What is a Motion to Vacate Default?

The court has broad discretion to vacate the entry of default, default judgment, or dismissal, but that discretion can be exercised only if the defendant establishes a proper ground for relief, by the proper procedure and within the set time limits. (Code of Civ. Proc., § 473(b).)

Legal Standard

“The court may, upon any terms as may be just, relieve a party or his or her legal representative from a judgment, dismissal, order, or other proceeding taken against him or her through his or her mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable neglect.” (Code of Civ. Proc., § 473(b).) This section “is often applied liberally where the party in default moves promptly to seek relief, and the party opposing the motion will not suffer prejudice if relief is granted.” (Elston v. City of Turlock (1985) 38 Cal.3d 227, 233.)

“The rules pertaining to defaults and default judgments must be precisely followed to ensure that a defaulting defendant is aware of plaintiff’s claims.” (Grappo v. McMills (2017) 11 Cal.App.5th 996, 1012.)

A default or default judgment is void if a defendant was not served with a summons in the manner prescribed by statute. (Sakaguchi v. Sakaguchi (2009) 173 Cal.App.4th 852, 858; Ellard v. Conway (2001) 94 Cal.App.4th 540, 544.) “A judgment may be void on the face of the record or void for lack of proper service.” (Yeung v. Soos (2004) 119 Cal.App.4th 576, 582.)

Procedure

“Application for this relief shall be accompanied by a copy of the answer or other pleading proposed to be filed therein, otherwise the application shall not be granted, and shall be made within a reasonable time, in no case exceeding six months, after the judgment, dismissal, order, or proceeding was taken.” (Code of Civ. Proc., § 473(b).)

“This six-month time limitation is jurisdictional; the court has no power to grant relief under section 473 once the time has lapsed.” (Austin v. Los Angeles Unified School Dist. (2016) 244 Cal.App.4th 918, 928.) The six-month limitation period for mandatory relief under CCP § 473(b) commences at time a default judgment is rendered, rather than earlier when a default is entered. (Sugasawara v. Newland (1994) 27 Cal.App.4th 294.)

“The court shall, whenever an application for relief is made no more than six months after entry of judgment, is in proper form, and is accompanied by an attorney’s sworn affidavit attesting to his or her mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or neglect, vacate any

  1. resulting default entered by the clerk against his or her client, and which will result in entry of a default judgment, or
  2. resulting default judgment or dismissal entered against his or her client, unless the court finds that the default or dismissal was not in fact caused by the attorney’s mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or neglect.”

(Code of Civ. Proc., § 473(b); English v. IKON Business Solutions (2001) 94 Cal.App.4th 130, 143.)

“[W]hat must be attested to is the mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or neglect—not the reasons for it.” (Martin Potts & Associates, Inc. v. Corsair, LLC (2016) 244 Cal.App.4th 432, 438.)

Useful Rulings on Motion to Vacate Default

Recent Rulings on Motion to Vacate Default

1-25 of 10000 results

PRICE VS THE CITY OF ANAHEIM

Plaintiffs’ Motion for Preliminary Injunction Provided that the City will stipulate to a preliminary injunction with respect to the provisions of Ordinance No. 6374 relating to immediate warrantless access to the short-term rental (STR) units, the Court DENIES the application for a preliminary injunction in all other respects, WITHOUT PREJUDICE.

  • Hearing

    Sep 29, 2030

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA EDISON COMPANY VS. SANTA ANA RV STORAGE, L.P.

With respect to the first question, the Court concludes that Section 13.2(f) does not preclude SARVS from attempting to obtain compensation for any alleged loss of goodwill. Notably, nowhere in that section is there any reference to goodwill or any statement to the effect that any potential item of compensation not explicitly referenced therein is considered waived.

  • Hearing

    Apr 25, 2026

T-12 THREE, LLC VS. TURNER CONSTRUCTION COMPANY

The motion is MOOT as to Issue 2, which seeks adjudication of the Third Cause of Action, which Plaintiffs dismissed as to Count 1, under the General Contract. [ROA 2604.] The Court’s analysis with respect to Saddleback’s motion directed to the contract claims applies equally to this motion. 4.

  • Hearing

    Apr 25, 2026

THE CITIES OF DUARTE VS STATE WATER RESOURCES CONTROL BOARD AND CITY OF GARDENA VS REGIONAL WATER QUALITY CONTROL BOARD

CAS004001, as amended on June 16, 2015 by State Board Order WQ 2015-0075, which is remanded to you for reconsideration in light of the Decision of this Court dated April 18, 2019. Nothing herein shall limit or control in any way the discretion legally vested in you. YOU ARE FURTHER COMMANDED to file with this Court a return to this writ on or before (90 plus 30 days as per Respondents’ request) stating what you have done to comply.

  • Hearing

    Jun 20, 2021

VELAZQUEZ VS KIA MOTORS AMERICA INC.

Plaintiff Francisco Velazquez’s Motion to Appear Pro Hac Vice as to Kim D. Stephens, Gregory F. Coleman, Paul C. Peel, Jason T. Dennett and Adam A. Edwards The pro hac vice applications of Adam A. Edwards, Gregory Coleman, Jason T. Dennett, Kim D. Stephens, and Paul C. Peel do not address whether the applicants are: (1) regularly employed in the State of California or (2) regularly engaged in substantial business, professional, or other activities in the State of California. CRC, Rule 9.40(a)(2) and (3).

  • Hearing

    Jun 20, 2021

MALIN VS AMBRY GENETICS CORPORATION

Continued to 7-19-2019

  • Hearing

    Jun 20, 2021

BELINDA AGUILAR, ET AL. VS TG PROPERTIES LLC

Judicial Assistant is directed to give notice to Plaintiff, who upon receipt of this notice, is ordered to give notice to all parties of record.

  • Hearing

    Oct 13, 2020

(NO CASE NAME AVAILABLE)

On October 8, 2019, Plaintiff filed a complaint against Defendant and Does 1-25 for: Unlawful Detainer On October 23, 2019, this instant case was related to Case No. 19PSCV00904; Case No. 19PSCV00904 was deemed the lead case. On November 22, 2019, a clerk’s default judgment for possession only was filed. On November 22, 2019, Defendant’s default was entered. A Case Management Conference and an Order to Show Cause Re: Failure to Proceed with Default Judgment are set for July 2, 2020.

  • Hearing

    Oct 07, 2020

JOSE AGUILERA VS 5 STAR DELIVERY INC

A Case Management Conference and an Order to Show Cause Re: Default Judgment are set for September 24, 2020. Discussion Plaintiff’s Application for Default Judgment is DENIED without prejudice. The following defects are noted: Plaintiff appears to seek default judgment against Zaragoza and LAH only; however, Plaintiff has failed to dismiss 5 Star Delivery and RPH. Plaintiff’s first loan to Zaragoza was written in Spanish; however, Plaintiff’s second loan to Zaragoza was written in English.

  • Hearing

    Sep 24, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    Fraud

WEST COVINA CAR STOP, LLC, A CALIFORNIA LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY VS ROUND TABLE REMARKETING D.R.S., INC., A CALIFORNIA CORPORATION, ET AL.

After the checks had been sent to Round Table, Plaintiff learned that the vehicle price was to be paid directly to the selling dealer, and that only the broker fee was to be paid directly to Round Table. Round Table cashed the checks and refuse to return the monies to Plaintiff.

  • Hearing

    Sep 23, 2020

  • Type

    Contract

  • Sub Type

    Breach

VAGAN AZARYAN VS EXXON MOBILE

Judicial Assistant is directed to give notice to Plaintiff, who upon receipt of this notice, is ordered to give notice to all parties of record.

  • Hearing

    Sep 18, 2020

DANIEL GINZBURG, ET AL. VS 15025 SATICOY STREET, INC., ET AL.

Judicial Assistant is directed to give notice to Plaintiff, who upon receipt of this notice, is ordered to give notice to all parties of record.

  • Hearing

    Aug 31, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    other

RICHARD MACIAS VS CITY OF LOS ANGELES, ET AL.

Judicial Assistant is directed to give notice to Plaintiff, who upon receipt of this notice, is ordered to give notice to all Parties of record.

  • Hearing

    Aug 27, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    other

IN THE MATTER OF BARBARA PETERSON

The next previously scheduled hearing is on 8/18/20 to review the filing / sufficiency of the status report due on or before 7/20/20.

  • Hearing

    Aug 18, 2020

  • Type

    Family Law

  • Sub Type

    Conservatorship

IN THE MATTER OF BARBARA PETERSON

The next previously scheduled hearing is on 8/18/20 to review the filing / sufficiency of the status report due on or before 7/20/20.

  • Hearing

    Aug 18, 2020

  • Type

    Family Law

  • Sub Type

    Conservatorship

UPGRADE SECURITIZATION TRUST I VS CHRISTOPHER LOPEZ

The Loan was subsequently assigned to Plaintiff. Lopez has defaulted on the Loan by failing to make all required payments due thereunder. On October 25, 2019, Plaintiff filed a complaint, asserting a cause of action against Lopez and Does 1-5 for: Breach of Written Contract On January 16, 2020, Lopez’s default was entered. A Case Management Conference is set for March 23, 2020. Discussion Plaintiff’s Application for Default Judgment is DENIED without prejudice.

  • Hearing

    Aug 17, 2020

JINGXUAN ZHANG VS HUMMINGBIRD NEST ENTERTAINMENT CORP

On May 9, 2019, the court granted, inter alia, Plaintiff’s ex parte application for amendment to complaint. On August 7, 2019, Ye’s default was entered. An Order to Show Cause Re: Failure to Proceed with Default Judgment is set for August 14, 2020. Discussion Plaintiff’s Application for Default Judgment is DENIED without prejudice.

  • Hearing

    Aug 14, 2020

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

YESLENDER, LLC, A PENNSYLVANIA LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY VS FIVE BULLS TRANSPORT, INC., A CALIFORNIA CORPORATION, ET AL.

A Case Management Conference and an Order to Show Cause Re: Failure to File Proof of Service are set for August 12, 2020. Discussion Plaintiff’s Application for Default Judgment is GRANTED. ANALYSIS Yes (7/6/20) Default Entered. (JC Form CIV-100.) Yes Dismissal of all parties against whom judgment is not sought or an application for separate judgment against specified parties under CCP 579, supported by a showing of grounds for each judgment. (CRC 3.1800(a)(7).)

  • Hearing

    Aug 12, 2020

  • Type

    Contract

  • Sub Type

    Breach

CITRUS OBSTETRICS & GYNECOLGY VS CITRUS VALLEY HEALTH

The motion has been withdrawn as to Issues Nos. 2 and 15. The motion is otherwise deemed moot. 2. Defendant Emanate Health fka Citrus Valley Health Partners Inc.’s Motion to Seal Confidential Documents Filed by Plaintiff in Opposition to Emanate Health’s Motion for Summary Adjudication is GRANTED. Background Plaintiff Citrus Obstetrics & Gynecology Medical Associates, Inc.

  • Hearing

    Aug 06, 2020

  • Type

    Business

  • Sub Type

    Intellectual Property

HWANSHIK YOON VS ELLEN EUN YOO, ET AL.

Yoo, CJME and Does 1-10 for: Breach of Oral Contract Intentional Misrepresentation Defamation Quantum Meruit Unjust Enrichment Conspiracy to Defraud On May 23, 2019, E. Yoo’s, S. Yoo’s and CJME’s defaults were entered. A Case Management Conference and Order to Show Cause Re: Failure to Proceed with Default Judgment are set for August 6, 2020 Discussion Plaintiff’s application for default judgment is DENIED without prejudice.

  • Hearing

    Aug 06, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    Fraud

(NO CASE NAME AVAILABLE)

Since no motion for reconsideration or to vacate the judgment were filed, the Court agrees that the time to appeal the judgment entered in this matter expired on March 20, 2020. Accordingly, the Court cannot revisit the issue of defendant’s entitlement to attorneys’ fees under the judgment. Since plaintiff has not challenged the reasonableness of the fees requested, the Court will award defendant attorneys fees in the amount of $7,350.

  • Hearing

    Aug 03, 2020

CHANGLIANG DAI VS THOMAS CHEN, ET AL.

On September 5, 2019, Plaintiff filed a complaint, asserting causes of action against Chen, Tissuesco and Does 1-10 for: Breach of Contract Breach of Fiduciary Duty On October 23, 2019, Chen’s default was entered. Discussion The hearing on Plaintiff’s Application for Default Judgment is CONTINUED to September 2, 2020 8:30 a.m. The following defects are noted: Tissuesco’s default has not been entered.

  • Hearing

    Jul 31, 2020

  • Type

    Contract

  • Sub Type

    Breach

NORGUARD INSURANCE COMPANY, A CORPORATION VS GOTHAM DEVELOPMENTS LLC, A LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY

To be admissible, a declaration made out-of-state for use in California must state that the statements were made under penalty of California law in material compliance with Code of Civil Procedure Section 2015.5. Kulshrestha v. First Union Commercial Corp. (2004) 33 Cal.4th 601, 618. As such, the default judgment is procedurally defective and lacks admissible evidence.

  • Hearing

    Jul 30, 2020

  • Type

    Collections

  • Sub Type

    Promisory Note

REBEKAH CEHAJIC VS Z&A ASSOCIATES, INC., ET AL.

Judicial Assistant is directed to give notice to Plaintiff, who upon receipt of this notice, is ordered to give notice to all parties of record.

  • Hearing

    Jul 30, 2020

ANTHONY SAM VS RENEE KWAN ET AL

The Court GRANTS Board of Fire and Police Pension Commissioners’ motion for leave to file a FACC.

  • Hearing

    Jul 29, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    Fraud

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