CEB has republished my article, “Supreme Court Affirms the Use of Powerful Civil-Theft Remedies Under Penal Code 496 in Business-Tort Cases,” about the recent decision in Siry Investment, L.P. v. Farkhondehpour (Cal. Jul. 21, 2022 No. S262081) 2022 WL 2840312.
Siry held that the remedies under Penal Code section 496(c) — treble damages and attorney fees — are indeed available in business tort cases that fit the description of receipt of stolen property.
This means that many fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and even breaches of contracts and loans, could carry these steep penalties. These are powerful remedies, and their application to these relatively commonplace lawsuits is now specifically guaranteed by the Supreme Court.
Several appellate courts had declined to extend these remedies to garden-variety business-tort cases on policy grounds. The Supreme Court shared these concerns, but held the language of the statute indicated this was the intent of the legislature.
My original article is here. The California Appellate Law Podcast episode discussing Siry is here.
Tim Kowal is an appellate specialist certified by the California State Bar Board of Legal Specialization. Tim helps trial attorneys and clients win their cases and avoid error on appeal. He co-hosts the Cal. Appellate Law Podcast at www.CALPodcast.com, and publishes a newsletter of appellate tips for trial attorneys at www.tvalaw.com/articles. Contact Tim at email@example.com or (714) 641-1232.
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