At yesterday’s conference, the Supreme Court’s actions of note included:

  • The court once again said “yes” to the Ninth Circuit, agreeing to answer a state law question posed by the federal court.  The insurance question in Yahoo! Inc. v. National Union Fire Insurance Co. is:  “Does a commercial liability policy that covers ‘personal injury,’ defined as ‘injury . . . arising out of . . . [o]ral or written publication . . . of material that violates a person’s right of privacy,’ trigger the insurer’s duty to defend the insured against a claim that the insured violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act by sending unsolicited text message advertisements that did not reveal any private information?”
  • The court granted review in Donohue v. AMN Services, a wage and hour class action.  The Fourth District, Division One, Court of Appeal’s published opinion affirmed a summary judgment that rejected a challenge to an employer’s timekeeping system.  The court applied last July’s Supreme Court decision in Troester v. Starbucks Corporation.  The case also has appellate procedure issues regarding appealability and forfeiture of arguments.
  • The court granted review in a bunch of unlawful detainer cases, making one the lead case and the other 10 grant-and-holds.  In the lead case, Stancil v. Superior Court, the court limited the issue to this:  “Whether a motion to quash service of summons is the proper remedy to test whether a complaint states a cause of action for unlawful detainer.”  There’s no Court of Appeal opinion; the First District, Division Four, summarily denied a writ petition in the case.
  • The court granted rehearing in an attorney discipline matter.  A month ago, it denied review in a disciplinary proceeding and disbarred James DeAguilera.  With no opposition from the State Bar, the court yesterday stayed the disbarment and remanded the matter for determination of “the authenticity and credibility of the statements contained in [a] declaration purportedly signed by [a] complainant” that recanted oral testimony he had given at a State Bar Court hearing.
  • The court denied a request to depublish the opinion by the Second District, Division Seven, in People v. Dueñas, but Justice Carol Corrigan recorded a dissenting vote.  (The docket says Corrigan “is of the opinion the petition should be granted,” but there was no petition for review, just a depublication request, so it’s unclear whether she wanted the court to depublish or to grant review on its own motion.  [Update:  the Supreme Court’s docket has been revised to state that Corrigan “is of the opinion the court should grant review on its own motion.”])  In Dueñas, a high-profile case with substantial amicus curiae participation, the appellate court held that a $220 fine for driving with a suspended license, imposed on an indigent and homeless mother of young children “without considering her ability to pay violates state and federal constitutional guarantees because it simply punishes her for being poor.”
  • There were three criminal case grant-and-holds, one criminal case grant-and-transfer, and the court dumped three criminal cases that had been grant-and-holds.