Los Angeles County Small Claims Court, California

Can I file my claim in Los Angeles County?

Usually, a claim must be filed in the County where the person or business being sued resides. There are some exceptions to this rule (for example, an auto accident can be filed in the County where the accident occurred). A party may file the claim in small claims court if that party is at least eighteen years old. A party can file as someone less than eighteen if he or she has been emancipated. If you are under 18 or not mentally competent, the judge must appoint a guardian at litem to represent you in small claims court. This person only acts on their behalf with respect to that particular small claims court case.

Los Angeles County Small Claims Court Hearing

Los Angeles County Small Claims Court

Los Angeles County Small Claims Court

Small Claims Court cases are often scheduled where a number of cases will be heard in the same department at the same time (one at a time). The court’s schedule is busy and because of this scheduling, you will only have a few minutes to present your case. (You can pay attention to the cases that are heard before you). It is very important to spend time preparing for your case ahead of time. You should bring all the paperwork that supports your claim (or defense) including receipts, contracts, photographs, invoices, and any other paperwork. Make sure you bring any witnesses you need to the hearing if they are necessary to prove your case. Making sure you are prepared for the hearing goes along way toward a successful outcome. After each side has had the opportunity to present its side, the court will make a decision. The court will either make its ruling immediately, or notify both sides of its decision through the mail (make sure your address with the court is correct).

What is small claims court mediation?

Los Angeles County Superior Court may offer mediation for your claim before the actual trial. Mediation is a legal term which means that each side will have a discussion with an impartial third party to try and reach an agreement for the outcome of the case. Mediation can occur before the trial or even on the same day as your trial. Mediation is nothing to be scared of, but rather another chance for you to explain your side of the case (which will better prepare you for the actual hearing in front of the judge).

Can I hire an attorney?

A party is not able to be represented by anyone else in small claims court, including an attorney or lawyer. A party can discuss the case with an attorney before or after the the case to answer questions and help a party prepare for the hearing.

How much time do I have to file my case?

All cases must be filed before a certain deadline called the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations is a legal term that means the time someone has to file a claim. The time limit is different depending on the type of the case. If you were hurt, you have two years from the date of the injury or the date the injury is discovered to file your claim. (A minor has two years from his or her eighteenth birthday). If an oral contract (or oral agreement) was broken, you have two years after the agreement was broken to file your case. If the contract was written, you have three years from the date the contract was breached or broken to file the case. If you were the victim of fraud, you have three years from when you first learn of the fraud to file your case. It can be very difficult to find out when the statute of limitations begins to run. It is far better to file the case and let the judge decide, rather than filing too late and having it dismissed.

Types of Los Angeles County Small Claims Court Cases

A wide variety of cases can be filed in small claims court. Common cases are: car accidents, damage to property, some landlord tenant disputes, and contractor disputes.

Los Angeles County Small Claims Court Filing Fee

A filing fee is required and is set relative to the amount of money you are requesting for your claim. If you filed twelve or less claims over the past twelve months, the filing fee is:

  • $0 to $1,500 – $30
  • $1,500 to $5,000 – $50
  • $5,000 to $10,000 – $75

Once a party has filed twelve cases within twelve months, each consecutive case has a $100 filing fee.

Los Angeles County Small Claims Court Locations

Small Claims Court cases are heard in 23 courthouses across the County. The website for Los Angeles County Superior court is: www.lasuperiorcourt.org. Here are the following locations where Small Claims Court cases are heard in Los Angeles County:

Stanley Mosk Courthouse

The Stanley Mosk Courthouse is located at:

111 N. Hill St.
Los Angeles, CA 90012-3014

The phone number is: 213-974-6350

Central Civil West Courthouse

The Central Civil West Courthouse is located at:

600 S. Commonwealth Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90005

The phone number is: 213-974-6350

East Los Angeles Courthouse

The East Los Angeles Courthouse is located at:

4848 East Civic Center Way
Los Angeles, CA 90005

The phone number is: 213-351-8738

Pomona South Courthouse

The Pomona South Courthouse is located at:

4848 East Civic Center Way
Los Angeles, CA 90022

The phone number is: 323-780-2017

Pomona South Courthouse

The Pomona South Courthouse is located at:

400 Civic Ctr. Plz.
Pomona, CA 91766

The phone number is: 909-620-3023

West Covina Courthouse

The West Covina Courthouse is located at:

1427 W. Covina Pkwy.
West Covina, CA 91790-2799

The phone number is: 909-620-3023

El Monte Courthouse

The El Monte Courthouse is located at:

11234 E. Valley Blvd.
West Covina, CA 91790-2799

The phone number is: 626-813-3226

Burbank Courthouse

The Burbank Courthouse is located at:

11234 E. Valley Blvd.
El Monte, CA 91731-3288

The phone number is: 626-575-4116

Burbank Courthouse

The Burbank Courthouse is located at:

300 E. Olive Ave.
Burbank, CA 91502

The phone number is: 818-557-3461

Glendale Courthouse

The Glendale Courthouse is located at:

600 E. Broadway
Glendale, CA 91206-4395

The phone number is: 818-557-3461

Pasadena Courthouse

The Pasadena Courthouse is located at:

300 E. Walnut St.
Glendale, CA 91206-4395

The phone number is: 818-500-3551

San Fernando Courthouse

The San Fernando Courthouse is located at:

300 E. Walnut St.
Pasadena, CA 91101-1566

The phone number is: 626-356-5684

San Fernando Courthouse

The San Fernando Courthouse is located at:

900 Third St.S
San Fernando, CA 91340

The phone number is: 818-898-2425

Santa Clarita Courthouse

The Santa Clarita Courthouse is located at:

23747 W. Valencia Blvd.
Valencia, CA 93155-2913

The phone number is: 818-898-2425

Chatsworth Courthouse

The Chatsworth Courthouse is located at:

9425 Penfield Ave.
Valencia, CA 93155-2913

The phone number is: 661-253-7312

Michael D. Antonovich – Antelope Valley Courthouse

The Michael D. Antonovich – Antelope Valley Courthouse is located at:

9425 Penfield Ave.
Chatsworth, CA 91311

The phone number is: 818-576-8586

Michael D. Antonovich – Antelope Valley Courthouse

The Michael D. Antonovich – Antelope Valley Courthouse is located at:

42011 4th St. West
Lancaster, CA 93534

The phone number is: 661-974-7200

Van Nuys Courthouse East

The Van Nuys Courthouse East is located at:

6230 Sylmar Ave.
Van Nuys, CA 91401

The phone number is: 661-974-7200

Governor George Deukmejian Courthouse

The Governor George Deukmejian Courthouse is located at:

275 Magnolia Ave.
Van Nuys, CA 91401

The phone number is: 818-374-2901

Compton Courthouse

The Compton Courthouse is located at:

275 Magnolia Ave.
Long Beach, CA 90802-4591

The phone number is: 562-256-2317

Compton Courthouse

The Compton Courthouse is located at:

200 W. Compton Blvd.
Compton, CA 90220

The phone number is: 310-603-7842

Norwalk Courthouse

The Norwalk Courthouse is located at:

12720 Norwalk Blvd.
Norwalk, CA 90650-3188

The phone number is: 310-603-7842

Downey Courthouse

The Downey Courthouse is located at:

7500 E. Imperial Hwy.
Norwalk, CA 90650-3188

The phone number is: 562-807-7340

How long does it take my case to be heard?

Each County has its own Superior Court. The length of time between when the case is filed and when the hearing is varies for each county in California (and even within each county). Usually, the hearing for your small claims court case should be between twenty and seventy days after the case was filed. However, because of state cuts to the court’s budget, most hearings are now being set well past the seventy day mark.

Los Angeles County Small Claims Court

Small Claims Court is a special court whose purpose is to handle cases an efficient, inexpensive fashion. The rules for small claims court cases in Los Angeles County are the same for any county in California. The rules are designed to be less complex and more less formal when compared to general civil cases. The person or business that files the action is the plaintiff. The party who is being sued is known as the defendant. For small claims court cases in California, neither the plaintiff or the defendant is allowed to hire an attorney to represent them at the hearing. But, each party can talk to and ask questions to an attorney before or after the hearing if they wish.

Los Angeles County Small Claims Court Limits

A person cannot sue for more than $10,000 in a case. A corporation (or other corporate entity) cannot sue for more than $5,000. A party can only file two actions that are more than $2,500 in a year. A party can file as many cases in small claims court with an amount of $2,500 or less.

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