450(a).) The motion must be accompanied by a meet and confer declaration, or, when a party deponent fails to attend the deposition, the motion must also be accompanied by a declaration stating that the moving party has contacted the party deponent to inquire about the nonappearance. (CCP § 2025.450(b)(2).) If the deposition notice included a request for production of documents, the motion to compel attendance must also show good cause to justify the production. (CCP § 2025.450(b)(1).)

Discussion

Plaintiff provides the following facts. On December 11, 2019, Plaintiff served Defendant with a notice of deposition of Ms. Seidner set for January 23, 2020. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 3; Ex. 2.) On January 20, 2020, Defense counsel indicated that Ms. Seidner would not be appearing for her deposition on January 23, 2020 as both Ms. Seidner and counsel were unavailable. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 4; Ex. 3.) On January 20, 2020, Plaintiff’s counsel sent an email to Defense counsel stating that considering the upcoming discovery cutoff, Plaintiff would proceed with taking the nonappearance of Ms. Seidner and move the Court to compel her deposition. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 5; Ex. 4.) In response, on January 21, 2020, Defense sent a letter advising that Ms. Seidner would not be appearing for her deposition due to unavailability and did not offer alternative dates. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 6; Ex. 5.) On January 23, 2020, the date of the noticed deposition, Ms. Seidner failed to appear for her deposition. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 7; Ex. 6.) Plaintiff and proceeded to take the nonappearance of Ms. Seidner. (Id.)

This adequately shows that Ms. Seidner failed to appear at her duly noticed deposition, and that the parties met and conferred regarding Ms. Seidner’s non-appearance, albeit preemptively. Given that Ms. Seidner has failed to appear at his duly noticed deposition without a code-compliant objection, Plaintiff's motion is GRANTED. Ms. Seidner is ordered to appear at her deposition within 10 days. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the deposition will take place through remote electronic means. (See CRC Rules, Emergency Rule 11(a).)

Sanctions

Code of Civil Procedure section 2025.450 requires the Court to sanction a party who unsuccessfully opposes a motion to compel compliance, unless the court finds that the one subject to the sanction acted with substantial justification or that other circumstances make the imposition of the sanction unjust. Here, Defendant has failed to justify their party affiliated witness’s non-appearance. Therefore, the Court finds sanctions are mandatory.

Plaintiff request $4,420.00 in sanctions. Counsel’s declaration indicates they charge at the rate of $200.00/hour and performed the following work: (1) 0.6 hours to research for the motion, (2) 0.2 hours to draft the notice, (3) 1.7 hours to draft the memorandum; and (4) 0.4 hours to draft this declaration. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 8.) That is a total of 2.9 hours, for a total fee of $580.00. Further, they anticipate an additional 5 hours of work to draft a reply and a 4 hour round-trip to attend the hearing, including time at the hearing. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 9.) Further, Counsel anticipated the need to file an ex parte application to shorten time to hear this motion prior to the cut-off date, for an additional $1,400.00 in fees. (Dunaev Decl., ¶ 10.) Counsel also presents costs for $580.00 for the certificate of non-appearance and $60.00 filing fee.

The Court finds that the sanctions are unreasonably high given the relative simplicity of the motion at issue, and the duplicative nature of the motions presented. The Court finds that reasonable sanction for this motion would be $1,590.00, inclusive of costs, given the declarations and arguments of the parties.

Accordingly, Plaintiff’s request for sanctions is GRANTED in the reduced total amount of $1,590.00 against Defendant and Defendant’s counsel of record, jointly and severally.

Moving party is ordered to give notice.

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