In a continuing effort to make better use of available resources for litigants, the Los Angeles Superior Court has announced that five family law courtrooms will begin hearing cases at the Whittier Courthouse, located at 7339 South Painter Ave., by January, 2018.

Presiding Judge of the Los Angeles Superior Court, the Honorable Daniel J. Buckley, said, “Although the Los Angeles Superior Court struggles with budget shortfalls year after year, we continue to find more efficient ways of serving the public. This is one example. The Whittier Courthouse will provide wrap-around services for people who need the courts to address family law matters.”

“I was proud to work with the Los Angeles Superior Court over the last several years to help restore services to the Whittier Courthouse,” stated Assembly Majority Leader Ian Calderon. “It’s critical that our residents in Whittier and surrounding communities have access to justice. The Courthouse will provide much needed services that are dedicated solely to family law matters.”
Due to the severe budget cuts imposed on the state courts during the recession, the Los Angeles Superior Court was forced to curtail business in eight courthouses throughout the county, including the Whittier Courthouse, in 2013.

LASC’s Chief Executive Officer/Clerk, Sherri R. Carter, said of the move, “Repurposing the Whittier Courthouse allows us to better serve family law litigants than we can presently. There will be more room for self-help services, and we will have a more secure children’s waiting room than we could create in the Norwalk Courthouse.” The Norwalk Courthouse will have space available for future expansion in other case types.

The Whittier Courthouse is located in the Southeast District of the Los Angeles Superior Court. Family law cases filed in the Southeast District are currently heard at the Norwalk Courthouse. The five judicial officers who hear those matters, along with supporting clerical staff, court reporters and interpreters, will relocate to the Whittier facility. Family law matters include: dissolution (divorce), legal separation, and annulment cases, as well as child custody, support and visitation matters.

The Whittier Courthouse facility and geographic location make it ideally suited to this project. Relocation of the family law courtrooms to the Whittier Courthouse provides an opportunity for LASC to create a unique environment dedicated to hearing family law matters and provide the support services those cases require.

In addition to the family law courtrooms, a variety of family law support services will be located in the Whittier facility, including:

•Self-Help Resource Center
•Family Law Facilitators
•Family Law Court Services
•Children’s Waiting Room
•Domestic Violence Clinic

Two of the courtrooms will hear restraining order matters. A clerk’s office and Sheriff’s office will also be located in the building. The Courthouse has public parking and is located in close proximity to public transportation.

Family law cases are also heard at the Central Civil West, Chatsworth, Compton, Governor George Deukmejian, Michael Antonovich Antelope Valley, Pasadena, Pomona, Santa Monica, Stanley Mosk, Torrance and Van Nuys East Courthouses. The Whittier Courthouse will handle one-sixth of all family law cases filed outside of the court’s central district.

More information regarding family law matters can be found on the Court’s website at www.lacourt.org

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