Santa Cruz, California Legal Overview
The City of Santa Cruz is the county seat of Santa Cruz County, California. The main trial court for general and limited jurisdiction cases is the Santa Cruz Superior Court. This court has locations in the City of Santa Cruz and in Watsonville. Civil cases not exceeding $25,000 are considered limited jurisdiction cases, as are traffic infractions and misdemeanors that involve a fine of no more than $1,000 and a one-year jail term, or both.
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1. In addition to misdemeanors, traffic infractions and civil lawsuits amounting to less than $25,000, the superior court also has a limited jurisdiction small claims court. Individuals may file small claims that do not exceed $10,000. However, small claims that exceed $2,500 can be filed no more than two times per year. Businesses, corporations and other entities have a $5,000 limit for small claims. Appeals against all these limited jurisdiction cases, except for small claims, will be heard by the Santa Cruz Superior Court’s appellate division.
Trending Santa Cruz, California Legal Topics: Appeals against general jurisdiction cases such as felonies and unlimited civil cases from Santa Cruz go to the 6th District Court of Appeal, which is located in San Jose. The court of last resort in the state judicial system is the California Supreme Court. All federal trial court cases originating from the City and County of Santa Cruz will go to the San Jose Division of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.