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Voluntary Dismissal

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The district court did not abuse its discretion in denying plaintiff leave to amend to bring in a new defendant and allege a new theory of liability when the motion was filed 8 months after the scheduling order's deadline for amending the pleadings.  The plaintiff was not diligent having waited several months after learning of the new defendant's identity and… Read More

A dismissal without prejudice in either state or federal court is not a final judgment given res judicata effect if the dismissal is entered after a demurrer has been sustained or motion to dismiss has been granted with leave to amend and the dismissal is filed within the time allowed for amendment. Read More

Recognizing a divergence of opinions on this point, this decision follows Rice v. Crow (2000) 81 Cal.App.4th 725 and Le Parc Community Assn. v. Workers’ Comp. Appeals Bd. (2003) 110 Cal.App.4th 1161 in holding that the bare voluntary pre-trial dismissal of a lawsuit (pursant to settlement with less than all defendants) with prejudice does not result in the “actual litigation”… Read More

Distinguishing Microsoft Corp. v. Baker (2017) 137 S.Ct. 1702, Langere v. Verizon Wireless Services, LLC (9th Cir. 2020) 983 F.3d 1115, and Sperring v. LLR, Inc. (9th Cir. 2021) 995 F.3d 680, which involved voluntary dismissals in order to appeal from class certification orders or orders compelling arbitration, as to which Rule 23(f) or 9 USC 16 prescribe different appellate… Read More

When the plaintiff files an amended complaint that omits a defendant named in the prior complaint, the amendment is treated as a voluntary dismissal of the omitted defendant, without prejudice.  Here, plaintiff's third amended complaint named Minassian as a defendant.  The parties stipulated to the filing of plaintiff's fourth amended complaint which omitted Minassian.  Though the trial court didn't sign… Read More

A defendant that files an Anti-SLAPP motion to strike under CCP 425.16 may seek attorney fees (based on prevailing on the Anti-SLAPP motion) in one of three ways:  as part of the Anti-SLAPP motion, by a post-judgment memorandum of costs, or by a post-judgment motion for an attorney fee award.  This decision holds that if the defendant chooses either of… Read More

In Law v. Siegel (2014) 571 U.S. 415, the US Supreme Court held that a bankruptcy court may not use its equitable powers under 11 USC 105 to contravene express provisions of the Bankruptcy Code.  Applying that reasoning, this decision departs from prior Ninth Circuit precedent, In re Rosson (9th Cir. 2008) 545 F.3d 764, and holds that a bankruptcy… Read More

When a plaintiff voluntarily dismissed part of its case without prejudice well in advance of the district court's involuntary dismissal of the rest of the suit with prejudice, the judgment of dismissal is appealable (see Schoenfeld v. Babbitt (11th Cir. 1999) 168 F.3d 1257, 1265–66) even though it would not be if the voluntary dismissal came after the court's ruling… Read More

After the close of evidence but before submission of briefs in lieu of closing argument, plaintiff was entitled to voluntarily dismiss her complaint, thus avoiding an attorney fee award under Civil Code section 1717. Read More