On 03/10/2017 SHOGHAKAT SOGOMONYAN filed a Personal Injury - Medical Malpractice lawsuit against MOSHE WILKER MD. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judges overseeing this case are YOLANDA OROZCO, LAURA A. SEIGLE, AMY D. HOGUE and EDWARD B. MORETON. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.
Pending - Other Pending
Los Angeles County Superior Courts
Stanley Mosk Courthouse
Los Angeles, California
LAURA A. SEIGLE
AMY D. HOGUE
EDWARD B. MORETON
WILKER MOSHE M.D.
DOES 1 TO 20
FOSTER RICHARD M.
FRASER STEPHEN CLARK
2/26/2020: Declaration - DECLARATION DECLARATION OF DANIEL K. DIK PER LASC RULE 3.57 PERTAINING TO DEFENDANT MOSHE WILKER, M.D.'S MOTIONS IN LIMINE
2/26/2020: Motion in Limine - MOTION IN LIMINE DEFENDANTS' MOTION IN LIMINE NO. 2 TO PRECLUDE PLAINTIFF'S EXPERT WITNESSES FROM TESTIFYING TO ANY OPINIONS NOT EXPRESSED DURING THEIR DEPOSITIONS; MEMORANDUM OF PO
2/26/2020: Motion in Limine - MOTION IN LIMINE DEFENDANTS' MOTION IN LIMINE NO. 8 FOR AN ORDER PRECLUDING PLAINTIFFS FROM INTRODUCING ANY WITNESSES, EVIDENCE, OR CONTENTIONS NOT DISCLOSED IN RESPONSES TO DISCOVE
2/26/2020: Motion in Limine - MOTION IN LIMINE DEFENDANTS' MOTION IN LIMINE NO. 10 TO PRECLUDE EVIDENCE OF PRIOR SUITS, ACCUSATIONS, OR CLAIMS MADE, OR TO BE MADE AGAINST DEFENDANTS OR DEFENDANTS' EXPERTS; MEMOR
2/26/2020: Motion in Limine - MOTION IN LIMINE DEFENDANTS' MOTION IN LIMINE NO. 9 TO PRECLUDE REFERENCE TO MICRA; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIES
2/26/2020: Motion in Limine - MOTION IN LIMINE DEFENDANTS' MOTION IN LIMINE NO. 6 TO PRECLUDE PLAINTIFFS' COUNSEL FROM QUESTIONING PROSPECTIVE JURORS ABOUT OR OTHERWISE MENTIONING DURING VOIR DIRE ANY DOLLAR AMO
2/27/2020: Motion in Limine - MOTION IN LIMINE NO. 1 TO LIMIT DEFENDANTS EXPERTS TO THE OPINIONS RENDERED AT THE TIME OF THEIR DEPOSITIONS; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIES IN SUPPORT; DECLARATION OF MARINE
6/24/2020: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON EX PARTE APPLICATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL)
7/20/2020: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (COURT ORDER)
12/9/2020: Declaration - DECLARATION OF MARINE KHACHOYAN IN SUPPORT OF PLAINTIFFS OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANT MOSHE WILKER, M.D.S MOTION TO QUASH SUBPOENA
12/15/2020: Reply - REPLY REPLY TO OPPOSITION TO MOTION TO QUASH DEPOSITION SUBPOENA
1/8/2021: Case Management Statement
11/8/2019: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON EX PARTE APPLICATION FOR AN ORDER TO CONTINUE THE ...)
11/8/2019: Ex Parte Application - EX PARTE APPLICATION FOR AN ORDER TO CONTINUE THE TRIAL DATE
11/13/2019: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (HEARING ON EX PARTE APPLICATION FOR AN ORDER TO CONTINUE THE ...)
5/13/2019: [Proposed Order] and Stipulation to Continue Trial, FSC (and Related Motion/Discovery Dates) Person - [PROPOSED ORDER] AND STIPULATION TO CONTINUE TRIAL, FSC (AND RELATED MOTION/DISCOVERY DATES) PERSO
2/4/2019: Declaration - Declaration in Support of IDC Conference
5/8/2018: SUBSTITUTION OF ATTORNEY -
Hearing02/19/2021 at 13:30 PM in Department 27 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Hearing on Motion to Quash Motion to Quash the Deposition Subpoena to Jenny Guerrero and for Monetary Sanctions Against Plaintiff and her Attorneys of RecordsRead MoreRead Less
Hearing01/25/2021 at 08:30 AM in Department 27 at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Trial Setting ConferenceRead MoreRead Less
DocketCase Management Statement; Filed by Shoghakat Sogomonyan (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
DocketCase Management Statement; Filed by Moshe M.D. Wilker (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
DocketCase Management Statement; Filed by Shoghakat Sogomonyan (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
Docketat 1:30 PM in Department 27, Edward B. Moreton, Presiding; Hearing on Motion to Quash (Motion to Quash the Deposition Subpoena to Jenny Guerrero and for Monetary Sanctions Against Plaintiff and her Attorneys of Records) - Not Held - Continued - Court's MotionRead MoreRead Less
DocketNotice (Sogomonyan - Notice of Cont. of MTQ Depo SDT of Jenny Guerrero); Filed by Moshe M.D. Wilker (Defendant)Read MoreRead Less
Docketat 1:30 PM in Department 27, Edward B. Moreton, Presiding; Court OrderRead MoreRead Less
DocketMinute Order ( (Court Order Re: rescheduled Hearing on Motion to Quash Motion...)); Filed by ClerkRead MoreRead Less
DocketCertificate of Mailing for ((Court Order Re: rescheduled Hearing on Motion to Quash Motion...) of 12/16/2020); Filed by ClerkRead MoreRead Less
DocketProof of Personal Service; Filed by Shoghakat Sogomonyan (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
Docketat 08:30 AM in Department 7; Jury Trial - Not Held - Advanced and VacatedRead MoreRead Less
Docketat 10:00 AM in Department 7; Final Status Conference (Final Status Conference; Off Calendar) -Read MoreRead Less
DocketMinute OrderRead MoreRead Less
DocketMinute order entered: 2018-08-24 00:00:00; Filed by ClerkRead MoreRead Less
DocketSUBSTITUTION OF ATTORNEYRead MoreRead Less
DocketSubstitution of Attorney; Filed by Shoghakat Sogomonyan (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
DocketComplaint; Filed by Shoghakat Sogomonyan (Plaintiff)Read MoreRead Less
DocketCOMPLAINT FOR DICAL MALPRACTICERead MoreRead Less
DocketSUMMONSRead MoreRead Less
Case Number: BC653144 Hearing Date: March 19, 2021 Dept: 27
SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA
FOR THE COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES - CENTRAL DISTRICT
MOSHE WILKER, M.D., et al.,
[TENTATIVE] ORDER RE: DEFENDANT MOSHE WILKER, M.D.’S MOTION TO QUASH DEPOSITION TO JENNY GUERRERO; REQUEST FOR MONETARY SANCTIONS
On March 10, 2017, plaintiff Shoghakat Sogomonyan filed this action against defendant Moshe Wilker, M.D. for medical malpractice. Defendant seeks to quash Plaintiff’s deposition subpoena to Jenny Guerrero (“Ms. Guerrero”), who is the office manager of Defendant’s expert witness, Dr. Domenick Sisto, M.D. (“Dr. Sisto”). Ms. Guerrero was served on July 24, 2020 to appear for deposition on August 24, 2020. Defendant served an objection on August 3, 2020 and filed this Motion on August 19, 2020.
A deposition subpoena may request (1) only the attendance and testimony of a deponent, (2) only the production of business records for copying, or (3) the attendance and testimony, as well as the production of business records. (Code Civ. Proc., § 2020.020.) The court, upon motion or the court’s own motion, “may make an order quashing the subpoena entirely, modifying it, or directing compliance with it upon those terms or conditions as the court shall declare, including protective orders.
“‘[F]or discovery purposes, information is relevant if it might reasonably assist a party in evaluating the case, preparing for trial, or facilitating settlement’ and ‘[a]dmissibility is not the test and information, unless privileged, is discoverable if it might reasonably lead to admissible evidence.’ These rules are applied liberally in favor of discovery . . . and (contrary to popular belief) fishing expeditions are permissible in some cases.” (Cruz v. Superior Court (2004) 121 Cal.App.4th 646, 653, citations omitted.)
Defendant argues the subpoena should be quashed because as defense expert Dr. Sisto’s office manager, Ms. Guerrero has no information or evidence that would lead to the discovery of admissible evidence. Defendant states the deposition subpoena has been served in order to harass Defendant and defense counsel.
In opposition, Plaintiff argues that Ms. Guerrero’s testimony is necessary because Ms. Guerrero has been defense counsel’s main contact to arrange the expert deposition and document production and Plaintiff needs to ensure that the document production is complete. Plaintiff’s counsel proceeds to describe in detail various affronts he claims he has encountered while attempting to conduct expert discovery.
Plaintiff originally issued a deposition subpoena for Dr. Sisto for March 13, 2020 which was rescheduled to March 16, 2020. (Foster Decl., ¶ 5, Ex. 2.) Plaintiff complains that Defendant did not produce Dr. Sisto’s expert file on March 13, 2020 as required by CCP section 2034.415. (Opp. at 2:24-5:12; Foster Decl., ¶¶ 7, 10, 12, 13, 17. ) However, Defendant’s deposition did not take place until July 13, 2020, and section 2034.415 requires the deponent produce the requested documents no later than three business days before the deposition, not the date of the first noticed deposition. Thus, Plaintiff’s complaint that he did not receive the expert file in time is invalid.
Plaintiff next complains that defense counsel refused to allow Plaintiff to depose Dr. Sisto on March 16, 2020 due to “priority.” short notice, only for defense counsel to cancel the deposition in order to go on vacation. When defense counsel returned, Dr. Sisto’s deposition (and all expert depositions) were taken off calendar due to defense counsel’s representation that he had to quarantine and that Dr. Sisto’s office was closed until the end of March 2020. Then, between March and July, Plaintiff’s counsel repeatedly requested Dr. Sisto’s document production and deposition appearance.
Dr Sisto was finally deposed on July 13, 2020 but his deposition was limited to two hours. After the two-hour deposition concluded, Plaintiff sought a second deposition session with Dr. Sisto. Sisto and Ms. Guerrero.
Plaintiff contends Ms. Guerrero would be the best person to know anything in connection with document productions and whether Dr. Sisto produced his entire expert file. Plaintiff expresses concern that Defendant is not being truthful with producing Dr. Sisto’s entire expert file. In support, Plaintiff recounts that during the deposition, Dr. Sisto allegedly could not answer questions about his document production or what he reviewed before preparing his reports.
On reply, Defendant attaches a single page from Dr. Sisto’s deposition transcript which reflect his testimony that he has provided the totality of the opinions he intends to offer at the time of trial. (Kogen Decl., Ex. A.)
The Court does not understand why Ms. Guerrero’s deposition needs to be taken. Plaintiff already possesses the opinions Dr. Sisto intends to offer at trial. Plaintiff’s counsel claims he cannot be sure whether the entire expert file was produced, what other documents may remain, and what documents were provided for his review. However, Ms. Guerrero’s knowledge of which files were sent over for review is irrelevant if Dr. Sisto does not review them or rely on them to form an opinion; she does not have personal knowledge regarding which documents Dr. Sisto looked at. Furthermore, if Dr. Sisto fails to produce or mention a pertinent document that he reviewed or relied on, Plaintiff can handle any potential problem through motions in limine. Ultimately, whether defense counsel has acted in bad faith when representing Dr. Sisto’s limited availability is properly addressed by a motion for sanctions, not by summoning irrelevant third-parties for a deposition.
Defendant’s Motion to quash is GRANTED.
The court may in its discretion award the amount of the reasonable expenses incurred in making or opposing the motion, including reasonable attorney’s fees, if the court finds the motion was made or opposed in bad faith or without substantial justification or that one or more of the requirements of the subpoena was oppressive. (Code Civ. Proc., § 1987.2, subd. (a).)
After reviewing the many pages of evidence that were submitted, the Court is dismayed that the parties have brought such a squabble before the bench. Defense counsel’s failure to deny Plaintiff’s claims of bad faith in representing Dr. Sisto’s availability is concerning while Plaintiff’s retaliatory measure of subpoenaing Ms. Guerrero is equally disturbing. Accordingly, the Court declines to impose sanctions in connection with this Motion.
Moving party to give notice.
Parties who intend to submit on this tentative must send an email to the Court at SSCDEPT27@lacourt.org indicating intention to submit on the tentative as directed by the instructions provided on the court website at www.lacourt.org.
Dated this 19th day of March 2021
Hon. Edward B. Moreton, Jr.
Judge of the Superior Court