ADA
Interpreter Information

Does the Court provide interpreters?

Photo of two individuals having a conversation

If you are involved in a proceeding for a Criminal, Traffic, Juvenile, or Family Court Hearing, you may ask the clerk at the counter or the clerk in the courtroom for an interpreter. If an interpreter is not available at the time of your hearing, your case may be continued by the Court until an interpreter can be assigned.

If you are involved in a civil or small claims hearing, you may be provided an interpreter, if one is available

You may request an interpreter for all case types by completing the form INT-300 , INT-300 Chinese , INT-300 Farsi , INT-300 Korean , INT-300 Punjabi , INT-300 Russian , INT-300 Spanish , INT-300 Tagalog ,INT-300 Vietnamese .
The form may be emailed to , or the form may be mailed to HOJ Interpreter Unit, 191 N. First Street, San Jose, CA 95113. The sooner you submit the form to the Interpreters’ Office prior to your hearing, the greater the chance that an interpreter will be available. Due to increased demand for interpreters, you may wish to bring your own interpreter.

If you decide to use a noncertified or nonregistered interpreter, such as a friend or relative, have the person read the instructions and duties for interpreting in the information sheet called Foreign Language Interpreter’s Duties-Civil and Small Claims (INT-200) .

Tips for using an interpreter

Using a court interpreter can be awkward, because you have to go through another person to get your information or talk to the judge. Follow these tips when using an interpreter in a courtroom:

  • Listen carefully to the interpreter.
  • Wait for the interpreter to finish talking before you answer.
  • Speak slowly so the interpreter can hear everything you say.

Do not interrupt, even if someone in court says something bad about you. You will get a chance to speak.

What if the Court doesn't have an interpreter that speaks my language?

To locate an interpreter that speaks your language, check on the AOC (State Court Judicial Council) website. On the left side of the AOC's Interpreter  home page  are some links - you will want to click on the link that says "Search for an interpreter" which will take you to a web page with links to several lists of interpreters, as well as a searchable directory of interpreters who are in good standing with the Judicial Council.

Language Access Service Complaint

The Santa Clara County Superior Court is committed to providing language access services to the residents of Santa Clara County. If you have had difficulties in obtaining an interpreter or having your language needs met, and you would like to register a complaint about the Court’s language access services, please fill out the Language Access Complaint form  and turn it in at your local courthouse in person, mail it, or e-mail to . You can also fill it out and turn it in online by pressing the submit button on the complaint form  when you are finished.

Please complete the Language Access Complaint Form if you meet one of the following criteria:

  • You may file an anonymous complaint regarding the court’s language access services. Please Note: we will not be able to contact you to acknowledge receipt of your complaint, to ask for more information if necessary, or to inform you of the resolution of your complaint.
  • You can use the Language Access Complaint form to provide comments or suggestions about language access services. Filing a complaint regarding the court’s language access services will not negatively affect your court cases or the services you get at the court. Your complaint regarding the court’s language access services will NOT become a part of your case file or part of your case.
  • If you are making this complaint regarding the court’s language access services on behalf of someone else, fill out the information of the person we should contact about the complaint.
  • If you need language access services for an active court case, send us your complaint regarding the court’s language access services as soon as possible.

The Language Access Representative will review and respond to all interpreter and language access complaints. The Court takes all complaints about language access very seriously and will address the concerns in an appropriate manner. You will receive an acknowledgment of the receipt of your complaint regarding the Court’s language access services within 30 days. You will also be contacted about the status of resolution of your complaint within 60 days.

Please be aware that the Language Access Services Division does not have the authority to change or modify any decision made by a judicial officer and that its review of the complaint does not, in any way, affect or extend any applicable deadlines or procedural requirements such as filing motions, appeals, modifications, etc.

Thank you for submitting a complaint or suggestions regarding the Santa Clara County Superior Court language access services.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

If you require the services of a sign language interpreter, you may request one at any courthouse, for any type of hearing you may have. This includes civil hearings, small claims hearings and jury duty.

What if I want to become an interpreter?

If you are interested in becoming an interpreter, please visit the Judicial Council's "Become an Interpreter" page .

© 2018 Superior Court of California, County of Santa Clara