How to Take Legal Action to Fight a Water Bill!
If you have an issue with your water bill, and would like to file a complaint or claim, under the Government Claims Act all complaints must go through the City’s Risk Management Department before they can be taken to court.
If you have a claim and are ready to file, there is a claim form to fill out. You must file this form within 6 months of the incident. If you feel like you have a claim, but are unsure, you can give us a call and we will help advise you on your situation.
In addition to your claim form, we recommend you write a separate letter and attach it to your form before sending it to the City. In your letter you should include specific relevant dates, times, and amounts. If you can, try to identify any law that supports your claim. (E.g. California Constitution Article 13(d) Section 6(b)(3) which says that the amount you are charged has to be proportional to cost of the service you are provided). You also DEFINITELY want to attach copies of any relevant documentation that you have.
When the city receives your claim, they will notify you of their acceptance or denial of the claim usually within 45 days.
If they reject your claim, you can fight it at Superior Court. Superior Court is significantly different from Small Claims Court. You will need to pay filing fees and it’s not as easy to represent yourself, you may want to hire a lawyer. Keep in mind there may be options for getting these fees waived.
You can call us at (619) 696-6966