The goal of the County Civil/Small Claims department is to provide helpful information to all of our customers. Our hope is that the information provided is informative. If you require additional information; please contact us. A list of our locations can be found in the contact information section.
The County Civil/Small Claims department handles all summary procedure cases also known as small claims cases. In these types of cases the damages sought range from $.01 to $5,000.00. This department also handles civil matters that range from $5,000.01 to $15,000.00; as well as, most disputes between landlords and tenants.
Listed are some of the legal matters processed by the County Civil/Small Claims department are listed below:
(Please note this is partial list and no way defines the entire scope of the County Civil/ Small Claims Department)
County Civil/Small Claims is also widely known as the “people court” and legal representation is not required. If your legal matter is one of a more complex nature, you should seek legal advice on your rights and obligations.
Acceptable forms of payment are cash, cashier's check, money order, attorney's check, business check, or credit card (Visa or MasterCard).
The Clerk’s staff cannot provide you with any legal advice. You may see seek legal assistance at the local law library, legal aid or from the Florida bar referral service. See additional information and links below:
The information provided in this section is for County Civil disputes that range from $5,000.01 to $15,000.00. Although an attorney is not required for you to file a civil case, it is highly recommended that you seek legal counsel in these matters. However, you are not legally required to have legal counsel. The clerk’s office does not provide any paper work our guidance on these types of cases. Please keep in mind that if your case exceeds $5,000.00 the rules of summary procedures does not apply, and therefore you will not be able to utilizing any of the small claims forms. As a pro-se litigant a/k/a (self -represented party), you are required to educate yourself on all the rules of court and the preparation of forms and service requirements to move your case forward.
If you wish to proceed without legal counsel, please note that the clerk’s office cannot provide any help for you in this matter self-education is imperative. You may see seek legal assistance at the local law library, legal aid or from the Florida bar referral service. See additional information and links below:
Eviction is a legal dispute between a landlord and tenant due to non-payment of monies owned (rent) for the residential property. Information on eviction can be located in Florida Statutes Chapter 83 Landlord actions.
Paper work to file an eviction can be obtained on the clerk’s website by accessing the link: (Link to self-service forms) or by coming in to any of the courthouse locations. Deputy clerks are not attorneys and will not prepare any forms regarding evictions; however, they can provide ministerial guidance and procedural information about the filing. An information sheet is also available that will outline the process. (Insert PDF image of the information sheet)
Pursuant to Florida Statues Chapter 83.56 a notice is requires prior to filing a case for eviction there are variety of notices depending on the individual circumstance they including:
This notice must be given by the landlord for other non-compliance issues such as but not limited to: unauthorized pets, guests, or vehicles, parking violations etc. (see F.S. 83.56 for specific details)
The next step requires the forms for evictions to be completed by the landlord, including the proper notice pursuant to (see F.S. 83.56 for specific details), copy of any other documentation that supports the claim for eviction. For your convience we offer self service forms.SELF SERVICE FORMS
Service is required on the tenant; the tenant then must comply with the instructions on the summons.
The Judgment & Writ of Possession process are the final steps in the eviction process.
In order to participate in the sale, bidders must register at www.broward.realforeclose.com to get a Username, Password and bidder number and place a valid deposit to be considered. All bidders must be registered prior to the sale. Bidders are responsible for conducting their own research about the property.
Prior to the time of the sale, the bidder must post with the Clerk’s Office a deposit equal to 5% of the estimated highest bid for each property they anticipate winning at the sale. Deposit funds must be received no later than 3:00pm EST the previous business day of the auction. Deposits can be made via wire transfer or in person in the form of cash, cashier's check or money order at the main courthouse located at Broward County Central Courthouse, Judicial Complex, West Building, 201 SE 6th Street, 4th Floor, Room: 04130, Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301. For wire transfers, please instruct your bank to include the Bidder Number on the wire information. The wiring instructions are available on the Real Auction website, once the sale has completed and the winning bidder chooses to pay by wire transfer.
Effective Immediately: Section 7 of Senate Bill 2506 has amended Florida Statute 45.035 (3). The $60.00 service fee for conducting an electronic sale shall be assessed as costs and paid when filing for an electronic sale date. Each time the sale is scheduled or re-scheduled, the Plaintiff is required to pay the $60.00 service fee. The payment can be made via the e-Portal. If you are the successful bidder for property at a foreclosure sale, the balance of the final bid amount plus the court registry fees (3% of the first $500 and each subsequent $100 at 1.5%) must be received by the Clerk’s Office no later than 12:00 pm EST the next business day following the sale or by the deadline stated in the judgment. Accepted forms of payment are wire transfer, cash, cashier’s checks or money order. You will also owe Documentary “doc” stamps on the amount of your final bid. This fee is pursuant to Florida Statute 201.01 and is owed to the Broward County Board of County Commissioner. Doc Stamps on Titles and other instruments related to real property (rounded to the nearest $100.00) are calculated at $.70 per $100.00. You will receive an email regarding the requirements for payment of Documentary Stamps.
Any objections to the sale must be filed within 10 days after the filing of the certificate of sale.
Please refer to www.broward.realforeclose.com for further information regarding the foreclosure process.
If you are a plaintiff or plaintiff’s attorney in a foreclosure case that requires a live sale, that language must be listed in your final judgment. If your final judgment has already been entered, you will need to provide the Clerk’s Office with a court order directing the Clerk to conduct a live sale for that case. The sale will be conducted in the courthouse lobby located at the Broward County Central Courthouse, Judicial Complex West Building, 201 SE 6TH Street, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301.
A small claims suit is an action for damages where the amount in controversy does not exceed the sum of $5000.00 exclusive of costs, interest and Attorney’s fee.
Any person 18 years or older or any individual doing business as a company can file a small claims case. A parent or guardian may file on behalf of a minor child. An Attorney is not required; however some Judges may require a corporation to be represented by an Attorney.
You may file your suit at any of the court location listed in the contact information section.
The law gives the person or company the right to file in Broward County if one or more of the following is applicable:
Plaintiff is the party who brings the lawsuit. Defendant is the party being sued. It is important that you sue in the correct name and file against the right party. If you are the plaintiff, you will need the following information to complete your forms:
For a fee, the Clerk’s personnel will provide you with the necessary forms for filing a small claims case. The Clerks who assist in preparation of the forms are not Attorneys and cannot give legal advice. Their function is to help and guide in the preparation of the forms only. Responsibility for adequate pleadings and one’s position in a lawsuit always rests with the litigant, not with the Clerk.
The following are required to file your case:
A copy of the Summons/Notice to Appear for Pretrial Conference and Statement of Claim must be served on the defendant. Service may be accomplished by any of the following methods:
Acceptable methods of payment are Cash, Cashier’s Check, Money Order, Business Check, Visa and MasterCard. This office does not accept personal checks.
A pretrial conference is an informal process to determine if there is a cause of action. Once your case is filed, a pretrial date will be set. You will be given the pretrial date, time, room number and name of Judge assigned to your case.
A judgment is the written decision of the case signed by a Judge. It specifies the prevailing party, monies being awarded, actions to be performed or property to be transferred.
For information regarding the collection of a Small Claims Judgment, please send a self-addressed stamped envelope to the County Court location where you filed your case.
The addresses of the County Courts are as follows:
Broward County Central Courthouse
Judicial Complex West Building
201 Southeast 6th Street
3rd Floor, Room 03170
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301
North Regional Courthouse
1600 West Hillsboro Boulevard
Deerfield Beach, FL 33442
South Regional Courthouse
3550 Hollywood Boulevard
Hollywood, FL 33021
West Regional Courthouse
100 North Pine Island Road
Plantation, FL 33324
Assistance with Forms - Please visit the Law Library Self Help Equal Access Center.
Comfortable work areas, internet, wi-fi, Westlaw, Lexis, print materials and additional forms covering many topics including, but not limited to: Summary Administration; Formal Administration; Homestead; Motions; Affidavits; Caveats; Waivers; Consents; Adversary Actions
The Law Library is open to the public and Law Librarians are available to offer assistance in locating legal resources and forms.
https://www.floridabar.org (Lawyer Referral Service).
VALID FORMS OF PAYMENT — Cash, Cashier’s Check, Money Order, Attorney's Check, or Credit Card. (MasterCard or Visa only. Payer must appear in person with proper identification.)|
NO PERSONAL CHECKS ARE ACCEPTED.
ATTENTION ATTORNEYS — Attorney’s trust account checks must be imprinted with the words “Trust Account” or “IOLTA”.
Payments into the Court Registry — Please view the Court Registry tab for more detailed information.
|Claims less than $100||$55.00|
|Claims of $100 or more, but not more than $500||$80.00|
|Claims of more than $500, but not more than $2,500||$175.00|
|Claims of more than $2,500||$300.00|
|Removal of Tenant Actions||$185.00|
|For all claims of not more than $1,000 filed simultaneously with an action for replevin of property that is the subject of the claim||$130.00|
|For the filing of any cross-claim, counterclaim or third party complaint in excess of $2,500||$295.00|
|Issuance of a summons, per summons||$10.00|
|For all cases in excess of 5 defendants, the regular filing fee plus, per defendant||$2.50|
|Re-open case fee (fee charged for each pleading in a “closed” case that requires Judicial action-claims of not more than $500.00||$25.00|
|Re-open case fee (fee charged for each pleading in a “closed” case that requires Judicial action-claims exceeding $500.00||$50.00|
|Writ fee (garnishment, replevin, attachment, distress)||$85.00|
|Service by registered mail (small claims only, FL resident only) per defendant||$9.00|
County Civil Miscellaneous Charges
|Photocopying of public records, per page||$1.00|
|Record search-per year||$2.00|
|Certification of copies of public or official documents filed in the Clerk’s office||$2.00|
|Verifying any document presented for certification and prepared by someone other than the clerk||$3.50|
|Preparing exemplification certificate, certificate of non-suit, including signing & sealing||$7.00|
|Subpoena fee (sign and seal)||$2.00|
|Issuing execution & other enforcement process-foreign judgment||$42.00|
|Non-Resident Cost Bond||$100.00|
|Attorney appearing Pro Hac Vice||$100.00|
|Approving surety bond||$8.50|
|Sealing of court file or expunging of any record||$42.00|
|Writ fee (garnishment, attachment, replevin and distress)||$85.00|
|Garnishment answer fee||$103.00|
|Fee for issuing each summons||$10.00|
|Fee for issuing each subpoena||$2.00|
|Fee for filing any cross-claims, counter-claims or third party complaints in excess of $2,500.00.||$295.00|
|Foreign Judgment Writ Fee||$42.00|
|Fee for Sealing of Court File or Expunging of any record||$42.00|
|Bond Approval Fee||$8.50|
|Each defendant in excess of five (5) on a case||$2.50|