What is a Motion for Failure to State A Claim?

A “motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be granted” is a procedural label used in federal court, not California court. The state-court equivalents are a demurrer, or a motion for judgment on the pleadings. Code of Civ. Proc., §§430.10, 438.

The function of a demurrer is to test the legal sufficiency of a pleading. Trs. Of Capital Wholesale Elec. Etc. Fund v. Shearson Lehman Bros. (1990) 221 Cal.App.3d 617, 621. Consequently, “[a] demurrer reaches only to the contents of the pleading and such matters as may be considered under the doctrine of judicial notice.” South Shore Land Co. v. Petersen (1964) 226 Cal.App.2d 725, 732. “It is not the ordinary function of a demurrer to test the truth of the plaintiff’s allegations or the accuracy with which he describes the defendant’s conduct.... [T]he facts alleged in the pleading are deemed to be true, however improbable they may be.” Align Technology, Inc. v. Tran (2009) 179 Cal.App.4th 949, 958.

“Judgment on the pleadings is akin to a demurrer and is properly granted only if the complaint does not state facts sufficient to state a cause of action against that defendant. The grounds for the motion must appear on the face of the complaint, and in any matters subject to judicial notice. The court accepts as true all material factual allegations, giving them a liberal construction, but it does not consider conclusions of fact or law, opinions, speculation, or allegations contrary to law or judicially noticed facts.” Shea Homes Limited Partnership v. County of Alameda (2003) 110 Cal.App.4th 1246, 1254.

It is an abuse of discretion for the court to deny leave to amend where there is any reasonable possibility that plaintiff can state a good cause of action. Goodman v. Kennedy (1976) 18 Cal.3d 335, 349. The burden is on the plaintiff to show in what manner he or she can amend the complaint, and how that amendment will change the legal effect of the pleading. Medina v. Safe-Guard Products (2008) 164 Cal.App.4th 105, 112.

For more see Demurrer and Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings.

Useful Rulings on Motion for Failure to State A Claim

Recent Rulings on Motion for Failure to State A Claim

226-250 of 615 results

RAMIRO VALADEZ VS. SAILS GROUP INC

This claim is derivative of the other torts as to which the Court has sustained both the special demurrer for uncertainty as well as the general demurrer for failure to state a claim as describe above. The Court grants plaintiffs leave to amend the complaint, to clean it up, and to make an assessment about which legally viable claims, if any, can be pleaded with sufficient factual allegations.

  • Hearing

    Feb 01, 2019

KYLE PIERONI TRUSTEE VS US BANK NATIONAL

Second Cause of Action (Constructive Fraud): The Court SUSTAINS the special demurrer for uncertainty and the general demurrer for failure to state a claim to this cause of action WITH LEAVE TO AMEND. Constructive fraud is a special tort applicable only to those instances in which there exists a fiduciary or confidential relationship. (Prakashpalan v. Engstrom, Lipscomb & Lack (2014) 223 Cal.App.4th 1105, 1131; Michel v. Moore & Associates, Inc. (2007) 156 Cal.App.4th 756, 763.)

  • Hearing

    Jan 31, 2019

  • Type

    Real Property

  • Sub Type

    other

THE REGENTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA VS. AISEN

A dismissal for failure to state a claim (Fed. Rules Civ. Proc., rule 12(b)) is ordinarily treated as an adjudication on the merits. See Boccardo v. Safeway Stores, Inc. (1982) 134 Cal. App. 3d 1037, 1042 and cases cited therein. In this case, the District Court granted USC's motion to dismiss two of UCSD's causes of action for failure to state a claim : (1) conversion of data and (2) UCSD's Penal Code Section 502(c) claim against individual defendants (Jimenez, Hong, Tobias and Pizzola).

  • Hearing

    Jan 31, 2019

  • Type

    Business

  • Sub Type

    Intellectual Property

THE REGENTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA VS. AISEN

A dismissal for failure to state a claim (Fed. Rules Civ. Proc., rule 12(b)) is ordinarily treated as an adjudication on the merits. See Boccardo v. Safeway Stores, Inc. (1982) 134 Cal. App. 3d 1037, 1042 and cases cited therein. In this case, the District Court granted USC's motion to dismiss two of UCSD's causes of action for failure to state a claim : (1) conversion of data and (2) UCSD's Penal Code Section 502(c) claim against individual defendants (Jimenez, Hong, Tobias and Pizzola).

  • Hearing

    Jan 31, 2019

  • Type

    Business

  • Sub Type

    Intellectual Property

THE REGENTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA VS. AISEN

A dismissal for failure to state a claim (Fed. Rules Civ. Proc., rule 12(b)) is ordinarily treated as an adjudication on the merits. See Boccardo v. Safeway Stores, Inc. (1982) 134 Cal. App. 3d 1037, 1042 and cases cited therein. In this case, the District Court granted USC's motion to dismiss two of UCSD's causes of action for failure to state a claim : (1) conversion of data and (2) UCSD's Penal Code Section 502(c) claim against individual defendants (Jimenez, Hong, Tobias and Pizzola).

  • Hearing

    Jan 31, 2019

  • Type

    Business

  • Sub Type

    Intellectual Property

MADISON VS GEARY

Here, the grounds upon which Defendants are moving for judgment on the pleadings is failure to state a claim – the same ground of a general demurrer. Therefore, because it is not yet 30 days before trial and because the grounds upon which the present motion are brought are akin to a general demurrer, the motion is timely. Legal Standard Generally, a motion for judgment on the pleadings operates like a demurrer. (Weil & Brown, Cal. Prac. Guide: Civ. Proc.

  • Hearing

    Jan 31, 2019

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    Auto

KYLE PIERONI TRUSTEE VS US BANK NATIONAL

Second Cause of Action (Constructive Fraud): The Court SUSTAINS the special demurrer for uncertainty and the general demurrer for failure to state a claim as to this cause of action WITH LEAVE TO AMEND. Constructive fraud is a special tort applicable only to those instances in which there exists a fiduciary or confidential relationship. (Prakashpalan v. Engstrom, Lipscomb & Lack (2014) 223 Cal.App.4th 1105, 1131; Michel v. Moore & Associates, Inc. (2007) 156 Cal.App.4th 756, 763.)

  • Hearing

    Jan 29, 2019

  • Type

    Real Property

  • Sub Type

    other

EDDY GARCIA VS JAMES BRADLEY EPSTEIN

The Court sustained the City’s demurrer to each cause of action on exhaustion and standing grounds, as well as Plaintiff’s failure to state a claim regarding the civil rights cause of action. On October 25, 2018, Plaintiff filed a Second Amended Complaint (“SAC”) alleging three causes of action for: 1) declaratory and injunctive relief; 2) petition for traditional write of mandate; and 3) deprivation of civil rights under 42 U.S.C. § 1983.

  • Hearing

    Jan 28, 2019

RODOLFO SILVA V. BRAID PEZZAGLIA, ET AL.

Accordingly, the demurrer to the fifth cause of action on the ground of failure to state a claim is SUSTAINED, with 10 days’ leave to amend.

  • Hearing

    Jan 24, 2019

SHARON LOVEYS VS CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES ET AL

Failure to State a Claim a. The Mandamus Claims Green Hills argues that the FAP’s mandamus causes of action concerning the permit and the February 6, 2018 compliance review fail as a matter of law. Dem. at 19-20. Green Hills argues that Loveys partly premises these causes of action on issues not raised at the administrative level and therefore she failed to administratively exhaust them. Ibid.

  • Hearing

    Jan 24, 2019

  • Type

    Administrative

  • Sub Type

    Writ

RJ ACQUISITION CORP VS ANDREW GORMAN

Therefore, the demurrer to the first cause of action must be sustained for failure to state a claim. The demurrer to the first cause of action must be sustained on an additional ground. Defendants assert that the first cause of action fails because Gorman’s supposed obligation to pay Plaintiff back was not set forth expressly in writing. Here, pursuant to the first cause of action, Plaintiff is attempting to recoup unearned commission, from “draws” or advances to Gorman. (TAC ¶¶ 14-24.)

  • Hearing

    Jan 22, 2019

  • Judge Elaine Lu
  • County

    Los Angeles County, CA

AMINA KARAM GRACE VS SANBORN LIU EVANS ET AL

Failure to State a Claim for Punitive Damages Defendants’ first argument is that the proposed FAC fails to state a claim for punitive damages. As noted above, the Court is only justified in denying leave to amend if it finds that the proposed amended complaint not only fails to state a cause of action (or, in this case, claim for punitive damages), but also that the failure could not be cured by further amendment.

  • Hearing

    Jan 22, 2019

AMINA KARAM GRACE VS SANBORN LIU EVANS ET AL

Failure to State a Claim for Punitive Damages Defendants’ first argument is that the proposed FAC fails to state a claim for punitive damages. As noted above, the Court is only justified in denying leave to amend if it finds that the proposed amended complaint not only fails to state a cause of action (or, in this case, claim for punitive damages), but also that the failure could not be cured by further amendment.

  • Hearing

    Jan 22, 2019

RJ ACQUISITION CORP VS ANDREW GORMAN

Therefore, the demurrer to the first cause of action must be sustained for failure to state a claim. The demurrer to the first cause of action must be sustained on an additional ground. Defendants assert that the first cause of action fails because Gorman’s supposed obligation to pay Plaintiff back was not set forth expressly in writing. Here, pursuant to the first cause of action, Plaintiff is attempting to recoup unearned commission, from “draws” or advances to Gorman. (TAC ¶¶ 14-24.)

  • Hearing

    Jan 22, 2019

  • Judge Elaine Lu
  • County

    Los Angeles County, CA

GREGORY STESHENKO V. DE ANZA COLLEGE, ET AL.

Disposition The demurrer to the first, second, third, and fifth causes of action is SUSTAINED WITH 20 DAYS’ LEAVE TO AMEND for failure to state a claim. (See City of Stockton (2007) 42 Cal.4th 730, 747 [where plaintiff has not had opportunity to amend complaint in response to demurrer, “leave to amend is liberally allowed as a matter of fairness unless the complaint shows on its face that it is incapable of amendment”].) The demurrer to the claim for punitive damages is OVERRULED.

  • Hearing

    Jan 17, 2019

CITY OF AMERICAN CANYON VS. GSM LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTS, INC.

Defendant’s demurrer to the fourth cause of action for Declaratory Relief on the ground of failure to state a claim is OVERRULED. Defendant claims, without explanation, that the fourth cause of action is “entirely based on GSM’s alleged obligation to indemnify the City.” The Court is not persuaded that this is so. Even if it were, however, the demurrer would fail for the reasons set forth above. Defendant shall file its answer within 10 calendar days.

  • Hearing

    Jan 10, 2019

REYES V. BARNELL

Therefore, the seventh cause of action is time-barred as well, and the court intends to sustain the demurrer to the cause of action for failure to state a claim. Furthermore, there does not appear to be any reasonable chance that plaintiffs can amend their complaint to cure the defect in their pleading, since their claims are clearly barred by the prior judgment in the 2015 case, and many of their claims are also barred by the statutes of limitation.

  • Hearing

    Jan 09, 2019

AH VS. SIMI VALLEY SCHOOL DISTRICT

Defendants' demurrer for failure to state a claim to the second cause of action is OVERRULED. The procedures in Ed. Code section 49070 do not apply. Otherwise, Defendants do not challenge the sufficiency of the alleged exhaustion of the Government Claim procedures in the SAC. (See SAC, ¶¶50-58.) It is apparent that Plaintiffs have sufficiently alleged exhaustion under the Government Claims Act. Defendants' demurrer for failure to state a claim to the third cause of action against May and Cox is OVERRULED.

  • Hearing

    Dec 21, 2018

AH VS. SIMI VALLEY SCHOOL DISTRICT

Defendants' demurrer for failure to state a claim to the second cause of action is OVERRULED. The procedures in Ed. Code section 49070 do not apply. Otherwise, Defendants do not challenge the sufficiency of the alleged exhaustion of the Government Claim procedures in the SAC. (See SAC, ¶¶50-58.) It is apparent that Plaintiffs have sufficiently alleged exhaustion under the Government Claims Act. Defendants' demurrer for failure to state a claim to the third cause of action against May and Cox is OVERRULED.

  • Hearing

    Dec 21, 2018

CHERYL A RICE VS. STACY METZNER

Defendant's demurrer to the fourth cause of action in the SAC on the ground of failure to state a claim is SUSTAINED without leave to amend. Defendant's motion to strike the punitive damages claim from the SAC is GRANTED without leave to amend.

  • Hearing

    Dec 18, 2018

  • Type

    Real Property

  • Sub Type

    other

CHERYL A RICE VS. STACY METZNER

Defendant's demurrer to the fourth cause of action in the SAC on the ground of failure to state a claim is SUSTAINED without leave to amend. Defendant's motion to strike the punitive damages claim from the SAC is GRANTED without leave to amend.

  • Hearing

    Dec 18, 2018

  • Type

    Real Property

  • Sub Type

    other

CHARLES ABRAHAMS VS DEUTSCHE BANK NATIONAL TRUST COMPANY

Due to plaintiff's failure to oppose the demurrer, the court infers plaintiff agrees his remaining causes of action are barred under the principles of res judicata and collateral estoppel and failure to state a claim. Plaintiff filed a petition for relief under Chapter 11 of the U. S. Bankruptcy Code on January 22, 2010, later converted to Chapter 7 on February 22, 2012.

  • Hearing

    Dec 13, 2018

  • Type

    Real Property

  • Sub Type

    other

CHARLES ABRAHAMS VS DEUTSCHE BANK NATIONAL TRUST COMPANY

Due to plaintiff's failure to oppose the demurrer, the court infers plaintiff agrees his remaining causes of action are barred under the principles of res judicata and collateral estoppel and failure to state a claim. Plaintiff filed a petition for relief under Chapter 11 of the U. S. Bankruptcy Code on January 22, 2010, later converted to Chapter 7 on February 22, 2012.

  • Hearing

    Dec 13, 2018

  • Type

    Real Property

  • Sub Type

    other

CHARLES ABRAHAMS VS DEUTSCHE BANK NATIONAL TRUST COMPANY

Due to plaintiff's failure to oppose the demurrer, the court infers plaintiff agrees his remaining causes of action are barred under the principles of res judicata and collateral estoppel and failure to state a claim. Plaintiff filed a petition for relief under Chapter 11 of the U. S. Bankruptcy Code on January 22, 2010, later converted to Chapter 7 on February 22, 2012.

  • Hearing

    Dec 13, 2018

  • Type

    Real Property

  • Sub Type

    other

PELIGRINA LIME VS. MILO

The demurrer attacks the FAC as follows: Count 1 for fraud: lack of jurisdiction, failure to state a claim, and lack of certainty; Count 4 for account stated: failure to state a claim; Count 5 for quiet title: failure to state a claim; Count 7 (sic) for conversion: lack of jurisdiction, lack of certainty. * The motion to strike attacks some 27 portions of the FAC.

  • Hearing

    Dec 12, 2018

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    Fraud

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