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If a party seeks a contractual attorney fee award as an adjunct to a judgment, the court determines the fee award on motion after entry of judgment; but if the party instead seeks attorney fees as an item of damage in a suit on the contract, the claim is an ordinary contract claim on which there is a right to… Read More

Because an injunction may not issue to enforce penal laws, a taxpayer action cannot be brought to enjoin public expenditures that allegedly are illegal solely because they violate a penal statute.  Read More

Defendant’s challenge to a settlement agreement clause providing for liquidated damages if defendant defaulted on its payment obligations required a fact-dependent determination from the trial judge, so it could not be raised for the first time on appeal.  Read More

Estate of elderly plaintiff was entitled to a constructive trust when plaintiff’s son’s wife diverted to her own use funds that son and wife agreed to hold in a bank account for plaintiff’s benefit.  Read More

The mandatory attorney-fault provision of Code of Civil Procedure section 473(b) applies only to judgments of dismissal or default and not to other types of judgment, such as, here, a trial on the merits of an administrative mandate proceeding in which judgment was rendered for the defendant agency.  Read More

No supersedeas bond is needed to stay enforcement of a money judgment on appeal if the appellant pays any damages the judgment awards and appeals only the judgment’s award of attorney fees and costs.  Read More

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