Getting a divorce in Oakland

Alameda courts, other facilities provide a ton of online resources–check our links

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For more information, including general statutes, residency requirements, the benefit of professional counseling, and the need to urgently address any domestic violence, please see:

Alameda County resources for domestic violence

According to the Alameda County Family Justice Center, “In the past, domestic violence victims often had to seek help from a fragmented, disjointed system of separate agencies offering related by frequently uncoordinated services. Victims had to travel to several different places to get help, often with children, tell their stories many times to various people, causing frustration and exacerbating their trauma. Many gave up and never actually received the full range of services they need. The cost in suffering and lost human potential to our community was staggering. In response, ACFJC was created and now serves as a one-stop center based on a simple premise: if all services for victims are located in one place, survivors will more readily access and receive the critical help they need and in a timely fashion.”

Other resources include:

Family Law Facilitators

Click on the link for addresses, contact information and clinic schedule for the Self-Help and Family Law Facilitator Centers of the Superior Court of California, Alameda County.

Forms and rules

The Judicial Council also makes available a variety of Family Law forms; once on the page, use the pulldown menu to select from the Family Law group. The council also provides rules of the court, including “Family and Juvenile Rules.”

Furthermore, some districts have local rules that must be followed; Alameda County Local Rules include “Rules Applicable to all Civil Cases” and “Family and Juvenile Rules.”

Alameda Law Library

The local law library also houses a wealth of information, including this Web site, which offers a search capability; for example, submitting “divorce” into the search field yielded several links, one of which was “Resources for Separation and Divorce.”

Family Law Court

According to its site, “Family Law Courts hear cases involving dissolution of marriage, nullity, legal separation and paternity, including related issues of spousal support, child support and custody and community property.” The “Divorce, Separation and Annulment” heading is link to a page of thorough information about the local divorce process, but fairly lean on links. One thing emphasized early on is the following: “Divorce can be complicated. We encourage you to talk to a family law lawyer so you will know about your legal rights and the legal issues in your case.”

Self-Help pages

The Self-Help pages echo the admonition to proceed very carefully if you decide to file pro se (that is, represent yourself without a lawyer):

If you represent yourself in Court, you are expected to understand the law, rules and procedures that apply to your case.  You will need to follow those in presenting your case to the court and getting your matter resolved, whether by settling with the other party, using an appropriate administrative process or going to trial.

You cannot come to Court and tell the judge that you are not a lawyer and do not understand what you are supposed to do.  The judge cannot give you legal advice about your case nor make decisions based on your lack of legal knowledge or understanding.  They must follow the law.  They may suggest you speak with an attorney, but cannot recommend specific individuals or firms to you.

Free evaluation

We can help. If you’re ready to begin the search for a compatible, well trained, experienced divorce attorney, you can start with our free case evaluation. If you need more information, please browse our site, using the tabs at the top of the page.

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