|Santa Clara County Superior Court|
When a trustee designates a principal place of administration, this provides jurisdiction to the applicable county superior court in case judicial relief is needed. For example, if a trustee designates an address in Campbell, CA as the principal place of administration, then Santa Clara County Superior Court would be the appropriate venue for judicial relief. Each California county (there are 58 of them) has a county superior court located in it. Thus any address in CA will have a local county superior court. Just trust me on this.
From a legal perspective, county superior courts are not all the same. One county superior court may view probate matters differently than other county superior courts. For instance, Santa Clara County Superior Court is very receptive to Prob C § 850(a)(3)(B) petitions (commonly known as Heggstad petitions). In particular, Santa Clara County Superior Court allows for these petitions to be heard ex parte (which essentially means there is a minimal waiting period for the case to be heard by the judge) and does not hyper-scrutinize the evidence needed to have the petition be granted. The difference between having a Heggstad petition be granted or not is often enormously consequential. If granted, it typically avoids the necessity of probate for the petitioner.
Conversely, other counties take a much more stringent approach in hearing Heggstad petitions, e.g. they require a noticed hearing (which means the case will be heard in 30-60 days) and certain evidence is needed to have the petition be granted.
In light of the foregoing, I designate my office as the principal place of administration for the client to ensure that they have access to Santa Clara County Superior Court, even if the client lives outside Santa Clara County (which has happened a few times).