Civil Process


The Sheriff is required to serve all judicial process in the manner prescribed by law. We have provided Information Guides and Sheriff's Instructions forms for most types of process service and enforcement actions to better inform you of our policies and procedures. The majority of procedures and laws governing the service and execution of civil process are covered in the California Code of Civil Procedure. 

Please be aware that only an attorney is allowed to give legal advice. If you have a legal question contact an attorney. This site is for information purposes only, not legal advice. If you have any questions about the processes that the Sheriff serves you may call us at 707-253-4325. If you want to fax us something for review our fax is 707-259-8177.

Fees in General

The Sheriff is required by law to charge fees for most civil process actions. You must pay a fee deposit, in advance, from which the Sheriff will deduct fees. The fee for general service documents is $40 dollars per person served. Fee deposits range from $35 for a wage garnishment to $3500 or more to levy on a business. The fee and fee deposit are listed in the Information Guides for each type of process service and enforcement action. 

In addition to the Sheriff's levy fee, other costs may include charges for moving and storage, towing, recording, publishing in a newspaper, and keepers. Any unused portion of the fee deposit is refunded. Sheriff’s fees are added to your judgment and increase the amount the debtor must pay to fully satisfy the case.

Sheriff’s Instructions

Signed instructions directing the Sheriff to serve process or perform an enforcement action are required. The instructions must be signed by your attorney or by you, if you don't have an attorney. A Sheriff's Instructions form accompanies the Information Guide for each type of process or enforcement action. If you do not find the type of process or enforcement action listed, you may click Sheriff's “General Civil Process Instructions" below for a general-purpose form. 

General Civil Process Instructions

Please telephone the Sheriff’s Civil Division, at 707-253-4325, to ascertain the proper fee deposit amount and any special requirements for service. If your matter involves a child custody case, you should telephone the Napa County District Attorney, Child Abduction Section 707-253-4211), which is specially funded and trained to be of assistance.

If you have questions regarding service of process, and /or fees, or to correspond with a levying officer regarding a case, please email the Civil Process Division.

Civil View (Attorneys)

The Napa County Sheriff’s Civil Process Office is pleased to introduce a new service called, CivilViewer™. This service is for attorneys doing business in the County of Napa. This is an exciting new service and provides faster service, increased access and up to the minute status of cases you are a party to.

Here is the initial list of services CivilViewer™ provides today:

  • 24 / 7 web access to all case information you are a party to
  • Email notification of service status changes to your personal email account
  • View Service and Attempts
  • View payment and check history
  • Case searching

You benefit by having access to information on a timely basis, pro-active notification of service status changes, offering a better service to your clients, avoiding repeated calls or visits to the Sheriff, improved time management and the convenience of web access from any location day or night. Please call the Civil Division for access at 707-253-4325.