Civil processes during COVID-19

The San Francisco Sheriff's Office complies with all government legislation on COVID-19.

The Sheriff's Office is accepting the following documents for civil process during the COVID-19 pandemic:

General process (personal/substitute service)

Summons and petitions

Wage garnishments

Bank levies

Third-party levies (bank, rent, etc.)

Civil bench warrants

Restraining orders (domestic, harassment, elderly, gun violence, juvenile)

Notice of hearings

Out-of-state summons

Small claims

COVID-19 civil process procedures


  1. Plaintiff obtains court-approved documents
  2. Plaintiff brings documents to the Grove Street entrance (loading dock) of City Hall

For restraining orders:

  1. The plaintiff contacts the civil section at the phone number on the posted instruction sheet.
  2. A Sheriff's clerk and Deputy Sheriff will meet the plaintiff at the City Hall loading dock.
  3. SF Sheriff's staff will review the paperwork to ensure it includes all required forms and information.
  4. The plaintiff will complete and sign the instruction form
  5. The plaintiff will pay any required fee
  6. The Sheriff's Office will issue a receipt and advise the plaintiff if any additional information is needed

For all other services:

  1. The individual who drops off the service will follow the instructions on the posted instruction sheet
  2. Once an individual provides all required information, the paperwork to be served may be placed in the drop box

COVID-19 health and safety protections include:

  1. Plexiglass barrier at desk where business is conducted
  2. Hand sanitizer
  3. Gloves
  4. Contactless drop-off procedure for all regular services
Civil service area at Grove Street loading dock City Hall
Civil service area at Grove Street loading dock City Hall with COVID protections