When Do You Need A Minor’s Compromise in California?

By Michael Reiter, Attorney at Law

A Minor’s Compromise is a court proceeding to obtain court approval of a settlement or compromise (such as a personal injury settlement)  involving a minor.  The procedure is set by the Code of Civil Procedure, the California Probate Code and the California Rules of Court.

California Code of Civil Procedure Section 372 reads, in pertinent part:

. . . The . . . guardian ad litem so appearing for any minor . . . shall have power, with the approval of the court in which the action or proceeding is pending, to compromise the same, to agree to the order or judgment to be entered therein for or against the ward . . . and to satisfy any judgment or order in favor of the ward . . . or release or discharge any claim of the ward . . . pursuant to that compromise. Any money or other property to be paid or delivered pursuant to the order or judgment for the benefit of a minor. . . shall be paid and delivered as provided in Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 3600) of Part 8 of Division 4 of the Probate Code.

California Probate Code Section 3600 reads, in pertinent part:

This chapter applies whenever both of the following conditions exist:

(a) A court (1) approves a compromise of, or the execution of a covenant not to sue on or a covenant not to enforce judgment on, a minor’s disputed claim, (2) approves a compromise of a pending action or proceeding to which a minor . . .  is a party, or (3) gives judgment for a minor . . . . [and]

(b) The compromise, covenant, or judgment provides for the payment or delivery of money or other property for the benefit of the minor . . . ..


California Rules of Court Rule 3.1384(a) reads, in pertinent part:

A petition for court approval of a compromise or covenant not to sue under Code of Civil Procedure section 372 must comply with rules 7.950, 7.951, and 7.952.

The procedure for a Minor’s Compromise is found in Title 7 of the California Rules of Court (Probate Rules), Chapter 20, Claims of Minors and Persons With Disabilities.

California Rules of Court Rule 7.950 reads, in pertinent part:

A petition for court approval of a compromise of or a covenant not to sue or enforce judgment on a minor’s disputed claim; a compromise or settlement of a pending action or proceeding to which a minor .  .  .  is a party; or disposition of the proceeds of a judgment for a minor . . . under chapter 4 of part 8 of division 4 of the Probate Code (commencing with section 3600) or Code of Civil Procedure section 372 must be verified by the petitioner and must contain a full disclosure of all information that has any bearing upon the reasonableness of the compromise, covenant, settlement, or disposition. Except as provided in rule 7.950.5, the petition must be prepared on a fully completed Petition to Approve Compromise of Disputed Claim or Pending Action or Disposition of Proceeds of Judgment for Minor or Person With a Disability (form MC-350).

The Rule references Judicial Council form MC-350, Petition to Approve Compromise of Disputed Claim.  As of the writing of this post, the current form is dated January 1, 2011.  Before using a Judicial Council form, make sure to check that the latest version is being used.  The petition is currently ten pages long, not including attachments

A Minor’s Compromise should be used to confirm any compromise, covenant not to sure or enforce judgment, whether or not there is pending action when a minor is involved.

The information you obtain at this blog is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is established by reading or commenting on this blog. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation.

A: 1255 W. Colton Ave. Suite 104
      Redlands, CA 92374
T: (909) 708-6055

W: http://michaelreiterlaw.com



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About Michael Reiter
Michael Reiter is a Redlands, California-based lawyer, serving San Bernardino County and Riverside County in Southern California's Inland Empire. Michael Reiter is a lawyer practicing in the following fields of law: Personal Injury Law, Municipal Law, Code Enforcement Law, Small Business Law and Real Estate Law. Michael Reiter practices in all the local courts, including San Bernardino Superior Court, Riverside Superior Court, and the United States District Court for the Central District of California. Michael Reiter was admitted to the California State Bar in 1998. Michael Reiter was Assistant City Attorney for the City of Redlands, a Deputy City Attorney for the City of San Bernardino, and Staff Attorney for Legal Aid Society of San Bernardino. Michael Reiter serves all of San Bernardino and Riverside County, Orange County, and Los Angeles County. Michael Reiter can be reached at (909) 708-6055, or by electronic mail at michael@michaelreiterlaw.com.

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