Prepare for and go to your court date

What to bring to your court date

Bring with you:

  • The Order Fixing Residence Outside the State of California (form GC-090) if you didn't already give it to the court clerk. If the judge agrees to let you move, the judge will sign this form.
  • Copies of your signed Proof of Service forms for the notice
  • Notes of what you plan to say

Ask the probate clerk or  Self-Help Center for rules or guidelines around bringing a child if you think the child needs to talk to the judge. Usually, children do not go to court.

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If this is the first time you've been in a courtroom, review some basic tips about how to plan for your day in court.

Your day in court

You may need to wait before your hearing

Other people may have a hearing on the same day as you. Your case may not be called right away. You may end up waiting a few minutes or even more than an hour before it’s your turn.

The judge calls your case 

Walk to the front of the courtroom

When it is your turn, the courtroom attendant will call the names and say your case number. You go up to the front. If the child's parents are there (or anyone who objects), they will also come up. Someone, usually the courtroom attendant will tell you where to sit or stand.

Tell the judge your name and answer their questions

The judge will ask you to say your names. Then, you may be asked to swear to tell the truth.

The judge may:

  • Ask you why it's in the child's best interest to move out of state.
  • Ask the parents or other relatives to speak, if they are there.
  • Ask the child what they think about the move.

The judge makes a decision 

If the judge decides it's in the child's best interest to move with you, they will sign the 

Order Fixing Residence Outside the State of California (form GC-090). You will then need to set up a legal guardianship wherever you move to. In general, you must do this within 4 months of moving, unless the judge gives you a different deadline.

You must follow the orders the judge made.

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Have a question about Guardianship?

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