This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 05/29/2019 at 03:26:40 (UTC).

STARS ATHLETIC FOUNDATION VS KARAMANOUKIAN TRUST

Case Summary

On 12/27/2017 STARS ATHLETIC FOUNDATION filed a Contract - Other Contract lawsuit against KARAMANOUKIAN TRUST. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.
Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****8350

  • Filing Date:

    12/27/2017

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Contract - Other Contract

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

 

Party Details

Plaintiff and Petitioner

STARS ATHLETIC FOUNDATION

Defendants and Respondents

DOES 1 TO 10

KARAMANOUKIAN TRUST

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff and Petitioner Attorney

BICKENBACH PAUL H. ESQ.

Defendant Attorney

KATZMAN MARC J. ESQ.

 

Court Documents

NOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

2/15/2018: NOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

NOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

4/6/2018: NOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

Unknown

4/25/2018: Unknown

Minute Order

4/27/2018: Minute Order

FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT 1. BREACH OF CONTRACT 2. FRAUD & BUSINESS DISPUTE

5/1/2018: FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT 1. BREACH OF CONTRACT 2. FRAUD & BUSINESS DISPUTE

SUMMONS

5/31/2018: SUMMONS

NOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE RE: PROJECTED DAMAGES OF PLAINTIFF, STARS ATHLETIC FOUNDATION &

6/26/2018: NOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE RE: PROJECTED DAMAGES OF PLAINTIFF, STARS ATHLETIC FOUNDATION &

DECLARATION OF MARC J. KATZMAN IN SUPPORT OF TILE COURT ORDERED WALKER HEARING AND IN OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFF'S ?PROJECTEL) DAMAGES? SUBMISSION

6/27/2018: DECLARATION OF MARC J. KATZMAN IN SUPPORT OF TILE COURT ORDERED WALKER HEARING AND IN OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFF'S ?PROJECTEL) DAMAGES? SUBMISSION

Minute Order

6/28/2018: Minute Order

NOTICE OF RULING RE: "WALKER" HEARING"

7/16/2018: NOTICE OF RULING RE: "WALKER" HEARING"

DEFENDANT KARAMANOUKIAN TRUST'S NOTICE OF MOTION TO STRIKE PORTIONS OF PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIES; AND DECLARATION OF MARC KATZMAN

7/25/2018: DEFENDANT KARAMANOUKIAN TRUST'S NOTICE OF MOTION TO STRIKE PORTIONS OF PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIES; AND DECLARATION OF MARC KATZMAN

NOTICE OF DEMURRER TO PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT; DEMURRER; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIES; AND DECLARATION OF MARC KATZMAN

7/25/2018: NOTICE OF DEMURRER TO PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT; DEMURRER; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIES; AND DECLARATION OF MARC KATZMAN

DEFENDANT'S FIRST AMENDED NOTICE OF DEMURRER TO PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT, ETC

8/7/2018: DEFENDANT'S FIRST AMENDED NOTICE OF DEMURRER TO PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT, ETC

Unknown

8/15/2018: Unknown

PLAINTIFF, STARS ATHLETIC FOUNDATION'S OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANT, KARAMANOUKIAN TRUST'S FIRST AMENDED NOTICE OF DEMURRER TO PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT

8/16/2018: PLAINTIFF, STARS ATHLETIC FOUNDATION'S OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANT, KARAMANOUKIAN TRUST'S FIRST AMENDED NOTICE OF DEMURRER TO PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT

PLAINTIFF, STARS ATHLETIC FOUNDATION'S OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANT, KARAMANOUKIAN TRUST'S MOTION TO STRIKE PORTIONS OF PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS & AUTHORITIES & DECLARATION OF MARC KATZM

8/16/2018: PLAINTIFF, STARS ATHLETIC FOUNDATION'S OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANT, KARAMANOUKIAN TRUST'S MOTION TO STRIKE PORTIONS OF PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS & AUTHORITIES & DECLARATION OF MARC KATZM

DEFENDANT'S REPLY TO PLAINTIFF'S OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANT'S AMENDED NOTICE OF DEMURRER

8/23/2018: DEFENDANT'S REPLY TO PLAINTIFF'S OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANT'S AMENDED NOTICE OF DEMURRER

Unknown

8/23/2018: Unknown

20 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 09/28/2018
  • DocketSummons on Cross Complaint

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  • 09/28/2018
  • DocketAnswer; Filed by Karamanoukian Trust (Defendant)

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  • 09/28/2018
  • DocketSummons (Cross-Complaint)

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  • 09/28/2018
  • DocketKARAMANOUKIAN TRUST'S CROSS-COMPLAINT FOR DAMAGES FOR: (1) BREACH OF CONTRACT; (2) FRAUD (INTENTIONAL MISREPRESENTATION); ETC.

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  • 09/18/2018
  • DocketStipulation; Filed by Karamanoukian Trust (Defendant)

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  • 09/18/2018
  • DocketSTIPULATION TO STRIKE PUNITIVE DAMAGES FROM PLAINTIFF S COMPLAINT, ETC.

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  • 09/14/2018
  • DocketNOTICE OF TRIAL & FINAL STATUS CONFERENCE

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  • 09/07/2018
  • Docketat 08:30 AM in Department 32; Case Management Conference (Conference-Case Management; Trial Date Set) -

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  • 09/07/2018
  • DocketMinute Order

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  • 09/07/2018
  • DocketOrder; Filed by Court

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31 More Docket Entries
  • 04/27/2018
  • DocketMinute Order

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  • 04/25/2018
  • DocketCASE MANAGEMENT STATEMENT

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  • 04/06/2018
  • DocketNOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

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  • 02/15/2018
  • DocketNOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE

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  • 02/15/2018
  • DocketNotice of Case Management Conference; Filed by Clerk

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  • 01/10/2018
  • DocketProof of Service (not Summons and Complaint); Filed by Stars Athletic Foundation (Plaintiff)

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  • 01/10/2018
  • DocketPROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

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  • 12/27/2017
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by Stars Athletic Foundation (Plaintiff)

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  • 12/27/2017
  • DocketSUMMONS

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  • 12/27/2017
  • DocketCOMPLAINT 1. BREACH OF CONTRACT 2. FRAUD & BUSINESS DISPUTE 3. ATTORNEY FEES; ETC

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: ****8350    Hearing Date: February 17, 2021    Dept: 32

STARS ATHLETIC FOUNDATION, a California Corporation

Plaintiff,

v.

KARAMANOUKIAN TRUST; et. al.,

Defendants.

Case No.: ****8350

Hearing Date: February 17, 2021

[Tentative] order RE:

PLAINTIFF’S MOTION For Attorney fees

BACKGROUND

This is a breach of contract action. Stars Athletic Foundation (“Stars”) filed this action on December 27, 2017. On September 28, 2018, Karamanoukian Trust (Trust) answered the complaint and filed a cross-complaint against Stars and Joanne Bockian (“Bockian”)

Karamanoukian received a judgment on its cross-complaint against Stars and Bockian on its breach of contract cause of action.

Trust seeks attorney fees under the contract, and neither Stars nor Bockian oppose this motion.

LEGAL STANDARD

The prevailing party in “any action on a contract” shall be awarded reasonable attorney’s fees incurred to enforce that contract where the contract specifically provides for attorney’s fees. (Cal. Civ. Code ; 1717(a).) “When a party obtains a simple, unqualified victory by completely prevailing on or defeating all contract claims in the action and the contract contains a provision for attorney fees, section 1717 entitles the successful party to recover reasonable attorney fees incurred in prosecution or defense of those claims. (Scott Co. of California v. Blount, Inc. (1999) 20 Cal. 4th 1103, 1109.) “[I]n deciding whether there is a ‘party prevailing on the contract,’ the trial court is to compare the relief awarded on the contract claim or claims with the parties' demands on those same claims and their litigation objectives as disclosed by the pleadings, trial briefs, opening statements, and similar sources.” (Hsu v. Abbara (1995) 9 Cal. 4th 863, 876.)

Paragraph 31 of the contract between the parties provides that a prevalent party in a contract action is entitled to reasonable attorney fees. Pursuant to the judgment in favor of Trust, the Trust was the prevailing party in this action.

ANALYSIS

Trust moves for an award of attorney fees in the amount of $100,502.50.

A. Entitlement to Attorney Fees

It is undisputed that Trust is the prevailing party in this action. As prevailing party in this action, Trust is entitled to a reasonable amount of attorney fees. The only issue raised in this motion is the reasonableness of the requested amount of attorney fees, costs, and expenses.

B. Reasonableness of Fees

1. Reasonable Hourly Rates

The hourly rates claimed by Trust’s attorneys who worked on this case are: (1) Marc Katz 450.00/hr; (2) Kathryn Sterling 450/hr; and (3) Paralegals 100/hr.

“In determining hourly rates, the court must look to the ‘prevailing market rates in the relevant community.’” (Heritage Pacific Financial, LLC v. Monroy (2013) 215 Cal.App.4th 972, 100.) In making this determination, “[t]he court may rely on its own knowledge and familiarity with the legal market.” (Ibid.)

Stars and Bockian do not dispute these rates.

The Court finds that the hourly rate charged by Trust’s attorneys is the reasonable hourly rate in this case.

2. Hours Reasonably Expended

The total number of billable hours claimed by Trust attorneys is set forth in Exhibit 4 of Kathryn Sterling’s declaration.

Stars and Bockian do not dispute these hours.

The Court finds that the hours reflected in Exhibit 4 of Kathryn Sterling’s declaration are the reasonable hour spent by Trust’s attorneys in this matter.

C. Multiplier

Trust does not request a multiplier.

D. Entitlement and Reasonableness of Costs

Trust laintiff requests a total of $5,781.77 in costs and expenses.

Stars and Bockian do not dispute these costs.

In this case, the Court finds that Trust is entitled to $5,781.77 in costs and expenses.

D. Conclusion

Based on the foregoing reasons, Plaintiff’s motion for attorney fees is GRANTED. The Court awards $100,502.50 in attorney fees and $5,781.77 in costs.



Case Number: ****8350    Hearing Date: December 07, 2020    Dept: 32

stars athletic foundation,

Plaintiff,

v.

KARAMANOUKIAN TRUST, et al.

Defendants.

Case No.: ****8350

Hearing Date: December 7, 2020

[TENTATIVE] order RE:

Motion for summary adjudication of the breach of contract claim against bockian

Background

A. Complaint

Plaintiff Stars Athletic Foundation (Stars) commenced this action against Defendant Karamanoukian Trust (Trust) on December 27, 2017. The operative pleading is the First Amended Complaint (FAC) filed on May 1, 2018. The FAC asserts causes of action for (1) breach of contract and (2) fraud. The FAC alleges in pertinent part as follows.

The Trust owns commercial real property located at 922 S. Myrtle Avenue, Monrovia, CA (Premises). Stars is in the business of providing children with multi-sports centers and ancillary activities. Stars entered into a lease agreement (Lease) with the Trust pursuant to which Stars leased the Premises. Stars entered into the Lease in order to provide its services to children in the greater San Gabriel Valley area. The Trust breached the Lease by failing to provide, among other things, a working restroom or HVAC system.

B. Cross-Complaint

The Trust commenced a cross-action against Stars on September 28, 2018. The Trust named Joanne Bockian as a Roe Defendant on October 31, 2019. The Trust’s Cross-Complaint asserts causes of action for (1) breach of contract, (2) fraud (intentional misrepresentation), (3) negligent misrepresentation, and (4) negligence. The Cross-Complaint alleges in pertinent part as follows.

In April 2017, the Trust entered into the Lease with Stars. Pursuant to the Lease, the parties agreed that Stars would lease the Premises for a one-year period commencing on July 1, 2017. The parties further agreed that Stars would pay rent of $4,500 per month for the first four months, $5,000 per month for the next four months, and $5,500 per month for the last four months.

Bockian, Stars’s principal, personally toured the Premises, negotiated the Lease, and signed each page of the Lease on Stars’s behalf. Prior to executing the Lease, Bockian was made aware that the Premises’s ventilation system was not a central air unit. Bockian agreed to accept the Premises “as-is.”

Stars paid the initial deposit of one month’s rent in the amount of $4,500 plus the required $5,000 security deposit. By the second month of the Lease term, Stars breached the Lease by refusing to pay rent. Stars stated that it would no longer make rent payments unless the Trust agreed to undertake and pay for renovations and upgrades to the Premises. Stars continued to occupy the Premises for the rest of the one-year Lease term. Stars owes the Trust, among other things, approximately $55,000 in unpaid rent.

C. Course of Proceedings

On August 29, 2018, the Court sustained the Trust’s demurrer to Stars’s fraud cause of action without leave to amend.

On December 4, 2019, the Court granted the Trust’s unopposed motion for summary judgment of the Complaint.

On March 13, 2020, the Court struck Stars’s Answer to the Cross-Complaint because Stars was not represented by counsel. Default was entered against Stars on April 8, 2020. Pursuant to the Trust’s request, the Court set aside the default entered against Stars on June 23, 2020.

On September 11, 2020, the Court granted the Trust’s motion for summary adjudication of its breach of contract claim against Stars.

Discussion

The Trust moves for summary adjudication of its breach of contract claim against Bockian. Bockian does not oppose.

In its breach of contract claim, the Trust alleges that Bockian breached the Lease by failing to make rent payments when they became due. (XC ¶ 22.)

The Trust presents the following pertinent evidence. Stars and the Trust entered into the Lease on April 6, 2017. (A. Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 2, Ex. 1.) The Lease required Stars to pay rent in the amount of $4,500 per month for the first four months, $5,000 per month for the next four months, and $5,500 per month for the last four months. (A. Karamanoukian Decl. Ex. 1, Lease Addendum.) In connection with the Lease, Bockian signed a “Guaranty of Lease” in which she “unconditionally and irrevocably guarantee[d] the prompt payment by [Stars] of all rents and all other sums payable by [Stars] under said Lease and the faithful and prompt performance by Lessee of each and every one of the terms, conditions and covenants of said Lease to be kept and performed by Lessee.” (A. Karamanoukian Decl. Ex. 1; Bockian Depo p. 133.)

Pursuant to the Lease, the Trust provided the Premises to Stars in broom clean condition, with the existing systems in good and operating condition for the purposes for which the Premises had been used at the time of leasing. (A. Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 8.) After signing the Lease, Stars refused to pay rent other than the initial deposit of $4,500, claiming that the Trust must pay for central air conditioning at the Premises. (A. Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 11.) Stars’s refusal to pay rent was without merit because Stars agreed to accept the Premises “as-is.” (A. Karamanoukian Decl. Ex. 1, Lease Addendum.)

The elements of a cause of action for breach of contract are (1) the existence of the contract, (2) plaintiff’s performance or excuse for nonperformance, (3) defendant’s breach, and (4) resulting damages to plaintiff. (Oasis West Realty, LLC v. Goldman (2011) 51 Cal.4th 811, 821.) The Trust has shown that (1) Bockian and the Trust entered into a valid guaranty, (2) the Trust performed its obligations under the lease agreement and guaranty, (3) Bockian breached the guaranty by failing to cure Stars’s default on its rental payments, and (4) this breach has caused the Trust to suffer damages including unpaid rent of $55,500. Accordingly, the Trust’s breach of contract claim against Bockian is meritorious.

By not opposing this motion or presenting any evidence, Bockian has failed to establish a triable issue of material fact precluding summary adjudication of this claim.

Conclusion

The Trust’s motion for summary adjudication is granted. The Trust is entitled to judgment against Bockian on the Trust’s breach of contract claim. The Trust is entitled to $55,500 in unpaid rent, $5,500 in late charges (Lease ¶ 13.4), $13,597.74 in prejudgment interest (Lease ¶ 13.5), $8,457 in costs to correct unauthorized alterations to the Premises (K. Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 4, Ex. 1), $5,750 in costs to replace damage to the Premises (K. Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 4, Ex. 2), and attorney fees to be determined by the Court in a subsequent motion (Lease ¶ 31).



Case Number: ****8350    Hearing Date: September 11, 2020    Dept: 32

stars athletic foundation,

Plaintiff,

v.

KARAMANOUKIAN TRUST, et al.

Defendants.

Case No.: ****8350

Hearing Date: September 11, 2019

[TENTATIVE] order RE:

Motion for summary adjudication of the trust’s breach of contract claim

Background

A. Complaint

Plaintiff Stars Athletic Foundation (Stars) commenced this action against Defendant Karamanoukian Trust (Trust) on December 27, 2017. The operative pleading is the First Amended Complaint (FAC) filed on May 1, 2018. The FAC asserts causes of action for (1) breach of contract and (2) fraud. The Trust’s demurrer to the fraud cause of action was sustained without leave to amend. The FAC alleges in pertinent part as follows.

The Trust owns commercial real property located at 922 S. Myrtle Avenue, Monrovia, CA (Premises). Stars is in the business of providing children with multi-sports centers and ancillary activities. Stars entered into a lease agreement (Lease) with the Trust pursuant to which Stars leased the Premises. Stars entered into the Lease in order to provide its services to children in the greater San Gabriel Valley area. The Trust breached the Lease by failing to provide, among other things, a working restroom or HVAC system.

B. Cross-Complaint

The Trust commenced a cross-action against Stars on September 28, 2018. The Trust named Joanne Bockian as a Roe Defendant on October 31, 2019. The Trust’s Cross-Complaint asserts causes of action for (1) breach of contract, (2) fraud (intentional misrepresentation), (3) negligent misrepresentation, and (4) negligence. The Cross-Complaint alleges in pertinent part as follows.

On April 4, 2017, the Trust entered into the Lease with Stars. Pursuant to the Lease, the parties agreed that Stars would lease the Premises for a one-year period commencing on July 1, 2017. The parties further agreed that Stars would pay rent in the amount of $4,500 for the first four months, $5,000 per month for the next four months, and $5,500 per month for the last four months.

Bockian, Stars’ principal, personally toured the Premises, negotiated the Lease, and signed each page of the Lease on Stars’ behalf. Prior to executing the Lease, Bockian was made aware that the Premises’ ventilation system was not a central air unit. Bockian agreed to accept the Premises “as-is.”

Bockian paid the initial deposit of one month’s rent in the amount of $4,500 plus the required $5,000 security deposit. By the second month of the Lease term, Stars breached the Lease by refusing to pay rent. Stars stated that it would no longer make rent payments unless the Trust agreed to undertake and pay for extra-contractual obligations to renovate and upgrade the Premises. Stars continued to occupy the Premises for the rest of the one-year Lease term. Stars owes the Trust, among other things, approximately $55,000 in unpaid rent.

C. Course of Proceedings

On December 4, 2019, the Court granted the Trust’s unopposed motion for summary judgment as to the Complaint.

On March 13, 2020, the Court struck the answer filed by Stars to the Cross-Complaint because Stars was not represented by counsel. Default was entered against Stars on April 8, 2020. Pursuant to the Trust’s request, the Court set aside the default entered against Stars on June 23, 2020.

Discussion

The Trust moves for summary adjudication of its breach of contract claim against Stars. Stars does not oppose.

In its breach of contract claim, the Trust alleges that Stars breached the Lease by failing to make rent payments when they became due. (XC ¶ 22.)

The Trust presents the following pertinent evidence. Stars and the Trust entered into the Lease on April 6, 2017. (Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 2, Ex. 1.) The Lease required Stars to pay rent in the amount of $4,500 for the first four months, $5,000 per month for the next four months, and $5,500 per month for the last four months. (Karamanoukian Decl. Ex. 1, Lease Addendum.) Pursuant to the Lease, the Trust provided the Premises to Stars in broom clean condition, with the existing systems in good and operating condition for the purposes for which the Premises had been used at the time of leasing. (Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 8.) After signing the Lease, Stars refused to pay rent other than the initial deposit of $4,500. (Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 11.) Stars’ refusal to pay rent was based on the demand that the Trust pay for central air conditioning at the Premises. (Ibid.) Stars’ refusal to pay rent was without merit because Stars agreed to accept the Premises “as-is.” (Karamanoukian Decl. Ex. 1, Lease Addendum.)

The elements of a cause of action for breach of contract are (1) the existence of the contract, (2) plaintiff’s performance or excuse for nonperformance, (3) defendant’s breach, and (4) resulting damages to plaintiff. (Oasis West Realty, LLC v. Goldman (2011) 51 Cal.4th 811, 821.) The Trust has shown that (1) Stars and the Trust entered into a valid lease agreement, (2) the Trust performed its obligations under the lease agreement, (3) Stars breached the lease agreement by failing to pay rent when rent became due, and (4) this breach has caused the Trust to suffer damages in the total amount of $55,500, plus interest. Accordingly, the Trust’s breach of contract claim is meritorious.

By not opposing this motion or presenting any evidence, Stars has failed to establish a triable issue of material fact precluding summary adjudication of this claim.

Conclusion

The Trust’s motion for summary adjudication is granted. The Trust is entitled to judgment against Stars on the Trust’s breach of contract claim. The Trust is entitled to $55,500 in unpaid rent, $5,500 in late charges (Lease ¶ 13.4), $12,228.84 in prejudgment interest (Lease ¶ 13.5), and attorney fees to be determined by the Court in a subsequent motion (Lease ¶ 31).



Case Number: ****8350    Hearing Date: December 04, 2019    Dept: 32

stars athletic foundation,

Plaintiff,

v.

KARAMANOUKIAN TRUST, et al.

Defendants.

Case No.: ****8350

Hearing Date: December 4, 2019

[TENTATIVE] order RE:

Motion for summary judgment

BACKGROUND

A. Complaint

Plaintiff Stars Athletic Foundation (“Plaintiff”) commenced this action against Defendant Karamanoukian Trust (“Defendant”) on December 27, 2017. The operative pleading is the First Amended Complaint (“FAC”) filed on May 1, 2018. The FAC asserts causes of action for (1) breach of contract and (2) fraud. Defendant’s demurrer to the fraud cause of action was sustained without leave to amend. The FAC alleges in pertinent part as follows.

Defendant owns commercial real property located at 922 S. Myrtle Avenue, Monrovia, CA (“Premises”). Plaintiff is in the business of providing children with multi-sports centers and ancillary activities. Plaintiff entered into a lease agreement (“Lease”) with Defendant pursuant to which Plaintiff leased the Premises. Plaintiff entered into the Lease in order to provide its services to children in the greater San Gabriel Valley area. Defendant breached the Lease by failing to provide, among other things, a working restroom or HVAC system.

B. Cross-Complaint

Defendant cross-complained against Plaintiff and Joanne Bockian on September 28, 2018. The Cross-Complaint asserts causes of action for (1) breach of contract, (2) fraud (intentional misrepresentation), (3) negligent misrepresentation, and (4) negligence. These causes of action are based on Plaintiff’s actions with respect to the Lease.

LEGAL STANDARD

CCP section 437c(c) states: “The motion for summary judgment shall be granted if all the papers submitted show that there is no triable issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law.” A material fact is one that “must relate to some claim or defense in issue under the pleadings, and it must also be essential to the judgment in some way.” (Riverside County Community Facilities District v. Bainbridge 17 (1999) 77 Cal.App.4th 644, 653.) The court may not weigh the evidence. (Mann v. Cracchiolo (1985) 38 Cal.3d 18, 39.) A motion for summary adjudication may be made by itself or as an alternative to a motion for summary judgment and shall proceed in all procedural respects as a motion for summary judgment. (CCP ; 437c(f)(2).) The moving party bears an initial burden of production to make a prima facie showing of the nonexistence of any triable issue of material fact, and if he does so, the burden shifts to the opposing party to make a prima facie showing of the existence of a triable issue of material fact. (Aguilar v. Atlantic Richfield Co. (2001) 25 Cal.4th 826, 850-51.)

STATEMENT OF FACTS

A. Lease Negotiations

Defendant has owned the Premises since April 2000. (Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 2.) The Premises consists of a single, free-standing industrial building of approximately 10,600 square feet. (Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 3.) At all times that Defendant owned the Premises and before Plaintiff entered the Lease, the Premises was used as an industrial warehouse, primarily for storage and manufacturing and distribution of goods. (Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 4.)

Commencing in September 2016, the parties began negotiations for Plaintiff to lease the Premises. (Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 6.) Because Defendant had plans to redevelop the Premises and surrounding areas, the Premises was priced substantially below market value in order to get a short-term tenant who understood the Premises was being leased “as-is.” (Ibid.)

Prior to signing the Lease on behalf of Plaintiff, Bockian, Plaintiff’s PMK, had reviewed the Lease’s terms several times. (Bockian Depo. pp. 17, 127.) Bockian had also thoroughly toured the Premises and had the opportunity to inspect its systems. (Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 7.) During some of these tours, Bockian noted issues with the building including small roof leaks, a broken faucet, and broken HVAC components. (Ibid.) Defendant made timely repairs to fix these issues. (Ibid.)

On April 6, 2017, Bockian conducted a final walk-through of the Premises. (Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 8.) At the conclusion of this walk-through, Bockian signed the Lease. (Ibid.)

B. Lease Provisions

The Lease contains several pertinent provisions:

Defendant moves for summary judgment on the Complaint on the ground that Plaintiff’s sole remaining cause of action for breach of contract fails as a matter of law. Specifically, Defendant contends that it complied with its minimal obligations under the Lease by delivering the Premises to Plaintiff in “broom clean” condition and with its promised systems “in good operating condition.” The Court agrees.

In general, the duties of a commercial landlord regarding preparing or maintaining the premises are minimal: “In the absence of an express covenant in the lease, the landlord is not obligated to prepare nonresidential premises for the tenant’s use, or to keep them in repair, except to the extent that he or she retains control over an area used in common by the public or other tenants. [¶] There is no implied covenant by the landlord that nonresidential premises leased are tenantable, or in any particular condition, or fit for the purpose for which they are leased or intended to be used by the tenant, or that they will continue to be fit for such purposes, even though the landlord knows the nature of the use intended.” (Del Taco, Inc. v. University Real Estate Partnership V (2003) 111 Cal.App.4th 16, 23 (citing 7 Miller & Starr, California Real Estate (3d ed.1997) ¶ 19:118).) In other words, the landlord has no duty to repair or prepare the premises for the tenant unless the lease expressly so provides. (See Friedman et al., Cal. Practice Guide: Landlord-Tenant (The Rutter Group 2019) ¶ 4:191.)

Under the terms of the Lease, Plaintiff assumed, and Defendant disclaimed, any obligation to repair and maintain the Premises. (Karamanoukian Decl. Ex. 1, p. 5.) Moreover, Defendant did not assume an obligation to ensure that the Premises was fit for the purpose for which Plaintiff intended to use it. To the contrary, the Lease states in bolded terms: “Lessee is responsible for determining whether or not the Applicable Requirements, and especially the zoning, are appropriate for Lessee’s intended use, and acknowledges that past uses of the Premises may no longer be allowed.” (Karamanoukian Decl. Ex. 1.)

Under the terms of the Lease, Defendant’s obligations with respect to delivery of the Premises to Plaintiff were minimal. In Section 2.2 of the Lease, Defendant agreed to “deliver the Premises to Lessee broom clean and free of debris on the Commencement Date or the Early Possession Date, whichever first occurs (‘Start Date’), and … warrant[ed] that the existing electrical, plumbing, fire sprinkler, lighting, heating, ventilating and air conditioning systems (‘HVAC’), loading doors, sump pumps, if any, and all other such elements in the Premises, other than those constructed by Lessee, shall be in good operating condition on said date….” (Karamanoukian Decl. Ex. 1.) In accordance with this section, Defendant provided the Premises to Plaintiff in “broom clean condition, with the existing systems in good and operating condition for the purposes for which the Premises had been used at the time of leasing, and by making all required repairs.” (Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 8; see also Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 7 (stating that, prior to Lease’s execution, Defendant repaired broken faucet, sink leak, and broken HVAC components).) Notably, complying with the Lease in this respect did not entail installation of an air conditioning system in the warehouse as such a system did not exist when the Lease was executed. (Karamanoukian Decl. ¶ 9.)

The undisputed evidence shows that Defendant complied with its obligations under the Lease. By not opposing this motion, Plaintiff has failed to establish a triable issue of material fact.

CONCLUSION

Defendant’s motion for summary judgment is GRANTED.



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