Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Maria Dolores Jimenez Perez v. Golden Empire Transit District

October 5, 2012

MARIA DOLORES JIMENEZ PEREZ, PLAINTIFF AND APPELLANT,
v.
GOLDEN EMPIRE TRANSIT DISTRICT, DEFENDANT AND RESPONDENT.



APPEAL from a judgment of the Superior Court of Kern County. William D. Palmer, Judge. (Super. Ct. No. S-1500-CV-272469)

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Franson, J.

CERTIFIED FOR PUBLICATION

OPINION

Plaintiff Maria Dolores Jimenez Perez filed this negligence action against defendant Golden Empire Transit District (Transit District) for injuries she received while exiting a bus. The issue on appeal is whether plaintiff properly alleged compliance with the claim presentation requirement in the Government Claims Act (Gov. Code, § 810 et seq.)*fn1 or whether her allegations establish that she failed to comply with the statute.

Transit District filed a demurrer contending that plaintiff's claim was defective because (1) it failed to include the date of the occurrence, which is required by subdivision (c) of section 910; (2) plaintiff was notified of the omission; and (3) plaintiff failed to file an amended claim curing the omission.

Plaintiff's first amended complaint alleged that a representative of Transit District called her representative, stated no date was included in the claim, and requested the date of the incident be provided. Plaintiff alleged she "subsequently provided the date of the incident to said representative, thus complying with the requirements of the government tort claim statute." Under the rules governing appellate review of a general demurrer, we cannot interpret plaintiff's allegations that she subsequently provided the date to mean that she failed to amend her claim. Also, we conclude her allegations regarding compliance with the claim requirement are sufficient under Code of Civil Procedure section 459, which addresses pleading performance with statutory conditions. Therefore, the demurrer should have been overruled.

We therefore reverse the judgment.

FACTS AND PROCEEDINGS

Plaintiff, a resident of Kern County, filed a negligence action against Transit District. Transit District is a "[l]ocal public entity" for purposes of the Government Claims Act. (§ 900.4.)

Plaintiff alleges that on July 15, 2009, she was a passenger on a bus operated by Transit District and was injured while exiting the bus due to the carelessness of the bus driver.

Transit District's demurrer asserted that plaintiff's lawsuit is barred because she failed to comply with the Government Claims Act's claim presentation requirement before filing her complaint. Because a demurrer admits the truth of properly pleaded facts, the contents of plaintiff's first amended complaint related to the claim presentation requirement are set forth here in full:

"15. Plaintiff is required to comply with a claims statute and has complied.

"16. On July 15, 2009, Stephanie Salcido, a special rider, customer service representative, employed by [Transit District], took a report regarding the herein alleged incident, wherein plaintiff alleges she was injured. The representative from [Transit District] informed plaintiff, that [Transit District] would pay for all her damages.

"17. On January 15, 2010, Plaintiff filed a timely claim complying with the required claims statute.

"18. On or about January 19, 2010, a [Transit District] representative called Plaintiff's representatives stating there was no date on the claim and requested that date of the incident be provided. Plaintiff subsequently provided the date of the incident to said representative, thus complying with the requirements of the government tort claim statute."

Transit District supported its demurrer with a request for judicial notice of (1) the claim form submitted to Transit District by plaintiff, (2) Transit District's February 3, 2010, letter to plaintiff's attorney stating the claim was insufficient because it omitted the date of the alleged incident, and (3) a March 3, 2010, letter from Transit District's attorney to plaintiff's attorney stating that the claim had been rejected. The trial court denied Transit District's request for judicial notice. Therefore, we will not provide a further description of the three documents.

Transit District's demurrer asserted that plaintiff's claim failed to include information essential to its validity--namely, the date of the occurrence. Transit District contended that plaintiff's negligence action was barred by her failure to present a valid claim as required by the Government Claims Act.

At the beginning of the hearing on the demurrer, the trial court stated its tentative decision was to overrule the demurrer. The court also stated it would not take judicial notice of the claim and facts stated therein and expressed a concern about converting the demurrer into a motion for summary judgment. ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.