California Court Records

What is Included in California Public Court Records

Criminal Court Cases

Assault & Battery, Domestic Violence, Parole Violation, Probation Violation, Sexual Assault, Robbery, Manslaughter, Murder, Drug Offenses, And More...

Civil Court Cases

Bankruptcies, Legal Judgments, Lawsuits, Tax & Property Liens, Contract Disputes, Probates, Family Law, Small Claims, Evictions, And More...

Traffic Court Cases

Driving Under Influence, Driving While Intoxicated, Speeding Tickets, Traffic Citations, Reckless Driving, Driving Without a License, License Suspensions, Criminal Driving Violations, Accidents, And More...

California Court Record Lookup

In 2001, California’s municipal and superior courts were consolidated, creating a unified, standardized state judiciary. Most California court records are public documents. By performing a California court records search individuals can access to public documents important many purposes such as collecting funds awarded in a judgment, restoring driving privileges after a DUI, confirming terms of probation, enforcing a court-ordered eviction, and establishing California child custody.

California Trial Court Records

There are 58 superior courts in California, distributed by population density and geography, mentioned California courthouses handle criminal and civil matters. Specialized divisions within these CA courts handle domestic issues, family law, juvenile cases, probate, and small claims. Use court case lookup to find California criminal records, civil cases, traffic violations and more.

Searching court records offline must be done at the local court level, a statewide search is not available, while California court records online can be viewed by performing California court record lookup. In addition, some California CA court records, such as traffic, small claims or misdemeanor case records are not available. Juvenile cases and some others involving sensitive information about minor victims, such as domestic violence, may be redacted or restricted for privacy concerns.

California Superior Courts

Individual superior courts offer their own online California court case lookup, including San Diego, San Francisco court records, and Orange County.

The Los Angeles Superior Court alone has over 425 elected judges presiding over 2.5 million cases per year, including more than 4,000 jury trials. Many of the state superior courts include integrated appellate divisions.

Statewide, these courtrooms handle more than six million cases per year, including more than 200,000 felony cases, 800,000 misdemeanors, and 200,000 civil cases valued at more than $25,000.

California Appellate Courts

Above superior courts are the state's six appellate districts and 105 judges. Each appellate court is responsible for reviewing decisions of superior courts within its geographical jurisdiction. In a recent year, the appellate courts received over 22,000 requests for hearings. These courthouses also receive appeals from several labor boards with state jurisdiction including workers compensation and public employment issues.

California Supreme Court

With jurisdiction over decisions made by the state appeals courts, the Supreme Court is the final authority on matters of state law in California. Seven justices preside over cases at this level in San Francisco and alternative locations in major cities. It also sets standards for judicial conduct and advises legislators on the interpretation of state law. In the fiscal year 2015 there were 19 death sentence appeals which contributed to the court's 85 written decisions for the year. In total, the court received about 7,900 filings and disposed of 7,700 cases.

State Appellate Courts

The state’s appellate courts are distributed in six districts and are comprised of more than 100 judges. The cases heard in appeals courts are generally contested decisions from superior courts.

The state supreme court is the last resort for appeals of lower court decisions. It also presides over the state bar, consults on the constitutionality of state laws, and may exercise its authority on writs to ensure cases comply with applicable laws.

Federal courts of CA

There are four divisions of federal courts in California that hear cases involving violations of federal laws, bankruptcy cases, and cases that cross state lines. Records for federal cases may be searched online.

California Civil Case Statistics

Civil Caseload
Civil Caseload 827,885
Caseloads per 100.000 Population
Caseloads per 100.000 Population 2,109
Clearance Rate
Clearance Rate 91%
Small Claims Caseload
Small Claims Caseload 163,059

Civil Caseloads for California, the sum of all civil cases reported by the state, account for 4,790,766 total cases at the year end of 2016, which makes it 2,109 cases per 100.000 population.

The clearance rate for the state is about 91% which makes up by dividing the outgoing to incoming civil cases and expressing the result in a percentage.

Civil Court Incoming & Outgoing Cases 2012-2016

The number of civil court caseloads in 2016 has decreased since 2012, being 827,885 vs. 1,163,784, which is by 28.9 % lower than 5 years ago. The same picture is seen with clearance rates, it’s lower compared to 2012, by 33.9% being 757,431 compared to 1,145,395.

State Small Claims & Rates Timeline

Year: Small Claims Max. Limit Small Claims Caseload per 100.000 Population Percent of Total Civil Caseload

The caseload for small claims has decreased since 2012, going from 185,204 cases a year to 163,059 of 2016. The maximum limit of small claim charges has stayed the same at $10,000 in 2016 compared to the $10,000 that was registered 5 years ago.

Accordingly the small claims rate has decreased- 415 cases per 100 000 population compared to the 487 of 2012. The total percentage of civil caseloads accounts 12.8% for the state of California for 2016.

Criminal Caseloads by Type

Criminal Caseloads for California sum in 1,364,529 cases at the year end of 2016 which has a share of 80% of misdemeanor and 20% of felony charges. Total criminal cases have decreased in California compared to the criminal caseload of 2012 - 1,444,240 cases. Felonies and misdemeanors have changed since 2012 by +5% and -1% accordingly.

The Proportion of Felony and Misdemeanor Caseloads

Criminal Incoming Court Cases by type 2012-2016

Criminal Caseloads Timeline

Domestic Relations Caseloads & Clearance Rates

The state’s domestic relations caseload has counted 388,903 cases which is 991 court cases per 100.000 population. It has decreased since 2012, the difference in caseloads is 3,970 for the last 5 years, being 392,873 in 2012.

State Court Holidays

Holiday: Date:
New Year's DayMonday, January 1, 2018
Martin Luther King, Jr. DayMonday, Jan 15, 2018
Lincoln's BirthdayMonday, February 12, 2018
Washington's BirthdayMonday, February 19, 2018
César Chávez DayFriday, March 30, 2018
Memorial DayMonday, May 28, 2018
Independence DayWednesday, July 4, 2018
Labor DayMonday, September 3, 2018
Columbus DayMonday, October 8, 2018
Veterans DayMonday, November 12, 2018
Thanksgiving DayThursday, November 22, 2018
Day after ThanksgivingFriday, November 23, 2018
Christmas DayTuesday, December 25, 2018

Supreme Court Caseloads & Clearance Rates