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Civil Cases - Probate Division

Pursuant to RSA 547:3, the probate court has jurisdiction to decide civil cases (e.g. collections, torts, contract actions, suits on bond, small claims, landlord-tenant action) when an estate, trust, conservatorship or guardianship (adult or minor) is the plaintiff or the defendant. This jurisdiction is concurrent with district court or superior court. However, if either party requests a jury trial or if a statute or regulation provides for review by superior court, then probate court does not have jurisdiction. 

In general, a new case will be opened when an action is filed in which one of the parties is not a party to the underlying case (estate, trust, guardianship or conservatorship). 

These cases may come in the form of a small claim, a civil writ case (including a writ of replevin), or a landlord tenant case. Each case will have its own case number and the appropriate filing fee and forms associated with these case types. 

There may be petitions, motions, or bills filed that will not require notice to other parties and may not require a hearing (e.g. petition for settlement on behalf of minor). These may be processed as if filed as a petition or motion in the underlying case and no separate case will be opened and no additional fee will be charged. 

See also Administrative Order 15 and Procedure Bulletin 28. Related information may be found at landlord tenant and small claims, on the district division pages.