Self Help

Alameda County expands public court services, opens self-help center – East Bay Times

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ALAMEDA COUNTY — Starting this week, the Alameda County Superior Court has expanded its services to include a new self-help center, and more clerk hours.

Clerk hours, including both criminal and civil filings, were closed at 2:30 p.m. but thanks to new funding, those hours have been expanded an extra half-hour, now closing instead at 3 p.m. The new hours will affect every clerk office in all Alameda County courthouses.

The county court system also announced a new self-help center at the Wiley W. Manuel Courthouse, located at 661 Washington St. in Oakland, with services to provide help in unlawful detainers, small claims, restraining orders, name and gender change petitions, and guardianships. The walk-in clinic is now open Monday through Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to noon and serves 45 customers each morning. This center also will have by-appointment workshops on the same topics in the afternoon.

Help for family law-related issues, such as child custody and divorce, will continue to be at the Hayward courthouse’s self-help center, located at 24405 Amador St.

“We are grateful for the opportunity to reestablish a self-help presence in North County, and to provide longer office hours to all court users,”  said Alameda County Superior Court Presiding Judge Wynne S. Carvill in a statement.

“We look forward to being able to expand access to the court even more in the future as the governor and the Legislature continue to restore funding to our trial courts.”

Both expansions in services are thanks to an additional $19.1 million in funding from the 2018-19 California state budget directed specifically toward trial court self-help needs.

Alameda County Superior Court has seven courthouses, including the George E. McDonald Hall of Justice in Alameda, the Berkeley Courthouse, the East County Hall of Justice in Dublin, the Fremont Hall of Justice, the Hayward Hall of Justice, the René C. Davidson Courthouse in Oakland and the Wiley W. Manuel Courthouse in Oakland. The court also has the Juvenile Justice Center in San Leandro.

Bay City News contributed to this report. 

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