Self-Help Center

Self-Help Center Services

The Self-Help Center provides legal and procedural information and assistance with court forms to self-represented litigants with cases in or who reside in Placer County.

 

The Self-Help Center does not represent people in court and the services provided do not result in an attorney-client relationship. With the exception of Settlement Services (defined below), we cannot assist litigants who are represented by attorneys and our services are not confidential. We assist both sides of the case equally. To get legal advice or have a confidential conversation, you must speak with a private attorney. All services of the Self-Help Center are free of charge.

 

Telephone and Video Appointments:

  • Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, from 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. and Tuesdays from 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

In-Person Appointments:

  • Limited, walk-in appointments available Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays from 8:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.
  • Prescheduled, in-person appointments available Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. and additional appointments on Tuesdays from 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Live Chat Assistance:

  • Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays from 1:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Video Settlement Services:

  • Monday - Friday at 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.

To schedule a telephone appointment, in-person appointment, or video appointment with the Self-Help Center, visit our appointment reservation system.

 

Self-Help Center Services Matrix

How to Schedule a Self-Help Appointment

Restraining Orders

The Self-Help Center offers assistance with restraining orders

What Types of Cases Do We Help With?

The Self-Help Center will attempt to steer you in the right direction in any type of case. The bulk of the matters we help with are family law, child support, evictions, small claims, guardianships and restraining orders. Below, our most frequently provided services are listed by type of law. We also provide instruction sheets and links if you would like to do the paperwork yourself. If you do not see what you need on this web page and you need assistance, just ask!

How Do I Get an Appointment for Self-Help Assistance?

The Self-Help Center offers assistance to Self-Represented litigants by telephone or video conference.

Access the appointment reservation system.

How Do I Obtain an In-Person Appointment with the Self-Help Center?

The Self-Help Center offers in-person assistance on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday mornings at the designated clerk’s window located on the first floor of the Hon. Howard G. Gibson Courthouse located at the Santucci Justice Center in Roseville, California. 


There are limited, 20-minute walk-in appointments offered Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays from 8:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. For walk-in services, go to the kiosk located in the lobby of the Gibson Ccourthouse and select a ticket from the kiosk for “Self Help Center.” Services are provided on a first come, first served basis.


The Self-Help Center also offers limited, 20-minute prescheduled in-person appointments on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. and additional appointments on Tuesdays from 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.   To schedule an in-person appointment, visit the appointment reservation system.
 

Can I Get Help by Video Conferencing?

Yes, the Self-Help Center offers Self-Represented litigants one-on-one assistance remotely through video conferencing. To schedule a video conference appointment. Access the appointment reservation system.

Can I Get Help by Email?

To ask general and case-related questions by email, please email CIC@placer.courts.ca.gov or visit our court website and click on the Contact Us link. Please type “ATTN: Self-Help” in the subject line of your email. Typical response time is within 2 days.

Does the Self-Help Center Provide Live Chat Assistance?

Yes, the Self-Help Center offers Live Chat assistance for divorce, legal separation, small claims, and child support cases on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 1:30pm -4:00pm excluding court holidays. The Live Chat application is located at the bottom right-hand side of this page and it is first come, first served.

Note: Some ad blockers block the Live Chat button. If you cannot see the Live Chat button below, you may need to temporarily disable your ad blocker.

Does the Self-Help Center Office Have Video Settlement Services Available?

Yes. The Self-Help Center provides two (2) daily video appointments Monday – Friday at 10:30 a.m .and 1:30 p.m.  for Settlement Services to help finish your family law matter.

Video Self-Help Settlement Services is a no-cost service available for family law cases in which one or both parties to the case are self-represented. If both parties are represented by an attorney, they cannot participate in Self-Help Settlement Services. However, if both parties are represented by an attorney in a Family Law case and interested in settlement or alternative dispute resolution, you may contact the Placer County Bar Association for assistance and schedule a settlement conference. For Video Self-Help Settlement Services, Self-Help staff will serve as a Settlement Officer during a video conference with the parties to attempt to resolve issues that are not related to custody, visitation, or domestic violence issues. Like all Self-Help Center services, the Settlement Services staff person that you will meet with is not your attorney. There is no attorney/client privilege. However, based on Evidence Code Section 1119, statements made during the Video Settlement Services discussions are confidential and not admissible in court. Please see the Video Self-Help Settlement Services Information Sheet for IMPORTANT information.

 

NOTE: In order to access Video Self-Help Settlement Services:

  1. Both parties MUST complete and exchange their preliminary disclosures before requesting a video Self-Help Settlement Services appointment.
  2. You may ask the court to set a video settlement appointment for you during a court hearing; or
  3. Both parties must agree to three (3) and up to five (5) potential appointment dates. Parties should be available for time slots chosen on their requested dates. Available appointments can be viewed by clicking Self-Help Video Settlement Services Availability. Once the dates are chosen, submit a request for an appointment date signed by both parties (Form PL-FL024T).
    1. Requests can be time-stamped and left in the Gibson Courthouse drop-box next to the 1st floor information desk or mailed to the Self-Help Center. Mail requests to the Self-Help Center at P.O. Box 619072, Roseville, CA 95661 no less than 10 business days prior to the soonest appointment date to allow time for processing and appointment confirmation.
    2. Requests can also be submitted to the Court electronically at the edelivery portal or emailed to the Self-Help Center at CIC@placer.courts.ca.gov
  4. You will receive confirmation of your appointment date and time and instructions on how to enter the video conference from the Self-Help Center. Confirmations will be sent to both parties at the email addresses provided.
  5. IMPORTANT: To participate in the video conference you will need a device capable of video calling with a webcam, microphone and headphones. You are strongly encouraged to connect from a computer/laptop rather than a mobile device or tablet. You will also need a high speed internet connection.

Preparing for Court

Watch the Video: Going to Court During Covid-19

Credit: SHARP Program, Butte County Superior Court

 

Watch the Video: Going to Court Remotely Via Video Conference

Credit: SHARP Program, Butte County Superior Court

 

Displaying Your Evidence in the Courtroom

A short video on how to use the courtroom equipment to display your evidence.

Click here for more information about going to court remotely via video conference

 

Self-Help Complaint Procedure

Self-Help Center Feedback Policy

Self-Help Center Feedback Form

CONTACT INFORMATION

Self-Help Center (Facilitator’s Office)
Howard G. Gibson Courthouse
Bill Santucci Justice Center

10820 Justice Center Drive
Roseville CA 95678
Recorded Information Line: (916) 408-6446
Contact Us

Self-Help FAQs

Can I complete forms at home?

Yes, click here to use Odyssey Guide & File to prepare your legal forms. This website will conduct a virtual interview where your responses will then be used to automatically complete the forms. After the forms are complete, you can print them out and file them. You will be asked to register an account- If you do not register, your work will NOT be saved! Odyssey Guide & File offers assistance on several forms including divorce, legal separation, nullity, evictions, name changes, guardianships and limited conservatorships, parentage cases, restraining orders, and small claims.

I want a divorce/legal separation/annulment.

General Information about Divorce, Legal Separation and Annulment here.

“Start Your Divorce” Instruction Sheet.

Financial Disclosures Information Sheet

I want to respond to a divorce/legal separation/annulment

If you and the other party are in agreement on most things, we suggest you make an appointment with the Legal Help Center for assistance before filing a Response with the court. There may be ways of moving forward with the case by agreement, without the expense of filing a Response.

Response to Divorce/Legal Separation/Annulment Instruction Sheet

Financial Disclosures Information Sheet

I want to gain child custody and support

For general information about child custody and support here. 

What kind of case do I need to get child custody and support?

If you want to get child custody or support orders, you must open the right kind of court case. The process for asking for a court hearing is called "Request for Order". You can open the court case and ask for orders at the same time by turning in all the papers to the court clerk. There are several kinds of court cases, depending on the circumstances. For more information on what case to file, review the statements below. We suggest that you make an appointment with the Self-Help Center to determine the proper filing.

If the other party in your case filed a Request for Order and you want to respond, click here for the process and procedure.

I have an emergency issue and I need a hearing as soon as possible

If you an important issue that needs to be heard by a Judge IMMEDIATELY (instead of 6 to 8 weeks out) you will need to ask for emergency orders along with your Request for Order forms. Click here to find out more about the procedure and forms for filing an emergency hearing.

If you have an important issue that is not an emergency but needs to be heard by the Judge in the next week or two (instead of the usual 6 to 8 weeks out), you will need to ask for an Order to Shorten Time (“OST”) along with the regular forms you file to ask for a court hearing. Click here to find out more about the procedure and forms for filing for an Order to Shorten Time.

I am married to my child’s parent and don’t want a divorce.

You can File Petition for Custody and Support without filing for a divorce and then file a Request for Order.

I have never been married to my child's other parent

File a Petition to Establish Parental Relationship, and then file a Request for Order.

I am divorced or going through a divorce with my child’s other parent in Placer County.

You can file a Request for Order in your divorce case to ask for custody and child support.

I need to open a general or limited conservatorship case.

Click here for the process and procedure to open up a general or limited conservatorship case.

For an app that helps you fill out the forms for a limited conservatorship only, go to Odyssey Guide & File.

  • Click “Start Your Legal Process”, then
  • Click “Requesting a Limited Conservatorship”
  • Answer the questions, save, your work, and at the end you can print out the forms.
I need to open a temporary or general guardianship case.

Click here to open a guardianship case.

For an app that helps you fill out the forms for a limited conservatorship only, go to Odyssey Guide & File

  • Click “Start Your Legal Process”, then
  • Click “Petition for Appointment of Guardian”
  • Answer the questions, save, your work, and at the end you can print out the forms.
I am an adult and I want to change my name.

Click here for the process and procedure to change your name as an adult.

I want to change my child’s name.

Click here for the process and procedure to change your child’s name.

I want to begin a small claims case

Click here for the process and procedure to begin a Small Claims court case. Small claims cases are for lawsuits of $12,500 or less.

I want to join into a Family Law case to ask for custody and/or visitation

Click here for the process and procedure to join into a Family Law case to ask for custody and/or visitation

I am a Veteran and I want a list of resources for Veterans.

Click here for a List of Resources for Veterans

I am a landlord and I want to start an eviction case.

Click here if you are a landlord and want to start an eviction case

I am tenant and I want to respond to an eviction case.

Click here if you are a tenant and want to respond to an eviction case

I am a landlord or a tenant and I want to ask for a trial date.

Click here if you are a landlord or a tenant and want to ask for a trial