Types of Small Claims Cases
Most cases for the recovery of money can be heard in small claims court. From a security deposit on a rental to a motor vehicle accident. Under Texas law, collections cases and claim assignments cannot be heard in small claims court.
Refugio County Court Clerk
We recommend contacting the Refugio County court clerk before proceeding down to the courthouse to file your action. This will ensure the courthouse is open and someone is available to assist with the filing of your claim. Remember, the court clerk is trained to assist with procedural questions, but is not able to give legal advice.
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.
Who is the judge in a Small Claims Court case?
A Justice of the Peace for Refugio County hears small claims court cases for Refugio County. Small Claims actions are heard in 2 courthouses throughout Refugio County.
Can I file my case in small claims court?
The plaintiff’s demand for money cannot exceed $10,000. (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. This would be called injunctive relief.
How are trials conducted?
The trial is relatively informal compared to a normal trial. In fact, the judge in small claims court is charged with developing facts of the case and may question or summon witnesses. 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.
Can I 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 because cases involving $10,000 or less usually do not justify the cost of an attorney. You are not required to have an attorney, but you are allowed one. (Government Code 28.003).
Where do I file my small claims court case?
You should file your action in the County and specific Precinct where the defendants reside or where the defendant has contracted to perform. (Government Code Section 28.011).
Refugio County Court Locations
The precinct map for Refugio County can be found here.
Precinct 1 Courthouse in the City of Refugio
This courthouse is located at:808 Commerce, Rm 111 Refugio, TX 78377
Precinct 2 Courthouse in the City of Refugio
This courthouse is located at:808 Commerce, Rm 103 Refugio, TX 78377
This courthouse handles cases for Precinct 2. The court’s website can be found here. The phone number for the court is (361)526-1635.