UCLRG Status Report 7/7/12
We made our second, and presumably last, Appeal filing on 7/6/12. As usual, it will be posted in our website information archive under legal filings for those that want to read it.
The filing opens with arguments against contentions in UC’s filing that we have not provided sufficient reasons to uphold our appeal, reiterates some of our previous contentions and argues against precedents cited by UC. It also continues the argument that the Regents intended to create contractual rights. It contains a lot of legal arm wrestling with our lawyers espousing precedents that trump precedents cited by UC. Overall, it should convince the Appellate Court that we have enough evidence of wrongdoing by UC that we should be allowed to present it to the Courts.
In one of the footnotes, we learned a new legal term “novation”. That refers to a situation where one party (UC) owes a liability to a second party (us) which a third party (DOE/NNSA/LLNS) is willing to assume. The basic requirement for the transfer of liability to be valid is that all three parties agree to the transfer. In our case, only two of the three parties agreed so the novation was not legal.
Our lawyers believe it may take 6 months to a year for the Appellate Court to rule. Given the California budget cuts for the judiciary this year and the belief that criminal cases are more important than civil cases, we believe estimates based on past experience are probably optimistic.
The Court of Appeal has an indefinite amount of time to consider the case. Once the court decides to take the case “under submission” (following oral argument or if oral argument is waived, following the date on which the court decides to consider the case), the court is supposed to rule within 60 days and almost always does so.
After the Appellate Court makes a ruling, there are various legal ways to reopen the Demurrer issue so the Appellate Court decision may not lay the issue to rest.
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