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Law Offices of Grossman v. Victor Elementary School District

California Court of Appeals, Fourth District, Second Division

June 26, 2015

LAW OFFICES OF MARC GROSSMAN, Plaintiff and Appellant,
v.
VICTOR ELEMENTARY SCHOOL DISTRICT, Defendant and Respondent.

APPEAL from the Superior Court of San Bernardino County. No. CIVVS1103873 David S. Cohn, Judge.

Page 1011

COUNSEL

Law Office of Marc Grossman and Jake Richards for Plaintiff and Appellant.

Page 1012

Orrock, Popka, Fortino, Tucker & Dolen; Dennis G. Popka and M. Wayne Tucker for Defendant and Respondent.

OPINION

RAMIREZ, P. J.

Law Offices of Marc Grossman (plaintiff or Law Firm) represented a student of defendant Victor Elementary School in a civil action arising from an assault that took place at the school. Plaintiff, in the name of the Law Firm, filed a petition for writ of mandate in the trial court under the California Public Records Act (Gov. Code, § 6258) seeking documentation reflecting the amount of money spent defending the litigation. That petition was denied, so relief was sought in this Court, which granted the petition. Upon issuance of the remittitur, plaintiff filed a Memorandum of Costs seeking, among other costs, attorneys’ fees for the petition. The trial court granted defendant’s motion to tax costs, denying attorneys’ fees. Plaintiff appealed from the denial of attorneys’ fees.

On appeal, plaintiff argues the trial court erred in denying fees on the ground plaintiff represented itself in the trial court. We reverse.

BACKGROUND

Due to the limited record, we take judicial notice of the records in the previous writ proceedings in Law Offices of Marc E. Grossman v. Victor Elementary School (Oct. 10, 2012, E056931) (nonpub. opn.). In that proceeding, plaintiff Law Firm filed a petition for writ of mandate in the trial court, as a member of the public, seeking disclosure of documents reflecting the amount defendant had expended in defense of the civil action entitled Jose E. v. Victor Elementary School District (Super. Ct. San Bernardino County, No. VCVVS041304.

The trial court denied the petition, giving rise to the filing of a petition for writ of mandate in this Court, again in the name of the Law Firm. We directed that the Superior Court vacate its order denying the petition and enter a new order granting the requested disclosure. (Law Offices of Marc E. Grossman v. Victor Elementary School, supra, E056931. Our disposition further stated that pursuant to Government Code section 6259, petitioner was entitled to recover its court costs and reasonable attorney fees. (Law Offices of Marc E. Grossman v. Victor Elementary School, supra, E056931.)

Following issuance of the remittitur, plaintiff filed a Memorandum of Costs, including $16, 327.00 for attorney fees on line 10. Defendant filed a motion to tax costs, challenging only ...


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