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Washington County
Justice Courts          

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Justice Courts of Washington County

Justice Courts have jurisdiction in civil suits where the amount of controversy is $10,000.00 or less and has jurisdiction on criminal cases that are punishable by fine only not to exceed $500.00 (in most cases).

CIVIL COURT

The Justice Court has exclusive jurisdiction in all civil actions in which the amount in controversy is $10,000.00 or under.  Civil Court filing fees and Constable fees total $126.00, if the defendant resides in Washington County.   If the defendant resides outside of Washington County, different Constable fees may apply.

Either party has a right to request a hearing before a jury up to 14 days before the set trial date, in which case a $22.00 jury fee is required by the requesting party. Neither the Judge nor members of the court staff are allowed to give any legal advice. If you need legal assistance, contact a lawyer of your choice.  Written information is available from the courts to guide you in the filing of your action.

 

NEW JUSTICE COURT RULES

 

 


CRIMINAL COURT

Justice Courts have original jurisdiction on Class C misdemeanors that are punishable by fine only.  Those range from the Texas Penal Code to the Traffic Code.   The following law enforcement agencies file complaints in Justice Courts in Washington County:  Washington County Sheriffs Office, Texas Department of Public Safety, Washington County Constables, Parks & Wildlife, Alcohol Beverage Commission, and Washington County Environmental Department.

The Texas Legislature requires that fees be collected on every conviction.  That amount is set by the State Legislature and is distributed to various State agencies of government.  These fees are commonly referred to as "court costs".


Definitions of Misdemeanor Offenses

Class C Misdemeanor

Fine (in most cases) not to exceed $500.00

Class B Misdemeanor

Fine not to exceed $2,000.00, confinement in jail for a term not to exceed 180 days or both (Tried in County Court At Law)

Class A Misdemeanor

Fine not to exceed $4,000.00, confinement in jail for a term not to exceed one year or both. (Tried in County Court At Law)

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