San Jose Court (San Jose Superior Court)

The San Jose Court is a courthouse of the Santa Clara Superior Court of California. The courthouse handles civil, criminal, family, juvenile, probate, small claims and traffic cases. The courthouse is open on Mondays through Fridays, from 8:15 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The stated mission of the courthouse is to provide “fair, accessible, effective, efficient and courteous” service to those who have disputes that must be resolved under the law.

A court calendar is available online, so defendants can learn the date and time required for their appearance. Defendants should know which courtroom they must report to prior to entering the courthouse.

Basic Information About the San Jose Court

There is no need for the public to schedule an appointment to observe Court procedures. However, there are certain types of proceedings that are not open to the public. These proceedings are juvenile dependency and juvenile justice cases. Upon entering the courthouse, individuals should b ready to go through security and metal detectors.

Those who must be in the courthouse for an extended period of time may bring food into the courtroom. These individuals include jurors and parties to lawsuits. One may not bring glass bottles into the courthouse, as these are deemed to be a security risk under the local rules. In addition, individuals must take care not to openly display food or drink in a courtroom. Food also may not be consumed in the Old Courthouse hallways.

Public transportation is available outside of the courthouse. The VTA and Caltrain offer transportation at low fees. Otherwise, individuals can find taxis or arrange for a cab to arrive outside of the courthouse.

Criminal Procedures in the San Jose Court

The criminal division of the San Jose Court handles misdemeanors, felonies and traffic infractions. A felony is a criminal offense that can be punished by imprisonment over one year or death. A misdemeanor is a criminal offense that is punishable by less than one year in jail or by a fine.

When an individual has been arrested, he or she should expect to have a first appearance hearing before a judge. This hearing will be held a day or two after the arrest. At the first appearance hearing, the judge will determine whether an individual has secured the assistance of an attorney. If a defendant cannot afford to hire an attorney, then the court may appoint one for him or her. In addition, judges also have a responsibility to determine the bail amount at this hearing. A defendant may not experience unreasonable restraints on his or her liberty. If a defendant feels that the bail amount is set too high, then he or she can request that the judge decrease this amount.

Qualifying for a Bail Bond

If a defendant is short on cash for bail, then he or she can secure a bail bond with the help of a bail bond company. A bail bond company will accept collateral from a defendant and provide financing for a bail bond in exchange.

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