Small Claims actions are heard in 4 courthouses throughout Van Zandt County.
Are there appeals in small claims court?
Appeals are allowed if the amount of the award exceeds $250.00.
Types of Small Claims Cases
Most cases for the recovery of money can be heard 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. Under Texas law, collections cases and claim assignments cannot be heard in small claims court.
Van Zandt County Court Clerk
The clerk at the courthouse can be an excellent resource for your case. This will ensure the courthouse is open and someone is available to assist with the filing of your claim. Also, while the clerk can answer questions about procedures, the clerk cannot give legal advice.
A Justice of the Peace for Van Zandt County hears small claims court cases for Van Zandt 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).
What is the trial like?
Unlike regular civil trials, small claims court rules do not follow the Rules of Evidence. 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. A small claims court trial is much quicker, often lasting between 15-20 minutes. A jury trial will likely last longer, probably a few hours.
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. However, you are allowed to retain one if you choose.
Small Claims Court Jurisdiction
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 type of relief would be injunctive relief.
Van Zandt County Court Locations
Precinct 1 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Grand Saline
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 189 Grand Saline, TX 75140-0189
Precinct 2 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Canton
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 9 Canton, TX 75103
Precinct 3 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Wills Point
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 648 Wills Point, TX 75169
Precinct 4 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Ben Wheeler
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 499 Ben Wheeler, TX 75754
This courthouse handles cases for Precinct 4 Place 1. The court’s website can be found here. The phone number for the court is (903)833-5705.