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 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. The only types of cases that are prohibited are an assignment of a claim (whereby you transfer your interest in a case for someone else to collect), a divorce, or a case filed by a collection agency or agents.
Are Appeals Allowed?
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?
Small claims cases in Waller County are heard in front of the justice of the peace for Waller County.
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). Small Claims Court cases for Waller are heard in 4 LOCATIONS throughout Waller County.
Can I file my case in small claims court?
A plaintiff cannot demand more than $10,000 in their action. (Texas Government Code 28.093). Additionally, a small claims court plaintiff can only ask the court for monetary relief. You are unable to seek injunctive or equitable relief. 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. This type of relief would be injunctive relief.
Clerk’s Role in Small Claims Court Actions
The clerk is often the first person small claims court litigants interact with in their case. This will ensure the courthouse is open and someone is available to assist with the filing of your claim. 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.
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. Additionally, the judge is allowed to ask questions of the parties and witnesses, and generally takes a more proactive role in determining the facts of a case. Trials generally are pretty short (15-20 minutes). If a jury trial is required, the trial could last a few hours.
Waller County Court Locations
The precinct map for Waller County can be found here.
Precinct 1 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Hempstead
This courthouse is located at:846 6th St, Ste 1 Hempstead, TX 77445
This courthouse handles cases for Precinct 1 Place 1. The court’s website can be found here. The phone number for the court is (979)826-7745.
Precinct 2 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Waller
This courthouse is located at:27388 Fieldstore Rd Waller, TX 77484
Precinct 3 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Hempstead
This courthouse is located at:12620 FM 1887 Hempstead, TX 77445
This courthouse handles cases for Precinct 3 Place 1. The court’s website can be found here. The phone number for the court is (979)826-7637.
Precinct 4 Place 1 Courthouse in the City of Pattison
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 7 Pattison, TX 77466-0007