Small Claims Court Clerk
The clerk is often the first person small claims court litigants interact with in their case. The clerk is knowledgeable at all of the procedures and will be able to inform you of any specific local procedures for Jim Wells 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 file my case in small claims court?
You cannot demand or ask for more than $10,000 in a small claims court case. (Government Code 28.093). Another restriction of small claims court is that a plaintiff can only seek monetary relief (an award of money). The court has no authority to issue an injunctive or equitable award. Say your landscaper breaks a sprinkler head. You can ask the court for money to replace the sprinkler head, but you cannot ask the court for an order requiring the landscaper to physically replace the sprinkler head. You could only ask the court for an award of money.
Can I file my small claims case in Jim Wells County?
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).
Who is the judge in a Small Claims Court case?
The justice of the peace for Jim Wells County presides over small claims court actions for Jim Wells County. Small Claims actions are heard in 5 courthouses throughout Jim Wells County.
What can I expect at trial?
Unlike regular civil trials, small claims court rules do not follow the Rules of Evidence. This allows the trials to be conducted in a much more informal fashion. Generally the judge will ask questions to help develop the facts and understand the context and circumstances surrounding the 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 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.
Do I need A Lawyer?
You are allowed to hire an attorney (Texas Government Code Section 28.003), however, most small claims court parties choose to represent themselves. 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).
Are Appeals Allowed?
A party can appeal a ruling if the amount of the judge’s award is in excess of $250.00.
Jim Wells County Court Locations
The precinct map for Jim Wells County can be found here.
Precinct 1 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Alice
This courthouse is located at:200 N Almond St, Rm B-103 Alice, TX 78332
Precinct 3 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Sandia
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 150 Sandia, TX 78383
Precinct 4 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Premont
This courthouse is located at:Drawer H Premont, TX 78375
Precinct 5 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Orange Grove
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 331 Orange Grove, TX 78372
This courthouse handles cases for Precinct 5 Place 1. The court’s website can be found here. The phone number for the court is (361)384-2486.
Precinct 6 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Ben Bolt
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 647 Ben Bolt, TX 78342