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Sarah Hofstadter of California Appellate Law Group. Sarah Hofstadter of California Appellate Law Group.

Imagine yourself in the following scenario. You represent the plaintiff in a case alleging breach of contract and unfair competition. Shortly before the case is scheduled to go to trial, the defendant files a motion on the pleadings to dismiss the contract claim, arguing that the contract is void under the statute of frauds. The trial court grants the motion, but you are sure the ruling is wrong. Technically, you could still go to trial and prevail on your unfair competition claim, but the contract claim is the basis for most of the damages, and both claims rest on essentially the same evidence. It just doesn’t make economic sense to try the unfair competition claim on its own now, while waiting to litigate the contract claim until after you get the trial court’s ruling reversed on appeal. What can you do? Is there a way to get appellate review of the trial court’s ruling right away?

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