Types of Cases
A variety of cases are handled 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.
Hutchinson 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. Remember, the court clerk is trained to assist with procedural questions, but is not able to give legal advice.
What is the trial like?
The trial is relatively informal compared to a normal trial. 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). However, if a party wishes for a jury trial, it will likely last a few hours.
Can I file my small claims case in Hutchinson 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).
Limit (or Jurisdiction) of Small Claims Court
A plaintiff cannot demand more than $10,000 in their action. (Texas Government Code 28.093). Small claims parties can only recover money. You cannot seek injunctive 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. You could only ask the court for an award of money.
The justice of the peace for Hutchinson County presides over small claims court actions for Hutchinson County.
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. 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). Hutchinson County Small Claims Court cases are heard in 2 courthouses in Hutchinson County.
Are there appeals in small claims court?
Appeals are allowed if the amount of the award exceeds $250.00.
Hutchinson County Court Locations
Precinct 1 Courthouse in the City of Stinnett
This courthouse is located at:P O Box 640 Stinnett, TX 79083-0640
Precinct 2 Courthouse in the City of Borger
This courthouse is located at:1400 Veta St, Rm 105 Borger, TX 79007