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By: Rachel Campbell on July 21st, 2017

What Makes the Temecula Probate Court Unique?

Temecula Probate Lawyer on What Makes the Temecula Probate Court Unique

Published July 12, 2017.

As a Temecula probate lawyer who appears in the Temecula Probate Court regularly I have come to appreciate its uniqueness.  The Temecula probate court is the southern-most probate court in Riverside County.  Temecula itself directly abuts San Diego County.  However, any probate lawyer in the court can tell you the Temecula probate court does not hear San Diego County probate cases.

The Temecula probate court is a division of the Riverside County Superior Court.  It is unique in that it is the only court in the county that does not have a dedicated courthouse. The Temecula probate court is located at 41002 County Center Dr. #100, Temecula, CA 92591 and is part of the Walt P Abraham Administrative Complex.  This makes it a little difficult to find the court itself.

Parking at the Temecula Probate Court is free and usually easy.

This is a real contrast to most other probate courts in Southern California. The court is open Monday through Friday from 7:30 A.M. to 4:00 P.M.  The court closes for various holidays that fall on weekdays throughout the year.

Temecula probate lawyers and their clients are very lucky to have a speedy clerk’s office in the Temecula Probate Court. If everything is in order when a probate petition is granted, then the court will issue the order on the same day. Probate attorneys or self-represented parties may purchase certified copies of their letters immediately following their hearing.

The Temecula Probate Court has an e-filing system to submit documents electronically to the court. Most, but not all, probate documents can be filed via the e-filing system. In addition, the clerk’s office also accepts filing of pleadings.  Unlike some counties that simply won’t permit window filings for anyone represented by a probate attorney, the Temecula Probate Court continues to allow counsel to file at the clerk’s window.

Scheduling court dates in the Temecula Probate Court is hassle free.  The clerks are very helpful and will usually set a hearing on a requested date as long it fits in the court’s existing calendar. The clerks also must make sure there is also enough time to give notice of the hearing.

One judicial officer staffs the Temecula Probate Court. This judicial officer is either a judge or commissioner, and is presently a judge.

This can be helpful in that having the same judge hear a probate case means the officer will likely remember what has happened in the past. This can make it easier to explain why a particular action happened. The downside to having one officer is that any case requiring a trial will get sent to Riverside.

Temecula Probate Costs

Like all probate cases in California, Temecula probate cases are governed by the statutory fee schedule for executor fees, attorney fees, and probate referee fees.  However, filing fees in Temecula are different than in most other counties because there is an additional thirty dollar fee when filing petitions.  That additional fee is for the refurbishment of the historic Riverside courthouse.  The executor and attorney fees are on average higher for estates that include real estate in Temecula, Murrieta, or Menifee because the average real estate price is higher than the surrounding areas.  Those higher real estate prices will also lead to slightly higher costs for the probate referee.

Probate Cases that Originate in the Temecula Probate Court

As of January 1, 2017, according to an administrative order signed pursuant to the local rules, the Temecula Probate Court takes cases that originate in:

  • Temecula
  • Murrieta
  • Menifee
  • Sun City
  • Lake Elsinore
  • Aguanga
  • Hemet
  • Homeland
  • Murrieta Hot Springs
  • Lakeview
  • San Jacinto
  • Quail Valley
  • Canyon Lake
  • Rancho California
  • Wildomar and
  • Winchester

These cases must be filed in the Temecula Probate Court.  A probate case originates in the city in which the decedent resided immediately before his or her death.  The corresponding zip codes for those areas are: 92530-92532, 92536, 92543-92546, 92548, 92562-92564, 92567, 92581-92583, 92587, 92589-92593, 92595, and 92596. As a rule of thumb, if your loved one died in the Temecula Valley then their probate must be filed in the Temecula Probate Court.