How Do I Get Information to the Judge? Should I Send a Letter?
Even though people sometimes want to tell the judge something, or ask the court to do something before their next court hearing, the court is generally not allowed to get new information or be asked to do something unless the other party knows what is being said or asked and has a right to respond. Anything you want to tell the judge, or ask the court to do, must be given to the court on the right form and shared with your spouse or partner.
File a Written Declaration
If you have a hearing scheduled soon, you may complete and file a:
Declaration (Form MC-030) with the court.
- First, write your information in the form of a “declaration,” made and signed under penalty of perjury.
- Then, file your declaration with the court and have it served on your former spouse or partner.
- Finally, a proof of service must be filed with the court.
The judge will then review the declaration when reviewing your file in preparation for the hearing.
If you want the court to do something, you will need to file a:
- Request for Order (form FL-300)
and accompanying forms to get a hearing scheduled.
Testimony at the Hearing
The other way to get information to the judge is through your own testimony at a hearing, or through the testimony of a witness.
If you decide to call witnesses at your hearing, you have to file and serve a witness list prior to the hearing. The witness list must include the names of all of the witnesses you intend to call with a brief description of their expected testimony. This must be filed with the court and served on the opposing party or lawyer. (If you do not file and serve a witness list before the hearing, the court may postpone your hearing to a later time.)
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