QUESTION: Can a receiver be assigned to a referee by stipulation, and take instruction from the referee?
ANSWER: A receiver is an officer of the court, appointed by and directed by the court. After the receiver’s appointment, the receivership proceeding can be assigned to a referee, either by stipulation or otherwise. The receiver, as an officer of the court, cannot take instructions directly from the referee. Any instruction or orders issued by the referee and intended for the receiver must first be submitted to the court for review and approval. In effect, the referee may make a report and recommendation to the court, which then may (or may not) issue the recommended order. See generally, C.C.P. ¶¶639, 643, and 644. For the same reasons, receivers cannot be appointed by arbitrators or take instruction from arbitrators. Marsch v. Williams, 23 Cal. App. 4th 238 (1994).