Justia Business Law Opinion SummariesArticles Posted in California Supreme Court
Kurwa v. Kislinger
Plaintiff filed an action against Defendant for breach of fiduciary duty and defamation, among other claims. Defendant cross-complained for defamation. Plaintiff later conceded he could not proceed on his cause of action for breach of fiduciary duty. The parties agreed to dismiss as well their respective defamation claims without prejudice and to waive operation of the statute of limitations on the defamation claims. The trial court ordered Plaintiff's action dismissed with prejudice with the exception of the defamation cause of action, which, together with Defendant's cross-complaint, the court dismissed without prejudice. The court then entered judgment in favor of Defendant. The court of appeal held the judgment final and appealable, reasoning that because the defamation counts had been dismissed, they were no longer pending between the parties and the trial court lacked jurisdiction to proceed further on any cause of action. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that, under Don Jose's Restaurant, Inc. v. Truck Ins. Exchange, the trial court's judgment was interlocutory, and therefore, not appealable. View "Kurwa v. Kislinger" on Justia Law
Greb v. Diamond Int’l Corp.
Plaintiffs filed a complaint for personal injuries and loss of consortium against Defendant corporation and other entities, alleging injuries from exposure to asbestos. Defendant demurred, alleging that more than three years before Plaintiffs filed their complaint, it had obtained a corporate dissolution pursuant to the laws of Delaware, Defendant's state of incorporation. Accordingly, Defendant argued, it lacked the capacity to be sued pursuant to Delaware's three-year survival statute. In opposition, Plaintiffs argued their action was permitted under California's own survival statute, which they asserted took precedence over Delaware law in this situation. The trial court sustained the demurrer and dismissed Plaintiffs' complaint, ruling that California's survival statute did not apply to foreign corporations, and hence Delaware's corresponding statute applied to Defendant. The court of appeal affirmed. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) California's survival statute does not apply to foreign corporations; and (2) North American Asbestos Corp. v. Superior Court was disapproved of to the extent it held otherwise. View "Greb v. Diamond Int'l Corp." on Justia Law
Aryeh v. Canon Bus. Solutions, Inc.
Defendant leased copiers to Plaintiff pursuant to a lease agreements entered into in 2001 and 2002. In 2008, Plaintiff sued Defendant for violation of the unfair competition law (UCL), Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code, 17200, alleging that Defendant charged for excess copies during its regular servicing of the copiers and that Defendant's practice of charging for test copies was unfair and fraudulent. The trial court sustained Defendant's demurrer and dismissed the action, concluding that because the complaint established a first violation in 2002, the claim was barred by the four-year statute of limitations. At issue on appeal was whether the continuing violation doctrine could be applied to extend the statute of limitations for UCL claims. A divided court of appeal affirmed, finding Plaintiff's claim untimely. The Supreme Court reversed, holding (1) the text and legislative history of the UCL leave UCL claims as subject to the common law rules of accrual as any other cause of action; and (2) continuous accrual principles prevented Plaintiff's complaint from being dismissed at the demurrer stage on statute of limitations grounds. View "Aryeh v. Canon Bus. Solutions, Inc." on Justia Law