I can tell you why the Court of Appeal decided to publish this opinion. Indeed, I'll be blunt about the Court of Appeal's intended message:
"Trial courts: PUT THE STIPULATION TO A COMMISSIONER ON THE RECORD. We don't care that pretty much every family law case is, in fact, resolved by a commissioner, and that pretty much every single litigant is practically forced to stipulate thereto. We also don't care that in both Riverside County and pretty much everywhere else, there are signs everywhere that say that your case will be heard by a commissioner unless you object. YOU'VE GOT TO PUT IT ON THE RECORD. Or else we're required to reverse."
Sage counsel. Worthy of publication, even.