San Francisco County Superior Court eFiling and eService Guide

This 2022 San Francisco County Superior Court eFiling and eService guide provides the essential information every attorney and paralegal needs to meet the San Francisco County Superior Court’s latest electronic civil filing requirements.

Table of Contents

General SFSC Civil eFiling Information

General SFSC Civil eFiling Information

San Francisco County Court Website

The Superior Court of California – County of San Francisco Local Court Rules

Mandatory Case Types: Civil

Filing Deadline: 11:59 p.m. on the court day that the filing is due

Formatting Requirements: The format of all E-Documents must comply with CRC 2.100 et seq., the rules governing formatting of paper pleadings.

Courtesy Copies: For papers filed by eFiling, 7 or more court days before the hearing, courtesy copies required by a court division must be lodged no later than 2 court days after the date of eFiling. For papers filed by eFiling, all courtesy copies must include the relevant Transaction Receipt. Please see local rules for more details.


Looking for an eFiling service provider (EFSP) to file into San Francisco Superior Court?

Before you decide: Download the EFSP checklist


Limitations on Filings: All parties in Designated Cases must conventionally file the following types of documents: Writs, Abstracts, Out of State Commissions, Certificate of Facts Re: Unsatisfied Judgments, Unlawful Detainer Summonses, Claims of Right to Possession, Undertakings and Rent Deposits, Bonds, and Order of Examinations.

Notes: All parties must conventionally file the initiating document for the following types of Designated Cases: Unlawful Detainer, Civil Harassment, and Name/Gender Change.

All other general civil complaints and petitions must be initiated through electronic filing.

The original Petition for Appointment of a Guardian ad Litem with original signatures and the proposed order must be conventionally filed directly in the Presiding Judge’s department after the filing fee has been paid. The filing fee may be paid either in the Clerk’s Office, Room 103, or through an eFiling vendor by electronically submitting a copy of the petition.

  • Unlawful Detainers (initial filing and summons only); all subsequent filings must be electronically filed.
  • Actions for Recovery of Covid Rental Debt: Residential.  (Initial filing only); all subsequent filings must be electronically filed.

General Court Information (415) 551-4000

Telephone Hours: 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Civil Clerk’s OfficeCivil DivisionCourt Staff –
Civil Operations
Hours of Operation and Location
Civic Center Courthouse
400 McAllister Street Room 103
Monday-Friday
8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Dropbox hours:
8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Court Administrator: Wayne Parinas
400 McAllister St., Room 103
San Francisco, CA  94102-4514
Office Hours: Monday – Friday
8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Info: (415) 551-4000
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Rapid Legal delivers unrivaled process serving for law firms and legal departments
eFiling Special Instructions & Technical Requirements

eFiling Special Instructions & Technical Requirements

Document Titles

When adding a title to a document be certain to include the following:

  • Name of the party filing the document
  • The nature of the document
  • Party against whom relief, if any, is being sought
  • The nature of relief sought.

The document title entered in “Document Title” box should be exactly the same as the document title on the caption of your document.


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Caption Pages & Slip Sheets
Captions and slip sheets may be needed for exhibits and other documents. Each document, submitted in pleading format, that is uploaded separately—even if in the same transaction—must include a caption page as a cover sheet.

The captain page must include a specific document title; for example, “Declaration of John Smith in Support of Motion for Summary Judgment.”

The caption page must also comply with all applicable codes and rules, including California Rules of Court, Rule 2.111. More information about this is available on this page of the SFSC website.

  • Smaller Documents
    If smaller documents, such as exhibits, are grouped together and uploaded as one document, there must be a caption page as a cover sheet and the caption page must include a specific document title. For example: “Exhibits A-E to Declaration of Joe Smith in Support of Motion for Summary Judgment”. Slip sheets must be used between each document (e.g., a page where the only words printed are “Exhibit A,” a page where the only words printed are “Exhibit B” and so on). Blank pages are not allowed as slip sheets.
  • Large Documents
    If a large document is broken down, each portion of the document that is uploaded separately must include a caption page as a cover sheet. As with smaller documents, the caption page for large documents must include a specific document title.
3-D and Other Physical Media

3-D and Other Physical Media

According to page 10 of the Uniform Local Rules of Court, Superior Court of California, County of San Francisco, documents that are three-dimensional objects, information that can only be stored on physical media other than paper, or other documents not readily susceptible to E-filing may be filed or lodged conventionally in accordance with the direction of the Court. A notice of such filing must be E-Filed and E-Served.


eFiling and eService Deadlines

Pursuant to CCP 1010.6 (b)(3) documents e-filed or electronically served between 12:00 a.m. and 11:59 p.m. are deemed filed or served on that same day.


Fees, Courtesy Copies, Rejected Documents

Fees, Courtesy Copies, Rejected Documents

Following is a summary of fees that may be associated with eFiling and eService in San Francisco Superior Court. This section also includes information about courtesy copies and rejected documents as they relate to the electronic filing process.

Complete details about these important components of working online with the Court appear on this eFiling instruction page.

You can also find comprehensive information about filing fees in civil cases (limited and umlimited) in The San Francisco Superior Court of California Statewide Civil Fee Schedule (effective April 1, 2021). The schedule also provides important information about fees for Family Law, Probate, Appeal and Writ Related Fees, Records Related Fees, Returned Check Fees, and other important fee-related questions.

Court Reporter Fee

For motions where the moving party must pay a fee for a court reporter provided by the court, the following procedures must be followed to ensure the court is able to collect payment.

  • A separate document (cover letter/correspondence; pleading) must be uploaded, within the same eFiling transaction for the court to collect payment for court reporter.
  • The document used to provide notice of payment of court reporter fees must specify the case name, case number, the hearing date and time and name of the party that is paying the fee. The Document Type of “Notice of Payment for Court Reporter Fee” must be indicated in the Document Field.
jury fees

Jury Fees

To post the non-refundable jury fees deposit:

  • A firm must submit a document in pleading form, or a letter for the collection of the $150 jury fee deposit.

To post advanced jury fees:

  • A firm must submit a document to the court for the collection of Advanced Jury Fees. The case name, case number, name of the party who is posting the fees and the amount should be indicated on the document you are submitting.

For subsequent jury fees:

The courtroom clerk will inform the party of the correct amount and a check may be submitted to the courtroom clerk, or the party can e-file the payment by submitting a Notice of Subsequent Jury Fees or other document such as a cover letter to the court.

Pro Hac Vice Renewal Fee

The annual renewal fee of $500 is due on or before the anniversary of the date the application to appear as counsel pro hac vice was granted.

A separate document must be uploaded to collect the fee which may be submitted in one of the following formats:

  • Cover Letter/Correspondence
  • Pleading

The document must specify the case name, case number, the bar number issued by the court, amount of the fee ($500) and name of the attorney for whom the fee is being paid. The Document Type “Pro Hac Vice Annual Renewal Fee” must be used. The court will not file the document, but will accept the document as “fee paid.”

If the cover letter/notice is not e-filed by the anniversary date of the Order Granting Pro Hac Vice status, the attorney’s pro hac vice status will terminate on the anniversary date.

courtesy copies

Courtesy Copies

You are required to send a courtesy copy in paper to the judge of any document that requires court review, action or signature.

These courtesy copies should be sent directly to the judge’s department and are due no later than 1:30 p.m. the next business day after the documents are e-filed (except for ex parte documents – see below).

  • Courtesy copies should be delivered via messenger to ensure timely delivery.
  • For courtesy copies of default packets that must be delivered to the Default Unit, the messenger can bypass the line at the civil counter in the Civic Center Courthouse (Room 103) and leave the courtesy copy in the drop box next to the defaults window.
rejected documents

Rejected Documents

San Francisco Superior Court offers these contact points for questions regarding rejected documents:

  • General Civil Cases: Sfefiling@sftc.org
  • Defaults: (415) 551-5921 or (415) 551-5969
  • United Family Court: UFCEfiling@sftc.org

Note from the Court: When calling these numbers, please leave a message with your question, transaction number(s) and a toll-free phone number (or a phone number where the court can place a collect call).

Please do not call other court numbers with questions regarding eFiling transactions.


Reduce eFiling Rejections with these helpful resources.


Preparing Your eFiling and/or eService Transaction

Preparing Your eFiling and/or eService Transaction

Multiple documents under a single transaction

When submitting a transaction with multiple documents done in pleading format—for example, a motion and supporting documents to be filed as standalone documents each—you must upload each document separately under the same transaction.  Each document must have a caption page of its own in compliance with CRC§2.100-2.111.

When submitting a transaction with multiple Judicial Council forms—for example, MC-051 Notice of Motion and Motion to be Relieved as Counsel and MC-052 Declaration in Support of Attorney’s Motion to be Relieved as Counsel—you must upload each form separately under the same transaction. No caption page required as it is considered a stand-alone document.

eFiling and eService Deadlines

Pursuant to CCP 1010.6 (b)(3) documents eFiled or electronically served between 12:00 a.m. and 11:59 p.m. are deemed filed or served on that same day.

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eService Important Reminders

eService Important Reminders

Complete and detailed information about eService of Documents and Proof of Service for San Francisco Superior Court is available in the Uniform Local Rules of Court, beginning on page 14 of the PDF the court has posted online.

Following are a few important points to remember about using eService in San Francisco Superior Court as noted in the Uniform Local Rules of Court PDF. Be sure to visit the Court’s website for the most up-to-date and comprehensive information.

  1. Users must E-Serve all E-Filed documents on all parties. Users may E-Serve other documents not E-Filed. This rule does not modify the obligations of service as set forth in the CCP.
  2. A party may choose to serve documents required to be E-Filed under these rules by means in addition to eService, but not instead of eService, unless otherwise provided by rule or order. The time for response to documents shall be the earlier of those attributable to the various means of service.
  3. The Transaction Receipt is a valid proof of service if it complies with CRC 2.251(e)(1) and CCP § 1013(a).
  4. Documents served by hand in open court during trial may be served conventionally. The document and proof of service must be eFiled before the close of business on the court day following service by hand in open court. In addition, the eFiled proof of service must reference the date the document was originally served in open court.
  5. During an ongoing hearing or trial, motions with jurisdictional time limits including motions for new trial, motions JNOV, motions to quash service for personal jurisdiction, any notice of appeal, and petitions for writs may be served conventionally. The Court’s service copy of any petition to the Court of Appeal for extraordinary relief must be eServed.
  6. Effect of eService. The eService of a document is effective service on all users. The filing and service provisions of CCP § 1010.6 and CRC 2.251 apply.

Stand-Alone Electronic Service (eService) is Here!

Place stand-alone eService orders on the Rapid Legal portal, independent of a court eFiling order.

  • Q. Why use eService?
  • A. eSevice uses email to notify a party that a court document
    has been served electronically. It is paperless, fast, and efficient.

To place an electronic service order, log into the portal and select “eService” under “Place Order.”


Family Law

Family Law

As a part of the Unified Family Court, the Family Law division handles a wide range of domestic relations cases ranging from dissolutions to child custody to adoptions. To help streamline its processes a selection of downloadable forms for Family Law are provided by the Court on its website.

The site features all local forms categorized by division, form name, form number and date of revision.

Forms used for Family Law in San Francisco Superior Court include the following:

11.7A: Declaration Regarding Custody and Visitation
11.7D(1): Application and Declaration for Telephonic Appearance
11.7D(2): Proposed Order for Telephonic Appearance
11.7.D. 4) c : Information on Title IV-D Remote Appearances in Department 416
11.9A: Declaration Regarding Acceptance of Service at P.O. Box
11.11: At Issue Memorandum
11.12: Status Conference Form
11.13: Request for Earlier Mandatory Settlement Conference Date
11.14E: Family Code Section 2337 (d) Attachment
11.16F: Child Custody Evaluation Order
11.17: Notice of Nature and Availability of Alternative Dispute Resolution Methods in Family Law Matters
Adoption Research Instructions
Application and Order Re: Release of Adoption Records
Child Custody and Visitation Stipulation and Order
Family Centered Case Resolution (FCCR) Statement
Order Re: Appointment of Counsel for Minor
Request for Voluntary Family Centered Case Resolution (FCCR) and Notice of Hearing Set
Service By Posting
Stipulation and Order of Compliance with Case Management Requiremeents
Stipulation Re: Voluntary Mediation
Stipulation to Reschedule Mediation and/or Hearing
Work Search Order

Local Rules Revised for 2022

Updated details about Family Law are available in the Superior Court of California County of San Francisco Uniform Local Rules of Court, revised January 1, 2022. The rules are available online and can be downloaded as a PDF.


Family Law Questions?

Get answers right here to 14 FAQs about Family Law from San Francisco County Superior Court.


eFiling FAQs From San Francisco Superior Court

eFiling FAQs From San Francisco Superior Court

If you are new to electronic filing in San Francisco Superior Court you may have questions about the Court’s eFiling requirements and how they need to be met. You can quickly find answers about eFiling online by reading these 15 Frequently Asked Questions.

Following are some of the questions you may want to address when you eFile into San Francisco Superior Court:

Q. What Civil Cases Are Subject to Mandatory eFiling?

A. Initiating filings for all General Civil case types except:  Small Claims, Civil Harassment, Name/Gender petitions, Probate Conservatorships and Guardianships, and Unlawful Detainers.

Subsequent filings for all General Civil case types, including: Asbestos, Probate Estate cases, Probate Trust cases, Complex Litigation cases and Unlawful Detainers.

Q. Am I Required to eFile the Initial Pleadings?

A. Yes. Initial filings for all General Civil case types except: Civil Harassment, Name/Gender petitions, and Unlawful Detainers.

Q. Do I Still Have to Provide Courtesy Copies?

A. In Civil cases, courtesy copies are required under LRSF 2.7(B).

In Probate Trust cases, courtesy copies are required under LRSF 14.93(G).

See more details about courtesy copies on the FAQ page.

Can Your Vendor Keep Up?

Can Your Vendor Keep Up?

The California court system is home to some of the world’s busiest courts. To keep up, law firms must focus on getting work done with peak efficiency in compliance with the Court’s rules. Electronic filing and eService help meet these needs.

For law firms that want to move beyond simply “getting the job done” with eFiling and eService, and elevate their performance, it’s smart to partner with a vendor that has experience with San Francisco Superior Court and deep domain experience in the legal profession.

If you’re uncertain whether your vendor fits that bill—or whether they can simply keep up with your firm—contact Rapid Legal. Speak with one of our account executives to find out what your vendor should be doing for you—and how they can prove their performance.

Book a demo or create an account today.

 

Information on this web page is current as of January 31, 2022. To get the most accurate and up-to-date information about eFiling in San Francisco Superior Court, please consult the Court’s website.