The California Code of Civil Procedure (CCP) specifies powers of judges at chambers, which are contained in Chapter 2 of Title 2 of Part 1 of the CCP, which was added in 1880. CCP Section 165 authorizes the justices of the Supreme Court and of the courts of appeal, at chambers, to grant all orders and writs which are usually granted in the first instance upon an ex parte application. This does not apply to writs of mandamus, certiorari, and prohibition.
CCP Section 166 provides that the judges of the superior courts may, in chambers:
- Grant all orders and writs that are usually granted in the first instance upon an ex parte application, and hear and dispose of those orders and writs
- Appoint referees
- Require and receive inventories and accounts to be filed
- Order notice of settlement of supplemental accounts
- Suspend the powers of personal representatives, guardians, or conservators
- Appoint special administrators
- Grant letters of temporary guardianship or conservatorship
- Approve or reject claims
- Direct the issuance from the court of all writs and process necessary in the exercise of their powers in matters of probate.
- Hear and determine all motions
- Hear and determine all uncontested actions, proceedings, demurrers, motions, petitions, applications, and other matters pending before the court, with specified exceptions
- Hear and determine motions to tax costs of enforcing a judgment.
- Approve bonds and undertakings.
CCP Section 166.1 provides that a judge may indicate in any interlocutory order a belief that there is a controlling question of law as to which there are substantial grounds for difference of opinion, appellate resolution of which may materially advance the conclusion of the litigation.
CCP Section 167 species that any act required or permitted to be performed by the clerk of a court may be performed by a judge.
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