Crookham v. Smith

CourtCalifornia Court of Appeals
Writing for the CourtTAYLOR, P.J., and KANE
Citation68 Cal.App.3d 773,137 Cal.Rptr. 428
PartiesMichael C. CROOKHAM, Cross-Complainant and Appellant, v. Antoinette Fink SMITH, Cross-Defendant and Respondent. Civ. 38763.
Decision Date31 March 1977

Page 428

137 Cal.Rptr. 428
68 Cal.App.3d 773
Michael C. CROOKHAM, Cross-Complainant and Appellant,
v.
Antoinette Fink SMITH, Cross-Defendant and Respondent.
Civ. 38763.
Court of Appeal, First District, Division 2, California.
March 31, 1977.

[68 Cal.App.3d 774]

Page 430

Kelly, Leal & Olimpia, Gary L. Olimpia, Raymond J. Davilla, Jr., Sunnyvale, for cross-complainant and appellant.

Hopkins & Carley, Bruce H. Munro, Stephen H. Pettigrew, San Jose, for cross-defendant and respondent.

[68 Cal.App.3d 775] BRAY, * Associate Justice (Assigned).

Michael C. Crookham, cross-complainant and appellant, appeals from a1 judgment of the Superior Court of Santa Clara County, entered upon order granting motion for summary judgment. 1

ISSUES PRESENTED

1) The natural father of an illegitimate child is not entitled to seek contribution from the natural mother for support payments to the county.

2) Section 11350.1 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is constitutional.

RECORD

The County of Santa Clara filed a complaint in the superior court alleging that as the result of a sexual relationship between defendant Michael C. Crookham and Antoinette Fink, the child Steven Fink was born August 3, 1964, and asking that the county be reimbursed for expenditures to date made in support of the child and that Crookham be ordered henceforth to pay it for the child's support. It appears that both parents of Steven have deserted him. Crookham answered the complaint with a general denial. However, thereafter, a stipulation was entered into between him and the county as a result of which judgment was entered against him that he pay $170 per month for the support and maintenance of said child.

Prior to the entry of this judgment, Crookham filed a cross-complaint against Antoinette Fink Smith as cross-defendant seeking contribution from her as the mother of Steven Fink of one-half of whatever sums cross-complainant might be ordered by the court to pay for Steven's support. Cross-defendant filed a motion for summary judgment on the [68 Cal.App.3d 776] cross-complaint. After a hearing thereon, the court granted the motion and judgment was granted on the order granting the motion. Cross-complainant appeals.

1) Cross-complainant is not entitled to contribution.

In pertinent part Welfare and Institutions Code section 11350.1 provides: 'Notwithstanding the provisions of any other statute, in any action brought by the district attorney for the support of a minor child or children, the action may be prosecuted in the name of the county on behalf of such minor child or children. The mother shall not be a necessary party in such action but may be subpoenaed as a witness. In an action under this section there shall be no joinder of actions, or coordination of actions, or cross-complaints, and the issues shall be limited strictly to the question of paternity, if applicable, and child support.'

In the instant case the District Attorney of Santa Clara County has brought

Page 431

this action in the name of the county for support of a minor child. This section expressly prohibits any cross-complaints. This prohibition alone is sufficient support for the action of the trial court in granting summary judgment.

Appellant refers to a further portion of section 11350.1 which states: 'Nothing herein contained shall be construed to prevent the parties from bringing an independent action under the Family Law Act or otherwise, and litigating the issue of support. In such event, the court in such proceedings shall make an independent determination on the issue of support which shall supersede the order made pursuant to this section.' Appellant seems to contend that his bringing a cross-complaint is the independent action referred to. It is not. It is a part of the district attorney's action on behalf of the county. Moreover, there is nothing in this section that implies that contribution will be between parents of a minor child.

Appellant refers to Civil Code section 242 which provides in part: '8every individual shall support his or her spouse and child, . . . The duty imposed by this section shall be subject to the provisions of Sections 196 (not applicable), 206 (reciprocal duties of parents and children in maintaining each other), . . .' There is no question but that a mother is required to support her minor child, but there is nothing in any of these sections which provides that she must contribute to what the father [68...

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9 practice notes
  • Minor v. Municipal Court, No. A045254
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 3 Mayo 1990
    ...deeming the premature notice filed February 28 as referring to that judgment. (Cal.Rules of Court, rule 1(a); Crookham v. Smith (1977) 68 Cal.App.3d 773, 775, fn. 1, 137 Cal.Rptr. Minor secondly suggests that the summary judgment can be affirmed based on the fact that the city, which filed ......
  • Ramirez, In re, No. 84-2612
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • 4 Agosto 1986
    ...and to the county for the child's support, even in the absence of a dissolution decree ordering support payments. Crookham v. Smith, 68 Cal.App.3d 773, 777, 137 Cal.Rptr. 428, 431 (1977); Cal.Civ.Code Sec. The responsibility to the child and to the county exists notwithstanding the parent's......
  • State Farm Fire & Casualty Co. v. Keenan
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 23 Julio 1985
    ...declaratory relief and damages." Because an order granting a motion for summary judgment is not appealable (Crookham v. Smith (1977) 68 Cal.App.3d 773, 775, fn. 1, 137 Cal.Rptr. 428), we liberally construe the Keenans' notice of appeal as one taken from the judgment entered on December 16, ......
  • Salas v. Cortez
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 26 Abril 1978
    ...would be construed to authorize an action against the mother and thus males and females would be treated equally. (Crookham v. Smith, 68 Cal.App.3d 773, 779, 137 Cal.Rptr. 428 (Welf. & Inst.Code, § 11350.1); Civ.Code, § 7015; see Commissioners' comment to § 21 of the Uniform Parentage Act (......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
9 cases
  • Minor v. Municipal Court, No. A045254
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 3 Mayo 1990
    ...deeming the premature notice filed February 28 as referring to that judgment. (Cal.Rules of Court, rule 1(a); Crookham v. Smith (1977) 68 Cal.App.3d 773, 775, fn. 1, 137 Cal.Rptr. Minor secondly suggests that the summary judgment can be affirmed based on the fact that the city, which filed ......
  • Ramirez, In re, No. 84-2612
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • 4 Agosto 1986
    ...and to the county for the child's support, even in the absence of a dissolution decree ordering support payments. Crookham v. Smith, 68 Cal.App.3d 773, 777, 137 Cal.Rptr. 428, 431 (1977); Cal.Civ.Code Sec. The responsibility to the child and to the county exists notwithstanding the parent's......
  • State Farm Fire & Casualty Co. v. Keenan
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 23 Julio 1985
    ...declaratory relief and damages." Because an order granting a motion for summary judgment is not appealable (Crookham v. Smith (1977) 68 Cal.App.3d 773, 775, fn. 1, 137 Cal.Rptr. 428), we liberally construe the Keenans' notice of appeal as one taken from the judgment entered on December 16, ......
  • Salas v. Cortez
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 26 Abril 1978
    ...would be construed to authorize an action against the mother and thus males and females would be treated equally. (Crookham v. Smith, 68 Cal.App.3d 773, 779, 137 Cal.Rptr. 428 (Welf. & Inst.Code, § 11350.1); Civ.Code, § 7015; see Commissioners' comment to § 21 of the Uniform Parentage Act (......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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