Lawsuit General Information

A Civil Lawsuit is commenced by filing a complaint and summons with the Court. The Court will follow the Justice Court Rules of Civil Procedure.

Jurisdictional Amount

The Plaintiff may file for any amount up to 10,000. A claim may NOT be split by filing two separate actions. The Plaintiff may ask for reimbursement of the court costs in addition to the $10,000 maximum. Court costs include, but are not limited to, filing and service fees. A prevailing defendant may also ask for reimbursement of court costs.

General Case Process Information

A complaint and summons are filed with the Court. The Court will assign the matter a case number. If you are submitting your claim by mail, please include a self-addressed stamped envelope for the return of the complaint to you.

The Plaintiff must have all copies served on the Defendant(s) by either the Constable, a Private Process Server or the Sheriff’s Department. There is service fee deposit for service of process by the Constable.

After service of the summons and complaint, any document filed with the Court by either party must be delivered or mailed to the other party.

Upon receipt of service, the Defendant will have 20 days in which to file an answer to the complaint.

If the Defendant disputes the complaint, the matter will be set for Trial. Prior to trial, the Court may set one or more pretrial conferences to determine if the case is ready for trial: has disclosure been made to each party, is further discovery necessary, is there a possibility of settlement. The judge may conduct settlement negotiations with the parties’ consent.

If the Defendant does not respond to the complaint, the Plaintiff may file an Application For Entry of Default after the 20 days has expired.

If the matter is resolved prior to trial, the Plaintiff is to file a Voluntary Dismissal.

If the Plaintiff is awarded a Judgment and the Defendant pays the Judgment in full, a Satisfaction of Judgment needs to be filed with the Court.