Note: for continuously updated Motion for Leave to Amend Pleadings in the California Superior Courts, please refer to SmartRules guides.
Use this At A Glance Guide to learn the statewide rules of civil procedure, (the California Code of Civil Procedure and California Rules of Court) for bringing a motion for leave to amend in the California Superior Courts. For more detailed information, including local rules, on bringing a motion for leave to amend in a specific California Superior Court, please see the SmartRules guides: Motion for Leave to Amend for the court where your action is pending.
SmartRules Motion for Leave to Amend guides cover additional requirements, including:
- Memorandum of Points and Authorities
- Hearing and Deposition requirements
- Filing and service requirements
- Evidence requirements
- Table of Contents
- Proposed Orders
- Page limits
Motion for Leave to Amend Rules
If the complaint is amended, a copy of the amendments shall be filed, or the court may, in its discretion, require the complaint as amended to be filed.
A proposed amendment or amended pleading must be serially numbered to differentiate it from previous pleadings or amendments. The court may deem a motion to file an amendment to a pleading to be a motion to file an amended pleading and require the filing of the entire previous pleading with the approved amendments incorporated into it. An amendment to a pleading must not be made by alterations on the face of a pleading except by permission of the court. All alterations must be initialed by the court or the clerk.
Leave to amend a pleading may be sought at any time. Leave to add, strike out, or correct the name of a party may be sought on ex parte application. Leave to make other amendments requires a noticed motion.
Amendment as a matter of right is made by filing and serving the amended pleading.
At any time before or after commencement of trial, in the furtherance of justice, and upon such terms as may be proper, the judge may allow the amendment of any pleadings or pretrial conference order.
A motion to amend a pleading before trial must: (1) Include a copy of the proposed amendment or amended pleading, which must be serially numbered to differentiate it from previous pleadings or amendments; (2) State what allegations in the previous pleading are proposed to be deleted, if any, and where, by page, paragraph, and line number, the deleted allegations are located; and (3) State what allegations are proposed to be added to the previous pleading, if any, and where, by page, paragraph, and line number, the additional allegations are located.
A separate declaration must accompany the motion and must specify: (1) The effect of the amendment; (2) Why the amendment is necessary and proper; (3) When the facts giving rise to the amended allegations were discovered; and (4) The reasons why the request for amendment was not made earlier.
A pleading may be amended “once by the party of course, and without costs, at any time before the answer or demurrer is filed,” or before the hearing on the demurrer. Amendment is made by filing the pleading as amended and serving a copy on the adverse party.
Leave of court to amend a pleading may be sought at any time.