Vista, CA Family (Civil) Court Complaint Process

There is extreme incompetence “functioning” from all levels at the San Diego County Superior Court, Family (Civil) Court Division.  Some of my experiences include, but not limited to, the following:

Filing Clerks turning me away and refusing to accept my filings for what they told me were “procedural” errors (advising me to return with “Signature Forms” and “Cover Sheets” that were not needed) to only determine later, that I was correct and they were wrong.

Court Transcribers who “failed” to document important details of my case.

Incompetent Commissioners who were not reading the case ahead of time (and were doing a poor job at “scanning”) and had no idea what the most important details were.

Commissioner Lowe pleading with me to abandon my Contempt filing against the ex husband because “Contempt Cases are difficult and a lot of hard work” when I had 4 witnesses that he was continuing to harass me against her stated court orders.

But, for the 2-months that my Contempt Hearing for husband’s harassment against judge’s orders sat on the calendar, ex continued to harass me and I was unable to file retraining orders against him because I already filed a Contempt charge.

I was in extreme danger while the Contempt Hearing sat on the court calendar for months and then when the date was close, Commissioner Lowe confused me into abandoning it. I later discovered that she did this to save court time and money.

Judge Lowe was supporting the abuser, and not protecting the abused, because it was easier. 

Positive Note: There is an anti-harassment order against ex husband permanently written in our divorce settlement.

A “Settlement Judge” (an attorney that volunteers as “Settlement Judge” to rise in the “ranks” and to enhance his credentials) who wanted to look good in front of my judge so he both cajoled me (you’re the big- person; you’re sweet and beautiful) and frightened me into giving everything away because my ex husband was “crazy” (Settlement Judge told my attorney and myself that he could tell the ex husband was “crazy” because of my immense contribution to the marriage, the husband floundering away my extreme investment, and then husband had the “take all and leave wife destitute” mentality). 

The Settlement Judge encouraging me to walk away from everything that was owed to me because the ex husband is “crazy” is supporting the abuser.

We all need to speak up and against the gross wrongdoings of the extreme dysfunction of the Vista, CA family court system. Here are some ways to do this:

1. Written complaints regarding Vista, CA Family Court Judges/Commissioners:

Supervising Family Law Judge, Maureen Hallahan

1555 6th Avenue

San Diego, CA 92101

Department F5

2. Online Form SDSC CIV-249, To Request Change/Reassignment of Judge/Commissioner in Family Court Cases:,1524469&_dad=portal

a. Click on above link. b. Click on “Forms” c. In upper right “search box,” input 249. d. Click on first choice, “PEREMPTORY CHALLENGE.”

3.  Complaint Form regarding other Vista, CA family court matters, including Mediators/Counselors.  This form does not include Judges/Commissioners (see above).  Same procedure as above but input FCS 044 into “search box”:

Form: FCS 044

4.  Procedural/General Questions regarding your Family Court Case:

Call: 760-201-8600

Press: 1 (English), then 4, then 0

Phone Hours: M-Th: 8:00-12:00, 1:00-4:30, Friday: 8:00-12:00

You may be on hold for a while.

Author: My Sociopath

Oceanside, California

6 thoughts on “Vista, CA Family (Civil) Court Complaint Process”

  1. I am filing a complaint against Commissioner Patti Ratekin and THANK YOU for sharing your story. She really IS a sociopath (I mean literally) and what this woman did to me in court was nothing short of traumatic and abusive. This woman destroys families and will destroy my daughter is given half a chance. I have no idea why she has not been STOPPED! Such abuse of power and the legal system…I have no faith in the system anymore. By the way, this woman did not read ANYTHING I submitted either…and she said so right in court. Unreal. Again, thank you for this information on how to file a complaint and get this sociopath removed from my family case.

    1. Hi Gabriela,
      I’m glad you are filing a complaint. We all need to take back our power. The family court system and its judges, commissioners, and lawyers are extremely uneducated and misinformed about people with personality disorders. The people with personality disorders are manipulating the entire system and the good people are being destroyed. Please keep in touch if you need anything. We can all come together and protest outside the court house.:) Lynna

  2. You think thats bad. Try coming to vallejo court house. I’ll match my nutty judge against ypurs. He’s name is healy ( he don’t desrrve to b addressed as judge)

    1. lourdes,
      I’m sorry it took me so long to respond to this. Please write a letter of complaint to the Family Court Supervisor in your area. You can call the number listed under your Superior Court, Family Court link. They will give you the address. You can make the letter short but write something. It is never too late to take action.

    1. Thank you Bert0001: I don’t feel like a “victim.” I just feel like a story teller that tries to be factual and informative and maybe help someone down the road somewhere with this information.


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