Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Can't Take a Writ from a Writ When You Can Take the Other Kind of Writ

City of Carlsbad v. Scholtz, No. D070253 (D4d1 July 8, 2016)

The underlying case here is a civil service proceeding before an ALJ. The municipality took an ordinary (non-administrative) writ to the superior court on some evidentiary issues, which was denied because the court determined that the city had an adequate remedy in administrative mandamus at the end of the case. The city then took an appeal. Question is whether in administrative proceeding, a denial of an interlocutory writ by the superior court is a final appealable judgment. It isn’t. 

Given that the superior court didn’t actually reach the merits of the issue on the writ and that the writ itself was interlocutory, the appeal shouldn’t be treated as an a appeal of a final judgment even though there weren’t any additional issues before the superior court. Nor would the appeal be accepted as a writ to the court of appeal. As the trial court previously determined, the presence of an adequate remedy in administrative mandamus meant that writ relief was unnecessary.

Appeal dismissed.

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