Sonoma County Small Claims Advisory Clinic

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About the Clinic
The Sonoma County Small Claims Advisory Clinic provides free procedural and legal information to Small Claims litigants regarding their rights and responsibilities under California Law.

In December 2005, Empire College School of Law took on the advisory role for the Sonoma County Small Claims Court. The free service, mandated by the county for users of the court, is provided by Empire Law Students overseen by the Dean of the Law School, Brian J. Purtill, and practicing attorney Murray Cockerill.

The clinic is staffed by third and fourth-year law students of Empire Law School and local attorneys. The staff is available to help with all stages of Small Claims cases. Any Small Claims participant or potential participant is welcome to seek help from the clinic – even those who are not residents of Sonoma County.

While we provide legal information and advice regarding small claims forms, we do not fill out the forms for clients. Additionally, we are prohibited by law and contract from advising on matters outside the realm of small claims court. Where such advice is sought we will provide referrals to another appropriate entity when necessary. Small Claims advisors cannot act as your attorney and are not meant to replace the advice of an attorney. If you would like the advice of an attorney, contact the Sonoma County Bar Lawyer Referral Service at (707) 546-5297.

The small claims advisory service would like to thank the Judicial Council of California, the California Department of Consumer Affairs, the Sacramento Small Claims Advisory Clinic, and all others who allowed us to use content from their website in the production of this site.


Empire College School of Law
First upstairs conference room on the left
3035 Cleveland Avenue
Santa Rosa, CA 95403


Walk-in Hours:
Monday and Wednesday
from 3:30 to 6:00 p.m.

Assistance by phone:
Tuesday and Thursday
from 3:30 to 6:00 p.m.

Bilingual assistance for Spanish speakers
Available during walk-in hours only.


The clinic is closed on ALL Federal/Court holidays.


Common Disputes Heard in Small Claims Court

What People Are Saying

Rachel Elliot

“Our office looks for quality law clerks and future attorneys. We have a strong relationship with Empire College and fill many of our openings with its graduates.”

Rachel Elliot, Deputy Public Defender, Law Office of the Public Defender, Sonoma County

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