PDF stands for Portable Document Format. It's a distribution format developed by Adobe Corporation to allow electronic information to be transferred between various types of computers. The software which allows this transfer is called Acrobat. In order to view and print a PDF file you will first need to download and install a copy of the Adobe Acrobat Reader. To download and install Acrobat Reader, please visit Adobe's download page.
A fillable form has fields in which you can enter text. The box for the field appears when you click next to the place where you want to enter text. Fillable forms are noted with an asterisk (*) next to the form.
Forms may be downloaded by right-clicking on the form number link and selecting the "Save Target As..." or "Save Link As..." option to download the PDF file directly to your hard drive. Use Adobe Reader to open the file after downloading.
Get legal help as soon as possible! In many cases you only have 30 days to respond. For many hearings (like domestic violence or eviction cases) you only have a few days. The Self Help section will help you find people who can help you at little or no cost. Read the forms. Try to figure out what they are about. Take your forms with you when you go to ask for legal help.
Look at the very bottom of the form. Every form has the name and number at the bottom.
Hand printed forms using either blue or black ink will be accepted for filing as long as they are legible.
- Be sure your forms are clear and easy to read. Use blue or black ink.
- Write your legal name, current address, and daytime phone number in the box at the top of the first page of each form. If you don't want to write your home address, use another address where you can get mail. The court will send your court papers to this address.
- If you don't have a lawyer, write "in pro per" on the "Attorney for" line on all court forms.
- Fill out your forms completely and accurately. If something doesn't apply to you, write "N/A." This means "not applicable."
- Sign each form where your signature is requested. Use blue or black ink only.
- Fill out your forms one section at a time. If you have questions about a section, leave it blank until you can get your questions answered.
- If you need help filling out your forms, you can ask a lawyer, a legal aid clinic, or a family law facilitator (in child, spousal, and partner support cases). Or go to a law library and ask the librarian for books that can help you.
- Make copies of all your forms. If a form has writing on both sides, use 2 separate pages to copy the 2 sides of the form.
- Keep a clean copy of all of your court papers in a folder in a safe place.
- Bring your complete court file with you every time you go to the clerk's office, a court hearing, or the facilitator's office.