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Damages

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The trial court did not abuse its discretion in determining that neither party prevailed in this action against a subcontractor and its bonding company.  The plaintiff city won on liability but was awarded only nominal damages though it had sought $3.4 million.  The trial court could properly conclude that the win on damages was not a total victory for the… Read More

An award of punitive damages was excessive where it equaled the full value of the only asset that the defendant was shown to own.  It is plaintiff's burden to produce evidence demonstrating the defendant's financial condition--including both assets and liabilities.  Here, plaintiff failed to present evidence of liabilities or show that defendant had more than a minimal annual income.  Proof… Read More

Under the out-of-pocket loss rule for fraud damages, a purchaser cannot recover the purchase price as consequential damages.  However, in applying the out-of-pocket loss rule, the trier of fact is not limited to considering the market value of the product or service on the date it was purchased, but may also consider post-sale evidence that bears on its market value… Read More

Assuming that it is unconstitutional to award statutory penalties for the same wrongful conduct that is also a basis for a punitive damage award, this decision holds that the jury's award of punitive damages for fraud and statutory double damages under the Song-Beverly Act did not offend that rule.  The punitive damages were for misrepresentations that induced purchase of the… Read More

Four federal statutes bar discrimination on the basis of race, gender, disability or other protected characteristics by recipients of federal financial assistance; namely Title VI and IX of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, the Rehabilitation Act and the Affordable Care Act.  None of these acts expressly grant private rights of action to victims of discrimination that violates those Acts' provisions. … Read More

Under the CLRA (Civ. Code 1792(b), no "action for damages" may be brought against a defendant that offers appropriate correction within 30 days of receiving the plaintiff's notice of violation of the statute.  This decision holds that "action for damages" includes--and the subsection therefore bars--any claim for compensatory damages or for restitution under the CLRA.  The decision also holds that… Read More

The trial court instructed the jury to award plaintiff defendant's profits from the false advertising the jury found only if it found that the defendant acted wilfully.  This instruction was contrary to the Supreme Court's later holding in Romag Fasteners, Inc. v. Fossil Group, Inc. (2020) 140 S.Ct. 1492.  So the jury verdict was reversed and remanded.  However, disgorgement of… Read More

Under Civ. Code 3333.2(c)(2), noneconomic damages in a medical malpractice case are limited to $250,000 unless the defendant provided services that exceeded "the scope of services for which the provider is licensed and which are not within any restriction imposed by the licensing agency or licensed hospital."  This decision holds that section 3333.2 applies to a physician's assistant who has… Read More

Defendant bought the property adjacent to plaintiff's property and improved the purchased property with a drip-irrigated walnut orchard.  A strip of land on defendant's side of the fence between the two properties was actually plaintiff's property.  After defendant completed the orchard improvements, plaintiff sued for trespass on that strip of land and sought an injunction requiring defendant to restore the… Read More

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