Attorney Fee Award is Appropriate Based on Successful Forum Non Conveniens Motion


The California Court of Appeal for the Fourth District recently decided a novel fee question. In PNEC Corp. v. Meyer, 2010 DJDAR 17387 (2010), the trial court awarded attorney fees to the Defendant after a successful motion to dismiss on the grounds of inconvenient forum (CCP § 418.10(a)(2).

The plaintiff, PNEC Corp., sued the Defendant for breach of guaranty. Plaintiff alleged that it provided Defendant with products and that she failed to pay for them. Plaintiff based its fee claim on a written guaranty of payment signed by Defendant, stating that the customer will be required to pay attorney fees if the account is referred to an attorney for collection.

Plaintiff filed suit and Defendant’s counsel moved alternatively to quash service of process due to lack of personal jurisdiction, or to dismiss the action due to inconvenient forum. Defendant proved that she lived in Washington. She submitted additional proof that she had never worked or initiated a lawsuit in California.

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