Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Manderville v. PC&S Group (Cal. Ct. App. - Jan. 24, 2007)

It's been a slow day today -- just one published opinion each from the Ninth Circuit and California Court of Appeal. One involving fish and the other involving real estate.

For what it's worth, I agree with the opinion today by Justice Nares, which reverses a grant of summary judgment by Judge Lim and holds that an exculpatory contract in a real estate purchase agreement that basically says "do your own investigation" doesn't necessarily absolve the seller from claims arising out of their alleged misrepresentations to the buyer that the lot could be subdivided when, it fact, it couldn't. Sure, I'm biased, both because Justice Nares is a USD alum as well as an incredibly nice fellow (I sat next to him at lunch on Friday and very much enjoyed talking with him). But I'd still be more than willing to slam him if I thought he got this one wrong. Fortunately, he didn't.

Except, by the way, for those crazy marks at the end of the first paragraph on page four. What the heck is "420:25-421:4)!" doing at the end of the sentence?! I mean, I can understand the partial parenthetical; my sense is that the law clerk forgot to delete this part -- undoubtedly a record citation -- when editing the draft opinion for publication. But the exclamation point?! Not something you usually see.

Get that mess out of there and the opinion will be fine.

POSTSCRIPT - My favorite CCoA gnome just sent me an e-mail letting me know -- and I love minutia such as this -- that the "!" comes from the macro the Court of Appeal uses in Microsoft Word. Apparently they put things like record citations between exclamation points [e.g., !(Andrew Deposition 10:12-14)!] and then run a macro to delete every such reference. Which works. Usually. Unless, as here, you forget to insert, or delete, the first exclamation point. Then it just looks silly.

My advice is to run the macro and then proofread, rather than vice-versa. Or just write a blog and don't worry about typos, misspellings, and the like. Either way works.