(San Diego County Super. Ct. No. 37-2008-00092470-CU- PO-CTL)
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Benke, Acting P. J.
Beasley v. Superior Court CA4/1
NOT TO BE PUBLISHED IN OFFICIAL REPORTS
California Rules of Court, rule 8.1115(a), prohibits courts and parties from citing or relying on opinions not certified for publication or ordered published, except as specified by rule 8.1115(b). This opinion has not been certified for publication or ordered published for purposes of rule 8.1115.
YMCA OF SAN DIEGO COUNTY,
Proceedings in mandate after superior court ordered petitioner to submit to a judgment debtor's examination. Jay M. Bloom, Judge. Petition granted.
Georgia Beasley seeks a writ of mandate directing the Superior Court of San Diego County to vacate its April 30, 2010 order requiring Beasley to submit to a judgment debtor's examination relating to her personal and confidential finances. Beasley contends the trial court erred in ruling that she, in her capacity as guardian ad litem, is liable for costs incurred by real party in interest YMCA of San Diego County (YMCA) in its successful defense of an action brought on behalf of Beasley's granddaughter. Beasley further contends that because she is not liable for costs, she cannot be subject to a judgment debtor's examination in her individual capacity. We agree with Beasley.
We thus grant the petition and direct the trial court to vacate its order granting YMCA's application to examine Beasley.
FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
The facts are not in dispute. E.M., age 12, claimed she was sexually assaulted while residing at one of YMCA's facilities.*fn1 On September 24, 2008, Beasley, E.M.'s grandmother and guardian, filed a lawsuit on behalf of E.M., against YMCA, alleging that YMCA's negligence allowed the assault to occur. Shortly thereafter, the San Diego Superior Court appointed Beasley as E.M.'s guardian ad litem. However, the record shows E.M. was unable to testify at her deposition to the details of the alleged assault. As a result, Beasley voluntarily dismissed the lawsuit without prejudice.
YMCA subsequently obtained a costs judgment. The court ordered that YMCA recover from "Plaintiff" the costs of suit in the sum of $12,120.60. On February 24, 2010, YMCA applied for an order requiring Beasley to appear in her individual capacity for a judgment debtor's examination. On March 9, 2010, the trial court granted the application and ordered Beasley to appear for a judgment debtor's examination. Beasley responded by filing an objection to the court's order. On April 30, 2010, Beasley appeared for the examination and again objected to her status as a plaintiff and judgment debtor. The court briefly took the matter under submission and ultimately ruled that Beasley was a "plaintiff" for the purposes of judgment debtor exam.*fn2 The court again ordered Beasley to appear for her examination, but stayed its order to allow Beasley to seek relief in this court.
A. Guardian Ad Litem Is Not Personally Liable For
"When a minor . . . is a party, that person shall appear . . . by a
guardian ad litem appointed by the court in which the action . .
. is pending . . . ." (Code Civ. Proc.,*fn3 §372, subd.(a).) A
guardian ad litem acts as a party's representative, similar to an
agent with limited powers. (In re Marriage of Caballero (1994) 27
Cal.App.4th 1139, 1149.) The guardian ad litem's ultimate purpose is
to protect the rights of the minor. He or she may make tactical and
even fundamental ...