The Law Office of Christine Nguyen Thomas recognizes that you are self-represented and will be handling most of your divorce case yourself. Below you will find a list of resources to help you learn more.
What are some alternative dispute resolution options available to Family Law litigants?
You do not have to “go to court” if you are able to resolve your case with the other party. There are many ways to handle your divorce case without “going to court”, including private mediation, neutral arbitration, Limited Scope Representation, Collaborative Family Law, and help from the Family Law Facilitator. Take a look at this flyer created by the court to learn more: http://www.ventura.courts.ca.gov/pdf_files/adr.pdf
Where can I learn more about Limited Scope Representation for my divorce case?
The California Courts website has an excellent explanation of Limited Scope Representation. Click here to learn more about how Limited Scope Representation can be helpful to your divorce case: http://www.courts.ca.gov/1085.htm
How do I check on the status of my court case?
You may check on the status of your court case by visiting the Family Law Case Inquiry page of the Ventura Superior Court website. You may search for your case by first and last name, or by case number.
Where is the court located?
The Ventura Superior Court is located in the Hall of Justice, 800 S. Victoria Avenue, Ventura, California, 93009.
The court is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., except for court holidays.
On what holidays is the court closed?
The court is closed on all court holidays. You can find a list of the court holidays here: http://www.ventura.courts.ca.gov/holidays.html
A holiday on which the court is closed does not count as a “court day” for purposes of calculating the days within which something is due. Weekends do not count either. The Los Angeles Superior Court has a useful court day calculator that allows you to calculate court days moving forward and backward.
Where is the Family Law Department?
The Family Law Department is located on the Third Floor of the Ventura Superior Court.
Department 35, Judge JoAnn Johnson
Department 34, Commissioner William R. Redmond
Department 33, Supervising Family Law Judge William Q. Liebmann
Department 32, Judge Roger L. Lund
Department 31, Judge John R. Smiley
Does the court offer childcare while I attend the hearing?
Yes, the Ventura Superior Court offers free childcare for litigants attending to court business at the courthouse. The Children’s Waiting Room is available free of charge for children at least 2 ½ years in age and potty trained.
Where can I get blank court forms?
The State of California provides access to free, blank Judicial Council court forms that you can download as a PDF file and fill in with your information.
The Ventura Superior Court also has local court forms that are mandatory for use in some situations and optional in others. These local court forms are also free and fillable PDF files.
Where can I get information on what forms I need to file and the procedure for filing them?
The Ventura Superior Court has “form packets” for common Family Law matters. The form packets contain instructions, detailing what forms you will need and procedures for getting the forms filed. The form packets will also contain copies of the blank, fillable PDF forms.
Where do I file my paperwork?
The Family Law filing window is located on the second floor in room 208.
How much does it cost to file the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage?
Effective January 1, 2016, the filing fee for a Petition of Dissolution of Marriage is $435. The filing fee for a Response to Dissolution of Marriage is also $435.
How do I get help if I can’t afford the filing fee?
If you cannot afford the filing fee, and if you qualify, the court may waive all or part of your fees. For more information from the court on how to waive court fees, click here: http://www.ventura.courts.ca.gov/form-packets.html
What is the Family Law Self-Help Center?
The Family Law Self-Help Center is staffed by Family Law attorneys and the Family Law Facilitator. You can receive help with selecting and completing your court forms. You may also receive general information regarding all aspects of family law and procedure; however, the Family Law Self-Help Center does not offer legal advice and does not provide assistance to litigants who are represented by an attorney. The Family Law Self-Help Center is located on the Third Floor in room 30, next to the Family Law courtrooms.
The Family Law Self-Help Center offers help on a first-come, first-served basis and is limited to 40 persons each day, except assistance is not available on Tuesdays. You can view the Family Law Self-Help Center schedule here: http://www.ventura.courts.ca.gov/pdf_files/2014_FamLawSHC-VTA_Schedule.pdf
Where can I get free legal advice about my Family Law matter?
The Ventura County Legal Aid provides free legal advice, to those who qualify based on their income. Attorneys are available to assist you with your Family Law matter on a first-come, first-served basis on the first and third Tuesdays of the month during the school year, from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the Ventura County Law Library. More information can be found here: https://www.vclegalaid.org/
Where can I learn more about general Family Law issues?
The Ventura Superior Court provides general information on Family Law issues under Dissolution FAQs, which can be found here: http://www.ventura.courts.ca.gov/faqs.html
The California Courts also provides a wealth of general information about the divorce process, child custody, child support, spousal support, property division, and much more. The website can be accessed here: http://www.courts.ca.gov/selfhelp-divorce.htm
Where can I learn more about general Family Law procedure in the Ventura Superior Court?
The Ventura Superior Court provides information on Family Law procedure here: http://www.ventura.courts.ca.gov/family.html
Additional rules and procedure can be found in the Ventura County Local Rules of Court: http://www.ventura.courts.ca.gov/local-rules.html
Are there apps to help me streamline co-parenting communication?
Yes, two popular applications that facilitate co-parenting communication are subscription based Our Family Wizard https://www.ourfamilywizard.com/ and the free service provided by Talking Parents https://www.talkingparents.com/. Talking Parents only provides a communication platform for parents. Our Family Wizard provides additional services, such as parenting time schedules and tracking of children’s expenses and requests for reimbursement.