Firm’s Summary Judgment Win Affirmed on Appeal

Irrigation Valves Above Ground

The California Court of Appeal affirmed a summary judgment order by the Superior Court of Los Angeles County in favor of Larson O’Brien’s clients, Canyon Water Company, and two of its officers, in a complex property and water rights dispute.

The plaintiff’s action against Larson O’Brien’s clients and others alleged elder abuse, misappropriation of water rights, and breach of fiduciary duties. The plaintiff claimed the defendants had diverted the water supply on which she had replied to irrigate her seven-acre property for decades, subsequently deteriorating her land.

In 2018, partners Stephen G. Larson and Paul A. Rigali and won summary judgment for Canyon Water Company and its officers, defeating the allegations. Upon appeal by the plaintiff, Paul presented an oral argument on July 10, 2020, on behalf of Canyon Water Company and the two officers. The California Court of Appeal affirmed the order on August 3, ruling the plaintiff had no contractual rights to the irrigation water and could not establish any wrongful conduct by Larson O’Brien’s clients relating to the alleged diversion of water.


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