Ellis County Small Claims Court cases are heard in 4 courthouses in Ellis County.
Are there appeals in small claims court?
Yes, but only if the amount in controversy is in excess of $250.
Do I need to hire an Attorney?
You are allowed to hire an attorney (Texas Government Code Section 28.003), however, most small claims court parties choose to represent themselves. This is largely because the amount at issue in the case is not large enough to justify the hiring of an attorney. However, you are allowed to retain one if you choose.
Small Claims Court Jurisdiction
A plaintiff cannot demand more than $10,000 in their action. (Texas Government Code 28.093). Small claims parties can only recover money. The court has no authority to issue an injunctive or equitable award. 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. This would be called injunctive relief.
Small claims cases in Ellis County are heard in front of the justice of the peace for Ellis County.
What can I expect at trial?
Unlike regular civil trials, small claims court rules do not follow the Rules of Evidence. There are no rules of evidence. Furthermore, the judge is allowed and often ask questions of witnesses and parties to help understand the facts of a case. Trials generally are pretty short (15-20 minutes). However, if a party wishes for a jury trial, it will likely last a few hours.
Small Claims Court Clerk
The clerk at the courthouse can be an excellent resource for your 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.
Can I file my small claims case in Ellis County?
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).
Small Claims Court Case Types
A variety of cases are handled in small claims court. This could be an action to get your security deposit back, or an action to recover money for damage done to your vehicle after a car accident. However, small claims court cannot handle assignments of claims (where one person transfers their interest in an action to another), a divorce proceedings, and cases filed by collection agencies or agents.
Ellis County Court Locations
The precinct map for Ellis County can be found here.
Precinct 1 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Ennis
This courthouse is located at:207 S Sonoma Trail Ennis, TX 75119-3541
Precinct 2 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Waxahachie
This courthouse is located at:701 S I-35 E, Ste 1 Waxahachie, TX 75165
This courthouse handles cases for Precinct 2 Place 1. The court’s website can be found here. The phone number for the court is (972)825-5022.
Precinct 3 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Waxahachie
This courthouse is located at:101 W Main St, Ste 106 Waxahachie, TX 75165
Precinct 4 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Midlothian
This courthouse is located at:1150 N Hwy 67, Ste 100 Midlothian, TX 76065-2308