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Superior Court of California - County of San Diego: Civil: Construction Defect Cases

Construction Defect Cases

Construction defect cases involve claims related to the construction of physical structures, including:

  • Individual residences
  • Residential condominiums
  • Commercial buildings
  • Commercial condominiums

These cases may involve any of the following:

  • Associations governing any of the above structures
  • Developers
  • Subcontractors
  • Manufacturers involved in the construction of the physical structures


Pursuant to San Diego Superior Court Local Rule 2.1.3, all construction defect cases filed in San Diego County are to be filed in Central Division (Hall of Justice, 330 W. Broadway, San Diego). The department currently designated to hear construction defect casesis Departments 62.

  • Any pre-litigation petition brought to the court pursuant to Civil Code 1375(n) will be assigned a case number and assigned to a designated construction defect department in the Central Division.
  • Any construction defect complaint filed after completion of the pre-litigation requirements of Civil Code 1375, et seq. will be assigned the same case number as any pre-litigation case number existing for the action.

Initial Filing of Construction Defect Cases

Initial construction defect complaints shall be electronically filed (E-Filed). San Diego Superior Court has mandatory E-Filing through File & Serve Xpress (fka Lexis Nexis FileandServe), an E-Filing service provider, unless there is a court order waiving E-Filing. Contact a File & Serve Xpress representative at 1-888-529-7587 or go to to establish an account.

Case Management Orders (CMOs)

See the Forms page for CMO templates which can be downloaded.

Plaintiffs and Defendants are to meet and confer regarding preparation of the CMO prior to the filing of a cross-complaint. The CMO shall be completed and submitted to the court for final approval.

When preparing the CMO timeline, please be aware that the court schedules the following events on Fridays:

  • 150-Day Status Conference
  • Pre-Mediation Readiness Conference
  • Trial Readiness Conference
  • Trial Call.

For the time of each event, please refer to the applicable Department Policies and Procedures.

Electronic Filing and Service Order / Courtesy Copies

Construction defect cases are designated as electronic filing ("E-File") cases and are governed by an Electronic Filing and Service Order.

Courtesy copies of documents specified in the Electronic Filing Reference Guide must be provided to the court.

Courtesy copies are to be provided to the court within two court days after electronic filing with the following exceptions:

  1. Replies to oppositions to motions must be delivered to the court the same day they are e-filed;
  2. Ex parte papers are due by 2:00 p.m. the day before the ex parte appearance.

All courtesy copies must comply with CRC Rules 2.100, 3.1110 and any other applicable formatting requirements.

Copies of any documents previously filed and relied upon by a moving or responding party must also be provided, i.e. the operative complaint or answer when filing a demurrer or motion for judgment on the pleadings.

For more information regarding courtesy copies, please see the Letter from Judges Enright and Styn Re: Final Construction Defect E-File Changes Effective April 5, 2004.


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