What forms do I need to file my Family Law case?
Different forms are required for different case types, contact the court to see which forms are required for your case type. If you need assistance in filing or legal advice you will need to contact an attorney, the court will only provide you with legal information. You may also be able to get assistance from the Santa Cruz Superior Court Family Law Facilitator (see Family Law Facilitator section below). Legal information, such as the information on the website is NOT legal advice. Only an attorney can provide legal advice. NOTE: Take special care when filling out the forms, verify all information, including names are correct, a small typo can possibly delay your case. Always keep copies of all documents for your own records.
What is a Family Law Facilator?
Santa Cruz Superior Court provides a Family Law Facilitator who is a licensed attorney. They act as neutral third party who can further assist you with your Family Law matters. Please contact the Santa Cruz Superior Court (see contact info on this page) to find out how to meet with a Family Law Facilitator. A Family Law Facilitator is able to provide general legal information, assistance in filling out court forms, and answer general legal questions. The Family Law Facilitator is NOT your attorney, NOTE: The Family Law Facilitator is only able to give legal information, they are not able to give legal advice. If you need legal advice you need to contact an attorney.
Are my court case records public?
For the most part, yes. Every court order and file are public record. Any person can go to the Santa Cruz Superior Court and request to see any court record.
There are 3 exceptions. First, if the case itself is confidential (ie. juvenile (under 18 years) case, or an adoption). Second exception is the confidential portion of a family law file, an example would be child custody evaluations and recommendations. The third exception is when a party requests and is granted an order to mark a document as confidenial or sealed. If you are unsure about what is confidential and what is not, ask the Santa Cruz Superior Court clerk.
What type of cases are handled in the Santa Cruz County Family Law Court?
The Santa Cruz County Family Law court handles all cases concerning family-related matters and domestic relations including legal separation, domestic violence, spousal support, dissolution of marriage (divorce), child visitation and custody, child support and restraining orders. All of these matters are handled in the Santa Cruz Superior Court Family Law Division.
Santa Cruz Superior Court serves the following cities and towns: Capitola, Santa Cruz, Scotts Valley, Watsonville, Amesti, Aptos, Aptos Hills-Larkin Valley, Ben Lomond, Bonny Doon, Boulder Creek, Brookdale, Corralitos, Davenport, Day Valley, Felton, Freedom, Interlaken, La Selva Beach, Live Oak, Lompico, Mount Hermon, Opal Cliffs, Pajaro Dunes, Paradise Park, Pasatiempo, Pleasure Point, Rio del Mar, Seacliff, Soquel, Twin Lakes, Zayante, .
Who can I ask if I have questions about my case?
For legal information specific to your case, see Family Law Facilitator information above. For general court or case information, the best place to seek answers is the Santa Cruz Superior Court Clerk. The job of the court clerk is to maintain the files and records of the court. They are also available to provide information and assist you with manners regarding your case. This is often the best place to seek answers for your particular matter. NOTE: The court clerk is only able to give legal information, they are not able to give legal advice. If you need legal advice you need to contact an attorney.
Are there any requirements for filing for Divorce in Santa Cruz Superior Court?
There is a residency requirement where you OR your spouse must have lived in California for the last six (6) months, AND have lived in Santa Cruz County for the last three (3) months.
Can I hire an attorney?
Yes, you can hire an attorney to represent you, but you are not required to do so.
Santa Cruz Superior Court Family Law Location
Address: 1 Second Street Watsonville, CA 95076
Phone: (831) 786-7200
Mailing Address: Superior Court of California, County of Santa Cruz Family Law Division 1 Second Street, Room 300 Watsonville, CA 95076
Family Law Clerk Phone: (831) 786-7200
Clerks Office Hours: 8:00 AM to 3:00 PM Monday – Friday in Watsonville. A mail slot is provided for filings after 3:00 PM.