Court of Appeal holds that witnesses’ deposition testimony that they lacked personal knowledge of declaration and were pressured to sign it, creates triable issue of fact on summary judgment

2021 case review: Forest Lawn Memorial-Park Assn. v. Superior Ct.

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A plaintiff brought a summary judgment motion based in part on the Declaration (under penalty for perjury ) of a relevant witness. The defendant then obtained the deposition of that witness, and found that the individual executing the Declaration said that they had no personal knowledge of the facts alleged, and had signed the document because they were pressured by Plaintiff’s counsel.

To be clear, the grant of a motion for summary judgment requires a finding by the trial court that the relevant alleged facts are not disputed. In this instance, the trial court found that the deposition denying statements made or implied in the Declaration created “triable issue of fact” and denied summary judgment.