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Decisions in Criminal, Government, Family Law & Contracts Matters

By FindLaw Staff on November 29, 2010 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

People v. Soojian, F058589, concerned a challenge to a conviction of defendant for various crimes, including attempted murder and robbery.  In reversing the convictions, the court ordered a new trial in holding that this is one of the rare cases where a failure to present evidence undermines confidence in the outcome, resulting in a miscarriage of justice.  The court also held that the newly discovered evidence raises significant issues as to the correctness of the verdict, and defendant is entitled to a trial in which all relevant evidence is presented and to a verdict based on all of that evidence.

In re Marriage of Stanton, D056713, concerned a challenge to the trial court's denial of the husband's requests for modification of awards of temporary child and spousal support to his ex-wife, in marital dissolution proceedings.  In affirming, the court held that federal preemption is inapplicable to military allowances for housing and food and such allowances are included in a party's gross income for purposes of child and spousal support when state law encompasses them.

City of San Jose v. Garbett, H034424, concerned a challenge to a trial court's grant of multiple injunctions to the City of San Jose, its mayor, and other individuals, restricting defendant's conduct toward the mayor and City Council.

In affirming, the court held that it is clear that if the elements of section 527.8 are met by the expression of a credible threat of violence toward an employee, then that speech is not constitutionally protected and an injunction is appropriate.  Here, the injunction was properly issues as, based on the plain language of the statute and the reasoning of both analogous cases and those involving intent-based statutes, the trial court properly found that defendant had uttered a credible threat within the meaning of section 527.8.  Further, substantial evidence supports the trial court's finding that defendant posed a risk of future harm if she did not issue the injunction.  Lastly, the court rejected defendant's overbreadth argument as an injunction was necessary to prevent irreparable harm to the identified City employees.

Am. Express Bank, FSB v. Kayatta, B223686, concerned a challenge to the trial court's judgment in the amount of $265,025.80 following an order granting summary judgment in favor of American Express, in American Express's suit for money damages against defendant, claiming that defendant failed to pay in full each and every charge that he personally made on a charge card account.

In affirming, the court held that there is no specific statutory language imposing upon American Express a duty to disclose to the basic cardmember that it, or one of its affiliates, obtained a judgment against an additional cardmember.  Further, American Express did not have a duty to disclose to defendant that it had obtained a judgment against a third-party, as nothing in the record suggests a confidential relationship between American Express and defendant that would give rise to a duty to disclose material facts.  Lastly, the court held that the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing does not impose a duty to disclose.

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