Drop Box Filing Procedures

Due to COVID-19 safety protocols, until further notice, drop-boxes will be located on the first floor lobbies of the San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose courthouses.  Drop box filings will be picked up only intermittently.  See General Order 73

General Information:

Drop boxes may be used for filings before Clerk’s Office intake counters open at 9:00 a.m. and after they close at 4:00 p.m. The public may use the drop boxes during the hours when the court is closed but the buildings are open to the public (see schedule below); federal employees with weekend and evening access to the courthouse may use the drop boxes whenever the Clerk’s Office is closed. Clerk’s Office staff retrieve documents from the drop boxes at 9:00 a.m. each day that the court is open.

Papers that relate to any hearing within seven calendar days may not be filed by drop box. All such documents must be filed in the Clerk’s Office between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.

Under-seal documents in compliance with Civil Local Rule 79-5 and, if applicable, General Order 62, may be filed by drop box.

Federal BuildingCourt LocationFloorBuilding OpenTelephone No.
Phillip Burton Federal Building & United States Courthouse450 Golden Gate Ave.
San Francisco, CA
16th Floor6:00 a.m. –
6:00 p.m.
Robert F. Peckham Federal Building280 So. First St.
San Jose, CA
2nd Floor7:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.408-535-5363
Ronald V. Dellums Federal Building1301 Clay St.
Oakland, CA
1st Floor7:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.510-637-3530
United States Courthouse3140 Boeing Ave.
McKinleyville, CA
No drop boxAfter hours case filings only through ECF707-445-3612

Drop Box Filing Procedures

Download a printable pdf of the drop box procedures below.

1. Date-stamp documents

Electronic date stamps are located next to the drop boxes. Turn each original document face-down and stamp the back of the last page. The stamp will record the date and time the court “received” the document.

The “filed” date, which will be placed on original documents by intake personnel, will be the same as the “received” date, unless the latter is a weekend or federal holiday, in which case the “filed” date will be the first court day following the weekend or holiday. Documents placed in drop boxes without a “received” stamp will be filed as of the date court staff retrieve the documents from the box.

2. Place documents in pouch or folder

To facilitate processing, clip or rubber-band each original document to its copies. Place each document in one of the orange pouches or red expanding folders provided by the court.

3. Complete filing information card(s)

Complete one filing information card for each document. Place the completed card in the transparent window of the appropriate pouch or folder. More than one pouch or folder per filing may be used, but a separate information card must be enclosed for each one.

4. Enclose filing fee (if required)

Include a check or money order payable to “Clerk, United States District Court” in the exact amount of the filing fee, if a fee is required. Please do not enclose cash.

5. Enclose return envelopes for conformed copies (if requesting)

Couriered copies: Mark return envelopes “FOR MESSENGER PICK UP: [NAME, FIRM].” Copies will be available for pick-up after 2:00 p.m. on the day court staff retrieve the documents from the drop box.

Mailed copies: Enclose self-addressed, stamped envelope(s) of appropriate size with adequate return postage. Copies will be placed in the mail the same day the documents are retrieved from the drop box.

6. Place documents in drop box

Documents will be retrieved by court staff at 9:00 a.m. on the next court day.