This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 10/10/2020 at 02:07:06 (UTC).

JASON MITCHELL, ET AL., VS. DANIEL M. UZAN

Case Summary

On 02/01/2018 JASON MITCHELL, filed a Contract - Other Contract lawsuit against DANIEL M UZAN. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Van Nuys Courthouse East located in Los Angeles, California. The Judges overseeing this case are RUPERT A. BYRDSONG, MICHAEL J. CONVEY and THERESA M. TRABER. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****6818

  • Filing Date:

    02/01/2018

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Contract - Other Contract

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Van Nuys Courthouse East

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judges

RUPERT A. BYRDSONG

MICHAEL J. CONVEY

THERESA M. TRABER

 

Party Details

Plaintiffs

MITCHELL JASON AN INDIVIDUAL

JHM VENTURES A CALIFORNIA CORPORATION

MITCHELL JASON

Defendants

DOES 1 THROUGH 20

UZAN DANIEL M. AN INDIVIDUAL

UZAN DANIEL

TRIUMPH SOUND AND VISION

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorneys

URBACH MATTHEW SCOTT

URBACH MATTHEW S.

WEISSKOPF STEPHEN D.

WEISSKOPF STEPHEN DANIEL

Defendant Attorneys

MILLER DAVID SCOTT

JESSEE MARK T.

JESSEE MARK T

 

Court Documents

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON MOTION FOR TERMINATING SANCTIONS; ORDER TO SHOW CA...)

3/9/2020: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON MOTION FOR TERMINATING SANCTIONS; ORDER TO SHOW CA...)

Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR (HEARING ON MOTION FOR TERMINATING SANCTIONS; ORDER TO SHOW CA...) OF 03/09/2020

3/9/2020: Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR (HEARING ON MOTION FOR TERMINATING SANCTIONS; ORDER TO SHOW CA...) OF 03/09/2020

Notice Re: Continuance of Hearing and Order

3/18/2020: Notice Re: Continuance of Hearing and Order

Notice Re: Continuance of Hearing and Order

4/10/2020: Notice Re: Continuance of Hearing and Order

Notice of Stay of Proceedings (Bankruptcy)

12/18/2019: Notice of Stay of Proceedings (Bankruptcy)

Declaration - DECLARATION DECLARATION OF JASON MITCHELL IN SUPPORT OF PLAINTIFFS' MOTION FOR TERMINATING AND MONETARY SANCTIONS AGAINST DEFENDANT FOR FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH COURT ORDER COMPELLING DISC

11/22/2019: Declaration - DECLARATION DECLARATION OF JASON MITCHELL IN SUPPORT OF PLAINTIFFS' MOTION FOR TERMINATING AND MONETARY SANCTIONS AGAINST DEFENDANT FOR FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH COURT ORDER COMPELLING DISC

Substitution of Attorney

10/8/2019: Substitution of Attorney

Notice of Ruling

5/16/2019: Notice of Ruling

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON EX PARTE APPLICATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL AND ALL REL...)

5/16/2019: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON EX PARTE APPLICATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL AND ALL REL...)

Order - ORDER [PROPOSED] EX PARTE APPLICATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL AND ALL RELATED DATES

5/16/2019: Order - ORDER [PROPOSED] EX PARTE APPLICATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL AND ALL RELATED DATES

Notice - NOTICE NOTICE OF NO OPPOSITION TO MOTION TO COMPEL DEFENDANT TO PROVIDE FURTHER RESPONSES TO PLAINTIFF JASON MITCHELL'S RENEWED FIRST SET OF REQUESTS FOR ADMISSION RECEIVED; DECLARATION OF MA

5/16/2019: Notice - NOTICE NOTICE OF NO OPPOSITION TO MOTION TO COMPEL DEFENDANT TO PROVIDE FURTHER RESPONSES TO PLAINTIFF JASON MITCHELL'S RENEWED FIRST SET OF REQUESTS FOR ADMISSION RECEIVED; DECLARATION OF MA

Notice Re: Continuance of Hearing and Order

4/24/2019: Notice Re: Continuance of Hearing and Order

Summons

2/1/2018: Summons

Notice of Case Management Conference

2/1/2018: Notice of Case Management Conference

Legacy Document - LEGACY DOCUMENT TYPE: AFFIDAVIT

2/28/2018: Legacy Document - LEGACY DOCUMENT TYPE: AFFIDAVIT

Case Management Statement

6/25/2018: Case Management Statement

Legacy Document - LEGACY DOCUMENT TYPE: ORDER

6/28/2018: Legacy Document - LEGACY DOCUMENT TYPE: ORDER

Order Granting Attorney's Motion to Be Relieved as Counsel-Civil

1/17/2019: Order Granting Attorney's Motion to Be Relieved as Counsel-Civil

63 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 09/23/2020
  • DocketCase Management Statement; Filed by Triumph Sound and Vision (Defendant)

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  • 07/16/2020
  • DocketNotice of Ruling; Filed by Triumph Sound and Vision (Defendant)

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  • 07/16/2020
  • DocketGeneral Denial; Filed by Triumph Sound and Vision (Defendant)

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  • 07/15/2020
  • Docketat 08:30 AM in Department U, Theresa M. Traber, Presiding; Non-Appearance Case Review (ReBankruptcy) - Held

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  • 07/15/2020
  • Docketat 08:30 AM in Department U, Theresa M. Traber, Presiding; Order to Show Cause Re: (Entry of Judgment) - Held

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  • 07/15/2020
  • Docketat 08:30 AM in Department U, Theresa M. Traber, Presiding; Hearing on Motion to Set Aside/Vacate Default (CCP 473.5) - Held - Motion Granted

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  • 07/15/2020
  • DocketMinute Order ( (Hearing on Motion to Set Aside/Vacate Default (CCP 473.5); No...)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 07/07/2020
  • DocketReply (To Opposition to Motion to Set Aside/Vacate Default of Triumph Sound and Vision); Filed by Triumph Sound and Vision (Defendant)

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  • 07/01/2020
  • DocketOpposition (PLAINTIFF'S OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANT TRIUMPH SOUND AND VISION'S MOTION FOR ORDER SETTING ASIDE DEFAULT); Filed by JHM VENTURES, a California Corporation (Plaintiff); JASON, MITCHELL (Plaintiff)

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  • 06/19/2020
  • DocketProof of Service (not Summons and Complaint); Filed by Triumph Sound and Vision (Defendant)

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83 More Docket Entries
  • 06/28/2018
  • DocketOrder; Filed by Court

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  • 06/25/2018
  • DocketCase Management Statement; Filed by DANIEL UZAN (Defendant)

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  • 06/20/2018
  • DocketNotice; Filed by JHM VENTURES, a California Corporation (Plaintiff); JASON, MITCHELL (Plaintiff)

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  • 03/28/2018
  • DocketAnswer; Filed by DANIEL UZAN (Defendant)

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  • 02/28/2018
  • DocketProof of Service of Summons and Complaint; Filed by JHM VENTURES, a California Corporation (Plaintiff); JASON, MITCHELL (Plaintiff)

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  • 02/28/2018
  • DocketAffidavit; Filed by JHM VENTURES, a California Corporation (Plaintiff); JASON, MITCHELL (Plaintiff)

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  • 02/01/2018
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by JHM VENTURES, a California Corporation (Plaintiff); JASON, MITCHELL (Plaintiff)

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  • 02/01/2018
  • DocketNotice of Case Management Conference; Filed by Clerk

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  • 02/01/2018
  • DocketSummons; Filed by JHM VENTURES, a California Corporation (Plaintiff); JASON, MITCHELL (Plaintiff)

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  • 02/01/2018
  • DocketCivil Case Cover Sheet; Filed by JHM VENTURES, a California Corporation (Plaintiff); JASON, MITCHELL (Plaintiff)

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: LC106818    Hearing Date: July 15, 2020    Dept: U

SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

FOR THE COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES - NORTHWEST DISTRICT

JASON MITCHELL, an individual; and JHM VENTURES, a California corporation,

Plaintiffs,

vs.

DANIEL M. UZAN, an individual; and DOES 1 through 20, inclusive,

Defendants.

)

)

)

)

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)

)

)

)

)

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)

CASE NO: LC106818

[TENTATIVE] ORDER RE: TRIUMPH’S MOTION TO SET ASIDE/VACATE DEFAULT

Dept. U

8:30 a.m.

July 15, 2020

I. BACKGROUND

On February 1, 2018, Jason Mitchell and JHM Ventures (Plaintiffs) filed a complaint against Daniel M. Uzan (Uzman) and Does 1 through 20, alleging claims for: (1) breach of contract – shareholder agreement; (2) breach of contract – guaranty agreement; (3) fraud; (4) conversion; and (5) breach of fiduciary duty. Triumph Sound and Vision (Triumph) was substituted in as Doe Defendant 1 on October 17, 2019.

Default was entered against Triumph on December 16, 2019. Triumph filed this motion to set aside/vacate default on March 6, 2020.

II. LEGAL STANDARD

In relevant part, Code of Civil Procedure section 473(b) provides:

The court may, upon any terms as may be just, relieve a party or his or her legal representative from a judgment, dismissal, order, or other proceeding taken against him or her through his or her mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable neglect. Application for this relief shall be accompanied by a copy of the answer or other pleading proposed to be filed therein, otherwise the application shall not be granted, and shall be made within a reasonable time, in no case exceeding six months, after the judgment, dismissal, order, or proceeding was taken.

The court has broad discretion to vacate the entry of default, default judgment, or a dismissal, but that discretion can be exercised only if the defendant establishes a proper ground for relief, by the proper procedure and within the set time limits. Pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure section 473(b), a motion to set aside/vacate cannot be brought more than 6 months after the entry of default and must be made within a “reasonable time.”

III. DISCUSSION

a. Timeliness

Default was entered against Triumph on December 6, 2019. Triumph filed this motion to set aside/vacate default against it on March 6, 2020. Defendant’s motion is timely as it is within the six-month window.

b. Reason for Delay

Triumph argues it was not properly served the summons and complaint in this matter. Plaintiffs’ process server claimed to have effectuated personal service on Triumph on November 11, 2019. Service of process was made on Bailey Watson, the person in charge at 5737 Kanan Road, Agoura Hills, California 9130, a postal annex mailbox location. Watson is not an employee, let alone the registered agent for service of process, of Triumph. Uzman is the registered service of process agent for Triumph, in addition to being its President/CEO.

Triumph also contends that if personal service was validly effected, its default should be set aside/vacated because it was the product of mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable neglect. Uzman has also been served in an individual capacity in this matter. Therefore, when he learned Triumph had been named as a defendant, Uzman did not realize Triumph was being sued as its own corporate entity instead of as an extension of himself. Triumph argues this assumption was reasonable because it was not a party to the transactions between Uzman and Plaintiffs, was not mentioned in the complaint, and Uzman was not personally served as its registered agent. Uzman thought Triumph was being sued in his capacity as a sole proprietorship, therefore, when he received the notice of default, he thought Triumph would be subject to the automatic stay imposed as a result of his personal bankruptcy action.

Triumph requested that Plaintiffs set aside/vacate its default voluntarily, but they refused. Triumph argues Plaintiffs will not be prejudiced by setting aside its default because the case has progressed very little in the interim.

Plaintiffs oppose Triumph’s default being vacated on the grounds that process was properly served on Triumph at the postal annex because this was the only address available for Triumph. Plaintiffs contend Code of Civil Procedure section 415.20(c) allows for service to be made on a private mailbox when it is a party’s only known address because Business and Professions Code section 17538.5 requires the user of a private mailbox to agree that the operator of the postal annex act as an agent for service of process.

Further, Plaintiffs challenge Uzman’s assumption that Triumph was not being sued as an individual entity and, therefore, subject to his bankruptcy stay. Plaintiffs argue Uzman’s “assumption” is unpersuasive because Uzman has been dilatory in litigating this matter and is now using this as a convenient excuse.

Here, Triumph has timely made this motion and filed its accompanying answer to Plaintiffs’ complaint. Despite their contentions otherwise, Plaintiffs did not properly serve Triumph at the postal annex. While the address at the post office box is listed as Triumph’s address on its statement of information filed with the State of California Secretary of State, this document also lists Uzman as the company’s agent for service of process and lists his home address. Therefore, Plaintiffs should have served Uzman as Triumph’s service agent at Uzman’s home address.

Uzman’s mistaken belief that Triumph was being sued as his sole proprietorship and was subject to his personal bankruptcy stay was reasonable given the circumstances. While it is understandable that Plaintiffs would question the validity of this assumption, the Court finds justice would be furthered by relieving Triumph of its default.

Therefore, based on the timeliness of this motion and Plaintiffs’ failure to properly serve Triumph, the motion to vacate/set aside Triumph’s default is well-taken and should be granted.

IV. CONCLUSION

For the foregoing reasons, Triumph’s motion to vacate/set aside default is GRANTED. Triumph is ordered to file its Answer within 10 days of entry of this order.

Triumph is also ordered to give notice of the Court’s ruling.

DATED: July 15, 2020

_____________________

Hon. Theresa M. Traber

Judge of the Superior Court

Case Number: LC106818    Hearing Date: July 14, 2020    Dept: U

SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

FOR THE COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES - NORTHWEST DISTRICT

JASON MITCHELL, an individual; and JHM VENTURES, a California corporation,

Plaintiffs,

vs.

DANIEL M. UZAN, an individual; and DOES 1 through 20, inclusive,

Defendants.

)

)

)

)

)

)

)

)

)

)

)

)

CASE NO: LC106818

[TENTATIVE] ORDER RE: TRIUMPH’S MOTION TO SET ASIDE/VACATE DEFAULT

Dept. U

8:30 a.m.

July 15, 2020

I. BACKGROUND

On February 1, 2018, Jason Mitchell and JHM Ventures (Plaintiffs) filed a complaint against Daniel M. Uzan (Uzman) and Does 1 through 20, alleging claims for: (1) breach of contract – shareholder agreement; (2) breach of contract – guaranty agreement; (3) fraud; (4) conversion; and (5) breach of fiduciary duty. Triumph Sound and Vision (Triumph) was substituted in as Doe Defendant 1 on October 17, 2019.

Default was entered against Triumph on December 16, 2019. Triumph filed this motion to set aside/vacate default on March 6, 2020.

II. LEGAL STANDARD

In relevant part, Code of Civil Procedure section 473(b) provides:

The court may, upon any terms as may be just, relieve a party or his or her legal representative from a judgment, dismissal, order, or other proceeding taken against him or her through his or her mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable neglect. Application for this relief shall be accompanied by a copy of the answer or other pleading proposed to be filed therein, otherwise the application shall not be granted, and shall be made within a reasonable time, in no case exceeding six months, after the judgment, dismissal, order, or proceeding was taken.

The court has broad discretion to vacate the entry of default, default judgment, or a dismissal, but that discretion can be exercised only if the defendant establishes a proper ground for relief, by the proper procedure and within the set time limits. Pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure section 473(b), a motion to set aside/vacate cannot be brought more than 6 months after the entry of default and must be made within a “reasonable time.”

III. DISCUSSION

a. Timeliness

Default was entered against Triumph on December 6, 2019. Triumph filed this motion to set aside/vacate default against it on March 6, 2020. Defendant’s motion is timely as it is within the six-month window.

b. Reason for Delay

Triumph argues it was not properly served the summons and complaint in this matter. Plaintiffs’ process server claimed to have effectuated personal service on Triumph on November 11, 2019. Service of process was made on Bailey Watson, the person in charge at 5737 Kanan Road, Agoura Hills, California 9130, a postal annex mailbox location. Watson is not an employee, let alone the registered agent for service of process, of Triumph. Uzman is the registered service of process agent for Triumph, in addition to being its President/CEO.

Triumph also contends that if personal service was validly effected, its default should be set aside/vacated because it was the product of mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable neglect. Uzman has also been served in an individual capacity in this matter. Therefore, when he learned Triumph had been named as a defendant, Uzman did not realize Triumph was being sued as its own corporate entity instead of as an extension of himself. Triumph argues this assumption was reasonable because it was not a party to the transactions between Uzman and Plaintiffs, was not mentioned in the complaint, and Uzman was not personally served as its registered agent. Uzman thought Triumph was being sued in his capacity as a sole proprietorship, therefore, when he received the notice of default, he thought Triumph would be subject to the automatic stay imposed as a result of his personal bankruptcy action.

Triumph requested that Plaintiffs set aside/vacate its default voluntarily, but they refused. Triumph argues Plaintiffs will not be prejudiced by setting aside its default because the case has progressed very little in the interim.

Plaintiffs oppose Triumph’s default being vacated on the grounds that process was properly served on Triumph at the postal annex because this was the only address available for Triumph. Plaintiffs contend Code of Civil Procedure section 415.20(c) allows for service to be made on a private mailbox when it is a party’s only known address because Business and Professions Code section 17538.5 requires the user of a private mailbox to agree that the operator of the postal annex act as an agent for service of process.

Further, Plaintiffs challenge Uzman’s assumption that Triumph was not being sued as an individual entity and, therefore, subject to his bankruptcy stay. Plaintiffs argue Uzman’s “assumption” is unpersuasive because Uzman has been dilatory in litigating this matter and is now using this as a convenient excuse.

Here, Triumph has timely made this motion and filed its accompanying answer to Plaintiffs’ complaint. Despite their contentions otherwise, Plaintiffs did not properly serve Triumph at the postal annex. While the address at the post office box is listed as Triumph’s address on its statement of information filed with the State of California Secretary of State, this document also lists Uzman as the company’s agent for service of process and lists his home address. Therefore, Plaintiffs should have served Uzman as Triumph’s service agent at Uzman’s home address.

Uzman’s mistaken belief that Triumph was being sued as his sole proprietorship and was subject to his personal bankruptcy stay was reasonable given the circumstances. While it is understandable that Plaintiffs would question the validity of this assumption, the Court finds justice would be furthered by relieving Triumph of its default.

Therefore, based on the timeliness of this motion and Plaintiffs’ failure to properly serve Triumph, the motion to vacate/set aside Triumph’s default is well-taken and should be granted.

IV. CONCLUSION

For the foregoing reasons, Triumph’s motion to vacate/set aside default is GRANTED. Triumph is ordered to file its Answer within 10 days of entry of this order.

Triumph is also ordered to give notice of the Court’s ruling.

DATED: July 15, 2020

_____________________

Hon. Theresa M. Traber

Judge of the Superior Court