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Superior Court of California, Counties of Butte, Glenn and Tehama
Self Help Assistance & Referral Program

1675 Montgomery Street • Oroville, CA 95965 • (530) 532-7015
655 Oleander • Chico, CA 95926 • (530) 532-7024
526 W. Sycamore Street • Willows, CA 95988 • (530) 934-6461
345 Pine Street * Red Bluff, CA 96080 * (530) 527-8649

Ask the Court

Column #6

Publication Date: Friday, October 3, 2008

Question: What experience, education, and training do you have to have to become a court clerk?
--Anonymous, Orland.

Answer: The majority of court clerk staff employed at the Glenn County Superior Court fall under the job classification of legal process clerks. The title of court clerks varies from county to county, but essentially, their duties are the same.

A court clerk is a sworn officer of the court and is a deputy of the clerk of the court/court executive officer. The clerk is appointed by the judges of the court and assists the presiding judge in the efficient operation of the court. As such, court clerk deputies maintain the courts records, file documents and keep records of court proceedings, for example.

To begin as an entry level clerk, the position requires that the prospective employee: 1) have one year of general clerical experience, preferably in a legal or criminal justice office, and 2) have an educational background equivalent to the completion of the twelfth grade. After this criterion is met, applicants are subject to testing and oral interviews to select the most qualified candidates. Additional training such as working in another court or criminal justice office for a number of years may qualify the candidate for a higher level court clerk position, such as a Clerk II or III.

Once the prospective employee is offered a position with the court, they must successfully pass a drug test, as well as criminal and Department of Motor Vehicle background checks.

In addition to these requirements Clerks must hold themselves to a higher standard by following the California Clerk’s Code of Ethics. Clerks must also be able to hold confidences, keep confidential matters and understand the importance of their work. Clerks process paperwork that may deprive a person of their liberty, release inmates from custody, evict someone from their property, or process domestic violence orders impacting a person’s safety, etc. As a result, the work is challenging and offers little room for error. 

To work as a legal process clerk is a unique and rewarding career. Over the next five years, many clerks and court personnel will be retiring, leaving open employment opportunities for those interested in a career in public service. If you are interested in working for the courts, please visit www.courtinfo.ca.gov, and link to the “Careers” page. You can obtain employment opportunities and position requirements for each of the 58 Superior Courts, including Glenn County’s.

Ask the Court is written by Glenn County Superior Court administration staff. E-mail questions to askthecourt@glenncourt.ca.gov or mail to

Glenn County Superior Court,
Attn: Ask the Court,
526 W. Sycamore St.,
Willows, CA 95988.

Questions may be submitted anonymously.

Click here for a pdf version

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Superior Court of California, County of Glenn © 2009