My question involves small claims court in the state of: California, Los Angeles County
Does the California evidence code Section 711 apply in Small Claims Trials de Novo?: It says "At the trial of an action, a witness can be heard only in the presence and subject to the examination of all the parties to the action, if they choose to attend and examine." I could not find anywhere in the Small Claims Act that this does not apply, only that Small Claims is informal.
I was the Plaintiff in a Trial de Novo case where the judge did not question anything the Defense said. They misquoted the CC&Rs, stated I didn't follow non-existent procedures, accused me of remodeling rather that repairing my condo, etc. etc. The judge did not ask them to produce one piece of evidence. I was not allowed to cross examine them, and the proceeding was abruptly stopped before I had a chance to call my witnesses.
I have since filed two SC-105 forms, requesting the trial reconvene so I could produce my witnesses and additional evidence; and the second time requesting the damages awarded be increased to cover my costs (I had damage to the interior of my condo after the roof leaked, which was HOA responsibility to maintain). Both were denied. The judge said I had no right to cross-examine the Defense, and that his ruling was based on applicable law. What law says that damage resulting from failed common area maintenance belongs to the homeowner? Is it true that I didn't have a right to examine the Defense? How is one supposed to defend oneself when the other side lies?