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California Small Claims Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Landlord - Tenant and Small Claims for California on
Q: California Lease Transfer - Question Regarding Security Deposit

Lived in LA and found a listing for someone who was looking to get out of their existing lease early (not a sublease).

An addendum was signed by all parties (the former tenant, myself, and property manager), stating that my name would be added to the lease and that the former tenant's... Read more »

John Michael Frick
John Michael Frick
answered on Feb 2, 2023

It looks like the landlord is keeping the previous tenant’s security deposit as your security deposit in lieu of refunding the previous tenant’s and you depositing a new one. So you have been unjustly enriched unless you repay the previous tenant.

2 Answers | Asked in Contracts, Personal Injury and Small Claims for California on
Q: what type of lawyer would I need if I did a medical research study and was told wrong information about the study.

I was told wrong information about what I was participating in and had I known I would not have participated.

Dale S. Gribow
Dale S. Gribow
answered on Jan 24, 2023

YOU WANT A CIVIL LITIGATOR.

HOWEVER, THE ISSUE WILL BE DAMAGES.

YOU HAVE TO PROVE HOW YOU WERE DAMAGED BY THIS INCORRECT INFO.

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2 Answers | Asked in Contracts, Personal Injury and Small Claims for California on
Q: what type of lawyer would I need if I did a medical research study and was told wrong information about the study.

I was told wrong information about what I was participating in and had I known I would not have participated.

Patrick William Steinfeld
Patrick William Steinfeld
answered on Jan 24, 2023

Before thinking about a lawyer consider the value of your claim. Lawyers are expensive and their fees may exceed the value of a potential recovery. Consider small claims court if the value of your claim is less than $10,000.

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1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant, Real Estate Law and Small Claims for California on
Q: I was Renting a room from my friend He got mad At me locked me out kept all my stuff and sold it everything I had

This is stuff I acquired throughout a lifetime my my welder was Brad new never been used But I acquire the stuff throughout the years I don't have receipts for it anymore Also he kept my medicine even after I told him that I needed it and it was important can I still get compensated Even... Read more »

Joshua D. Brysk
Joshua D. Brysk PRO label
answered on Jan 19, 2023

If he locked you out, took your property and sold it all without your permission, a crime was likely committed. Talk to the police to file a report.

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Identity Theft and Small Claims for California on
Q: What if I bought a phone with cash and the store employee pulls a debit card out of his pocket and pays with that?

Also on my phone it says auto pay has been set up with the debit card used to buy the phone. I didn't use a debit card though.

Leon Bayer
Leon Bayer
answered on Jan 16, 2023

I suggest you IMMEDIATELY return to the store and see the owner/manager to set this right. There are several explanations for this that come to my mind and none of them are on the up and up.

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Probate and Small Claims for California on
Q: collect a court order debt in small claim from the deceased access or estate. Court Advisor me to file correct form

I do Not Know What Form to file to continue collecting the debt owed to me

Julie King
Julie King
answered on Jan 16, 2023

It’s hard to know what you need. Most courts have a self-help center that can assist you with what form to use, but they cannot advise you after that because the people working there are not lawyers. Start there because it’s free. If you still need help after that, you’ll need to hire a... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Probate and Small Claims for California on
Q: collect a court order debt in small claim from the deceased access or estate. Court Advisor me to file correct form

I do Not Know What Form to file to continue collecting the debt owed to me

Ravi Patel
Ravi Patel
answered on Jan 14, 2023

Your question is not entirely clear, but it seems like you may need to file a "creditors claim" if the decedent has a probate open. If not, you may have to open a probate for them. But that could be more of a hassle and expense than you really want.

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1 Answer | Asked in Personal Injury, Civil Rights, Criminal Law and Small Claims for California on
Q: What kind a lawyer do I need?

The person injured me and made a false statement to the police (or bribe them) to make me arrested. I bailed out, and the case got dismissed. He intentionally did this trick and didn't pay me money for the job I've done for him as a consultant, he did iit to scare me or made me lose my... Read more »

Dale S. Gribow
Dale S. Gribow
answered on Jan 7, 2023

why was case dismissed?

dismissed or not guilty is not the same as innocent.

if your looking for a whistleblower suit you need a civil litigator.

if your looking to collect a small amount of money owed (less than $10k) use small claims.

have you reported to police?

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Civil Litigation and Small Claims for California on
Q: Can I file criminal charges against a women who lied to me about a puppy being in good health when I bought her?

She was listed as a breeder on puppies.com and I purchased a bulldog from her that she said was perfectly healthy, I have all of the messages documented just so you know. Then the morning I got her I messaged the woman to let her know that the dog wasn’t breathing normally and seem to have a lot... Read more »

John Karas
John Karas
answered on Jan 2, 2023

This is a civil matter, not criminal. You can sue her in Small Claims court for the purchase price of the animal and the vet bills you incurred.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant, Civil Litigation and Small Claims for California on
Q: Want to sue landlord and other party for lying about residence of plaintiff in case against my husband.

My husband got in a fight with an individual at our apartment complex. The plaintiff falsely claimed to live here, he last lived here in 2019, he was here visiting aunt. We know he lived elsewhere (he told defendant) and records online show different address. Landlord lied to court saying he lived... Read more »

Dale S. Gribow
Dale S. Gribow
answered on Dec 18, 2022

This is not the type of case a lawyer will take on a contingency...in all likelihood.

You will find it will be too expensive to retain a lawyer on an hourly.

I suggest you prepare a demand letter and when they don't respond, sue in Small Claims for $10k (the maximum)

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Landlord - Tenant and Small Claims for California on
Q: My apartment refuses to issue me a receipt of a one-time settlement fee. Is this a violation to this code?

I moved from one unit to another in the same apartment and paid a one-time settlement fee for the transfer. They are telling me to inquire regarding the receipt to the bank that I remitted this payment from and just doesn’t make sense why a bank in which processed a payment would issue a receipt... Read more »

Scott Richard Kaufman
Scott Richard Kaufman
answered on Dec 14, 2022

A copy of your check should be good enough to expense it.

In my opinion:

The management most likely is not wanting to give you a receipt

because they do not want a written trail, ie, they are likely either

avoiding paying taxes on it, OR not telling the real LL they...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Identity Theft and Small Claims for California on
Q: My ex submitted a loan application and was approved for a $20,000 loan for her business. This was all done using my info

I never approved for her to use my information to get this loan and now I’m getting calls from debt collectors saying I owe $19,000 because she has not been paying the loan and it’s all under my information. This is not my loan and I never approved any of this.

Dale S. Gribow
Dale S. Gribow
answered on Dec 1, 2022

when you say your EX, does that mean you were divorced?

if so what she did, arguably broke the law.

did you report it to law enforcement?

you may want to contact a local lawyer to write a letter and try to explain this to the people coming after you. I think a police report...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Construction Law and Small Claims for California on
Q: During a landscape project the home owner fired me. Are they legally required to pay for materials used so far?

This customer was a problem from the very start. Comparing my methods and approach to youtube videos and telling me I wasn't doing the installation correctly. From then on he constantly complained about every single little step of the project. Eventually Myself and my crew needed a break from... Read more »

Adam Stoddard
Adam Stoddard
answered on Nov 22, 2022

Did you have a contract with the homeowner? You are entitled to be paid for the work performed and materials delivered to the project. Given that you are only out about $3K, this would be a small claims matter.

1 Answer | Asked in Products Liability, Business Law, Construction Law and Small Claims for California on
Q: If a contractor leaves equipment on a property, & someone moves the equipment, causing damage to the home, who's liable?

For instance, if the contractor had left a compact tractor on the property, and over a weekend when neither the homeowner or contractor were there, someone pushed the tractor into the siding on the home, causing damage, would the contractor be liable for the damaged siding since they were the one... Read more »

Dan Rowan Cortright
Dan Rowan Cortright
answered on Nov 17, 2022

No, the person who moved the backhoe actually caused the damage, not the contractor who wasn't there.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant, Personal Injury and Small Claims for California on
Q: My building is infested with cockroaches. What type of lawyer do I need for an landlord/tenant case.

My building is infested with cockroaches. It wasn't when I moved in but after 1 and a half years, It is ridiculous. I have spent nearly $1000 to keep them out and kill them. I have written my landlord four letters of the last 3 months asking for him to step in and hire a professional. He has... Read more »

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar
answered on Nov 16, 2022

A California attorney could advise best, but you await a response for two weeks. For your question about what type of lawyer you need, the lease/rent/habitability issues would fall under the expertise of a landlord-tenant attorney. In terms of personal injury damages, law firms tend to require... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Personal Injury, Construction Law, Landlord - Tenant and Small Claims for California on
Q: Dust got into my tenants unit from a roofer's work and now they are claiming damages of $20K+. Who's liable?

Hi, I am a landlord with a tenant who is trying to claim $20K of personal property damages after I hired a licensed/contracted roofer to do work. They are saying that the dust broke their computer and damaged some worn shoes. The roofers are trying to deny responsibility, but they did not require... Read more »

James A. Greer
James A. Greer
answered on Nov 14, 2022

Dear Landlord regarding Tenant Claim about dust intrusion: The tenant's claim is one for negligence, and goes something like this: it was reasonably foreseeable for the roofing contractor to know or reasonable should know that their construction work would result in dust intrusion and... Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law, Civil Rights, Federal Crimes and Small Claims for California on
Q: Can I sue my former lawyer for not representing me properly which ended with a conviction for a crime that never occurre

I had a little accident in my home when I was trying to make my own dab (honey oil) because I was using it for my ptsd and it’s really expensive! There was a tiny fire before the authorities arrived but I had extinguished it immediately. There was no fire or damage to my house but they still... Read more »

Dale S. Gribow
Dale S. Gribow
answered on Nov 14, 2022

you can always sue anyone for anything.............the issue is whether you would win and whether you could afford to retain a lawyer or find a lawyer that would take the matter on a lien.

you may also consider making a motion for a new trial.

i had previously not finished my...
Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Consumer Law and Small Claims for California on
Q: I paid for a commissioned art piece in Nov 2019 and have yet to receive the item.

I have reached out to the artist multiple times and his excuse is that it is almost finished. He also said that he does cancelled orders and won’t refund. I do not see that policy anywhere on his receipt or website. I spent a paycheck to have this item made and cannot afford to “throw it... Read more »

James R. Dickinson
James R. Dickinson
answered on Oct 31, 2022

Not sure why you've waited so long to pursue this, but speak immediately with a local attorney. Time is always of the essence in legal matters. [I litigate cases. Anything posted here must not be construed as legal advice, nor as grounds for forming an attorney-client relationship. You should... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Contracts, Consumer Law, Real Estate Law and Small Claims for California on
Q: In a small claims court in Ca., Can a married couple each file a $7,500 claim against a contractor who abandoned a job?

We are two senior citizens and retired teachers. Paid contractor $31,500 for a $26,500 job. He only did $15,000 of the job before he abandoned job.

Scott Richard Kaufman
Scott Richard Kaufman
answered on Oct 27, 2022

Start with a complaint to the state contractor's board and go from there...

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts, Animal / Dog Law and Small Claims for California on
Q: What laws pertain to a breach of sales contract (bought a cat) and what law allows me to sue for restitution damages?

I bought the kitten for $750, from a person, claiming they were worked with a Cattery. I traveled to the location for the transaction, not at the Cattery. They gave me the wrong gender. Kittens at that age may be difficult to determine the gender without a thorough examination. They acknowledged... Read more »

James R. Dickinson
James R. Dickinson
answered on Oct 26, 2022

Sounds like a small claims action. [I litigate cases. Anything posted here must not be construed as legal advice, nor as grounds for forming an attorney-client relationship. You should seek an attorney for formal legal advice and representation.]

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