Danville, CA asked in Municipal Law and Small Claims for California

Q: Can I subpoena a city official (Planning Division and Building Division) as part of a Small Claims Court case?

The Planning Division approved a project under a non-discretionary approval that does not meet city code .

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1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Municipal Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: It is possible to subpoena a city official, such as a representative from the Planning Division or Building Division, as part of a small claims court case. However, there may be certain limitations or requirements for doing so.

In general, subpoenas are legal documents that require a person to appear in court or provide testimony or documents related to a legal case. In a small claims court case, subpoenas may be used to compel witnesses or evidence that may be relevant to the case.

To issue a subpoena, you would need to file a subpoena request with the court and serve the subpoena on the person or entity being subpoenaed. The request may need to include specific information about the witness or evidence being sought, and may need to comply with any rules or guidelines established by the court.

It is important to note that there may be limitations or restrictions on who can be subpoenaed and for what purposes. For example, some government officials may have immunity from subpoenas or may be protected by privacy laws.

Additionally, while a city official may be subpoenaed to provide testimony or documents related to a project approval or other actions taken by the city, it may be important to consult with a qualified attorney who is familiar with the specific laws and regulations governing the situation.

In summary, while it is possible to subpoena a city official as part of a small claims court case, there may be limitations or requirements that need to be considered. It may be helpful to consult with a qualified attorney to determine the best course of action for your specific case.

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