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Getting Started

If you would like to start a case, then you will need to file a case. In order to do that, you will need to know (1) the case type (2) the court you will need to file into (3) what you need to file. After you file the case, you will receive your next steps from the court. 

If you have received paperwork from the court, you will need to (1) know what the case is about (2) know what forms you have to file. 

If you received paperwork from the court stating that a hearing has been scheduled, take a look at the preparing for a hearing page

If you know you have a hearing scheduled but you cannot remember when or where it is, look at the case access portal, or call 1-855-212-1234 and provide them with your case number. 

Starting a case

To get started, you need to know what type of case you want to file. The case type will guide you to what court division to file into, what forms to fill out, and what events will occur next. 

See an explanation of the different case types    

Now that you know what type of case to file into, you should also know what type of court you will use: either the Family Division, District Division, or Probate Division of Circuit Court, or Superior Court. This information will help you figure out which court you will file into.

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Did you know?

Some words that are used in the courts may not be familiar with everyone. We want you to become familiar with these terms and understand them so that you will be better able to understand what is happening with your case.

Legal definitions  

Responding to a case

If you received paperwork from the courts, you need to read the paperwork carefully and follow the instructions as accurately as you can. The instructions may ask you to file an appearance, ask you to attend a court hearing, or ask you to attend mediation. Pay special attention to any dates that you see. The dates may tell you when your court hearing is, or the deadline by which you have to file paperwork with the court. If you cannot attend the date of your court hearing, you can ask the court to reschedule the date by filing a motion

Your paperwork will also tell you the case number. The case number is used by the court to track the progress of your case. You will need to put your case number on any paperwork that you file with the court. If you ever have questions about your case, you will need to provide your case number to the court staff. 

It may help you to know what case type your case is. The case type will help to narrow down what laws, rules, and administrative orders govern your case, and will help you find other resources that may assist you in your case. 

See an explanation of the different case types