County Civil Department

Small Claims

A Small Claims Case is a legal action filed in County Court to settle minor legal disputes among parties where the damages or value of the property does not exceed $5,000.00, excluding costs, interest, and attorney fees.

Any person(s) 18 years of age or older, or any individual(s) doing business as a company may file a Small Claims Case. A parent or guardian may file a claim on behalf of a minor child. Each person who is a party to the claim must appear at the Clerk's office to sign the necessary paperwork in the presence of a deputy clerk, or if signed outside the Clerk's office, the signatures must be notarized.

An attorney is not required in Small Claims Cases; however, you or your attorney must appear at the hearings.

Forms for filing a Small Claims Case are available at the Clerk's office.

Filing fees for small claims actions are determined by Florida Statutes and Gilchrist County Ordinances, and are subject to change. Fees vary in accordance with the dollar amount of your claim and the type of action being filed. Fees for service on the parties you are suing are also required and are dependent on the type of service you select. A current schedule of service charges/fees is available in the Clerk's office.

It is important that you file your claim against the correct party. The additional time you spend researching the correct name could make a difference in whether you are able to collect, should a judgment be entered by the court in your favor.

Copies of any contracts, notes, leases, receipts, or other evidence you may have in support of your claim must be furnished for each person named in the claim, as well as, the court.

You must have the defendant(s) complete name and street address (do not use a post office box unless you are serving by registered mail). If you are suing an individual, doing business as, you will need that person's name and the business' name. For example: John Doe, DBA, Poor Boy's Roofing. If you are suing a business or a corporation you will need the name of the corporation, as well as, the name of the president, vice president, or registered agent for that corporation. For example: Poor Boy's Roofing, Inc. by serving John Doe, President. This information may be acquired by calling the Secretary of State Corporate Filing Division, Tallahassee, Florida at (386) 488-9000.

After you file your Small Claims Case, each person or business you are suing must be served with a summons to appear in court on the date and time scheduled. This court date will be a pre-trial conference. The parties will meet with a trained mediator and try to resolve their differences. If this is not possible, then a final hearing will be scheduled. At the final hearing you will have an opportunity to explain your case to the judge, ask the person(s) you are suing any questions concerning your claim, present your documentation as discussed at the pre-trial conference, and call on any witnesses you have to help explain your case.

A trial by jury may be requested by the person(s) filing the Small Claims Case upon written demand at the time the case if filed. The defendant may request a jury trial within five days after service of notice or at the pre-trial conference.

If at any time in the proceedings a settlement is reached between the parties, the plaintiff must notify the Clerk of Circuit Court's office in writing of the settlement.

The court does not collect money damages for you. You may wish to consult an attorney for advice on how to collect your judgment.

If you choose to place a lien against any individually owned real property of the defendant, following the award of a judgment in your favor, you may have a certified copy of your judgment recorded in the Circuit Court Recording Department. Fees for recording are set by statute and are subject to change by legislative action. Contact the Clerk's office for current fees.

The information contained in our brochure for filing a Small Claims Case is intended only as a guide to assist you with the basic facts of filing a claim. If you should need further information, you must contact an attorney or use the law library for research.



Online Services Logo and page link (External Link) is a service of Florida's Clerks of Court. The website provides several online services that are fast, convenient and secure. Click on the links below to access the services which are also available en español.


Click here to Search and Order Official Records OnlineSearch and Order Official Records

Official Records are documents required or authorized to be recorded in one general series called "Official Records". Search thousands of records across counties, all in one place. Frequently ordering records? Create an account for streamlined checkout. Records can also be purchased online.


Click here to Pay Traffic Citations OnlinePay Traffic Citations

Pay securely by credit card (Visa, Mastercard, AMEX or Discover) or debit card. Elect to attend or decline traffic school during the payment process.



Access MyFloridaCounty Traffic IVR - toll free (855) 984-1187 on any touch tone phone.



Click here to Pay Child Support OnlinePay Child Support

Non-custodial parents and employers can pay online with a credit card or direct debit from a bank account. Inquiry on a case’s payment history is also available online.



Click here to pay Court Case Payments OnlineMake Court Case Payments

Pay court case fines and fees online securely by credit card (Visa, MasterCard, AMEX or Discover) or debit card.  Receive confirmation of payment after successfully completing the payment process.


MyFloridaRemit.comAvoid the hassle of sending checks each month and pay online. Use for all Child Support payments made using the electronic check (e-check) payment method.

Pay Traffic Tickets online and receive instant confirmation. Elect to take Traffic School at the same time. Child Support and Traffic services are also available en español.



Other Clerk of Court Services

Gilchrist County Official Record Images

Administrative Orders

Search Court RecordsSearch Court Records online

Perform a public county search of court records online.



Attorney Login for CCIS

To get a login contact Lyndsay at


eFiling Portal logoState of Florida ePortal Site

The Florida Courts eFiling Portal web site provides eFiling and eRecording capability to users with a single statewide login. Users may utilize the ePortal web interface to submit documents to Clerks and Recorders.

 My Florida Clerks logo and site link (External Link)

Find information about the Courts, public records, research how to file a small claims case or find an official record.

The Clerk's office performs nearly 1,000 different constitutional and statutory functions or duties, representing the broadest and most diverse mantle of responsibility of any locally elected official. Find out more about the many things we do and the many ways we can help you at