A case may be filed in Small Claims if the amount being sought
is $5,000 or less; $10,000 or less for "natural persons" (CCP § 116.221).
cases above $2,500 may be filed each year
(CCP § 116.231).
An attorney is not
allowed to represent you in court. Resources for learning to present
your own case are noted below.
Small Claims Court Clerk Information
Ukiah: (707) 468-2002
Fort Bragg: (707) 964-3192
Court Clerk's Office Hours:
8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Monday - Friday
8:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Monday - Friday
Code of Civil Procedure
Section 116.220 states what actions can be filed in small claims
One or more of the following statements
must be true in order to file your small claims action in Mendocino
■ A defendant lives in this judicial
district, or if the defendant is a business that has its principal place
of business in this judicial district.
A person was injured or personal property was damaged in this judicial
A defendant signed or entered into a contract in this judicial district,
a defendant lived in this judicial district when the contract was
entered into, a contract or obligation was to be performed in this
judicial district, or if the defendant is a corporation, the contract
was breached in this judicial district.
■ When a
contract is involved see
CCP § 395(B), CCP § 1812.10, and CCP § 2984.4
Forms and Filing
A forms packet, "Information for the Small Claims Plaintiff", complete with Claim Form, is available from the court clerk's office.
Other Small Claims forms are available from the court clerk, the
Law Library or the
Judicial Council website.
All paperwork must be typewritten or neatly written in black ink. There are typewriters available for public use at the Public Library at 105 N. Main St, Ukiah or the Law Library in the Ukiah courthouse, Room 307.
Small Claims Advisor
The Self Help Legal Access Center (SHLA Center) provides direct in-person service regarding all aspects
of small claims proceedings. Visit the SHLA Center in the Ukiah Courthouse
Monday-Thursday from 1:00pm to 4:00pm, or in Fort Bragg at one of their Friday
Small Claims Mediation
Mediation of Small Claims cases is not offered through the court. Parties that want to have their cases mediated need to arrange it on their own.
The Filing Fee is based on the amount of the
- Up to $1,500, the fee is $30.00
- $1,500.01 to $5,000.00, the fee is $50.00
- $5,000.01 to 10,000.00, the fee is $75.00
If you have filed more than 12 claims in the past year, the filing fee is $100.00 per claim.
Service of Documents
The date and time of the small claims hearing is set when the
plaintiff files the small claims case. It is the plaintiff's
responsibility to serve the defendant with the Plaintiff's Claim and
Order to Go to Small Claims Court that includes this court date.
Effective September 1, 2009, the option of service of the claim by
return receipt (certified mail) will no longer be provided.
If the other party does not agree with the
date and time set, they will need to file a Request to Postpone Small Claims
Hearing (Judicial Council form SC-110) and an Order on Request to Postpone
Small Claims Hearings (SC-111) to continue the matter, along with a $10.00
Postponing your Hearing
If the defendant has been served, either party can file with the
Court a Request to Postpone Small Claims Hearing (Judicial Council form
SC-150) and submit an Order on Request to Postpone Small Claims Hearings
(SC-152), along with a $10.00 filing fee at least 10 days before the
hearing. Click on the form name to
open the form. These and other Judicial Council forms are
available at www.courts.ca.gov/forms.
Small Claims Advisor and Other Assistance
If you need legal assistance and/or have questions about filing your
claim, contact the Small Claims Division 24 hours a day for pre-recorded
information at (707) 468-2002
See the Law Library for reference books about Small Claims. Open to the public in the Ukiah courthouse, resources are available for all levels of legal research.
See California Small Claims Courts Information Center
for on-line resources, including the following:
- How to research your case
How to collect on a judgment
Department of Consumer Affairs offers small claims information on
Night Court for Small Claims cases is held at 5:30 p.m. on
the first Wednesday of each month in Ukiah.
Parties must use the Perkins Street entrance of the Ukiah Courthouse
after 4:30 p.m. The Perkins Street entrance will be locked at
5:30 p.m. Please arrive 5 to 10
Small Claims Calendar
Visit our On-Line Court Calendar page for
information on hearings set for the next 30 days.
Calendar times and places are subject to change at any
time. On the day of the hearing, check the calendars posted on the
calendar bulletin board for that day's court assignments.
The Court organizes and groups similar types of hearings together for
efficiency. The Calendar Plan lists the specific times and
courtrooms that hearings are held.