Civil cases are lawsuits that fall into one of two court jurisdictions, depending on the dollar amount involved in the case. Small Claims Court, a division of County Civil, handles cases that do not exceed $5,000.00. Cases exceeding $5,000.00 but not exceeding $15,000.00 are under the jurisdiction of County Civil. Cases exceeding $15,000.00 and all family law cases, which include divorces, adoptions, name changes, etc., are under the jurisdiction of Civil Court. Back to top
The civil division of the Circuit Court has jurisdiction over general law cases such as foreclosures, real property disputes, condominium disputes, eminent domain, auto negligence, personal negligence, professional malpractice, products liability, and contracts and indebtedness, all with a claim value over $15,000.00. Back to top
If a couple decides to get a divorce, also referred to as "dissolution of marriage," the Supreme Court of Florida and Florida Family Law have created general information packets regarding divorces for your reference and use. These packets are for couples who wish to represent themselves in their divorce proceedings. As in all matters involving the law, if you do not feel fully comfortable or qualified to represent yourself, you may want to consider obtaining the services of a competent lawyer. In order to file for divorce in Florida, one of the party must be a Florida resident for at least six (6) months prior to the date the divorce petition is filed.
Divorces are a matter of family law. Other family law cases include child and spousal support, adoptions, paternity, change of name, child custody, separate maintenance, and annulment. Back to top
A Small Claims case is filed in County Court to settle disputes among parties where the dollar amount is $5,000.00 or less, excluding costs, interest, and attorneys' fees. In most small claims cases, the parties in the case represent themselves and it is not necessary to have a lawyer. The Clerk's Office will provide you with the necessary forms to initiate your small claims case. Please be advised, however, that the employees of the Clerk's Office cannot provide you with any legal advice on any matter and cannot guarantee the collection of any amount found due and owing to you. Back to top
County Civil settles disputes for cases that exceed $5,000.00 but do not exceed $15,000.00. There are no forms available at the Clerk's Office for County Civil lawsuits. If you should choose to file your own case, the Law Library is available for research and has some forms available to copy. Please remember, the law librarian cannot answer any legal questions or give any legal advice. As in all matters involving the law, if you do not feel fully comfortable or qualified to represent yourself, you may want to consider obtaining the services of a competent lawyer.
The County Civil court is also where most Tenant Eviction proceedings are filed. The Clerk's Office has eviction forms available. Back to top