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Criminal Division

Criminal Jurisdiction

The Superior Court has criminal jurisdiction over misdemeanors, preliminary felony hearings and felony trials. In all criminal cases, the defendant is presumed to be innocent. The prosecutor must prove each element of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt.

Correspondence with the Court regarding your case

Use your full name as it appears on your citation or complaint. If the spelling is incorrect or you go by a different name, please notify the court so that the record can be corrected. If you have a common name, please include your date of birth. Also, if you know your case number, always include it with any correspondence. 

Criminal Calendar Information

Clerks are not permitted to extend arraignment/hearing dates on criminal matters. They are, however, able to advance arraignments/hearings.

The criminal calendar is prepared a day in advance. Therefore, there are no arraignments/hearings available on a "walk-in" basis. If your case is warranted you may calendar your case by 12:00 pm the day before you want to appear. The warrant will be recalled only after you appear in court and the judge orders the warrant recalled. Other requests to calendar your case must be received at least two days before the date that you want to appear in court.

Calendars are usually posted in or outside the Clerk's office and online here. If you are unable to find your name or locate a calendar, go to the Clerk's office.

If you fail to appear in court on the date of your hearing, the judge will issue a warrant for your arrest. There are several calendars posted in the courthouse. If your name does not appear on these calendars, please notify the criminal division clerk that your name does not appear.


Fine Payments

All fines are due by the date the judge specifies in court.  Your paperwork will reflect the amount owed and the due date. If you fail to comply with the court’s order, you will be subject to increased penalties of at least $300, a warrant for your arrest may be issued, and the court may pursue collection through the Franchise Tax Board, the State Board of Equalization, and other collection agencies.

Pay In Person

Personal Checks, Bank Cashier's Checks, Drafts or Money Orders, payable to the "Clerk of the Court" and Credit Cards (MasterCard and Visa) will be accepted by the Santa Barbara County Superior Court in payment of any fee, service charge, fine or bail deposit. If a check is returned for non-sufficient funds or "account closed", the payor must reimburse the Court with cash, or cashier's check plus a service fee for the actual cost as determined by consultation between the Court Administrator and the County Auditor's Office.

Pay Online

You may access and pay your fine online by clicking the button below.

Online Payment

MasterCard or Visa only.

Telephone Information

Clerks are available to answer questions or take a payment by calling our offices between 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Santa Barbara: (805) 568-3959

Lompoc: (805) 737-7789

Santa Maria: (805) 614-6590

Fine Deferment/Installment Plans

Pursuant to your minute/probation order you may be ordered to pay a fine/fee by the court. In order to be eligible for an installment payment plan, you must submit a completed application. Incomplete applications will not be accepted. Court approval of deferment or installment payment plans will include specified due dates and minimum amounts for payments, as determined by the Court at the time of the application is filed.

Fine Payment Drop Box for After Hours Payments

Due to the budget crisis, our courts now close at 1:30 p.m. A drop box is provided for traffic/criminal payments between 1:30 p.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Payments (no cash please) placed in the drop box will be processed the next day.

Court Appearances

At your arraignment hearing, you should have all pertinent information with you, such as:

  • Proper identification (Driver's License, California ID, or other picture identification, Social Security card etc.) a copy of your citation, letter to appear
  • booking forms
  • cash bail or bail bond papers
  • any other paperwork that would be relevant such as fine payment slip, community service contract, any paperwork received while in custody
  • etc.

You should make arrangements to spend several hours at the courthouse to handle all possible matters in your case.

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