DisputeSuite.com, LLC v. ScoreInc.com

If a suit is dismissed on forum non conveniens grounds, the defendant is not entitled to an attorney fee award as the prevailing party, at least if the plaintiff can and does re-file suit in the other forum. The dismissal of a breach of contract complaint for forum non conveniens (based on a forum selection clause in the contract) did not make the defendant a prevailing party entitled to an attorney fee award under Civ. Code 1717 when the plaintiff had promptly refiled his complaint in the chosen forum.  A procedural victory that results in transferring an active contract dispute from one forum to another is not a final resolution of the contract dispute and so it is premature to award attorney fees.  However, if something prevented the plaintiff from refiling in the chosen forum—such as the statute of limitations—then the defendant might properly be found to be the prevailing party entitled to fees.

California Supreme Court (Werdegar, J.) ; April 6, 2017; 2017 WL 1279701

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s