Going to Court
Where is my court hearing?
|San Diego County Courthouse||Vista Courthouse|
Parking at the courthouse is not provided. For your convenience, we have provided a map to provide transportation options. Please be aware there is a cost associated with parking downtown.
- What do I do when I get to the courthouse?
San Diego Courthouse: Check in with DCSS reception on the 5th floor. For morning hearings, check in at 8:00 AM. For afternoon hearings, check in at 12:45 PM.
Vista Courthouse: Check in with DCSS reception located in the traffic court annex of the court complex. The annex is located next to the law library. Proceed through traffic court annex and turn right down the hallway, exiting through the set of double doors. Once through the double doors, follow the signs to the DCSS office. For morning hearings, check in at 8:00 AM. For afternoon hearings, check in at 12:45 PM.
Inform the DCSS staff at reception that you are checking-in for a court hearing.
(NOTE: If there is a restraining order or history of domestic violence involving the other party, let us know when checking in. If necessary, arrangements will be made to meet with each party separately.)
- Pre-Hearing Meeting (Meet and Confer)
Before your hearing, you will meet with a DCSS staff member to discuss your case before going to court for the hearing. If an attorney represents you, your attorney must be present. During this meeting you will:
- Discuss the case and provide any updated information.
- Try to reach an agreement regarding the child support matters. If you reach an agreement, all parties will sign the agreement and you will not need to go to court.
- If a full agreement cannot be reached, you will appear in court.
- The Court Hearing
The DCSS attorney presents the case to the court, including each party’s position and informs the court of any issues that were not resolved.
The Commissioner will review the facts of the case and complete a calculation of support based on your income and visitation with the child(ren).
Based on the calculation and the additional information provided, the Commissioner will make a decision, and a judgment will be made.
(NOTE: If the Commissioner feels that more information is needed, they will re-schedule the court hearing to allow the parties to return to court with information required for the court to make a decision on the issues.)
- Telephonic Hearings
You may qualify for a telephonic hearing if you:
- are disabled and unable to attend the hearing in person
- live out of state
- live in Northern California
If you meet the above criteria, follow the telephonic hearing process.
If the court is not ready to hear the case at the exact time scheduled for the telephonic hearing, the court clerk may instruct you to call back in 10-15 minutes.
- Request a Continuance
If you will miss your court hearing, you need to contact DCSS soon as possible. You should also contact the other party to request their permission to continue the hearing.
There is no guarantee that the hearing will be continued. The court may proceed even though you are not there.