How to Fill Our an Unlawful Detainer Complaint in California
This is a step by step guide on filling out an unlawful detainer complain in pro per in California. It is recommended that you have an attorney before doing so.
Page 1 of Unlawful Detainer Complaint1. Fill out the section asking for an attorney:
a. Put in your name, address, and telephone number. In the "attorney for" put the words "in pro per."
2. In section where it says "Superior Court of California, County of:"
a. Put in the County where you are filing your lawsuit (this has to be the County where the property is located).
b. Below that put the street and mailing address of the court which should be the same.
c. Below that section put in the Branch name of the court.
d. Leave the section does 1 to 10 unchecked for now.
3. In the next section check the box that says limited civil case, amount in controversy is under 10K dollars.
4. In paragraph 1 of the complaint put your name where it says plaintiff. In the section below put the tenant(s) name where it says defendant.
5. In paragraph 2 put what type of legal entity the plaintiff is. (If the Plaintiff is an LLC or INC. stop here and contact our office for an attorney or call another one, an LLC or INC. may not represent themselves.)
6. In Paragraph 3, put the location of the premises where the tenant is withholding.
7. In paragraph 4, the usual option will be to check the owner box. If the plaintiff is not the owner. Call an attorney now.
8. In paragraph 6 put how much the tenant originally agreed to pay,
a. In paragraph 6.1 check the box that states whether the tenant agreed to pay rent in what type of term.
b. In paragraph 6.2 put the amount of rent the tenant was supposed to be paying and when it was to become due.
c. In Paragraph 6.3 put the day of the month that the tenant agreed to pay rent.
d. In paragraph 6(b) allege whether the agreement to rent was written or oral by checking the applicable box and also indicate who the agreement was made with.
Page 2 of Unlawful Detainer Complaint1. In Paragraph 6(c) designate who named above is not an actual tenant such as a subtenant.
2. In Paragraph 6(d) state if any changes to therental agreement were made and attach them to the document.
3. In Paragraph 6(e) and 6(d) indicate whether you are attaching the written rental agreement which is attached as exhibit 1.
4. In 6(f) label if you do not have the rental agreement or if the eviction is soley for non-payment of rent by checking the applicable box.
5. In paragraph 7 put the defendants/tenant names, and check the box for what notice you served.
6. In paragraph 7(b) put the date the notice you used ended.
7. In paragraph 7(d), check the box if the notice included an election of forfeiture.
8. In paragraph 7(e), attach the notice of termination (e.g. 3 day notice to pay rent or quit) and label it as exhibit 2.
9. In paragraph 8 check the box on how the termination notice was served. (Please call the Eviction Law Group if you do not know how to serve a termination notice).
Page 3 of Unlawful Detainer Complaint1. In Paragraph 10 put how much the 3 day notice to pay rent or quit demanded.
2. To come up with the value of Paragraph 11 put in how much the value of the property is by dividing 30 by the fair market rent of the premises at issue.
3. Check the box in paragraph 13 if your lease provides for the prevailing party to get their attorney's fees.
4. In paragraph 14 write in any rent control ordinance and its date of passage if it applies to the area that you are evicting from.
5. In paragraph 17(c) put in the amount of past due rent, 17(d) check if you believe you can get reasonable attorney's fees, 17(e) check if you want the tenant to never be able to get back into possession of the premises,
6. In Paragraph 17(f) list the date where the rent stated in the three day or the fixed term termination notice ends. This box is asking the court for the fair market rental value for every day after the tenant remains in possession.
7. In Paragraph 18, please put the number of pages attached that make up the unlawful detainer complaint.
8. In paragraph 19, please check the box if an unlawful detainer assistant (aka paralegal) helped you in filling out the paperwork.
9. Sign both areas and date.
Filling out your own eviction lawsuit is not a recommended course of action. California eviction law is very complicated. If you wish to fill out an eviction in Los Angeles County, you will need a properly filled out Summons, Complaint, Civil Cover Case Sheet, and Civil Cover Case Sheet Addendum. These documents must be filled out accurately and filed at the court and served on the tenant. After service, additional documents need to be filled out in order to get a judgment.
Many errors can be made if you decide to fill out your own eviction lawsuit. Many more can happen if you do not have representation on the day of court. Above is the simple way we draft an eviction lawsuit from our offices in Long Beach or Huntington Beach, CA. We have been employed by large law firm attorneys, major companies, and local Mom and Pop establishments to handle their evictions. We are considered one of the best Eviction Law Firms in the Southern California area.
The legal forms for eviction can be found on the courts website at http://www.courts.ca.gov/forms.htm?filter=UD. If you plan on filing for eviction on your own you will need to browse the courts website and also properly fill out a Summons,and Civil Cover Case sheet as well as addendum. If you do not have these documents filled out appropiately the clerk will likely reject your filing.