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This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 11/29/2019 at 12:52:45 (UTC).

SUNDEE RIVERS VS AARON WERSTINE ET AL

Case Summary

On 08/08/2017 SUNDEE RIVERS filed a Personal Injury - Motor Vehicle lawsuit against AARON WERSTINE. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judges overseeing this case are MARC D. GROSS, DEBRE KATZ WEINTRAUB, SAMANTHA JESSNER, CHRISTOPHER K. LUI and JON R. TAKASUGI. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****1468

  • Filing Date:

    08/08/2017

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Personal Injury - Motor Vehicle

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Stanley Mosk Courthouse

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judges

MARC D. GROSS

DEBRE KATZ WEINTRAUB

SAMANTHA JESSNER

CHRISTOPHER K. LUI

JON R. TAKASUGI

 

Party Details

Plaintiff and Petitioner

RIVERS SUNDEE

Defendants and Respondents

DR PEPPER SNAPPLE GROUP INC.

WERSTINE AARON

DOES 1 TO 50

WERSTINE KERRY

Other

LAW FIRM OF MCCLAUGHERTY & ASSOCIATES

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff and Petitioner Attorneys

STEINER NEIL S. ESQ.

STEINER NEIL STUART

Defendant and Respondent Attorneys

BASSETT MICHAEL L. ESQ.

ENDRES TED ESQ.

MCCLAUGHERTY JAY S. ESQ.

MCCLAUGHERTY JAY STEPHEN

MCCLAUGHERTY JAY STEPHEN ESQ.

BASSETT MICHAEL LYNCH ESQ.

TIPPIN ANDREW L.

BASSETT MICHAEL LYNCH

 

Court Documents

Objection - OBJECTION OBJECTION/OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO REOPEN EXPERT DISCOVERY; DECLARATION OF KHRYS WU

11/18/2019: Objection - OBJECTION OBJECTION/OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO REOPEN EXPERT DISCOVERY; DECLARATION OF KHRYS WU

Reply - REPLY REPLY TO OPPOSITION TO MOTION TO REOPEN EXPERT DISCOVERY PURSUANT TO CCP 2024.50 AND TO REQUEST CONTINUANCE OF TRIAL; DECLARATIONS OF NEIL STEINER AND SUNDEE RIVERS

11/19/2019: Reply - REPLY REPLY TO OPPOSITION TO MOTION TO REOPEN EXPERT DISCOVERY PURSUANT TO CCP 2024.50 AND TO REQUEST CONTINUANCE OF TRIAL; DECLARATIONS OF NEIL STEINER AND SUNDEE RIVERS

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (NUNC PRO TUNC ORDER)

11/21/2019: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (NUNC PRO TUNC ORDER)

Joinder to Motion - JOINDER TO MOTION DEFS AARON WERSTINE AND KERRY WERSTINE'S JOINDER IN MTN IN LIMINE

9/9/2019: Joinder to Motion - JOINDER TO MOTION DEFS AARON WERSTINE AND KERRY WERSTINE'S JOINDER IN MTN IN LIMINE

Reply - REPLY COMBINED REPLY OPPOSITIONS TO MOTION TO CONTINUE THE TRIAL; DECLARATION OF NEIL STEINER

9/6/2019: Reply - REPLY COMBINED REPLY OPPOSITIONS TO MOTION TO CONTINUE THE TRIAL; DECLARATION OF NEIL STEINER

Notice of Ruling

9/3/2019: Notice of Ruling

Ex Parte Application - EX PARTE APPLICATION TO CONTINUE THE TRIAL OR, IN THE ALTERNATIVE TO SHORTEN NOTICE FOR A MOTION TO CONTINUE THE TRIAL

8/28/2019: Ex Parte Application - EX PARTE APPLICATION TO CONTINUE THE TRIAL OR, IN THE ALTERNATIVE TO SHORTEN NOTICE FOR A MOTION TO CONTINUE THE TRIAL

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO STRIKE THE ANSWERS OF DEFENDANT DR. PEP...)

4/24/2019: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO STRIKE THE ANSWERS OF DEFENDANT DR. PEP...)

Notice - NOTICE NOTICE OF WITHDRAWAL OF MONETARY SANCTIONS AS TO BASSETT, DISCOE, MCMAINS & KARGOZAR RELATING TO MOTION FOR ORDER STRIKING THE ANSWERS OF DEFENDANT

4/10/2019: Notice - NOTICE NOTICE OF WITHDRAWAL OF MONETARY SANCTIONS AS TO BASSETT, DISCOE, MCMAINS & KARGOZAR RELATING TO MOTION FOR ORDER STRIKING THE ANSWERS OF DEFENDANT

Minute Order - Minute Order (Court Order Re Recusal of Judicial Officer Marc D. Gross)

12/13/2018: Minute Order - Minute Order (Court Order Re Recusal of Judicial Officer Marc D. Gross)

Certificate of Mailing for - Certificate of Mailing for Minute Order (Court Order Re Reassignment Pursuant to Recusal) of 12/14/2018

12/14/2018: Certificate of Mailing for - Certificate of Mailing for Minute Order (Court Order Re Reassignment Pursuant to Recusal) of 12/14/2018

Declaration - Declaration Declaration in Opposition

12/6/2018: Declaration - Declaration Declaration in Opposition

NOTICE OF ERRATA

3/21/2018: NOTICE OF ERRATA

NOTICE OF ERRATA

3/21/2018: NOTICE OF ERRATA

NOTICE RE INFORMAL DISCOVERY CONFERENCE OFF CALENDAR

4/27/2018: NOTICE RE INFORMAL DISCOVERY CONFERENCE OFF CALENDAR

PROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS -

8/22/2017: PROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS -

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

8/8/2017: COMPLAINT-PERS. INJURY, PROP DAMAGE, WRONGFUL DEATH (2 PAGES) -

59 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 08/10/2020
  • Hearing08/10/2020 at 08:30 AM in Department 4A at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Order to Show Cause Re: Dismissal

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  • 04/20/2020
  • Hearing04/20/2020 at 08:30 AM in Department 4A at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Jury Trial

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  • 04/06/2020
  • Hearing04/06/2020 at 10:00 AM in Department 4A at 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; Final Status Conference

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  • 11/26/2019
  • DocketNotice (of Entry of Order Reopen Expert Discovery Pursuant to CCP 2024.50 and Continuing Trial); Filed by Sundee Rivers (Plaintiff)

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  • 11/21/2019
  • Docketat 10:00 AM in Department 4A, Christopher K. Lui, Presiding; Final Status Conference - Held - Continued

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  • 11/21/2019
  • Docketat 2:47 PM in Department 4A, Christopher K. Lui, Presiding; Nunc Pro Tunc Order

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  • 11/21/2019
  • Docketat 1:30 PM in Department 4A, Christopher K. Lui, Presiding; Hearing on Motion - Other (Notice of Motion/Motion to Reopen Expert Discovery Pur CCP 2024.50, in the alternative compel defendants to produce or preclude defendant Dr Pepper from offering expert testimony; continue trial; memo of points and authorities; Declaration) - Held - Motion Granted

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  • 11/21/2019
  • DocketMinute Order ( (Final Status Conference; Plaintiff's Motion to Reopen Expert ...)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 11/21/2019
  • DocketMinute Order ( (Nunc Pro Tunc Order)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 11/19/2019
  • DocketReply (Reply to Opposition to Motion to Reopen Expert Discovery Pursuant to CCP 2024.50 and to Request Continuance of Trial; Declarations of Neil Steiner and Sundee Rivers); Filed by Sundee Rivers (Plaintiff)

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96 More Docket Entries
  • 09/05/2017
  • DocketProof-Service/Summons; Filed by Plaintiff/Petitioner

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  • 08/24/2017
  • DocketDemand for Jury Trial; Filed by Dr Pepper Snapple Group, Inc. (Defendant)

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  • 08/24/2017
  • DocketANSWER OF DEFENDANT, DR PEPPER SNAPPLE GROUP, INC., TO PLAINTIFF'S UNVERIFIED COMPLAINT

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  • 08/24/2017
  • DocketDEMAND FOR JURY TRIAL

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  • 08/24/2017
  • DocketAnswer; Filed by Dr Pepper Snapple Group, Inc. (Defendant)

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  • 08/22/2017
  • DocketPROOF OF SERVICE SUMMONS

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  • 08/22/2017
  • DocketProof-Service/Summons; Filed by Sundee Rivers (Plaintiff)

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  • 08/08/2017
  • DocketSUMMONS

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  • 08/08/2017
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by Sundee Rivers (Plaintiff)

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  • 08/08/2017
  • DocketCOMPLAINT-PERS. INJURY, PROP DAMAGE, WRONGFUL DEATH (2 PAGES)

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: BC671468    Hearing Date: January 27, 2020    Dept: 28

After review of the court file, the Court makes the following order:

Department 28 of the Personal Injury Court has determined that the above entitled action is complicated based upon the number of pretrial hearings and/or the complexity of the issues presented.

AT THE DIRECTION OF DEPARTMENT 1:

This case is hereby transferred and reassigned to the following Independent Calendar Court in THE SOUTHEAST DISTRICT, JUDGE MARGARET MILLER BERNAL presiding in DEPT. F of the Norwalk Courthouse, for all purposes except trial. Department 1 hereby delegates to the Independent Calendar Court the authority to assign the case for trial to that Independent Calendar Court.

Any pending motions or hearings, including trial and status conferences, will be reset, continued or vacated at the direction of the newly assigned Independent Calendar court.

Plaintiff shall give notice to all parties of record.

Case Number: BC671468    Hearing Date: November 21, 2019    Dept: 4A

Motion to Reopen Discovery, Compel Production, or Preclude Use of Evidence; Motion to Continue Trial

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

BACKGROUND

On August 8, 2017, Plaintiff Sundee Rivers (“Plaintiff”) filed a complaint against Aaron Werstine, Kerry Werstine, and Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, Inc. (“Defendants”) alleging motor vehicle and general negligence for an automobile collision that occurred on August 13, 2015.

On October 21, 2019, Plaintiff filed a motion to reopen discovery, or in the alternative, compel production of expert reports, or in the alternative, preclude use of expert reports, and a request to continue trial.

Trial is set for December 5, 2019.

PARTYS REQUESTS

Plaintiff asks the Court to continue the trial date and reopen expert discovery to follow that new trial date, or in the alternative, to require Defendants to produce discoverable expert documents, or in the alternative, to preclude Defendants from presenting expert testimony unless they produce their expert’s documents.

LEGAL STANDARD

Pursuant to California Rules of Court, rule 3.1332, subdivision (a), “[t]o ensure the prompt disposition of civil cases, the dates assigned for a trial are firm. All parties and their counsel must regard the date set for trial as certain.” Under California Rules of Court, rule 3.1332, subdivision (b), “[a] party seeking a continuance of the date set for trial, whether contested or uncontested or stipulated to by the parties, must make the request for a continuance by a noticed motion or an ex parte application under the rules in chapter 4 of this division, with supporting declarations. The party must make the motion or application as soon as reasonably practical once the necessity for the continuance is discovered.”

California Rules of Court, rule 3.1332, subdivision (c) states that “[a]lthough continuances of trials are disfavored, each request for a continuance must be considered on its own merits. The court may grant a continuance only on an affirmative showing of good cause requiring the continuance.”  California Rules of Court, rule 3.1332, subdivision (d) sets forth factors that are relevant in determining whether to grant a continuance.

California Code of Civil Procedure section 2024.050 allows a court to grant leave to complete discovery proceedings.  In doing so, a court shall consider matters relevant to the leave requested, including, but not limited to: (1) the necessity of the discovery, (2) the diligence in seeking the discovery or discovery motion, (3) the likelihood of interference with the trial calendar or prejudice to a party, and (4) the length of time that has elapsed between previous trial dates.  (Code Civ. Proc. § 2024.050.)

DISCUSSION

Defendants argue Plaintiff did not provide adequate notice in serving the motion by email on November 14, 2019.  (Oppositions, p. 2.)  However, the motion’s proof of service shows it was served on Defendants by U.S. mail on October 21, 2019.  As such, the Court finds Plaintiff properly served the motion on Defendants.

Plaintiff argues there is good cause to reopen expert discovery.  Defendants refuse to produce expert documents that Plaintiff is entitled to receive.  (Motion, p. 6:21-6:23.)  Plaintiff needs to take the depositions of Defendants’ expert witnesses Daniel Kaplin, M.D., Beau LeBlanc BSME, John Kennedy, and Stephen L.G. Rothman, M.D.  (Motion, p. 7:1-7:4.)  

Defendants argue that the Court’s September 10, 2019 ruling forecloses Plaintiff’s argument that there is good cause to reopen expert discovery.  (Opposition, p. 3:10-3:20.)  The Court disagrees.  In that minute order, as Plaintiff correctly observes, the Court did not reopen expert discovery when the Court continued trial because Plaintiff made the argument for the first time on reply that she needed to depose Defendants’ experts.  As such, Plaintiff is not barred from making the request now.

The Court finds there is good cause to continue trial and reopen expert discovery for Plaintiff to depose Daniel Kaplin, M.D., Beau LeBlanc BSME, John Kennedy, and Stephen L.G. Rothman, M.D.  Defendants do not argue that they will be prejudiced if this continuance and reopening of expert discovery is granted.  However, Plaintiff does argue that she will not be prepared for trial and will not know the scope of the testimony that will be offered by the defense experts without being able to take these depositions.  As such, there is good cause to reopen expert discovery.

The Court notes that there have been three prior continuances.  (Steiner Decl., ¶ 35.)  This continuance will be the fourth.  The Court’s patience draws thin with each continuance.  It becomes less and less likely that the Court will grant each subsequent continuance.  As such, the Court strongly suggests that the parties complete discovery and prepare for trial without requesting another continuance in this matter.

Accordingly, the motion is GRANTED.

The Court orders trial shall be continued to April 20, 2020 at 8:30 a.m.  The Court also orders the final status conference date shall be continued to April 6 at 10:00 a.m.  Both hearings are to be held in Department 4A of the Spring Street Courthouse, 312 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012.

The Court extends the time for completing expert discovery for the sole purpose of allowing Plaintiff to take the depositions of Daniel Kaplin, M.D., Beau LeBlanc BSME, John Kennedy, and Stephen L.G. Rothman, M.D.  The non-expert discovery cut-off remains closed.

Plaintiff is ordered to give notice of this ruling.