Appellate Court Concludes that Cost Shifting is Calculated from the Date of the Last Urevoked Offer of Judgment

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In One Star Inc. v. Staar Surgical Co. the Second District Court of Appeal reversed the decision of the trial court concerning the interpretation of the “offer of the judgment” statute, California Code of Civil Procedure § 998.

One Star Inc. (“Star”) was a business representative for Staar Surgical Co. (“Surgical”). Star sued Surgical for breach of contract. In September of 2007, Surgical made an offer of compromise pursuant to CCP § 998. Pursuant to the terms of the statute the offer lapsed 30 days after it was made and not accepted. Two months later Surgical made a second offer. However, Surgical withdrew the offer before the date that it lapsed. Star was successful at trial but recovered less than what Surgical had offered in the first offer of judgment. Surgical then moved to recover the costs pursuant to CCP § 998.

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