Skip to main content

Do you have to have an attorney on a ex parte in a unlawful detianer when its a business thats incorporated

Los Angeles, CA |

did ex parte paper work for a cleint going pro per and judge said since the business was a corporation he needed an Attorney to argue the ex parte

+ Read More

Attorney answers 3


The judge is right. The defendant also needs an attorney to file a response that is not subject to a motion to strike. I hope you will not be charging your client for worthless work.

I am licensed in California only and my answers on Avvo assume California law. Answers provided by me are for general information only. They are not legal advice. Answers must not be relied upon. Legal advice must be based on the interplay between specific exact facts and the law. This forum does not allow for the discussion of that interplay. My answer to any specific question would likely be different if that interplay were explored during an attorney-client relationship. I provide legal advice during the course of an attorney-client relationship only. The exchange of information through this forum does not establish such a relationship. That relationship is established only by personal and direct consultation with me followed by the execution of a written attorney-client agreement signed by each of us. The communications on this website are not privileged or confidential and I assume no duty to anyone by my participation on Avvo or because I have answered or commented on a question. All legal proceedings involve deadlines and time limiting statutes. So that legal rights are not lost for failure to timely take appropriate action and because I do not provide legal advice in answer to any question, if you are an interested party you should promptly and personally consult with an attorney for legal advice. Also, see Avvo's terms and conditions of use, specifically item 9, incorporated by this reference


Yes, a corporation can only appear in court through an attorney.

The above is general legal and business analysis. It is not "legal advise" but analysis, and different lawyers may analyse this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. I am only licensed in California. See also terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here.


A corporation may only appear in court through a licensed attorney.

In the eyes of the law a corporation has all the powers of a natural person in the carrying out of its business. This means the corporation may avail itself of the state's laws and may bring a lawsuit. However, under long-settled common law, a corporation cannot represent itself before courts of record without a lawyer, and it cannot represent itself through an officer, director or any other person who is not also a licensed lawyer. See the case of Caressa Camille, Inc. v. Alcoholic Beverage Control Appeals Bd. (2002) 99 Cal.App.4th 1094, 1101–1103 [121 Cal. Rptr. 2d 758. The same rule applies in Federal Court as well.

The logic behind this rule is that a corporation is an artificial entity created by law and can only act in its affairs through its natural persons, agents and/or representatives. Obviously, any person who would appear in court to act on behalf of the corporation, if not a licensed attorney, would then be practicing law without a license. See the case of Merco Constr. Engineers, Inc. v. Municipal Court (1978) 21 Cal.3d 724, 730 [147 Cal. Rptr. 631, 581 P.2d 636.

Practicing law without a license is a big problem, and I am not aware of any exceptions.

This response does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and I. I am not your lawyer and I am not representing you in the underlying issue stated in your question. The response I have offered is not intended to be relied upon, you should seek out an attorney to assist in this matter.

Can't find what you're looking for?

Post a free question on our public forum.

Ask a Question

- or -

Search for lawyers by reviews and ratings.

Find a Lawyer