July 30, 2012

Summary of July 25, 2012 conference report for civil cases

The following is our summary of the Supreme Court’s actions on petitions for review in civil cases from the Court’s conference on Wednesday, July 25, 2012. The summary includes those civil cases in which (1) review has been granted, (2) review has been denied but one or more justices has voted for review, or (3) the Court has ordered depublished an opinion of the Court of Appeal.

Review Granted

Verano Condominium Homeowners Association v. La Cima Development, S202596—Review granted and held pending consideration and disposition of the same issue in Pinnacle Museum Tower Association v. Pinnacle Market Development, S186149.

A homeowners association brought an action against a condominium developer on behalf of itself and its members. The developer moved to compel arbitration. The trial court denied the motion. The question presented is whether arbitration provisions included in a declaration of covenants, conditions, and restrictions (CC&R’s) (recorded before the establishment of the homeowners association) and included in separate purchase agreements constitute agreements to arbitrate.

The Court of Appeal, Fourth District, Division One, held in an unpublished opinion that the provisions in the CC&R’s do not constitute an agreement to arbitrate, but the provisions in the purchase agreements between the developer and original purchasers are sufficient to compel arbitration. However, the court agreed with the trial court that no agreement to arbitrate existed between the developer and homeowners association because no evidence showed that the association agreed to the CC&R’s, either explicitly or implicitly. The court also agreed that no agreement to arbitrate existed between the developer and any purchaser who did not buy a unit directly from the developer because these indirect purchasers never contracted with the developer and a “meeting of the minds” never occurred. The court reversed and remanded for further proceedings consistent with its opinion.

Review Denied (with dissenting justices)

All of Us or None v. Bowen, S202885—Petition for Review denied with Justice Kennard voting to grant and transfer the matter to the Court of Appeal for issuance of an opinion.

The question presented was whether non-violent, low-level felony offenders who have been sentenced to county jail or to serve terms of community supervision under the Criminal Justice Realignment Act of 2011 are entitled to register and vote in the November 2012 presidential election. Petitioners filed a petition for writ of mandate in the Court of Appeal, First District, Division Three. The court summarily denied the petition and the Supreme Court denied review.



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