This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 10/01/2020 at 12:45:17 (UTC).

JEFFREY THOMAS VS WHBT INC

Case Summary

On 04/05/2018 JEFFREY THOMAS filed a Personal Injury - Other Personal Injury lawsuit against WHBT INC. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judges overseeing this case are CHRISTOPHER K. LUI, DANIEL M. CROWLEY, STEPHEN M. MOLONEY and SAMANTHA JESSNER. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****0967

  • Filing Date:

    04/05/2018

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Personal Injury - Other Personal Injury

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Stanley Mosk Courthouse

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judges

CHRISTOPHER K. LUI

DANIEL M. CROWLEY

STEPHEN M. MOLONEY

SAMANTHA JESSNER

 

Party Details

Plaintiff and Petitioner

THOMAS JEFFREY

Defendants and Respondents

WHBT INC.

MICKYS

DOES 1 TO 100

MICKY'S WEST HOLLYWOOD

Cross Plaintiff

JACOBS BROOKS

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff and Petitioner Attorneys

STANLEY MARTIN L. ESQ.

STANLEY MARTIN LOUIS

Defendant and Respondent Attorneys

SKANE WILCOX LLP

WILCOX WENDY LEIGH

 

Court Documents

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON MOTION FOR ORDER SETTING COMPENSATION OF PLAINTIFF...)

8/20/2020: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON MOTION FOR ORDER SETTING COMPENSATION OF PLAINTIFF...)

Notice of Ruling

8/27/2020: Notice of Ruling

Opposition - OPPOSITION DECLARATION OF GOLDSTEIN

8/6/2020: Opposition - OPPOSITION DECLARATION OF GOLDSTEIN

Opposition - OPPOSITION DECLARATION OF AMINIAN

8/6/2020: Opposition - OPPOSITION DECLARATION OF AMINIAN

Declaration - DECLARATION IN SUPPORT OF MOTION

7/22/2020: Declaration - DECLARATION IN SUPPORT OF MOTION

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON EX PARTE APPLICATION FOR AN ORDER THAT DEFENDANT P...)

5/22/2020: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON EX PARTE APPLICATION FOR AN ORDER THAT DEFENDANT P...)

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (DEFENDANT WHBT, INC. DBA MICKY'S WEST HOLLYWOOD'S MOTION TO C...)

8/30/2019: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (DEFENDANT WHBT, INC. DBA MICKY'S WEST HOLLYWOOD'S MOTION TO C...)

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (COURT ORDER)

4/20/2020: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (COURT ORDER)

Motion to Compel - MOTION TO COMPEL MOTION BY DEFENDANMOTION TO COMPEL INDEPENDENT MENTAL EXAMINATION OF PLAINTIFF

7/31/2019: Motion to Compel - MOTION TO COMPEL MOTION BY DEFENDANMOTION TO COMPEL INDEPENDENT MENTAL EXAMINATION OF PLAINTIFF

Motion to Quash - MOTION TO QUASH RANDALL AYBAR M.D.

8/1/2019: Motion to Quash - MOTION TO QUASH RANDALL AYBAR M.D.

Motion to Quash

8/1/2019: Motion to Quash

Opposition - OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO QUASH SUBPOENA TO MOLINA HEALTHCARE SERVICES

8/21/2019: Opposition - OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO QUASH SUBPOENA TO MOLINA HEALTHCARE SERVICES

Notice - NOTICE OF NON-OPPOSITION

8/22/2019: Notice - NOTICE OF NON-OPPOSITION

Reply - REPLY PLAINTIFF'S COMBINED REPLY TO OPPOSITIONS TO MOTIONS TO QUASH RECORDS SUBPOENAS TO DHCS, MOLINA HEALTHCARE AND RANDALL AYBAR MD

9/4/2019: Reply - REPLY PLAINTIFF'S COMBINED REPLY TO OPPOSITIONS TO MOTIONS TO QUASH RECORDS SUBPOENAS TO DHCS, MOLINA HEALTHCARE AND RANDALL AYBAR MD

Certificate of Mailing for - Certificate of Mailing for Minute Order (Ruling on Submitted Matter) of 02/28/2019

2/28/2019: Certificate of Mailing for - Certificate of Mailing for Minute Order (Ruling on Submitted Matter) of 02/28/2019

Minute Order - Minute Order (Ruling on Submitted Matter)

2/28/2019: Minute Order - Minute Order (Ruling on Submitted Matter)

Notice of Ruling

3/7/2019: Notice of Ruling

COMPLAINT-PERS. INJURY, PROP DAMAGE, WRONGFUL DEATH (2 PAGES) -

4/5/2018: COMPLAINT-PERS. INJURY, PROP DAMAGE, WRONGFUL DEATH (2 PAGES) -

62 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 04/23/2021
  • Hearing04/23/2021 at 08:30 AM in Department 28 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Jury Trial

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  • 04/09/2021
  • Hearing04/09/2021 at 10:00 AM in Department 28 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Final Status Conference

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  • 12/07/2020
  • Hearing12/07/2020 at 13:30 PM in Department 28 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Hearing on Motion for Order Setting Compensation of Plaintiff's Experts

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  • 08/27/2020
  • DocketNotice of Ruling; Filed by WHBT, Inc. (Defendant)

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  • 08/20/2020
  • Docketat 1:30 PM in Department 28, Daniel M. Crowley, Presiding; Hearing on Motion for Order (Setting Compensation of Plaintiff's Experts) - Not Held - Continued - Court's Motion

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  • 08/20/2020
  • DocketMinute Order ( (Hearing on Motion for Order Setting Compensation of Plaintiff...)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 08/17/2020
  • Docketat 10:30 AM in Department 28, Daniel M. Crowley, Presiding; Trial Setting Conference - Held

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  • 08/17/2020
  • DocketMinute Order ( (Trial Setting Conference)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 08/12/2020
  • DocketReply (to Opposition to Motion); Filed by WHBT, Inc. (Defendant)

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  • 08/12/2020
  • DocketResponse (to Objections); Filed by WHBT, Inc. (Defendant)

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92 More Docket Entries
  • 07/03/2018
  • DocketPLAINTIFF JEFFREY THOMAS S ANSWER RO CROSS-COMPLAINT OF BROOKS JACOBS

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  • 06/04/2018
  • DocketDEFENDANT, WHBT, INC. DBA MICKY'S WEST HOLLYWOOD'S ANSWER TO UNVERIFIED COMPLAINT

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  • 06/04/2018
  • DocketCROSS COMPLIANT FOR DAMAGES;ASSAULT AND BATTERY;AND ETC.

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  • 06/04/2018
  • DocketCross-Complaint; Filed by Brooks Jacobs (Cross-Complainant)

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  • 06/01/2018
  • DocketAnswer; Filed by WHBT, Inc. (Defendant); Micky's West Hollywood (Legacy Party)

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  • 04/24/2018
  • DocketPROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

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  • 04/24/2018
  • DocketProof of Service (not Summons and Complaint); Filed by Jeffrey Thomas (Plaintiff)

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  • 04/05/2018
  • DocketCOMPLAINT-PERS. INJURY, PROP DAMAGE, WRONGFUL DEATH (2 PAGES)

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  • 04/05/2018
  • DocketSUMMONS

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  • 04/05/2018
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by Jeffrey Thomas (Plaintiff)

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: BC700967    Hearing Date: August 20, 2020    Dept: 28

Motion to Set Expert Deposition Fees

Having considered the moving, opposing, and reply papers, the Court rules as follows.

BACKGROUND

On April 5, 2018, Plaintiff Jeffrey Thomas filed a complaint against Defendant WHBT, Inc. dba Micky’s West Hollywood (“Defendant”).  Plaintiff Jeffrey Thomas alleges premises liability, negligence, assault, and battery for a July 31, 2017 altercation involving Defendant’s bouncers.

On June 4, 2018, Cross-Complainant Brooks Jacobs filed a cross-complaint against Plaintiff/Cross-Defendant Jeffrey Thomas (“Opposing Party”)Cross-Complainant Brooks Jacobs alleges assault, battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligent infliction of emotional distress, and negligence for the same altercation that the complaint is based upon.

On July 22, 2020, Defendant filed a motion to set expert deposition fees pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure section 2034.430.

Trial is set for April 23, 2021.

PARTY’S REQUESTS

Defendant asks the Court to set the fees for deposing Kevin A. Aminian, M.D.; Theodore Goldstein, M.D.; Mohsen M. Hamza, M.D.; and Pouya Lavian, M.D. to $1,000.00 an hour.

OBJECTIONS

Opposing Party objects to Defendant’s counsel’s statement that Opposing Party’s experts’ deposition fees are unreasonable and that the reasonable fee is $1,000.00.  More specifically, Opposing Party objects on the grounds that there is a lack of foundation and the statements are improper legal opinions and expert opinions.  Defendant’s counsel’s opinion is that of a lay witness who has seen similar experts charge $1,000.00 or less based on twenty-two years of practice in retaining dozens of similar experts.  Accordingly, these objections are OVERRULED.

LEGAL STANDARD

“A party desiring to depose an expert witness described in subdivision (a) shall pay the expert’s reasonable and customary hourly or daily fee for any time spent at the deposition . . . .” (Code Civ. Proc., § 2034.430, subd. (b).)  Thus an expert being deposed is entitled to his or her “reasonable and customary” fees.

“If a party desiring to take the deposition of an expert witness under this article deems that the hourly or daily fee of that expert for providing deposition testimony is unreasonable, that party may move for an order setting the compensation of that expert.”  (Code Civ. Proc., § 2034.470, subd. (a).)  The motion must be accompanied by a meet and confer declaration, and during such conference the expert or the party must provide:

  1. Proof of the ordinary and customary fee actually charged and received by that expert for similar services provided outside the subject litigation.

  1. The total number of times the presently demanded fee has ever been charged and received by that expert.

  1. The frequency and regularity with which the presently demanded fee has been charged and received by that expert within the two-year period preceding the hearing on the motion.

(Code Civ. Proc., § 2034.470, subd. (b)(1)-(3).)

In evaluating a motion under this section, the court must assess the “proof of the ordinary and customary fee actually charged and received by that expert for similar services provided outside the subject litigation.”  (Code Civ. Proc., § 2034.470, subd. (c).)  The expert must also provide, and the court must assess, evidence of the following:

  1. The total number of times the presently demanded fee has ever been charged and received by that expert.

  1. The frequency and regularity with which the presently demanded fee has been charged and received by that expert within the two-year period preceding the hearing on the motion.

(Code Civ. Proc., § 2034.470, subd. (d)(1)-(2).)  The court may also consider fees for similar experts in the relevant community, and other factors deemed relevant.  (Code Civ. Proc., § 2034.470, subd. (e).)

DISCUSSION

Dr. Aminian is a neurologist and is charging Defendant $1,200.00 an hour to be deposed.  (Glaser Decl., ¶ 3-4, Exh. 1.)  Dr. Goldstein is an orthopedic surgeon and is charging Defendant $1,200.00 an hour to be deposed.  (Ibid.)  Dr. Hamza’s specialty is not indicated.  Dr. Hamza is charging Defendant $2,000.00 an hour to be deposed.  (Glaser Decl., ¶ 5.) 13; Opposition, p. 2:12-2:13.)

Dr. Aminian was board certified in neurology in November of 1993.  (Aminian Decl., 2; Exh. 1.)  Dr. Aminian works at Cedars Sinai Medical Center.  (Ibid.Dr. Aminian had served as a Clinical Assistant Instructor in the Department of Neurology at State University of New York.  (Ibid.)  Dr. Aminian has charged $1,200.00 an hour during depositions for over a year.  (Aminian Decl., 3.)  Dr. Aminian has charged this rage over twenty-five times.  (Ibid.)  Dr. Aminian has never had a court reduce his rate.  (Aminian Decl., ¶ 4.)  Dr. Aminian knows of no prior personal injury cases where someone attempted to reduce his rate.  (Ibid.)

Dr. Goldstein was board certified in orthopedic surgery in March of 1971.  (Goldstein CV.)  Dr. Goldstein is the Director of Cedars Sinai Medical Foundation Spinal Disease Management Program, the Co-Medical Director of Cedars Sinai Center Spine Center of Excellence, and a Clinical Professor in the Department of Orthopedics.  (Ibid.; see also Goldstein Decl., 2.)  Dr. Goldstein has held numerous other positions, has been awarded for his medical practice, and has given over sixty medically related presentations.  (Ibid.)  Dr. Goldstein has had multiple books and peer-reviewed articles published.  (Ibid.)  Dr. Goldstein has charged $1,500.00 an hour during depositions since the beginning of 2020.  (Goldstein Decl., 3.)  Dr. Goldstein was retained while his rate was $1,200.00 an hour.  (Ibid.)  Dr. Goldstein has charged the $1,200 rate dozens of times and, since his increased rate was implemented, has charged the $1,500.00 rate several times.  (Ibid.)  Dr. Goldstein has never had a court reduce his fee.  (Goldstein Decl., 4.)  Dr. Goldstein knows of no prior occasion where someone attempted to reduce his rate.  (Ibid.)

The Court finds the motion must be denied.  Doctors Aminian and Goldstein have collected their requested rates many times before.  Their tenure suggests these rates are reasonable.  Defendant argues the rates must be reduced because Defendant’s counsel is familiar with the usual and reasonable hourly rates for these experts as being $1,000.00 an hour.  (Glaser Decl., 9.)  Even if this is assumed to be true, the requested fees are not so far outside such a range of reasonable rates that a reduction is justified.

Plaintiffs’ and Plaintiffs’ doctors’ non-compliance with Defendant’s request for the relevant information to determine the reasonableness of the fees also does not justify a reduction of the charged fees.  Such information has been provided here and, thus, shows the requested fees are reasonable.

Lastly, the motion is moot as to Dr. Hamza because the relevant rate has been agreed to be $1,000.00.  The requested judicial action of reducing Dr. Hamza’s rate to $1,000.00 would have no effect.

CONCLUSION

The motion is DENIED.

Defendant is ordered to give notice of this ruling.

The parties are directed to the header of this tentative ruling for further instructions.