Plaintiff's Claim and Order to Defendant (Small Claims)
Two copies per defendant of the Plaintiff’s Claim and Order to Defendant
(form SC-100 Proof of service SC-104
Purpose of Process
The small claims court acquires jurisdiction to hear the case when the Plaintiff’s
Claim and Order to Defendant is served on the defendant.
Specify an address for service where the defendant usually works or lives.
Manner of Service
The defendant may be served by personal or substituted service. Personal service
must be made not less than 15 days before the hearing, or 20 days if the small
claims court hearing is in another county. Substitute service must be made at least
25 days before the hearing, or 30 days if the court is in another county.
Time for Service
The Process Server must receive the process no later than four weeks before the hearing.
$46.20 or more
$46.20 to start if served, not found or canceled.
Proof of Service
The Process Server will mail a Certificate of Service to the court and a Notice of
Service to the plaintiff if the Claim is served. If not served, a Not Found/No Service
return is mailed to the plaintiff explaining the reason for non-service.
A small claims case cannot be heard until the defendant (the person sued) is served with a copy of the Plaintiff’s Claim
and Order to Defendant. The Plaintiff’s Claim and Order to Defendant may be personally served at least 15 days before
the hearing if the place of service and the court are in the same county. If the court is in another county, personal
service must be made at least 20 days before the hearing. Service may also be made by substitution in which a copy of
the Plaintiff’s Claim and Order to Defendant is left with a suitable person at the defendant’s usual place of abode
(residence) , employment or mailing address and a copy mailed to the defendant at that address. Substitute service must
be made at least 25 days before the hearing or 30 days if the court is in another county. The Process Server will make
up to three attempts to serve the Plaintiff’s Claim and Order to Defendant including one night time attempt after 6:00 p.
m. (unless the defendant cannot be found at the address in the evening.) If the defendant is served, the Process Server
will file a proof of service with the court and mail a notice of service to the plaintiff. If service is unsuccessful, the
Process Server will mail a certificate of not found/no service detailing the reasons for non-service to the plaintiff. The
plaintiff should not appear in court unless advised that the Plaintiff’s Claim and Order to Defendant was served. The
plaintiff should call the Process Server for a status check if a mailed notification is not received at least five days before
$46.20 or more
Process Server Instructions
Two copies of Plaintiff's Claim and Order to Defendant
Deliver to the Department at least four weeks before the hearing.
T. (213) 725-7969
M. 1605 S. Hoover ST # 103 Los Angeles, CA 90006