Civil Self-Help Center

*New* Telephone Appointments

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All services will be conducted by phone appointments until further notice. To request an appointment, call ‪(916) 476-2731‬.‬ We will return your call within two business days to discuss whether you are eligible for service and then schedule a longer phone appointment.


The purpose of the Civil Self-Help Center is to provide general information and basic assistance to individual self-represented litigants. If you have a lawyer, or if you represent a business, we cannot help you. Services are for Sacramento County residents or people with cases in Sacramento County Superior Court that fall within our scope of services only. Please read  “Issues the staff CANNOT assist you with” below, for cases that fall outside of the scope of our services.  All of our services are free of charge.

The CSHC cannot assist with all types of cases. Instead of an appointment, patrons may be referred to the library or to other services such as the Small Claims Clinic or Family Law Facilitators’ office. You can also visit our Law 101 topics and our Self Help Video pages any time to watch our self-help videos and download forms and guides.

Issues the staff CAN assist you with:

  • Simple complaints for breach of contract lawsuits
  • Simple answers to breach of contract lawsuits
  • Simple complaints for personal injury and property damage lawsuits
  • Simple answers to personal injury and property damages lawsuits
  • Enforcement of Judgment
  • Motions to Set Aside Default
  • Motions to Extend Time for Service
  • Name Changes 
  • Name and Gender Changes
  • Confidential Safe At Home Name Changes (by appointment only)
  • Requests for Entry of Default
  • Oppositions to Civil Forfeitures
  • Claims of Exemption from Wage Garnishment or Bank Levy
  • Motions to and Oppositions to Motions to Compel Discovery
  • Motions to Pay in Installments
  • Oppositions to Motions to Deem Admissions Admitted and for Sanctions
  • Guardianships — starting a guardianship of a minor
  • Case Management Statements

Issues the staff CANNOT assist you with:

  • Appeals
  • Medical, Dental, and Legal Malpractice
  • Landlord/Tenant (Unlawful Detainer; Eviction)
  • All Real Estate actions, including Quiet Title, Lis Pendens, Foreclosure and Loan Modification
  • Discovery Requests and Responses (see our Discovery Video Series)
  • Administrative Law, Government Torts, Writs of Mandate & any action involving a government entity
  • Family Law (divorce, child custody, paternity)
  • Criminal Law
  • Complicated Probate or Estate Issues, such as Will Contests, and Conservatorship
  • Small Claims
  • Traffic
  • Juvenile Dependency and Delinquency
  • Federal Law (Bankruptcy, Immigration Law, lawsuits against the U.S., all Civil Rights lawsuits)
  • Class Action lawsuits
  • Writs of Possession, Temporary Restraining Orders, Injunctions
  • Employment Law


The Sacramento Civil Self-Help Center is located at the Sacramento County Public Law Library.  The Civil Self-Help Center provides limited legal assistance to those without attorneys, if they have a qualifying civil case in the Sacramento County court or reside in Sacramento County.

The Civil Self-Help Center provides workshops and individual assistance with a variety of civil legal issues. There are no income eligibility requirements to receive the free services at the Civil Self-Help Center.

How to Get Help

All services will be provided by telephone appointment until firther notice.  To request an appointment, call ‪(916) 476-2731‬.‬ We will return your call within two business days to discuss whether you are eligible for service and then schedule a longer phone appointment.

Due to limited resources, the CSHC cannot take telephone calls or respond to emails. All services are provided in person only.  Whether you are helped in a workshop or an individual appointment is solely within the discretion of our staff.

Appointments will be made beginning at 8:30 a.m. Patrons who are present at 8:30 a.m. Monday – Friday will be entered into a random drawing to determine the order their case will be evaluated. If an appointment is appropriate, it will be made for later in the day. You are encouraged to arrive by 8:25 a.m. to participate in the appointment setting drawing.

All available appointments are usually filled by the end of the morning lottery. It is rare that any appointments are still available if you arrive later in the day. If you need assistance from the CSHC, please make plans to be at the library by 8:25 am for your best chance to receive assistance.

Appointments are not required to attend the workshops. To attend the Name Change workshop, the Introduction to Written Discovery Class, or the Discovery Lab, arrive at the library by 1:20 pm.  Workshops may last up to 3 hours, so plan your parking and child care accordingly. Metered parking near the library is limited, so please use one of the nearby parking garages instead.