Probate Court is at Downtown Superior (DTS) Court in San Jose. Go to the DTS page for the DTS location, hours and phone number. The Probate Clerk’s Office is in Room 107 of the DTS courthouse.
The court is closed on court holidays. There are several people in the probate department who can give you information:
The examiners review all petitions supporting documents set for hearings in the probate court to make sure they are complete and agree with California law, local court rules, and other requirements (like publication and notice).
The examiners usually review the petitions about three days before the hearing. Then, they write a summary for the probate judge and recommend if a petition should be pre-approved. [See Local Probate Rule 1.L].
If your petition is not complete or does not meet all legal and court rules, the examiner can recommend your hearing be postponed (continued). [See Local Probate Rule 1.M] If there are problems with any of your documents, the examiner will call you.
|Probate staff attorney||
The probate staff attorney helps the judge review cases set for hearing. S/he is also available to the court staff, attorneys and the public to answer questions about court procedure.
The probate staff attorney also reviews all urgent and uncontested temporary petitions, ex parte petitions, and hearings on a shortened notice basis (less than 15 days notice). [Local Probate Rule 2.E]
To speak to the probate staff attorney, call (408) 882-2100 to schedule an appointment. [Local Probate Rule 1.N]
|Online and recorded information on pre-approved matters||
The probate examiners sometimes pre-approve certain types of petitions without a hearing.
To see if your petition was pre-approved, call the day before your hearing after 9:00 a.m.: (408) 882-2100 extension 2650. This information is also available online - see Probate Preapproved.
Remember: Probate cases are complicated. You will need to learn new words. Visit the Probate Glossary page with Probate Terms. You will need to learn about the Court’s rules and procedures. Refer to the Local Probate Rules of Court.
If you need more help, talk to a lawyer. You can get a referral to a lawyer from the Local Bar Association in Santa Clara County. Their phone number is 408-971-6822 . You may also want to refer to our Free & Low-Cost Legal Help page.