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Probate Overview

The Probate Court has jurisdiction over the following types of matters:

  • Decedent's Estate and Trusts
  • Guardianships
  • Conservatorships [including Limited Conservatorships (developmentally disabled persons) and Lanterman-Petris-Short Act (LPS) Conservatorships)]
  • Other Probate Case Types (including Commitments of Developmentally Challenged Persons; Establishment of Fact of Birth, Death or Marriage

    Upon a person's death, individuals must lodge the decedent's will with the Court. This must be done within thirty (30) calendar days of the decedent's date of death.

    The purpose of the Probate Examiner/Research Attorney is to review all documents related to decedent’s estates, conservatorship, and guardianship cases for procedural correctness before they are acted on by the court at the hearing. The Probate Examiner cannot give legal advice or provide advisory opinions.

    Court investigators primarily assist the court in cases involving conservatorships and guardianships. Court investigators have specialized training in social work, mental health and criminal justice.

    To contact the Probate Court Investigators please call 415-444-7090

    • Conservatorships - California law requires court investigators to carefully assess the living situations, general health and well-being, and finances of conservatees or potential conservatees to ensure that conservators are acting in the best interests of conservatees. Investigators must visit conservatees regularly, review health and medical records, and prepare reports for the Court on their findings.
    • Guardianships - Court investigators review and report on the qualifications of people who are seeking court appointment as guardians for children. These investigations include site visits and interviews with proposed guardians to determine the potential impact of the physical, emotional, and social environment on the children.

    Documents received in the clerk’s office after 3:30 p.m. will be time stamped with the current date and processed the following court business day. The date of filing will be the time stamped date. See more information about procedures for filing court documents by clicking here.

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