criminal court records

Juvenile Courts

For people under the age of 18 charged with crimes, a separate juvenile court system exists in each county in California.

Juvenile court proceedings and court records generally are not open to the public.

There are exceptions:

  • Criminal court cases against juveniles charged with certain violent or very severe crimes are open to the public in California.
  • Juveniles charged with very serious crimes may be charged as adults in superior court in California, in which case the court proceedings and court records are open as they are in other felony cases.

For more information on juvenile court proceedings and the circumstances under which court hearings or records are open to the public, see the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press' Access to Juvenile Courts and the section specifically on California.

For more information on juvenile courts in California, including when a juvenile can be tried as an adult, see the official California Courts Web site.