The freshwater harpacticoid Psammonitocrella kumeyaayi sp. nov. from the Nearctic Region (California; USA) is proposed. The position of the genus within Harpacticoida and its relationship with the Parastenocarididae is discussed. The new species can be included within Psammonitocrella on account of a) the cylindrical furca, longer than the telson, b) the unmodified inner spine on the basis of the male first leg, c) loss of the outer spine on the second exopodal segment of the first leg, d) loss of the outer spine of the third exopodal segment of the second, third, and fourth legs, e) loss of the inner apical seta on the third exopodal segment of the second and third legs, f) transformation of the inner apical seta of the third exopodal segment of the fourth leg into a spine, and g) loss of the endopodite of the fourth leg. The new species differs remarkably from P. boultoni , and P. longifurcata in the loss of the outer spine of the second exopodal segment of the fourth leg, in the presence of a one-segmented fifth leg exopodite, and in the presence of an outer seta on the basis of the first and second legs. Both Psammonitocrella and the known species of Parastenocarididae have a one-segmented endopod on the fourth leg, and the endopods of the second and third legs are reduced to one or two segments. Psammonitocrella is currently allocated into the Ameiridae , and evidence suggesting a sister-group relationship with Parastenocarididae —both share the loss of the inner seta on the first endopodal segment of the first leg—indicates that the Parastenocarididae should be included into the Ameiridae . In an evolutionary context, Parastenocarididae could have evolved from a lineage of freshwater ameirids that became interstitial in continental waters and colonized aquifers and groundwaters.