This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 01/19/2022 at 15:52:07 (UTC).

CESAR SANCHEZ ET AL VS GERARDO MARTINEZ

Case Summary

On 06/14/2017 CESAR SANCHEZ filed a Personal Injury - Motor Vehicle lawsuit against GERARDO MARTINEZ. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Spring Street Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judges overseeing this case are MARC D. GROSS, JON R. TAKASUGI, THOMAS D. LONG, HOLLY E. KENDIG and AUDRA MORI. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****5206

  • Filing Date:

    06/14/2017

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Personal Injury - Motor Vehicle

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judges

MARC D. GROSS

JON R. TAKASUGI

THOMAS D. LONG

HOLLY E. KENDIG

AUDRA MORI

 

Party Details

Petitioners and Plaintiffs

SANCHEZ CESAR

SANCHEZ MARIA

Respondents and Defendants

DOES 1 TO 20

MARTINEZ GERARDO

ALTITUDE INC. DOE11

Not Classified By Court

MERCURY INSURANCE GROUP

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Petitioner and Plaintiff Attorneys

TOFER O. ALEX ESQ.

CRONK ANNA H

GREENSLADE MICHAEL VINCENT

Respondent and Defendant Attorneys

PASAROW STEPHEN C. ESQ.

PASAROW STEPHEN C.ESQ.

PASAROW STEPHEN CHARLES

Not Classified By Court Attorney

PLESSALA BRIAN M.

 

Court Documents

Motion to Consolidate

10/18/2021: Motion to Consolidate

Opposition - OPPOSITION TO MERCURY INSURANCE GROUP'S MOTION TO CONSOLIDATE

10/29/2021: Opposition - OPPOSITION TO MERCURY INSURANCE GROUP'S MOTION TO CONSOLIDATE

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON MOTION TO CONSOLIDATE BY PLAINTIFF MERCURY INSURAN...)

11/12/2021: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON MOTION TO CONSOLIDATE BY PLAINTIFF MERCURY INSURAN...)

Notice - NOTICE OF RULING ON MOTION AND MOTION TO CONSOLIDATE

12/3/2021: Notice - NOTICE OF RULING ON MOTION AND MOTION TO CONSOLIDATE

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (COURT ORDER RE THIRD PARTY'S NOTICE OF RELATED CASE WITH CASE...)

4/23/2021: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (COURT ORDER RE THIRD PARTY'S NOTICE OF RELATED CASE WITH CASE...)

Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR (COURT ORDER RE THIRD PARTY'S NOTICE OF RELATED CASE WITH CASE...) OF 04/23/2021

4/23/2021: Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR (COURT ORDER RE THIRD PARTY'S NOTICE OF RELATED CASE WITH CASE...) OF 04/23/2021

Notice of Related Case - THIRD PARTY'S NOTICE OF RELATED CASE WITH CASE NO. 20STCV40249

4/23/2021: Notice of Related Case - THIRD PARTY'S NOTICE OF RELATED CASE WITH CASE NO. 20STCV40249

Notice of Ruling

8/10/2021: Notice of Ruling

Stipulation - No Order - STIPULATION - NO ORDER TO CONTINUE TRIAL, FSC [AND RELATED MOTION/DISCOVERY DATES]

8/26/2021: Stipulation - No Order - STIPULATION - NO ORDER TO CONTINUE TRIAL, FSC [AND RELATED MOTION/DISCOVERY DATES]

Order - [PROPOSED] ORDER RE STIPULATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL, FSC [AND RELATED MOTION/DISCOVERY DATES]

9/7/2021: Order - [PROPOSED] ORDER RE STIPULATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL, FSC [AND RELATED MOTION/DISCOVERY DATES]

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (TRIAL SETTING CONFERENCE)

8/12/2020: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (TRIAL SETTING CONFERENCE)

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (COURT ORDER)

7/27/2020: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (COURT ORDER)

Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR (COURT ORDER) OF 07/27/2020

7/27/2020: Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR (COURT ORDER) OF 07/27/2020

Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR [NOTICE OF CONTINUANCE DUE TO COVID-19 STATE OF EMERGENCY DECLARATIONS]

4/21/2020: Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR [NOTICE OF CONTINUANCE DUE TO COVID-19 STATE OF EMERGENCY DECLARATIONS]

Unknown - NOTICE OF CONTINUANCE DUE TO COVID-19 STATE OF EMERGENCY DECLARATIONS

4/21/2020: Unknown - NOTICE OF CONTINUANCE DUE TO COVID-19 STATE OF EMERGENCY DECLARATIONS

Notice of Change of Address or Other Contact Information

2/14/2020: Notice of Change of Address or Other Contact Information

Order - ORDER RE EX PARTE APPLICATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL AND RELATED DATES

3/5/2020: Order - ORDER RE EX PARTE APPLICATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL AND RELATED DATES

Ex Parte Application - EX PARTE APPLICATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL AND ALL RELATED DATES

3/5/2020: Ex Parte Application - EX PARTE APPLICATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL AND ALL RELATED DATES

27 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 04/19/2022
  • Hearing04/19/2022 at 08:30 AM in Department 31 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Jury Trial

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  • 04/05/2022
  • Hearing04/05/2022 at 10:00 AM in Department 31 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Final Status Conference

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  • 12/15/2021
  • Docketat 1:30 PM in Department 31, Audra Mori, Presiding; Hearing on Motion to Consolidate - Not Held - Rescheduled by Party

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  • 12/03/2021
  • DocketNotice (of Ruling on Motion and Motion to Consolidate); Filed by MERCURY INSURANCE GROUP (Non-Party)

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  • 11/12/2021
  • Docketat 1:30 PM in Department 31, Audra Mori, Presiding; Hearing on Motion to Consolidate - Held - Motion Granted

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  • 11/12/2021
  • DocketMinute Order ( (Hearing on Motion to Consolidate By Plaintiff Mercury Insuran...)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 10/29/2021
  • DocketOpposition (to Mercury Insurance Group's Motion to Consolidate); Filed by ALTITUDE INC. DOE11 (Defendant); Gerardo Martinez (Defendant)

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  • 10/18/2021
  • DocketMotion to Consolidate (TO CONSOLIDATE RELATED CASE WITH THE PRESENT ACTION;); Filed by MERCURY INSURANCE GROUP (Non-Party)

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  • 09/22/2021
  • Docketat 08:30 AM in Department 31, Audra Mori, Presiding; Jury Trial - Not Held - Continued - Stipulation

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  • 09/08/2021
  • Docketat 10:00 AM in Department 31, Audra Mori, Presiding; Final Status Conference - Not Held - Continued - Stipulation

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54 More Docket Entries
  • 03/28/2018
  • DocketProof-Service/Summons; Filed by Cesar Sanchez (Plaintiff); Maria Sanchez (Plaintiff)

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  • 03/07/2018
  • DocketPROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

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  • 03/07/2018
  • DocketPROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

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  • 03/07/2018
  • DocketProof-Service/Summons; Filed by Cesar Sanchez (Plaintiff); Maria Sanchez (Plaintiff)

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  • 03/07/2018
  • DocketProof-Service/Summons; Filed by Cesar Sanchez (Plaintiff); Maria Sanchez (Plaintiff)

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  • 02/21/2018
  • DocketAMENDMENT TO COMPLAINT

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  • 02/21/2018
  • DocketAmendment to Complaint; Filed by Cesar Sanchez (Plaintiff); Maria Sanchez (Plaintiff)

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  • 06/14/2017
  • DocketCOMPLAINT-PERS. INJURY, PROP DAMAGE, WRONGFUL DEATH (2 PAGES)

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  • 06/14/2017
  • DocketSUMMONS

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  • 06/14/2017
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by Cesar Sanchez (Plaintiff); Maria Sanchez (Plaintiff)

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Tentative Rulings

b"

Case Number: BC665206 Hearing Date: November 12, 2021 Dept: 31

SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

FOR THE COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES - CENTRAL DISTRICT

CESAR SANCHEZ, ET AL.,

Plaintiff(s),

vs.

GERARDO MARTINEZ, ET AL.,

Defendant(s).

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CASE NO: BC665206 (R/T 20STCV40249)

[TENTATIVE] ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO CONSOLIDATE

Dept. 31

1:30 p.m.

November 12, 2021

1. Cases at Issue

On June 14, 2017, Plaintiffs, Cesar Sanchez and Maria Sanchez (collectively, the “Sanchezes”) filed Case No. BC665206 against Defendants, Gerardo Martinez (“Martinez”) and Altitude, Inc. (“Altitude”) for damages arising from a motor vehicle accident.

On October 20, 2020, Petitioner Mercury Insurance Group (“Mercury”) filed the petition in 20STCV40249 to compel arbitration of uninsured motorist claim against the Sanchezes.

The two cases have been deemed related and are pending in Department 31. (Min. Order relating cases, April 23, 2021.)

At this time, Mercury moves to consolidate the two actions arguing that both matters arise out of the same motor vehicle accident involving the Sanchezes, Martinez, and with a third-party motorist whose identity is unknown to Mercury. Mercury contends the matter should be consolidated for discovery and trial to avoid an anomalous result with two different forums. Mercury asserts consolidation will promote judicial economy by enabling a single trial.

Defendants Martinez and Altitude (collectively, “Defendants”) oppose the motion. Defendants assert they will not agree to arbitration of this action, and prejudice will result to the parties if proof of insurance is introduced to the jury. Defendants state they do not oppose consolidation for purposes of discovery only, and the risk of inconsistent rulings is outweighed by the likelihood of prejudice to Defendants.

2. Motion to Consolidate

a. Analysis

CCP § 1048 grants discretion to the trial courts to consolidate actions involving common questions of law or fact. The trial court's decision will not be disturbed on appeal absent a clear showing of abuse of discretion. A consolidation of actions does not affect the rights of the parties. The purpose of consolidation is to avoid unnecessary costs or delay, avoid duplication of procedure, particularly in the proof of issues common to both actions, and avoid inconsistent results by hearing and deciding common issues together. (See Estate of Baker (1982) 131 Cal.App.3d 471, 485.) The granting or denial of a motion to consolidate rests in the trial court's sound discretion and will not be reversed except upon a clear showing of abuse of discretion. (Feliner v. Steinbaum (1955) 132 Cal.App.2d 509, 511.) Each case presents its own facts and circumstances, but the court generally considers the following: (1) timeliness of the motion: i.e., whether granting consolidation would delay the trial of any of the cases involved; (2) complexity: i.e., whether joining the actions involved would make the trial too confusing or complex for a jury; and (3) prejudice: i.e, whether consolidation would adversely affect the rights of any party. (See State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co. v. Superior Court (1956) 47 Cal.2d 428, 430–431.)

In deciding whether to grant a motion to consolidate, the court should weigh whether the common issues predominate over the individual issues and whether any risks of jury confusion or prejudice to the parties outweighs the reduction in time and expense that would result from consolidation. (Todd-Stenberg v. Shield (1996) 48 Cal.App.4th 976, 978.)

A trial court has authority to “consolidate a contractual arbitration proceeding between an insurer and an insured as to uninsured motorist coverage in the insured's pending action against third parties — that is, to join the insurer as a defendant as to uninsured motorist coverage issues — for all purposes, including trial, in order to avoid conflicting rulings on a common issue of law or fact.” (Mercury Ins. Group v. Sup. Ct. (1998) 19 Cal.4th 332, 345.)

Furthermore, in the general case, even in the presence of a petition to compel contractual arbitration, there is no requirement that issues subject to contractual arbitration may be resolved only by means of contractual arbitration, or at least only by means of some kind of “arbitration” resulting in a binding and final decision. To be sure, provided that the allegations necessary to such a petition are true, the contractual arbitration law, in Code of Civil Procedure section 1281.2, generally mandates a trial court to compel. But not always. The trial court may decline to do so if the petitioning party has waived its right. (Id., subd. (a).) Or if grounds exist to “revoke” the underlying arbitration agreement by rescission. (Id., subd. (b).) Or if there is an issue of law or fact common to the arbitration and a pending action or proceeding with a third party and there is a possibility of conflicting rulings thereon. (Id., subd. (c).) In such a situation, it may consolidate. (Id., foll. subd. (c).) If it does, it effectively orders the resolution of the issues subject to arbitration within the action or special proceeding in question and, therefore, outside of arbitration. For, in ordering intervention or joinder, it necessarily “refuse [s] to enforce the arbitration agreement....” (Ibid.)

(Id. at 347.)

In Mercury Ins., the plaintiffs filed a complaint against a driver, the driver’s employer, and an unidentified motorist who fled the scene by fictitious name. (Id. at 338.) The plaintiffs presented their insurer, Mercury, with an uninsured motorist claim. (Id.) The plaintiff made a demand on Mercury for contractual arbitration, and a contractual arbitration proceeding commenced. (Id.) The plaintiffs then moved to consolidate the contractual arbitration proceeding with Mercury as to the uninsured motorist coverage issues with the pending civil action to essentially join Mercury as a defendant. (Id.) The superior court granted the motion and consolidated the contractual arbitration with the civil action and then diverted the action to judicial arbitration. (Id.) The California Supreme Court affirmed, finding

“a trial court has authority to consolidate a contractual arbitration proceeding between an insurer and an insured as to uninsured motorist coverage in the insured's pending action against third parties … for all purposes, including trial, in order to avoid conflicting rulings on a common issue of law or fact.” (Id. at 345.)

In this case, the court has the authority to consolidate a civil action with a related uninsured or under-insured motorist arbitration. Both actions concern claims involving the same motor vehicle accident between the Sanchezes, Defendants, and a third-party motorist. Consolidation of the two actions will ensure there are no conflicting rulings and the issues are properly determined. The court does not find that consolidation will confuse the jury. Moreover, the risk of inconsistent findings at trial outweighs Defendants’ claimed prejudice. The court is confident that the trial judge will be able to make appropriate instructions and admonitions to avoid juror confusion as well as eliminate any prejudice resulting from the insurance issue. The court finds that consolidation should result in a more efficient and economical trial and reduce the possibility of inconsistent verdicts.

Therefore, Mercury’s motion to consolidate the actions is granted.

b. Trial Date

BC665206 is currently set for trial on April 6, 2022. 20STCV40249 is currently set for trial on April 19, 2022. The Court continues the April 6, 2022, trial date and sets the consolidated cases for trial on April 19, 2022. The FSC is scheduled for April 5, 2022, at 10:00 a.m. in D-31. All hearing dates in 20STCV40249are vacated. The parties must reschedule any hearings in 20STCV40249for hearing in BC665206. All future papers must be filed in BC665206 only and all future hearings must be scheduled in BC665206 only.

Mercury’s motion to consolidate actions is granted.

Mercury is ordered to give notice.

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE:

Dated this 12th day of November, 2021

Hon. Audra Mori

Judge of the Superior Court

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