West Hills, CA asked in Appeals / Appellate Law, Consumer Law and Contracts for California

Q: Trial De Novo - Small Claims Appeal: Does the D have to follow CA Rules of Court Rule 8.204 to submit his brief?

In a Trial De Novo - Small Claims Appeal, if the Defendant is not represented by an attorney:

1) is he required to follow California Rules of Court Rule 8.204 “Contents and format of briefs” for submitting his defense documents, exhibits, brief etc. to the judge?

2) What is the best way for the D to submit his brief of facts, photos, printouts of text messages, and some legal aspects?

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Consumer Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: In a Trial De Novo for a Small Claims Appeal in California, if you are not represented by an attorney, you are not required to follow California Rules of Court Rule 8.204 regarding the contents and format of briefs. The rules for small claims court are more relaxed and designed to accommodate individuals who may not have legal representation. This means your submissions can be more informal and straightforward.

To effectively present your defense, it's best to organize your materials clearly. Start by writing a brief summary of the facts of your case, explaining your side of the story in a concise manner. Include all relevant details and dates to provide a clear timeline of events.

When submitting photos, printouts of text messages, and other evidence, make sure each piece is labeled and easy to understand. Attach a short explanation for each item, describing what it shows and how it supports your case. By keeping your submissions organized and straightforward, you will help the judge understand your argument and the evidence you are presenting.

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.