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California Courts-Small Claims Information


Superior Court of California

Small Claims Advisor

Services for

Santa Cruz

and San Benito Counties



Phone (831) 786-7370 or Email: selfhelp.information@santacruzcourt.org


●    Live Call-in Service

      Tuesdays 1:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.


●    Walk-in Hours in Watsonville

       (Only After Phone Consultation)

       Tuesdays 8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

       Thursdays 8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

       1Second St., third floor room 301 in Watsonville


●    Walk-in Hours in San Benito

       Mondays 8:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

       450 Fourth St. in Hollister


Calls and Emails returned within one week, or sooner if possible.  Walk in service provided on a first come, first served basis, but please note that availability may fill up before the end of stated hours of operation. 


The Small Claims Advisor provides free help preparing court forms, legal information, and procedural advice to self-represented litigants, such as:


     ■     What to do Before Filing


     ■     Jurisdiction and Venue


     ■     Where to File


     ■     How to Name a Defendant


     ■     Service of Process


     ■     Filing Defendant's Claim


     ■     Requesting a Continuance of the Hearing


     ■     Mediation Options


     ■     Paying Judgment in Installments


     ■     How to Collect a Judgment


There is no attorney-client relationship or confidentiality between the public and the Small Claims Advisor.  The Small Claims Advisor remains neutral and is available to all parties in a dispute.  The Small Claims Advisor is not responsible for the outcome of any case.