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Winds v. Probation Dep't of County of Sacramento

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURTFOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


January 27, 2010

WARM WINDS DBA ALTERNATIVES TO VIOLENCE, A CALIFORNIA NON-PROFIT CORPORATION, PLAINTIFF,
v.
THE PROBATION DEPARTMENT OF THE COUNTY OF SACRAMENTO, VERNE L. SPEIRS, CHIEF; SHAWN AYALA, ASSISTANT PROBATION CHIEF; SUSAN VANQUILL, RETIRED ANNUITANT/PROBATION OFFICER; SHELLY FISHER, PROBATION OFFICER; MORGAN WARD, SUPERVISOR, DOMESTIC VIOLENCE UNIT, DOES 1 THROUGH 10, INCLUSIVE, DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Morrison C. England, Jr. United States District Judge

ORDER

By Memorandum and Order dated November 12, 2009, this Court granted Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment. Judgment was subsequently entered in favor of Defendants in accordance with that Order.

On December 10, 2009, after the case had been closed, Lyle Solomon, counsel of record for Plaintiff Warm Winds dba Alternatives to Violence, a California Non-Profit Corporation ("Warm Winds"), filed a proposed Substitution of Attorneys requesting that Judith Bracamonte, as Warm Winds' Executive Director, be substituted as counsel in this matter. That request was denied, by Minute Order dated December 14, 2009, on grounds that the Local Rules of this District clearly provide that "a corporation or other entity may appear only by an attorney."

E.D. Local Rule 183(a). As Warm Winds' Executive Director, Bracamonte's substitution request runs counter to both Local Rule 183(a) and to applicable case law. See CLD Construction, Inc. v. City of San Ramon, 120 Cal. App. 4th 1141, 1145 (2004) ([A] corporation, unlike a natural person, cannot represent itself before courts of record in propria persona, not can it represent itself through a corporate officer, director, or other employee who is not an attorney. It must be represented by a licensed counsel in proceedings before courts of record").

Despite the Court's December 14, 2009 Minute Order, on December 28, 2009, Judith Bracamonte, as "Director [of] Warm Winds Inc. Without Counsel" filed two post-judgment Motions seeking extensions for filing Motions for Reconsideration and for Relief from Judgment under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 60(c). Because Bracamonte cannot represent Warm Winds, Inc. for the reasons stated above, she has no standing to bring either motion.

Consequently both Motions (Docket Nos. 56 and 57) are stricken and the January 28, 2010 hearing date for the Motions is vacated.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

20100127

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