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What is the difference between a code of civil procedure 656 and 657?
On Friday, May 31, 2013 we completed a 2 day trial. The court did not rule in our favor. We immediately asked for the Statement of Decision. 3 days later the judge's court clerk called us and stated the judge wanted to met with all parties the next day. On May 31st during the trial we asked the court 3 times if it had received our documents. The court strongly stated "no." 4 or 5 subpeona's requesting the release of custodial records totalling 10 to 15 documents should have been at the trial. We later learned from the sender these exhibits had been sent to the court seven days before the trial. With no other explanation, the court admitted to now having in its possession documents we asked about during the trial.
At the June 4th call hearing, the court asked us if we wanted to re-open evidence. We said yes. The court asked the other side if they objected. They of course did. The court wanted deal with it then and there. We stated we did not want to move hastily. That the current proceedings looked like legal ambush since we were against 3 experienced attorneys and were ourselves pro per. The judge said ok and wanted us to file by June 17th.
After looking up the codes we discovered if we went this route whatever ruling came forth would NOT be appealable. We declined to use the re-open evidence option and at the end of June communicated this to the court at a hearing on the matter. The court stated in July that because of its burdensome case load, it needed to push back when it would produce the proposed statement of decision and proposed judgment.
Our judge wrote a proposed statement of decision 4 months after the trial and his court clerk filed it on the 16th of September. We have already responded to it by filing objections to it which we filed on October 1st. However, we received a call from the court business office stating our petition could not be accepted. We did research and knew the business office was not correct. We called them and gave codes. They researched and called us back within the hour stating they had made an error and our petition would be received. That was September 7, 2013.
We have not heard back from the court since we filed. November 30th or December 1, 2013 will be 6 months since the May 31st trial was completed.
Our question is: Does our time run out to appeal the court's ruling on Nov. 30th or Dec 1st eventhough there has not been an official "Statement of Decision" filed and no entry of the judgment?
Our real intention is to file a Ca Code of Civil Procedure 656, 657, and 659 action for a new trial after the statement of decision and entry of judgment have been done.
How long can the court take before it does its statement of decision? What recourses do we have to move the court along?
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