This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 06/01/2019 at 06:12:36 (UTC).

NCC CONSTRUCTION INC VS JOHN C LUKES ET AL

Case Summary

On 02/15/2017 NCC CONSTRUCTION INC filed a Contract - Other Contract lawsuit against JOHN C LUKES. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judge overseeing this case is DALILA CORRAL LYONS. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****0661

  • Filing Date:

    02/15/2017

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Contract - Other Contract

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Stanley Mosk Courthouse

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judge

DALILA CORRAL LYONS

 

Party Details

Plaintiffs, Petitioners, Cross Plaintiffs and Cross Defendants

NCC CONSTRUCTION INC.

LUKES JOHN C.

LUKES KATHRYN A.

JASSO CONTSTRUCTION A BUSINESS ENTITY

NCC ELECTRICAL A BUSINESS ENTITY

ROES 1 THROUGH 25

AVILA RAYMOND J. AKA RAYMOND MICHAEL AVILA

Defendants, Respondents and Cross Plaintiffs

DOES 1 THROUGH 20

LUKES JOHN C.

LUKES KATHRYN A.

Not Classified By Court

RAYMOND AVILA AND GEMINI INSURANCE COMPANY ON BEHALF OF SUSPENDED CORPORATION JASSO CONSTRUCTION

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff and Petitioner Attorney

SALEK KEITH ESQ.

Defendant Attorney

HEDGES LESLIE J.

Cross Defendant Attorneys

ENGE CHERIE A. ESQ

TARASSOLY VIDA

HARRIS MICHAEL

WOLKIN BRANDT

JACOBS PAUL N.

 

Court Documents

STIPULATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL AND ALL RELATED DATES; ORDER

1/26/2018: STIPULATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL AND ALL RELATED DATES; ORDER

DECLARATION IN SUPPORT OF ATTORNEY?S MOTION TO BE RELIEVED AS COUNSEL?CIVIL

2/9/2018: DECLARATION IN SUPPORT OF ATTORNEY?S MOTION TO BE RELIEVED AS COUNSEL?CIVIL

RULING

3/12/2018: RULING

Minute Order

3/12/2018: Minute Order

Minute Order

9/18/2018: Minute Order

Notice of Related Case

12/31/2018: Notice of Related Case

Motion to Be Relieved as Counsel

1/3/2019: Motion to Be Relieved as Counsel

Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

1/16/2019: Proof of Service (not Summons and Complaint)

Notice of Ruling

1/16/2019: Notice of Ruling

Minute Order

4/18/2019: Minute Order

Objection

4/29/2019: Objection

Ex Parte Application

4/29/2019: Ex Parte Application

Declaration

4/29/2019: Declaration

Minute Order

5/22/2019: Minute Order

PROOF OF SERVICE OF SUMMONS

3/22/2017: PROOF OF SERVICE OF SUMMONS

DECLARATION OF CAITLYN M. HOBBS, IN SUPPORT OF PLAINTIFF'S, NCC CONSTRUCTION, INC., A CALIFORNIA CORPORATION, OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANTS, JOHN C. LUKES, AN INDIVIDUAL; AND, KATHRYN LUKES, AN INDIVIDUAL,

5/8/2017: DECLARATION OF CAITLYN M. HOBBS, IN SUPPORT OF PLAINTIFF'S, NCC CONSTRUCTION, INC., A CALIFORNIA CORPORATION, OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANTS, JOHN C. LUKES, AN INDIVIDUAL; AND, KATHRYN LUKES, AN INDIVIDUAL,

Unknown

5/19/2017: Unknown

FIRST AMENDED CROSS-COMPLAINT OF JOHN C. LUKES AND KATHRYN A. LUKES

10/16/2017: FIRST AMENDED CROSS-COMPLAINT OF JOHN C. LUKES AND KATHRYN A. LUKES

123 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 05/22/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 20, Dalila Corral Lyons, Presiding; Hearing on Motion for Leave (to file answer and cross-complaint in Intervention on behalf of Gemini Insurance Company; crs # 41268751620) - Not Held - Taken Off Calendar by Party

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  • 05/22/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 20, Dalila Corral Lyons, Presiding; Hearing on Motion for Leave to File a Cross-Complaint (by cross-defendant, Raymond Avila. CRS# 846907831906) - Not Held - Taken Off Calendar by Party

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  • 05/22/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 20, Dalila Corral Lyons, Presiding; Court Order

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  • 05/22/2019
  • Minute Order ( (MOTION BY CROSS-DEFENDANT (RAYMOND AVILA), FOR AN ORDER FOR L...)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 05/15/2019
  • Proof of Service by Mail; Filed by Raymond Avila and Gemini Insurance Company on behalf of suspended corporation Jasso Construction (Non-Party)

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  • 05/15/2019
  • Notice (of Withdrawal of Motion by Gemini Insurance Company for Leave to File Answer and Cross-Complaint in Intervention; CRS#412168751620); Filed by Raymond Avila and Gemini Insurance Company on behalf of suspended corporation Jasso Construction (Non-Party)

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  • 05/15/2019
  • Notice (OF WITHDRAWAL OF CROSS-DEFENDANT RAYMOND AVILA'S MOTION FOR AN ORDER; CRS#846907831906); Filed by Raymond Avila and Gemini Insurance Company on behalf of suspended corporation Jasso Construction (Non-Party)

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  • 05/09/2019
  • Opposition (to Motion File Cross-Complaint); Filed by John C. Lukes (Cross-Complainant)

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  • 05/09/2019
  • Opposition (to Motion for Leave to Intervene); Filed by John C. Lukes (Cross-Complainant)

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  • 05/09/2019
  • Notice of Lien; Filed by Kathryn A. Lukes (Defendant)

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224 More Docket Entries
  • 03/22/2017
  • NOTICE OF PENDENCY OF ACTION

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  • 03/22/2017
  • Proof-Service/Summons; Filed by NCC Construction Inc. (Plaintiff)

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  • 03/22/2017
  • PROOF OF SERVICE OF SUMMONS

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  • 03/06/2017
  • ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE HEARING

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  • 03/06/2017
  • NOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

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  • 03/06/2017
  • Notice of Case Management Conference; Filed by Clerk

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  • 03/06/2017
  • OSC-Failure to File Proof of Serv; Filed by Clerk

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  • 02/16/2017
  • SUMMONS

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  • 02/15/2017
  • Complaint; Filed by null

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  • 02/15/2017
  • COMPLAINT FOR: 1. BREACH OF CONTRACT ;ETC

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: BC650661    Hearing Date: October 25, 2019    Dept: 20

TENTATIVE RULING

Judge Dalila C. Lyons

Department 20

Hearing Date: Friday, October 25, 2019

Case Name: NCC Construction, Inc. v. Lukes, et al.

Case No.: BC650661

Motion: Determination of Good Faith Settlement

Moving Party: Cross-Defendant Villeda Associates Corporation dba Elite Plastering

Responding Party: *UNOPPOSED*

Notice: OK

Ruling: Cross-Defendant Villeda Associates Corporation dba Elite Plastering’s motion for a determination of good faith settlement is DENIED WITHOUT PREJUDICE.

On October 10, 2019, Cross-Defendant Villeda filed a motion for determination of good faith settlement for a partial settlement of claims between Cross-Complainants Mr. and Ms. Lukes and Villeda. However, Villeda is not a Cross-Defendant in the Lukes’ cross-complaint.

In addition to a determination that Villeda’s motion for determination of good faith settlement, Villeda specifically moved for this Court to dismiss with prejudice the NCC Cross-Complaint in this case and a Complaint filed by Cross-Defendant Avila in a different case (LASC Case No. 19STCV26604) assigned to Dept. 48.

First, this Court cannot dismiss complaints or cross-complaints unless the complainant or cross-complainants agree to such dismissal based on the settlement.

Second, the following charts of the complaints and cross-complaints in this action illustrates why the Court will not grant Villeda’s motion for good-faith settlement at this time:

First Amended Complaint filed by NCC Construction on 06/13/2017

John C. Lukes (Named/Bankruptcy)

Kathryn A. Lukes (Named)

NCC Construction (Plaintiff)

First Amended Cross-Complaint filed by John C. Lukes, et al. on 10/16/2017

Raymond D. Avila (Answered)

NCC Electrical (Answered)

Lasso Construction (Answered)

NCC Construction Inc. (Answered)

John C. Lukes (Cross-Complainant)

Kathryn A. Lukes (Cross-Complainant)

Cross-Complaint filed by NCC Construction on 03/29/2018

Roes 1-25 (Named)

Villeda Associates Corporation (Answered)

NCC Construction Inc. (Cross-Complainant)

As the three charts demonstrate, Villeda is not named as a Cross-Defendant in Mr. and Ms. Lukes’ Cross-Complaint. Instead, Villeda is named as a Cross-Defendant in NCC Construction’s Cross-Complaint. However, Villeda has not submitted any proof that NCC Construction consents to Villeda being dismissed from NCC Construction’s Cross-Complaint. The fact that Villeda conditionally settled with Mr. and Ms. Lukes[1] has no bearing on whether the Court should dismiss a different cross-complaint by a different party who did not settle its claims against Villeda.

At the hearing on this motion the parties are to explain to the Court the basis for requesting dismissal of non-parties and of cases not involved in the settlement without the consent of the complainant/cross-complainant.

_____________________________________________________________________________

MOTION NO. 2

TENTATIVE RULING

Judge Dalila C. Lyons

Department 20


Hearing Date: Friday, October 25, 2019

Case Name: NCC Construction, Inc. v. Lukes, et al.

Case No.: BC650661

Motion: Determination of Good Faith Settlement

Moving Party: Cross-Defendant Raymond Avila and Intervenor Gemini Insurance Company on behalf of Jasso’s Construction, Inc., a suspended corporation

Responding Party: *UNOPPOSED*

Notice: OK


Ruling: The motion for determination of good faith settlement by Cross-Defendant Raymond Avila and Intervenor Gemini Insurance Company on behalf of Jasso’s Construction, Inc., a suspended corporation, is GRANTED.

Any and all cross-complaints or claims arising out of this action against Raymond Avila, Gemini Insurance Company, or Jasso’s Construction, Inc. for equitable comparative contribution or partial or comparative indemnity based on comparative negligence or comparative fault are barred.

Cross-Defendant Raymond Avila and Intervenor Gemini Insurance Company on behalf of Jasso’s Construction, Inc. are hereby dismiss with prejudice.

Moving Party to Give Notice.


“[A] defendant's settlement figure must not be grossly disproportionate to what a reasonable person, at the time of the settlement, would estimate the settling defendant's liability to be.” Torres v. Union Pacific R.R. Co. (1984) 157 Cal.App.3d 499, 509. The party asserting the lack of good faith, who has the burden of proof on that issue (§ 877.6, subd. (d)), should be permitted to demonstrate, if he can, that the settlement is so far “out of the ballpark” in relation to these factors as to be inconsistent with the equitable objectives of the statute. Such a demonstration would establish that the proposed settlement was not a “settlement made in good faith” within the terms of section 877.6. Tech-Bilt, Inc. v. Woodward-Clyde & Associates (1985) 38 Cal.3d 488, 499-500.

The factors a court should look to in evaluating “good faith” within the meaning of CCP § 877.6 are (1) a rough approximation of plaintiff’s total recovery and the settler’s proportionate liability, (2) the amount paid in settlement, (3) the allocation of settlement proceeds among the various plaintiffs, (4) the financial condition of the settling defendants and their ability to respond to a judgment against them, (5) the existence of collusive, fraudulent, or other tortious conduct by the settling parties in connection with the negotiation and construction of the settlement which is injurious to the interests of the non-settling parties. Abbot Ford, Inc. v. Superior Court (1987) 43 Cal.3d 858, 874 citing Tech-Bilt 38 Cal.3d 488. While the settling party is not initially compelled to make a showing of the Tech-Bilt factors in bringing the motion or application for good faith settlement, once the settlement is attacked as lacking good faith the settling party is required to file counter-affidavits showing the settlement is “in the ballpark.” See Mattco Forge, Inc. v. Arthur Young & Co. (1995) 38 Cal. App. 4th 1337, 1350 n. 6.

Here, Cross-Complainants Mr. and Ms. Lukes were remodeling a house they bought, located at 2062 Midwick Drive, Altadena, California (“the House”). Mr. and Ms. Lukes have sued on their cross-complaint for construction defects resulting from that remodeling. Mr. and Ms. Lukes contracted with Jasso’s Construction, Inc. erroneously sued as Jasso Construction (“Jasso’s”) for limited work on the House. Avila was Jasso’s foreman on the remodeling project. Gemini is the insurer for Jasso’s, acting on Jasso’s behalf in this action. Jasso’s is currently a suspended corporation. There are no pending cross-complaints against Jasso’s, Avila, or Gemini.

“Potential liability for indemnity to a nonsettling defendant is an important consideration for the trial court in determining whether to approve a settlement by an alleged tortfeasors.” TSI Seismic Tenant Space, Inc. v. Superior Court (2007) 149 Cal.App.4th 159, 166. “The settling party’s proportionate liability is one of the most important factors.” Long Beach Memorial Medical Center v. Superior Court (2009) 172 Cal.App.4th 865, 873. This is especially so when the “true value [for Settling Defendants] in the ‘settlement’ [with Plaintiff] was not the dismissal of [Plaintiff’s] claims as to [Settling Defendants]…but rather the dismissal of the indemnity claims of [the Other Defendants].” West v. Superior Court (1994) 27 Cal.App.4th 1625, 1636. The good faith evaluation is made based on the information available at the time of the settlement and cannot be grossly disproportionate as to what a reasonable person at the time of the settlement would estimate the settling defendant’s liability to be. Mattco Forge, Inc. v. Arthur Young & Co. (1995) 38 Cal.App.4th 1337, 1349. “In any action for personal injury, property damage, or wrongful death, based upon principles of comparative fault, the liability of each defendant for non-economic damages shall be several only and shall not be joint.” Civ. Code § 1431.2(a) (emphasis added).

The nonsettling parties Plaintiff/Cross-Defendant/Cross-Complainant NCC Construction, Cross-Defendant NCC Electrical, and Defendant/Cross-Defendant Villeda have failed to oppose the present application for good faith settlement. The Court’s October 11, 2019 Minute Order reflects all parties agreement that oppositions to the present motion for determination of good faith settlement were to be filed by October 15, 2019. No oppositions have been filed.

In this case, the Court finds Jasso, Avila, and Gemini’s (“Moving Parties”) offer of $420,000.00 is not grossly disproportionate to their potential liability. Moving Parties provide the declaration of an expert, Jay Carey, who opines that the cost to repair the defects alleged to have been caused by Jasso’s and/or Avila is only $23,797.00. Carey Decl. ¶ 4, Exh. 1. The Lukes’ allege $1.2 million in damages, however Moving Parties argue their portion of that potential liability is much smaller than the other contractor cross-defendant, NCC Construction. Jasso’s and Avila worked on the House for eight weeks, while NCC Construction worked on the House for twelve months. Given, Jasso’s and Avila only worked on the House for 12.5% of the remodeling project, their settlement offer of 35% of Plaintiffs’ claimed damages is not grossly disproportionate to their potential liability. Further, Moving Parties cannot be liable to Mr. and Mrs. Lukes for attorney fees because there is no provision for attorney fees in the contract between Jasso’s and Mr. and Mrs. Lukes. This fact reduces Moving Parties’ potential liability by $159,000.00 at least. Additionally, Mr. Lukes does not allege his claim for almost $6 million in lost income against Moving Parties, further reducing Moving Party’s potential liability. That claim is alleged solely against NCC Construction. There is no evidence of collusion between these settling parties and all parties were represented by counsel in arms-length settlement negotiations. The settlement proceeds will be distributed by the bankruptcy court among Mr. Lukes, Mrs. Lukes, and Mr. Lukes’s creditors.

Accordingly, Cross-Defendant Raymond Avila and Intervenor Gemini Insurance Company on behalf of Jasso’s Construction, Inc., a suspended corporation, motion for good faith determination of settlement is GRANTED.

Cross-Defendant Raymond Avila and Intervenor Gemini Insurance Company on behalf of Jasso’s Construction, Inc. are hereby dismiss with prejudice.

[1] Who have not named Villeda in their cross-complaint.