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This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 02/11/2021 at 00:28:07 (UTC).

DWAYNE K CHIKAHIRO VS FORD MOTOR COMPANY

Case Summary

On 11/13/2017 DWAYNE K CHIKAHIRO filed a Contract - Other Contract lawsuit against FORD MOTOR COMPANY. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judge overseeing this case is GREGORY KEOSIAN. The case status is Disposed - Judgment Entered.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****3428

  • Filing Date:

    11/13/2017

  • Case Status:

    Disposed - Judgment Entered

  • Case Type:

    Contract - Other Contract

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Stanley Mosk Courthouse

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judge

GREGORY KEOSIAN

 

Party Details

Plaintiff and Petitioner

CHIKAHIRO DWAYNE K.

Defendants and Respondents

DOES 1 TO 10

FORD MOTOR COMPANY

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff and Petitioner Attorney

MIKHOV STEVEN B. ESQ.

Defendant and Respondent Attorney

MORTENSON MICHAEL D.

 

Court Documents

Memorandum of Costs (Summary)

9/17/2019: Memorandum of Costs (Summary)

Declaration - DECLARATION OF STEVE MIKHOV IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR ATTORNEY'S FEES, COSTS AND EXPENSES

9/17/2019: Declaration - DECLARATION OF STEVE MIKHOV IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR ATTORNEY'S FEES, COSTS AND EXPENSES

Memorandum of Points & Authorities - MEMORANDUM OF POINTS & AUTHORITIES IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR ATTORNEYS FEES, COSTS AND EXPENSES

9/17/2019: Memorandum of Points & Authorities - MEMORANDUM OF POINTS & AUTHORITIES IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR ATTORNEYS FEES, COSTS AND EXPENSES

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON MOTION FOR ATTORNEY FEES)

11/6/2019: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON MOTION FOR ATTORNEY FEES)

Notice of Ruling - NOTICE OF RULING RULING RE DWAYNE K. CHIKAHIRO'S MOTION FOR ATTORNEY FEES AND COSTS

11/6/2019: Notice of Ruling - NOTICE OF RULING RULING RE DWAYNE K. CHIKAHIRO'S MOTION FOR ATTORNEY FEES AND COSTS

Order Appointing Court Approved Reporter as Official Reporter Pro Tempore

11/6/2019: Order Appointing Court Approved Reporter as Official Reporter Pro Tempore

Notice of Ruling

12/2/2019: Notice of Ruling

Notice - NOTICE OF ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE RE DISMISSAL

12/18/2019: Notice - NOTICE OF ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE RE DISMISSAL

Notice - NOTICE OF ENTRY OF JUDGMENT OR ORDER

2/21/2020: Notice - NOTICE OF ENTRY OF JUDGMENT OR ORDER

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE RE: DISMISSAL)

3/9/2020: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE RE: DISMISSAL)

CASE MANAGEMENT STATEMENT -

1/19/2018: CASE MANAGEMENT STATEMENT -

CASE MANAGEMENT STATEMENT -

1/25/2018: CASE MANAGEMENT STATEMENT -

SUBSTITUTION OF ATTORNEY -

2/16/2018: SUBSTITUTION OF ATTORNEY -

Proof of Service -

4/20/2018: Proof of Service -

NOTICE OF CHANGE OF ADDRESS

6/27/2018: NOTICE OF CHANGE OF ADDRESS

Notice - NOTICE OF POST MEDIATION STATUS CONFERENCE

4/2/2019: Notice - NOTICE OF POST MEDIATION STATUS CONFERENCE

NOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

1/3/2018: NOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

COMPLAINT 1.. VIOLATION OF SONG-BEVERLY ACT - BREACH OF EXPRESS WARRANTY ;ETC

11/13/2017: COMPLAINT 1.. VIOLATION OF SONG-BEVERLY ACT - BREACH OF EXPRESS WARRANTY ;ETC

37 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 03/09/2020
  • Docketat 09:00 AM in Department 61, Gregory Keosian, Presiding; Order to Show Cause Re: Dismissal - Held

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  • 03/09/2020
  • DocketMinute Order ( (Order to Show Cause Re: Dismissal)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 02/21/2020
  • DocketNotice ( of Entry of Judgment or Order); Filed by Dwayne K. Chikahiro (Plaintiff)

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  • 02/14/2020
  • DocketJudgment (ON PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR ATTORNEYS' FEES, COSTS AND EXPENSES); Filed by Dwayne K. Chikahiro (Plaintiff)

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  • 02/07/2020
  • Docketat 09:00 AM in Department 61, Gregory Keosian, Presiding; Order to Show Cause Re: Dismissal - Held - Continued

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  • 02/07/2020
  • DocketMinute Order ( (Order to Show Cause Re: Dismissal)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 01/08/2020
  • Docketat 09:00 AM in Department 61, Gregory Keosian, Presiding; Order to Show Cause Re: Dismissal - Held - Continued

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  • 01/08/2020
  • DocketMinute Order ( (Order to Show Cause Re: Dismissal)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 12/18/2019
  • DocketNotice (OF ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE RE DISMISSAL); Filed by Dwayne K. Chikahiro (Plaintiff)

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  • 12/02/2019
  • DocketNotice of Ruling; Filed by Dwayne K. Chikahiro (Plaintiff)

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68 More Docket Entries
  • 01/03/2018
  • DocketNotice of Case Management Conference; Filed by Plaintiff/Petitioner

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  • 01/03/2018
  • DocketNOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

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  • 12/06/2017
  • DocketDEFENDANT FORD MOTOR COMPANY'S ANSWER TO COMPLAINT

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  • 12/06/2017
  • DocketAnswer; Filed by Ford Motor Company (Defendant)

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  • 11/27/2017
  • DocketNOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

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  • 11/27/2017
  • DocketNotice of Case Management Conference; Filed by Clerk

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  • 11/20/2017
  • DocketProof-Service/Summons

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  • 11/13/2017
  • DocketCOMPLAINT 1.. VIOLATION OF SONG-BEVERLY ACT - BREACH OF EXPRESS WARRANTY ;ETC

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  • 11/13/2017
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by Dwayne K. Chikahiro (Plaintiff)

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  • 11/13/2017
  • DocketSUMMONS

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: BC683428    Hearing Date: November 06, 2019    Dept: 61

Dwayne K. Chikahiro’s Motion for Attorney Fees and Costs is GRANTED in the amount of $24,865.44.

  1. MOTION FOR ATTORNEYS’ FEES

Chikahero seeks $40,193.05 in attorney’s fees, costs and expenses, representing a lodestar fee amount of $24,730.00, an added 0.5 multiplier of $12,365.00, and costs and expenses in the amount of $3,098.05. (Motion at p. 2.) This is after Ford accepted Chikahiro’s offer of compromise in the amount of $42,521.82. (Opposition at p. 4.)

Parties to litigation must generally bear their own attorney’s fees, unless they otherwise agree. (Code Civ. Proc. § 1021.) However, the Song-Beverly Act provides for the award of attorneys’ fees to prevailing plaintiffs as follows:

If the buyer prevails in an action under this section, the buyer shall be allowed by the court to recover as part of the judgment a sum equal to the aggregate amount of costs and expenses, including attorney's fees based on actual time expended, determined by the court to have been reasonably incurred by the buyer in connection with the commencement and prosecution of such action.

(Civ. Code § 1794, subd. (d).)

“It is well established that the determination of what constitutes reasonable attorney fees is committed to the discretion of the trial court, whose decision cannot be reversed in the absence of an abuse of discretion.” (Melnyk v. Robledo (1976) 64 Cal.App.3d 618, 623.) In exercising its discretion, the court should consider a number of factors, including the nature of the litigation, its difficulty, the amount involved, the skill required in handling the matter, the attention given, the success or failure, and the resulting judgment. (See id.)

In determining the proper amount of fees to award, courts use the lodestar method. The lodestar figure is calculated by multiplying the total number of reasonable hours expended by the reasonable hourly rate. “Fundamental to its determination . . . [is] a careful compilation of the time spent and reasonable hourly compensation of each attorney . . . in the presentation of the case.” (Serrano v. Priest (1977) 20 Cal.3d 25, 48 (Serrano III).) A reasonable hourly rate must reflect the skill and experience of the attorney. (Id. at p. 49.) “Prevailing parties are compensated for hours reasonably spent on fee-related issues. A fee request that appears unreasonably inflated is a special circumstance permitting the trial court to reduce the award or deny one altogether.” (Serrano v. Unruh (1982) 32 Cal.3d 621, 635 (Serrano IV).) The Court in Serrano IV also stated that fees associated with preparing the motion to recover attorneys’ fees are recoverable. (See id. at p. 624.)

Ford opposes the present motion for fees on the following bases. First, Ford argues that the fees sought for the present motion are excessive, amounting to $4,830.00 for 14.6 hours, or 17% of the total bill. (Opposition at p. 6.) Ford also argues that no multiplier should be added, and that a negative multiplier should be applied because of the simple nature of the case and the lack of relative risk involved. (Opposition at pp. 7–10.)

The court agrees with Ford that the amount claimed in connection with Chikahiro’s present motion — by the court’s count 14.3 hours (Mikhov Decl. Exh. A at p. 6) — is excessive in relation to the simplicity of the motion’s subject matter and the known practice of Chikahiro’s counsel to use form templates for motions of this type. The court therefore reduces the amount awarded for this work from $5,105.00 for 14.3 hours of attorney work (at an average rate of $356.99 per hour) to $2,141.94, representing six hours of work at the same average rate: a reduction in the lodestar amount of of $2,963.06.

The court also agrees with Ford that, given the relatively structured nature of this case, a multiplier is not warranted here. “Once the court has fixed the lodestar, it may increase or decrease that amount by applying a positive or negative ‘multiplier’ to take into account a variety of other factors, including the quality of the representation, the novelty and complexity of the issues, the results obtained, and the contingent risk presented.” (Thayer v. Wells Fargo Bank., N.A. (2001) 92 Cal.App.4th 819, 833.) The present action was neither particularly novel nor complex, as demonstrated by the billings submitted with the motion. This factor conclusively balances out the contingent nature of the recovery of Chikahiro’s counsel in this matter, which is adequately compensated by the ordinary lodestar amount. The court declines to award a downward lodestar multiplier according to Ford’s argument.

The court therefore takes the lodestar submitted by Chikahiro — $24,730.00 — and reduces it by $2,963.06, leaving a total fee lodestar of $21,766.94. The court awards Chikahiro costs in the amount of $3,098.05.

Chikahiro’s Motion for Attorney Fees and Costs is GRANTED in the amount of $24,865.44.

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