A special demurrer for uncertainty in California is the topic of this blog post.
A special demurrer for uncertainty in California is filed on the grounds that the complaint is uncertain because it is vague and ambiguous.
Statutory authorization for a special demurrer for uncertainty in California.
A special demurrer for uncertainty in California is authorized by Code of Civil Procedure § 430.10 which states, in pertinent part: “The party against whom a complaint or cross-complaint has been filed may object, by demurrer or answer as provided in section 430.30, to the pleading on any one or more of the following grounds… (f) The pleading is uncertain. As used in this subdivision, “uncertain” includes ambiguous and unintelligible.”
Before filing any special demurer for uncertainty in California the moving party must comply with the requirements of Code of Civil Procedure section 430.41.
Code of Civil Procedure § 430.41 states in pertinent part that,
“(a) Before filing a demurrer pursuant to this chapter, the demurring party shall meet and confer in person or by telephone with the party who filed the pleading that is subject to demurrer for the purpose of determining whether an agreement can be reached that would resolve the objections to be raised in the demurrer. If an amended complaint, cross-complaint, or answer is filed, the responding party shall meet and confer again with the party who filed the amended pleading before filing a demurrer to the amended pleading.
(1) As part of the meet and confer process, the demurring party shall identify all of the specific causes of action that it believes are subject to demurrer and identify with legal support the basis of the deficiencies. The party who filed the complaint, cross-complaint, or answer shall provide legal support for its position that the pleading is legally sufficient or, in the alternative, how the complaint, cross-complaint, or answer could be amended to cure any legal insufficiency.
(2) The parties shall meet and confer at least five days before the date the responsive pleading is due. If the parties are not able to meet and confer at least five days prior to the date the responsive pleading is due, the demurring party shall be granted an automatic 30-day extension of time within which to file a responsive pleading, by filing and serving, on or before the date on which a demurrer would be due, a declaration stating under penalty of perjury that a good faith attempt to meet and confer was made and explaining the reasons why the parties could not meet and confer. The 30-day extension shall commence from the date the responsive pleading was previously due, and the demurring party shall not be subject to default during the period of the extension. Any further extensions shall be obtained by court order upon a showing of good cause.
(3) The demurring party shall file and serve with the demurrer a declaration stating either of the following:
(A) The means by which the demurring party met and conferred with the party who filed the pleading subject to demurrer, and that the parties did not reach an agreement resolving the objections raised in the demurrer.
(B) That the party who filed the pleading subject to demurrer failed to respond to the meet and confer request of the demurring party or otherwise failed to meet and confer in good faith.
(4) Any determination by the court that the meet and confer process was insufficient shall not be grounds to overrule or sustain a demurrer.
(c) If a court sustains a demurrer to one or more causes of action and grants leave to amend, the court may order a conference of the parties before an amended complaint or cross-complaint or a demurrer to an amended complaint or cross-complaint, may be filed. If a conference is held, the court shall not preclude a party from filing a demurrer and the time to file a demurrer shall not begin until after the conference has concluded. Nothing in this section prohibits the court from ordering a conference on its own motion at any time or prevents a party from requesting that the court order a conference to be held.
(d) This section does not apply to the following civil actions:
(1) An action in which a party not represented by counsel is incarcerated in a local, state, or federal correctional institution.
(2) A proceeding in forcible entry, forcible detainer, or unlawful detainer.
(e) (1) In response to a demurrer and prior to the case being at issue, a complaint or cross-complaint shall not be amended more than three times, absent an offer to the trial court as to such additional facts to be pleaded that there is a reasonable possibility the defect can be cured to state a cause of action. The three-amendment limit shall not include an amendment made without leave of the court pursuant to Section 472, provided the amendment is made before a demurrer to the original complaint or cross-complaint is filed.”
Grounds for a special demurer for uncertainty in California.
A special demurer for uncertainty in California is a disfavored ground for demurer. However a California Court of Appeal has stated in a published decision that a demurrer for uncertainty should be sustained if the complaint is so poorly written that the defendant cannot reasonably respond as they cannot determine what issues must be admitted or denied or what causes of action are directed against them.
Any party filing a special demurrer for uncertainty in California should be sure to specify exactly where the alleged uncertain allegations are located by referring to the page and line numbers of the complaint as well as specifying how or why certain allegations are uncertain.
Sample special demurrer for uncertainty in California for sale.
Attorneys or parties in California that would like to view a portion of a sample 14 page special demurer for uncertainty in California containing brief instructions, a memorandum of points and authorities with citations to case law and statutory authority, sample meet and confer declaration pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure section 430.41 and proof of service sold by the author can see below.
The author of this blog post, Stan Burman, is a freelance paralegal who has worked in California and Federal litigation since 1995 and has created over 300 sample legal documents for sale.
For licensed attorneys and law firms that need assistance with any California or Federal litigation matters, Mr. Burman is available on a freelance basis. Mr. Burman may be contacted by e-mail at DivParalgl@yahoo.com for more information. He accepts payments through PayPal which means that you can pay using most credit or debit cards.
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Please note that the author of this blog post, Stan Burman is NOT an attorney and as such is unable to provide any specific legal advice. The author is NOT engaged in providing any legal, financial, or other professional services, and any information contained in this blog post is NOT intended to constitute legal advice.
The materials and information contained in this blog post have been prepared by Stan Burman for informational purposes only and are not legal advice. Transmission of the information contained in this blog post is not intended to create, and receipt does not constitute, any business relationship between the author and any readers. Readers should not act upon this information without seeking professional counsel.
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