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- Magistrate Cases
- District Cases ($10,000 or more, Personal Injury, Breach of Contract, Foreclosures, Quiet Title, Property, Habeas Corpus)
- Unlawful Detainer (Evictions)
- Change of Name
- Domestic Violence (Civil Protection Orders)
- Probate (Wills)
- Child Protective Act
- Mental Commitment
- Registration of Trust
- Adoption/Termination of Parental Rights
- Compromise Claim of Minors
- Child Custody
- Child Support Proceedings
- Tort Claims
- Small Claims
- Money Order
- Visa or Mastercard ($3.00 fee – per transaction)
- NO CHECKS ACCEPTED FOR CIVIL FILING FEES
Can a relative serve the papers on defendant?
You can ask any person who is at least 18 years old and not a party to your case to serve process on the defendant. The person should be a neutral third party.
How do I file a Small Claims?
You have to file in the county where the debt arose or where the Defendant lives.
You can get a claim form from the court clerk in the county where you are going to file your claim. Fill out the form completely (except for the case number), and give it to the court clerk to be filed. You must pay a $69.00 filing fee. You may use a credit or debit card – however, a $3.00 fee will be charged on top of the filing fee.
You cannot ask for more than $5,000.00. You cannot avoid the $5,000.00 limit by filing more than one claim against the same defendant about the same transaction or occurrence.
Note: When you are suing a Business or corporation the paperwork has to be served to the Registered Agent for the company. You do not need to put the registered agent name on the claim, unless he is a party in the case.
How do I know who the Registered Agent is?
You can call the Secretary of State (208)-334-2300.
If the person I want to file against lives in another state, where do I file my small claims?
You must file your claim in the county where the defendant lives or the county where the claim arose.
Is it ok to bring a witness to the hearing?
Yes, if your witness is willing to come with you, that is okay. Otherwise you can pick up a subpoena and have it served by the sheriff, process server or by mail.
There is a court date set, however, that date will not work for me – what do I need to do?
You must file a Motion to Continue. You can get the form at www.courtselfhelp.idaho.gov.
What happens if the defendant submits their answer after the default hearing has been set?
Even though the defendant has a 20-day deadline to submit their answer, the court can accept an answer right up to the default hearing date. If the defendant submits an answer after the default hearing has been set, the court clerk shall vacate the default hearing and reset the case for a contested hearing. Both parties will be sent a Notice of Hearing.
What happens if the parties reach a settlement before the hearing?
Ideally the plaintiff will submit a Motion to Dismiss with the court. Once the motion is filed, the clerk shall vacate any hearings and close the case. Don’t confuse a Motion to Dismiss with a Satisfaction of Judgment (remember: a Satisfaction of Judgment is only used with an actual Judgment has been signed by the Judge).
What happens if the prevailing party doesn’t file a Satisfaction of Judgment?
The other party can file a Motion and Affidavit for Satisfaction of Small Claims Judgment. They have to provide proof that the judgment was satisfied and upon review the judge will either grant or deny the motion. Occasionally the judge may require a new hearing to be set, but that is rare.
What happens when the case is appealed?
Appealed small claims cases move to the magistrate court division. Therefore, once the initial appeal documents are filed by a small claims clerk, all future filings and proceedings will be handled by a civil magistrate clerk. Both parties can be represented by lawyers. Case files from here on out are filed in the civil division.
What if I have evidence for my case?
Exhibits are things that may help prove your case. The most common types of exhibits are documents and photographs, but an exhibit can be anything that is useful to support your claim.
What is the most you can claim or get in small claims?
$5,000.00 is the limit – any more than that it must be filed in civil court.
To verify military status, if social security # or birth date is known, try www.dod.mil/pubs/foi
Look for Service members Civil Relief Act: Verification of Military Service or call (866)574-4970
Or fax request to (571)372-0500
Find an information sheet to help you if you are a Plaintiff at: https://courtselfhelp.idaho.gov/docs/forms/CAO_SC_Instr_1-1.pdf
Find an information sheet to help you if you are a Defendant at:
Director of Court Operations
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Caldwell, ID 83605
Phone / Fax
Weekdays 8:00am – 4:30pm