Can I hire an attorney?
In Texas, small claims parties generally represent themselves without an attorney. The reasoning behind this is because the amount is $10,000 or less, hiring an attorney becomes cost prohibitive. However, you are allowed to retain one if you choose. Small Claims Court cases for Dimmit are heard in 4 LOCATIONS throughout Dimmit County.
Can I appeal my case?
A party can appeal a ruling if the amount of the judge’s award is in excess of $250.00.
Small Claims Court Venue
In order to follow correct procedure, a small claims case needs to be filed in the proper county and precinct. In Texas, the action is filed in the County and Precinct where the defendants reside or where a contract was to be performed. (Government Code Section 28.011).
Types of Small Claims Cases
A variety of cases are handled in small claims court. From a security deposit on a rental to a motor vehicle accident. The only types of cases that are prohibited are an assignment of a claim (whereby you transfer your interest in a case for someone else to collect), a divorce, or a case filed by a collection agency or agents.
Clerk’s Role in Small Claims Court Actions
The clerk is often the first person small claims court litigants interact with in their case. The clerk is an excellent resource for the procedure for small claims court cases in Texas but also any procedures specific to that County or courthouse. It is recommended that you contact the clerk’s office to ensure the courthouse is open during the hours you want to visit. Also, while the clerk can answer questions about procedures, the clerk cannot give legal advice.
Who is the judge in a Small Claims Court case?
A Justice of the Peace for Dimmit County hears small claims court cases for Dimmit County.
Limit (or Jurisdiction) of Small Claims Court
A plaintiff cannot demand more than $10,000 in their action. (Texas Government Code 28.093). Small claims parties can only recover money. You are unable to seek injunctive or equitable relief. For example, if you pay a painter $1,000 to paint your house and the painter does not even begin, you cannot ask the court to issue an order for the painter to paint your house. You could only ask the court for an award of money.
What is the trial like?
Unlike regular civil trials, small claims court rules do not follow the Rules of Evidence. In fact, the judge in small claims court is charged with developing facts of the case and may question or summon witnesses. Furthermore, the judge is allowed and often ask questions of witnesses and parties to help understand the facts of a case. A small claims court trial is much quicker, often lasting between 15-20 minutes. If a jury trial is required, the trial could last a few hours.
Dimmit County Court Locations
Precinct 1 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Carrizo Springs
This courthouse is located at:
This courthouse handles cases for Precinct 1 Place 1. The court’s website can be found here. The phone number for the court is (830)876-5486. And you can email the court by clicking here.
Precinct 2 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Carrizo Springs
This courthouse is located at:103 N 5th St Carrizo Springs, TX 78834
This courthouse handles cases for Precinct 2 Place 1. The court’s website can be found here. The phone number for the court is (830)876-4210.
Precinct 3 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Big Wells
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 519 Big Wells, TX 78830
This courthouse handles cases for Precinct 3 Place 1. The court’s website can be found here. The phone number for the court is (830)457-2643. And you can email the court by clicking here.
Precinct 4 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Asherton
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 236 Asherton, TX 78827
This courthouse handles cases for Precinct 4 Place 1. The court’s website can be found here. The phone number for the court is (830)468-9116. And you can email the court by clicking here.