Limit (or Jurisdiction) of Small Claims Court
The plaintiff’s demand for money cannot exceed $10,000. (Texas Government Code 28.093). Small claims parties can only recover money. You cannot seek injunctive 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.
Can I hire an attorney?
Small claims court litigants in Texas normally represent themselves without an attorney. This is because cases involving $10,000 or less usually do not justify the cost of an attorney. Nevertheless, you are allowed to retain one if you desire. (Texas Government Code Section 28.003).
Types of Small Claims Cases
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.
What can I expect at trial?
Small claims court trials are very informal compared to a regular civil trial. This allows the trials to be conducted in a much more informal fashion. Furthermore, the judge is allowed and often ask questions of witnesses and parties to help understand the facts of a case. A small claims court trial is much quicker, often lasting between 15-20 minutes. If a jury trial is required, the trial could last a few hours.
Are there appeals in small claims court?
Yes, but only if the amount in controversy is in excess of $250.
Clerk’s Role in Small Claims Court Actions
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 Tyler County. We recommend calling the clerk’s office to ensure the courthouse is open. Remember, the court clerk is trained to assist with procedural questions, but is not able to give legal advice.
A Justice of the Peace for Tyler County hears small claims court cases for Tyler County. Small Claims Court cases for Tyler are heard in 4 LOCATIONS throughout Tyler County.
Small Claims Court Venue
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).
Tyler County Court Locations
The precinct map for Tyler County can be found here.
Precinct 1 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Woodville
This courthouse is located at:702 N Magnolia, Rm 101 Woodville, TX 75979-4915
Precinct 2 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Woodville
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 417 Woodville, TX 75979
This courthouse handles cases for Precinct 2 Place 1. The court’s website can be found here. The phone number for the court is (409)283-8426.
Precinct 3 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Colmesneil
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 98 Colmesneil, TX 75938-0098
Precinct 4 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Fred
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 576 Fred, TX 77660
This courthouse handles cases for Precinct 4 Place 1. The court’s website can be found here. The phone number for the court is (409)429-9500.