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Civil Cases - District Division

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Scheduling of Small Claims and Civil cases

Scheduling of Small Claims and Civil cases

During the COVID state of emergency the circuit courts continued to handle cases prioritized by state and federal law (e.g., child protection, guardianships, incarcerated criminal cases, etc.).  At the same time, there was a slow down or pause on other case types.   Small claims and civil cases were significantly impacted by pandemic scheduling realities and the limitations on in-person hearings.

Now that the Supreme Court has authorized court users to have full access to court buildings again, all cases are being reviewed and addressed in order of filing – oldest first. Despite a shortage of judges for the circuit court, we expect that some courts will begin scheduling previously cancelled hearings and new small claims and civil cases, as well as payment hearings, in the next several weeks.  Others will begin sometime in the weeks and months after that, depending on the severity of backlogs in all case types. 

Please check back frequently with the Information Center at 1-855-212-1234 for the scheduling statuses for specific courts and their abilities to get these types of cases scheduled onto the dockets.

Electronic Filing

Electronic Filing is mandatory in civil cases at all district division locations.  Self-represented litigants will use the program TurboCourt.  Attorneys will use the program File & Serve. If you had filed your original civil action in paper (not electronically) and have received a judgment that you are trying to collect, you may continue to file your pleadings in paper. Please be aware of the Circuit Court’s Electronic Filing Rules.

Basic Facts

The District Division of the Circuit Court can hear civil cases involving requests for money damages.  The damages may not exceed $25,000. If damages exceed $25,000, the case must be filed in the Superior Court. If damages are $10,000 or less, a Small Claim may be filed.

Civil Complaints may be filed in the District Division. The NH Supreme Court recently issued new court rules for these actions.  In addition, it is important to be familiar with the general Rules of the Circuit Court District Division.

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After reviewing the information on these pages, if you need further assistance please contact the Trial Court Information Center: 1-855-212-1234 for calls from US or Canada (Calls from outside US or Canada call 603-415-0162)