Access to the court system just became even more difficult for litigants whom have limited resources. In an unsurprising (yet still disappointing) move, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed SB 857, which increases filing fees in Los Angeles County and the rest of California. Additionally, because this bill includes an urgency clause, the new fees took effect upon the Governor’s execution of the document. In other words, the new filing fees are effective immediately.
Here is a list of some of the new fees:
- First appearance in an unlimited civil action (over $25,000.00), Family law petitions, and Probate petitions by plaintiff(s) and each defendant will increase to $395.00. This fee increase applies to all types of filings in which the previous fee was $355.00 (civil, probate, family, etc…).
- First appearance in a limited action ($10,000.00 up to $25,000.00) by plaintiff(s) and each defendant will increase to $370.00.
- First appearance in a limited action (under $10,000.00) by plaintiff(s) and each defendant will increase to $220.00.
Note: The above fees do not include the additional fees required for Unlawful Detainer filings (additional $15.00) or the surcharges imposed in Riverside County, San Bernardino County, or the City and County of San Francisco.
- Motion for Summary Judgment/Adjudication will increase to $500.00.
- Application by counsel to appear Pro Hac Vice will increase to $500.00.
- Adds an additional $3.00 penalty to every parking violation.
- Additional increases in various criminal penalties and traffic fines.
- A fee for telephonic appearances (a fee payable to the court in addition to fees paid to vendors). Fee has not been determined yet. An additional notice will be sent once we learn what this fee will be set at.
This is another example of what politicians do in Sacramento when they have failed to manage our resources properly. They increase fees. Pretty soon litigation will exclusively be the "sport of kings."