This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 12/01/2020 at 06:29:11 (UTC).

CASSANDRA MARIE TRIVISANO VS RUPINDER SINGH JHALLI ET AL

Case Summary

On 04/03/2018 CASSANDRA MARIE TRIVISANO filed a Personal Injury - Motor Vehicle lawsuit against RUPINDER SINGH JHALLI. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judges overseeing this case are LAURA A. SEIGLE and EDWARD B. MORETON. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****0834

  • Filing Date:

    04/03/2018

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Personal Injury - Motor Vehicle

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Stanley Mosk Courthouse

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judges

LAURA A. SEIGLE

EDWARD B. MORETON

 

Party Details

Plaintiffs and Petitioners

TRIVISANO CASSANDRA MARIE

SHEKARI ELNAZ

Defendants and Respondents

DYAL BALREET S.

JHALLI RUPINDER SINGH

DYAL RAMANDEEP K.

DOES 1 TO 50

LAW OFFICES OF TIMOTHY J O'SHEA

LAM ANNIE

Guardian Ad Litem

VOJDANIHERIS FARHAD AND INDIVIDUAL

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff and Petitioner Attorneys

DAILY JUSTIN E. D.

HAYES BRAD G. ESQ.

HAYES BRADLEY G. ESQ.

MALCZYNSKI MATTHEW

Defendant Attorneys

GRANDY JAMES LAWTON

TORRES RON

KUO TIONG SOPHIA MARIE C.

TORRES RONNIE E.

 

Court Documents

Declaration - DECLARATION OF ROCHELLE C. ROTEA

11/5/2020: Declaration - DECLARATION OF ROCHELLE C. ROTEA

Opposition - OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANTS BALREET S. DYAL AND RAMANDEEP K. DYAL'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY ADJUDICATION

11/5/2020: Opposition - OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANTS BALREET S. DYAL AND RAMANDEEP K. DYAL'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY ADJUDICATION

Separate Statement

11/5/2020: Separate Statement

Joinder - JOINDER TO OPPOSITION OF PLAINTIFF TRIVISANO TO DEFENDANTS DYAL'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT

11/5/2020: Joinder - JOINDER TO OPPOSITION OF PLAINTIFF TRIVISANO TO DEFENDANTS DYAL'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT

Reply - REPLY RESPONSE TO PLAINTIFF'S SEPARATE STATEMENT

11/12/2020: Reply - REPLY RESPONSE TO PLAINTIFF'S SEPARATE STATEMENT

Stipulation and Order - JOINT STIPULATION AND [PROPOSED] ORDER TO CONTINUE HEARING ON DEFENDANTS BALREET S. DYAL AND RAMANDEEP K. DYALS MOTION FOR SUMMARY ADJUDICATION

7/15/2020: Stipulation and Order - JOINT STIPULATION AND [PROPOSED] ORDER TO CONTINUE HEARING ON DEFENDANTS BALREET S. DYAL AND RAMANDEEP K. DYALS MOTION FOR SUMMARY ADJUDICATION

Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR [JOINT STIPULATION AND ORDER TO CONTINUE HEARING ON DEFENDANTS BALREET S. DYAL AND RAMANDEEP K. DYALS MOTION FOR SUMMARY ADJUDICATION]

7/20/2020: Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR [JOINT STIPULATION AND ORDER TO CONTINUE HEARING ON DEFENDANTS BALREET S. DYAL AND RAMANDEEP K. DYALS MOTION FOR SUMMARY ADJUDICATION]

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE)

7/1/2020: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE)

Notice of Change of Address or Other Contact Information

6/22/2020: Notice of Change of Address or Other Contact Information

Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR (NON-APPEARANCE CASE REVIEW) OF 05/27/2020

5/27/2020: Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR (NON-APPEARANCE CASE REVIEW) OF 05/27/2020

Motion for Summary Adjudication

4/21/2020: Motion for Summary Adjudication

Case Management Statement

3/16/2020: Case Management Statement

Order - ORDER TRANSFERRING PERSONAL INJURY (PI) CASE TO INDEPENDENT CALENDAR (IC) COURT

2/14/2020: Order - ORDER TRANSFERRING PERSONAL INJURY (PI) CASE TO INDEPENDENT CALENDAR (IC) COURT

Ex Parte Application - EX PARTE APPLICATION FOR AN ORDER CONTINUING TRIAL AND ALL RELATED DATES

1/24/2020: Ex Parte Application - EX PARTE APPLICATION FOR AN ORDER CONTINUING TRIAL AND ALL RELATED DATES

Proof of Service by Mail

12/6/2019: Proof of Service by Mail

Answer

1/10/2019: Answer

Proof of Service -

5/30/2018: Proof of Service -

COMPLAINT

4/3/2018: COMPLAINT

51 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 04/19/2021
  • Hearing04/19/2021 at 09:30 AM in Department M at 1725 Main Street, Santa Monica, CA 90401; Jury Trial

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  • 04/12/2021
  • Hearing04/12/2021 at 09:00 AM in Department M at 1725 Main Street, Santa Monica, CA 90401; Final Status Conference

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  • 11/19/2020
  • Docketat 08:30 AM in Department M; Hearing on Motion for Summary Adjudication - Held - Motion Denied

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  • 11/19/2020
  • DocketMinute Order ( (Hearing on Motion for Summary Adjudication)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 11/19/2020
  • DocketNotice of Ruling; Filed by Balreet S. Dyal (Defendant); Ramandeep K. Dyal (Defendant)

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  • 11/12/2020
  • DocketReply (Reply to Opposition to Motion for Summary Adjudication); Filed by Balreet S. Dyal (Defendant); Ramandeep K. Dyal (Defendant)

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  • 11/12/2020
  • DocketReply (Response to Plaintiff's Separate Statement); Filed by Balreet S. Dyal (Defendant); Ramandeep K. Dyal (Defendant)

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  • 11/05/2020
  • DocketJoinder (to Opposition of Plaintiff Trivisano to Defendants Dyal's Motion for Summary Judgment); Filed by Elnaz Shekari (Plaintiff); Zohreh Taghizadeh (Legacy Party); Vojdaniheris, Farhad and individual (Legacy Party)

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  • 11/05/2020
  • DocketOpposition (To Defendants Balreet S. Dyal and Ramandeep K. Dyal's Motion for Summary Adjudication); Filed by Cassandra Marie Trivisano (Plaintiff)

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  • 11/05/2020
  • DocketDeclaration (of Rochelle C. Rotea); Filed by Cassandra Marie Trivisano (Plaintiff)

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66 More Docket Entries
  • 05/30/2018
  • DocketPROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

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  • 05/30/2018
  • DocketNOTICE AND ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF RECEIPT

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  • 05/30/2018
  • DocketPROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

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  • 05/30/2018
  • DocketNotice and Acknowledgment of Receipt; Filed by Cassandra Marie Trivisano (Plaintiff)

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  • 05/30/2018
  • DocketProof-Service/Summons; Filed by Cassandra Marie Trivisano (Plaintiff)

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  • 05/30/2018
  • DocketProof of Service (not Summons and Complaint); Filed by Cassandra Marie Trivisano (Plaintiff)

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  • 05/21/2018
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by Elnaz Shekari (Plaintiff)

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  • 04/03/2018
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by Cassandra Marie Trivisano (Plaintiff)

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  • 04/03/2018
  • DocketSUMMONS

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  • 04/03/2018
  • DocketCOMPLAINT

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: BC700834    Hearing Date: November 19, 2020    Dept: M

CASE NAME: Cassandra Marie Trivisano v. Rupinder Singh Jhalli et al

CASE NO.: BC700834/ BC706839

MOTION: Motion for Summary adjudication

HEARING DATE: 11/19/2020

Background

On April 3, 2018, plaintiff Cassandra Marie Trivisano (“Trivisano”) filed an action against defendants Rupinder Singh Jhalli, Balreet Dyal and Ramandeep Dyal for injuries from an automobile collision on August 20, 2016 in BC700834 (the “Trivisano Action”). On May 15, 2018, Plaintiffs Farhad Vojdaniheris, Elnaz Shekari, Zohreh Taghizedah and Barsam Vojdaniheris, a minor by and through his guardian ad litem, Farhad Vojdaniheris, filed an action against Defendants Jhalli and Annie Lam concerning the same automobile accident, which was assigned case number BC706839 (the “Vojdaniheris Action”). Balreet Dyal and Ramandeep Dyal were later added as Doe Defendants to the Vojdaniheris Action.

On December 19, 2019, the Personal Injury Court granted a motion to consolidate these two cases. On January 28, 2020, the court transferred the case to this Court for all purposes except for trial. (See 1/28/2020 Minute order; see also 2/14/2020 Transfer order.) On April 21, 2020, Defendants Balreet Dyal and Ramandeep Dyal filed a motion for summary adjudication as to both complaints.

Basis for summary adjudication

Defendants Balreet Dyal and Ramandeep Dyal seek summary adjudication on the two complaints in this consolidated action, as follows:

As to the Trivisano Complaint:

1. There are no triable issues of material fact as to Trivisano Plaintiff allegations in the First Cause of Action- Motor Vehicle Negligence, paragraph 13, that Defendants BALREET DYAL and RAMANDEEP DYAL breached a duty of reasonable/due care or statutory duties owed to Trivisano Plaintiff.

2. There are no triable issues of material fact as to Trivisano Plaintiff allegations in the Second Cause of Action- General Negligence, paragraph 19, that Defendants BALREET DYAL and RAMANDEEP DYAL breached a duty of due care owed to Trivisano Plaintiff by driving negligently or recklessly.

3. There are no triable issues of material fact as to Trivisano Plaintiff allegations in the Third Cause of Action- Negligent Entrustment, paragraph 26, that Defendants BALREET DYAL and RAMANDEEP DYAL knew or should have known that Defendant Rupinder Jhalli was unfit to drive the vehicle. Defendants Balreet Dyal and Ramandeep Dyal were merely vehicle owners at the time of the accident and their lability should be limited to $15,000.00/ $30,000 pursuant to Vehicle Code 17151.

As to the Vojdaniheris Complaint:

1.There are no triable issues of material fact as to Vojdaniheris Plaintiffs allegation in the complaint, paragraph 6a that Doe Defendants 1-20 were agents or employees of other named defendants and acted within the scope of that agency or employment.

2. There are no triable issues of material fact as to Vojdaniheris Plaintiffs allegations in the First Cause of Action- Motor Vehicle, MV 2a that Doe Defendants 1 to 5 operated a motor vehicle.

3. There are no triable issues of material fact as to Vojdaniheris Plaintiffs allegations in the Second Cause of Action-General Negligence, GN-1 (description of reasons for liability) first paragraph, that Doe Defendants 1 to 30 negligently drove, managed, maintained, controlled, operated and entrusted their motor vehicle involved in the subject accident.

4. There are no triable issues of material fact as to Vojdaniheris Plaintiffs allegations in the Second Cause of Action-General Negligence, GN-1 (description of reasons for liability) second paragraph, that Doe Defendants 1 to 30 negligently hired, trained, supervised, retained, employed and/or managed their employees, agents and assigns so as to cause the subject accident.

Legal Standard

The purpose of a motion for summary judgment or summary adjudication “is to provide courts with a mechanism to cut through the parties’ pleadings in order to determine whether, despite their allegations, trial is in fact necessary to resolve their dispute.”  (Aguilar v. Atl. Richfield Co(2001) 25 Cal. 4th 826, 843.)  “Code of Civil Procedure section 437c, subdivision (c), requires the trial judge to grant summary judgment if all the evidence submitted, and ‘all inferences reasonably deducible from the evidence’ and uncontradicted by other inferences or evidence, show that there is no triable issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.”  (Adler v. Manor Healthcare Corp. (1992) 7 Cal.App.4th 1110, 1119.) 

“The supporting papers shall include a separate statement setting forth plainly and concisely all material facts which the moving party contends are undisputed. Each of the material facts stated shall be followed by a reference to the supporting evidence. The failure to comply with this requirement of a separate statement may in the court's discretion constitute a sufficient ground for denial of the motion.” (Code Civ. Proc., § 437c(b)(1); see also Cal. Rules of Court, rule 3.1350(c)(2) & (d).)

“The opposition papers shall include a separate statement that responds to each of the material facts contended by the moving party to be undisputed, indicating if the opposing party agrees or disagrees that those facts are undisputed. The statement also shall set forth plainly and concisely any other material facts the opposing party contends are disputed. Each material fact contended by the opposing party to be disputed shall be followed by a reference to the supporting evidence. Failure to comply with this requirement of a separate statement may constitute a sufficient ground, in the court's discretion, for granting the motion.” (Code Civ. Proc., § 437b(b)(3) (emphasis added).)

“On a motion for summary judgment, the initial burden is always on the moving party to make a prima facie showing that there are no triable issues of material fact.”  (Scalf v. D. B. Log Homes, Inc(2005) 128 Cal.App.4th 1510, 1519.)  The moving party is entitled to summary judgment if they can show that there is no triable issue of material fact or if they have a complete defense thereto. (Aguilar v. Atlantic Richfiend Co. (2001) 25 Cal.4th 826, 843.)  

In analyzing motions for summary judgment, courts must apply a three-step analysis: “(1) identify the issues framed by the pleadings; (2) determine whether the moving party has negated the opponent's claims; and (3) determine whether the opposition has demonstrated the existence of a triable, material factual issue.” (Hinesley v. Oakshade Town Center (2005) 135 Cal.App.4th 289, 294.) Pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure section 437c(p)(2):

A defendant or cross-defendant has met his or her burden of showing that a cause of action has no merit if that party has shown that one or more elements of the cause of action, even if not separately pleaded, cannot be established, or that there is a complete defense to that cause of action. Once the defendant or cross-defendant has met that burden, the burden shifts to the plaintiff or cross-complainant to show that a triable issue of one or more material facts exists as to that cause of action or a defense thereto. The plaintiff or cross-complainant may not rely upon the mere allegations or denials of its pleadings to show that a triable issue of material fact exists but, instead, shall set forth the specific facts showing that a triable issue of material fact exists as to that cause of action or a defense thereto.

When deciding whether to grant summary judgment, the Court must consider all of the evidence set forth in the papers, except evidence to which the Court has sustained an objection, as well as all reasonable inferences that may be drawn from that evidence, in the light most favorable to the party opposing summary judgment.  (Avivi, 159 Cal.App.4th at 467.)   

“A moving defendant now has two means by which to shift the burden of proof under subdivision (o)(2) of section 437c to the plaintiff to produce evidence creating a triable issue of fact. The defendant may rely upon factually insufficient discovery responses by the plaintiff to show that the plaintiff cannot establish an essential element of the cause of action sued upon…. Alternatively, the defendant may utilize the tried and true technique of negating (‘disproving’) an essential element of the plaintiff's cause of action.” (Brantley v. Pisaro (1996) 42 Cal.App.4th 1591, 1598; see also Code Civ. Proc., § 437c(p)(2).) A moving defendant must show that plaintiff cannot reasonably obtain evidence to prove a cause of action, which is more than simply arguing that there is an absence of evidence. (Gaggero v. Yura (2003) 108 Cal.App.4th 884, 891.)  

A motion for summary adjudication shall be granted only if it completely disposes of a cause of action, an affirmative defense, a claim for damages, or an issue of duty. (Code Civ. Proc., § 437c(f)(1).)

Joinder

On November 5, 2020, Plaintiffs Farhad Vojdaniheris, an individual; Elnaz Shekari, an individual; Zohreh Taghizadah; and Barsam Vojdaniheris, a minor by and through his guardian ad litem, Farhad Vojdaniheris, filed a joinder to the opposition to summary adjudication. The joinder is timely.

Evidentiary objections

Plaintiff Trivisano submits ten evidentiary objections to the declarations of Balreet S. Dyal and Ramandeep K. Dyal. Objections 1 through 5 are to the Balreet Dyal declaration and objections 6 through 10 are to the Ramandeep Dyal declaration.

Objection no. 1 – Overruled.

Objection no. 2 – Sustained.

Objection no. 3 – Sustained.

Objection no. 4 – Sustained.

Objection no. 5 – Sustained.

Objection no. 6 – Overruled.

Objection no. 7 – Sustained.

Objection no. 8 – Sustained.

Objection no. 9 – Sustained.

Objection no. 10 – Sustained.

Analysis

  1. Motor vehicle negligence

    1. Trivisano Complaint

Plaintiff Cassandra Marie Trivisano’s first cause of action is for motor vehicle negligence. The first cause of action is against Defendants Rupinder Singh Jhalli, Balreet S. Dyal and Ramandeep K. Dyal. Plaintiff Trivisano alleged that Balreet Dyal and Ramandeep Dyal owned the vehicle. Specifically, Plaintiff Trivisano alleges, “Defendants, and each of them, owed Plaintiff a duty of reasonable/due care as well as statutory duties established by the California Vehicle Code.” (Compl. ¶ 12.) Plaintiff allege “Defendants and each of them breached their duties of reasonable due care as well as their statutory duties to Plaintiff.” (Compl. ¶ 13.) Plaintiffs allege that Defendants Balreet Dyal and Ramandeep Dyal are vicariously liable for injuries and damages under Vehicle Code § 17150.

Defendants argue that they are entitled to summary adjudication on this cause of action because they were not driving the vehicle. Defendants provide evidence that they were not driving the vehicle at the time of the accident. (See declarations of Balreet Dyal and Ramandeep Dyal). Defendants, however, ignore the portions of the complaint where Plaintiffs allege that Defendants owed Plaintiff a statutory duty under the California Vehicle Code. As such, Defendants have failed to meet their initial burden as to the first cause of action in the Trivisano complaint because the statutory duties under the Vehicle Code are broader in scope that simply being the driver of the vehicle.

    1. Vojdaniheris Complaint

The Vojdaniheris complaint also contains a cause of action for motor vehicle negligence. Plaintiffs Farhad Vojdaniheris, Elnaz Shekari, Zohreh Taghizadeh, and Barsam Vojdaniheris alleged that Does 1 and 2 are defendants who operated the motor vehicle. (See Vojdaniheris Compl. at p. 4, MV-2(a).) Plaintiffs substituted Doe 1 and Doe 2 Defendants for Ramandeep K. Dyal and Balreet S. Dyal. Plaintiffs do not allege that Defendants Balreet Dyal and Ramandeep Dyal are liable for other reasons. As noted above, Defendants provide evidence that they were not driving the vehicle at the time of the accident. (See Ramandeep Decl. ¶ 2, Balreet Decl. ¶ 2.) Defendants have met their initial burden on motor vehicle negligence as to the Vojdaniheris Complaint. The burden is shifted to the Vojdaniheris Plaintiffs.

The Vojdaniheris Plaintiffs have failed to file an opposition to the motion for summary adjudication. Vojdaniheris Plaintiffs filed a joinder to the opposition. However, the Trivisano opposition did not address causation. Since the Vojdaniheris plaintiffs have failed to meet their burden on this cause of action, Defendants are entitled to summary adjudication on the motor vehicle negligence cause of action in the Vojdaniheris complaint.

  1. General negligence

Trivisano’s second cause of action is for general negligence. The elements of negligence are dutybreachcausation, and damages. (Johnson v. Prasad Plaintiffs allege that “Defendants breached their duty to Plaintiff by driving recklessly and/or negligently” (Compl. ¶ 19.) Defendants seek summary adjudication on this cause of action because they were not driving the vehicle. Defendants provide evidence through their declarations. (See Ramandeep Decl. ¶ 2, Balreet Decl. ¶ 2.) Defendants have negated one of the elements of negligence­­­­—causation. Therefore, the burden is shifted to Trivisano.

Trivisano argues that Defendants have not met their initial burden. Trivisano generally argues that there is a dispute of material fact as to duty. However, Trivisano has not presented any evidence to meet her burden as to the general negligence cause of action. Since Trivisano has failed to meet her burden, Defendants are entitled to summary adjudication on the general negligence cause of action in the Trivisano complaint.

  1. Negligent entrustment

The third cause of action in the Trivisano complaint is for negligent entrustment. The second cause of action in the Vojdaniheris complaint is also for negligent entrustment. Trivisano alleges “Defendants S. Dyal and K. Dyal knew, or should have known, that Jhalli was unfit to drive the vehicle.” (Trivisano Comp. ¶ 26.) “Liability for negligent entrustment is determined by applying general principles of negligence, and ordinarily it is for the jury to determine whether the owner has exercised the required degree of care. [Citations omitted.]” (Allen v. Toledo (1980) 109 Cal.App.3d 415, 421.)

In its simplest form the question is whether the owner [or other supplier] when he permits an incompetent or reckless person, whom he knows to be incompetent or reckless, to take and operate his car [or any other instrumentality], acts as an ordinarily prudent person would be expected to act under the circumstances.” [Footnote omitted.] [Citation omitted.] California courts have long held that inexperience alone does not necessarily establish incompetency. (Krawitz v. Rusch (1989) 209 Cal.App.3d 957, 966, 257 Cal.Rptr. 610; Boyd v. White (1954) 128 Cal.App.2d 641, 656, 276 P.2d 92 [student pilot is not per se incompetent].) It is necessarily a question for the jury whether a prudent person, aware of the facts known to the supplier of the instrumentality, would have permitted the individual to operate the instrumentality.

(White v. Inbound Aviation (1999) 69 Cal.App.4th 910, 920–921.)

Defendants argue that they are entitled to summary adjudication on the negligent entrustment claims in both complaints because there is no evidence that Defendants had actual knowledge of Jhalli’s incompetence. (See MSA at 13:19-14:12 [citing Dodge Center v. Superior Court (1988) 199 Cal.App.3d 332, 341].). The Court of Appeal in Dodge Center dealt with a cause of action under Vehicle Code section 14606. “The cause of action [under Vehicle Code section 14606, subdivision (a)] parallels that at common law for negligent entrustment, resting on a demonstration of knowing entrustment to an incompetent or dangerous driver with actual or constructive knowledge of his incompetence. (Dodge Center, supra199 Cal.App.3d at 338 [citing Hartford Accident & Indemnity Co. v. Abdullah (1979) 94 Cal.App.3d 81; Rest.2d Torts, § 390, P. 314; 4 Witkin, Summary of Cal.Law (8th ed. 1974) Torts § 650 pp. 2929–2931].) Defendants argue that they have provided evidence that show that they did not have actual knowledge. However, Defendants rely on evidence of which the Court sustained objections. In addition, Defendants have failed to provide evidence that shows that they did not have constructive knowledge of Jhalli’s incompetence. Defendants have failed to negate an element of negligent entrustment. Therefore, Defendants are not entitled to summary adjudication as to the negligent entrustment cause of action.

c. Damages cap under vehicle code 17151

Defendants seek summary adjudication on the issue of maximum liability on the Trivisano complaint. “A motion for summary adjudication shall be granted only if it completely disposes of a cause of action, an affirmative defense, a claim for damages, or an issue of duty.” (Code Civ. Proc., § 437c(f)(1).) This request is improper since it would not completely dispose of a claim for damages. (See, e.g., Catalano v. Superior Court (2000) 82 Cal.App.4th 91, 97 [explaining that “a claim for punitive damages is specifically set forth as an area which may properly be the subject of summary adjudication, in keeping with the purposes of Code of Civil Procedure section 437c, subdivision (f), a grant of summary adjudication in this area must cover the entire claim.”].) Here, Defendants seek to limit damages instead of dispose of a claim for damages. Defendants did not submit a joint stipulation requesting and obtaining permission for the filing of such motion. (See generally Code Civ. Proc., § 437c (t)(1) & (2).) Summary adjudication is improper and therefore denied on this issue.

Case Number: BC700834    Hearing Date: December 19, 2019    Dept: 4B

[TENTATIVE] ORDER RE: DEFENDANT JHALLI’S MOTION TO CONSOLIDATE

On April 3, 2018, plaintiff Cassandra Marie Trivisano filed an action against defendant Rupinder Singh Jhalli for injuries from a three-car collision on August 20, 2016. Plaintiff Trivisano was a passenger in Defendant Jhalli’s car when it crashed into a car driven by Annie Nam (erroneously sued as “Annie Lam”). Ms. Nam’s car then rear-ended the car in front of her, which was driven by Farhad Vojdaniheris (“Farhad”) and carried Elnaz Shekari, Zoreh Taghizadeh, and Barsam Vojdaniheris (collectively, the “Vojdaniheris Plaintiffs”). Plaintiff Trivisano also sued the owners of the car Defendant Jhalli was driving, Balreet Dyal and Ramandeep Dyal (collectively, the “Dyal Defendants”). This action was assigned the case number BC700834 (the “Trivisano Action”).

On May 15, 2018, the Vojdaniheris Plaintiffs filed this action against defendants Jhalli and Nam which was assigned the case number BC706839 (the “Vojdaniheris Action”). On August 2, 2018, Nam filed a cross-complaint in the Vojdaniheris Action against Defendant Jhalli seeking indemnification and declaratory relief. The Trivisano and Vojdaniheris Actions have been related.

Defendant Jhalli moves to consolidate the Trivisano and Vojdaniheris Actions on grounds that the actions involve common parties and common questions of law and fact. The Dyal Defendants filed a notice of joinder. Plaintiff Trivisano opposes the motion.

“When actions involving a common question of law or fact are pending before the court, it may order a joint hearing or trial of any or all the matters in issue in the actions; it may order all the actions consolidated and it may make such orders concerning proceedings therein as may tend to avoid unnecessary costs or delay.” (Code Civ. Proc. § 1048, subd. (a).) The purpose of consolidation is to enhance trial court efficiency by avoiding unnecessary duplication of evidence and the danger of inconsistent adjudications. (See Todd-Stenberg v. Dalkon Shield Claimants Trust (1996) 48 Cal.App.4th 976, 978-979.)

Jhalli argues that the actions should be consolidated because they both involve the same accident, have overlapping parties and involve issues of comparative fault. Trivisano opposes contending there are no comparative fault issues as to Defendant Jhalli’s liability because his car (which rear-ended Nam’s car, which subsequently rear-ended Vojdaniheris’s car) started the chain of collisions.

The two actions involve common questions of law and fact. They arise out of the same accident, and issues of comparative fault overlap. Consolidating the cases will enhance help avoid duplication of evidence and inconsistent verdicts.

Accordingly, the Motion to consolidate is GRANTED. All documents are to be filed in Case No. BC700834. The dates in Case No. BC706839 are vacated.

Moving party to give notice.

Parties who intend to submit on this tentative must send an email to the Court at SSCDEPT4B@lacourt.org indicating intention to submit on the tentative.