Monday, May 19, 2014

This Lawsuit Is Not Triangular ...

Orion Commc’ns v. Superior Court, No. D064979 (D4d1 May 14, 2014)

A judgment creditor moved to amend a judgment to add a new defendant as an alter ego or successor of the original judgment debtor. The new defendant filed a declaration to strike the judge under Code of Civil Procedure §170.6. The trial court accepted the strike, notwithstanding the fact that earlier in the case, the judgment debtor had previously filed a strike of its own.

The court here grants a writ and orders the trial court to strike the strike. Under § 170.6, each “side” of a case only gets one strike. That’s the case even when a party joins the case after its side has used its strike. There can, on occasion, be more than two “sides” in a case, as when parties on the same side of the v. are nonetheless substantially adverse. But the general rule is just two sides. In order to substantiate otherwise, the moving party is required to provide evidence establishing its adversity against the prior striker. Here, the new defendant argued that it might potentially be adverse to the debtor. But it didn’t provide any evidence in support. And in any event, the arguments it made were speculative and did not demonstrate the requisite adversity.

Writ granted.

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