Are there appeals in small claims court?
A party can appeal a ruling if the amount of the judge’s award is in excess of $250.00.
What is the trial like?
Unlike regular civil trials, small claims court rules do not follow the Rules of Evidence. There are no rules of evidence. Generally the judge will ask questions to help develop the facts and understand the context and circumstances surrounding the case. It will likely be pretty quick. If a jury trial is required, the trial could last a few hours.
Where do I file my small claims court case?
The action is generally filed in the County and Precinct where the defendants reside (where they live) or where location where the Defendants contracted themselves to perform. (Texas Government Code Section 28.011).
Judges for Small Claims Court Cases in Freestone County
Small claims cases in Freestone County are heard in front of the justice of the peace for Freestone County.
Types of Small Claims Cases
Small claims courts handle a wide variety of cases. Cases include damages from an automobile accident, a security deposit from a landlord, or breach of a contract. Under Texas law, collections cases and claim assignments cannot be heard in small claims court.
Limit (or Jurisdiction) of Small Claims Court
A plaintiff cannot demand more than $10,000 in their action. (Texas Government Code 28.093). Another restriction of small claims court is that a plaintiff can only seek monetary relief (an award of 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.
Small Claims Court Clerk
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. While the clerk can help you with procedural issues, the clerk is not able to give legal advice. They will direct you to an attorney if answering your question would require that.
Can I hire an attorney?
Small claims court litigants in Texas normally represent themselves without an attorney. This is largely because the amount at issue in the case is not large enough to justify the hiring of an attorney. You are not required to have an attorney, but you are allowed one. (Government Code 28.003). Freestone County Small Claims Court cases are heard in 4 courthouses in Freestone County.
Freestone County Court Locations
The precinct map for Freestone County can be found here.
Precinct 1 Courthouse in the City of Fairfield
This courthouse is located at:440 E Main Fairfield, TX 75840
This courthouse handles cases for Precinct 1. The court’s website can be found here. The phone number for the court is (903)389-8783.
Precinct 2 Courthouse in the City of Teague
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 218 Teague, TX 75860
Precinct 3 Courthouse in the City of Fairfield
This courthouse is located at:440 E Main, Ste 3 Fairfield, TX 75840-4336
Precinct 4 Courthouse in the City of Fairfield
This courthouse is located at:112 E Main, Ste 204 Fairfield, TX 75840