Ponani Sukumar (plaintiff) and Southern California Stroke Rehabilitation Associates (plaintiff) sued two Italian companies, Air Machine Com SRL (Air Machine) and Panatta Sport SRL (Panatta) (defendants), alleging breach of contract and other causes of action. Sukumar filed the complaint in California state court. Air Machine and Panatta filed a motion to quash the summons, claiming that the case should be dismissed because the California court lacked personal jurisdiction to issue rulings impacting these Italian companies. While the motion to quash was pending, Air Machine and Panatta jointly served a statutory settlement offer on Sukumar. This offer was made pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure § 998 and is often referred to as a 998 offer. The trial court determined that the act of serving the statutory settlement offer constituted a general appearance by Air Machine and Panatta and waived the issue of personal jurisdiction. Air Machine and Panatta then appealed to the California Court of Appeal.