Wood v. Herson – Case Brief Summary (California)

In Wood v. Herson (1974) 39 Cal.App.3d 737, the appellate court determined that the doctrine of res judicata applied to bar relitigation of the issue of title in an action for specific performance because the title issue had been determined in an prior unlawful detainer proceeding. (Id. at p. 745.)

The appellate court noted that the unlawful detainer trial had lasted several days and that pretrial depositions had been taken, and stated that the plaintiffs "have had their day in court." (Ibid.)

However, the appellate court did not rule that pretrial discovery and a lengthy trial were necessary for a litigant to have had the opportunity for a full and fair hearing in an unlawful detainer action.