The trial court correctly confirmed both an interim final arbitration award that disposed of all the merits issues and a concluding final arbitration award that awarded plaintiff its arbitration and litigation costs. Two final judgments confirming separate final arbitration awards did not violate the one final judgment rule which is directed at a different objective of determining the merits of all claims between two parties in a single judgment. Hightower v. Superior Court (2001) 86 Cal.App.4th 1415 approved an incremental process of issuing partial final arbitration awards where it is “reasonably necessary, if not essential” to the establishment and enforcement of the remedy that the arbitrator has fashioned. A separate award of costs fits within that rationale. Though plaintiff might have waited to petition to confirm the initial final award until the cost award had been entered, it didn’t waive its rights by seeking confirmation earlier.
California Court of Appeal, Second District, Division 2 (Chavez, J.); March 28, 2018; 2018 WL 1516828