Small Claims Court Jurisdiction
You cannot demand or ask for more than $10,000 in a small claims court case. (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, you could sue a dry cleaner for ruining your clothes and ask for money to replace the clothes, but you cannot ask the judge for an order for the dry cleaner to repair your clothes. 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. 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. It will likely be pretty quick. A jury trial will likely last longer, probably a few hours.
Hays County Court Clerk
We recommend contacting the Hays County court clerk before proceeding down to the courthouse to file your action. The clerk is knowledgeable at all of the procedures and will be able to inform you of any specific local procedures for Hays County. We recommend calling the clerk’s office to ensure the courthouse is open. 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. The reasoning behind this is because the amount is $10,000 or less, hiring an attorney becomes cost prohibitive. Nevertheless, you are allowed to retain one if you desire. (Texas Government Code Section 28.003).
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).
Are there appeals in small claims court?
Yes, but only if the amount in controversy is in excess of $250. Small Claims actions are heard in 6 courthouses throughout Hays 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. 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.
Small claims cases in Hays County are heard in front of the justice of the peace for Hays County.
Hays County Court Locations
The precinct map for Hays County can be found here.
Precinct 1 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of San Marcos
This courthouse is located at:111 E San Antonio St, Ste 201 San Marcos, TX 78666
Precinct 1 Place 2 Courthouse in the City of San Marcos
This courthouse is located at:712 S Stagecoach Tr, Ste 2235 San Marcos, TX 78666
Precinct 2 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Kyle
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 1449 Kyle, TX 78640-1449
Precinct 3 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Wimberley
This courthouse is located at:14306 Ranch Rd 12, Ste 11 Wimberley, TX 78676
Precinct 4 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Dripping Springs
This courthouse is located at:195 Roger Hanks Parkway, Ste 2 Dripping Springs, TX 78620
Precinct 5 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Buda
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 215 Buda, TX 78610-0215