Ohio state court system

Understanding how the system of Ohio state court works is very important as it helps you find court records easily.

Ohio Courts Overview

To make your work easier, start searching for court records in Ohio by simply going to courts by county.

The trial court system of Ohio State consists of Court of Claims, Mayor’s Courts, Municipal Courts, County Courts, and Courts of Common Pleas.

Courts of Common Pleas

These courts have general jurisdiction to handle all types of cases, but generally handle only the cases that other courts have no jurisdiction over. They have original jurisdiction to handle felonies as well as civil cases that involve more than $15,000 in dispute. Civil claims with less than $1,000 are usually transferred to Municipal Courts. Besides, Courts of Common Pleas also have limited jurisdiction over domestic relations, estate/probate, mental health, and juvenile cases.

Each Court of Common Pleas can have special separate divisions for juvenile, general, cases, domestic relations and probate cases.

The Domestic Relations Division generally handles child support, child custody, and divorce. The General Division handles cases such as appeals from various administrative agencies, criminal cases, and civil cases.

The Probate Division, also known as Probate Court in most counties, handles cases that include trusts, wills, estates, adoptions, mental illness, and guardianships.

The Juvenile Division deals with cases that include most paternity cases, offenses that involve minors. Juvenile Divisions may share jurisdiction over child support and child custody with the Domestic Relations Division.

County Courts

Ohio County Courts have exclusive jurisdiction to handle certain types of criminal and civil cases in territories that are not within a Municipal Court’s jurisdiction. Criminal cases generally heard by these courts include felony preliminary hearings, traffic and non-traffic misdemeanors, some parking violations, and most township resolutions violations.

Civil cases generally heard by these courts include most general civil claims with less than $15,000 in dispute. They have original jurisdiction over cases for less than $15,000 in dispute, and exclusive jurisdiction in cases that involve less than $500.

Civil cases generally heard by these courts include contract cases, certain nuisance cases, temporary protection orders, certain types of cases connected with boundaries or title of real estate, forcible entry and detainer, judgment collection actions, and actions for the recovery of personal property or money.

Municipal Courts

Ohio Municipal Courts have jurisdiction to handle certain types of criminal and civil cases. Typical criminal cases that these courts handle include some parking violations, violations of municipal ordinances, preliminary hearings for felony, traffic and non-traffic misdemeanors, and most violations of the township resolutions.

Civil cases that these courts handle include cases where no involved part is seeking more than $15,000, general civil claims with less than $15,000 in dispute, and cases that involve less than $500.

Civil cases generally heard by these courts include contract cases, certain nuisance cases, temporary protection orders, certain types of cases connected with boundaries or title of real estate, forcible entry and detainer, judgment collection actions, and actions for the recovery of personal property or money.

Municipal Courts have Small Claims divisions for handling civil cases involving recovery of up to $300. A Municipal Court may also have a Housing or Environmental division for handling some criminal cases and civil cases involving any amount of money in dispute.

Mayor’s Courts

Ohio Mayor’s Courts have limited jurisdiction over certain types of quasi-criminal and criminal cases in areas that don’t fall under the jurisdiction of an Ohio Municipal Court. Cases heard by these courts include some traffic cases, some parking violations, and violations of municipal ordinances.

Court of Claims

This court has original jurisdiction to handle civil cases filed against the agencies of the state or the state itself. Typical cases heard by this court include property damage, wrongful imprisonment, discrimination, personal injury, and contract disputes. It operates from a location in Columbus but hears cases for the entire State of Ohio.

The Official Website of Ohio County

Columbus City of Columbus
Cleveland City of Cleveland
Cincinnati City of Cincinnati The City of Cincinnati government is dedicated to maintaining the highest quality of life for the people of Cincinnati. The City is focused on economic development to create jobs, committed to innovation and efficiency through technology, seeks to be a leader in environmental sustainability, and pursues partnerships to help create opportunities that benefit the city’s diverse residents, businesses and visitors.
Toledo City of Toledo
Akron City of Akron
Dayton
Parma Welcome to the City of Parma, Ohio Welcome to the City of Parma, Ohio
Canton The City of Canton, Ohio – cantonohio.gov The official home page of the City of Canton, Ohio. Home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Youngstown City of Youngstown, Ohio Municipal website for the City of Youngstown, Ohio.
Lorain Lorain, OH | Official Website
Hamilton Hamilton, OH | Official Website
Springfield City of Springfield – Official Website Springfield, Ohio is a historically rich city promoting business growth and community development.
Kettering Kettering
Elyria city of elyria ohio
Lakewood The City of Lakewood, Ohio
Cuyahoga County The Official Government Website of Cuyahoga County The Official Government Website of Cuyahoga County, Ohio
Franklin County Franklin County, Ohio
Hamilton County Hamilton County, Ohio Welcome to Hamilton County, Ohio – the home county of the Greater Cincinnati region. Like our namesake, Alexander Hamilton, we have a feisty spirit that has helped leave our indelible mark on America. You’ll see our strong Midwestern values- tough, hardworking, and polite- in the people that call this County home.
Summit County THE COUNTY OF SUMMIT WEBSITE County of Summit, Ohio
Lucas County Lucas County, OH – Official Website
Stark County Stark County Government
Butler County Welcome to Butler County Ohio!
Lorain County LorainCounty.com | It’s all about Lorain County … It’s all about you!™
Mahoning County Mahoning County, OH | Official Website
Lake County Lake County, Ohio
Warren County Warren County Ohio
Clermont County Clermont County Ohio Government
Medina County Medina County Ohio – Official Government Website Newsletter Sign-Up
Licking County Licking County
Greene County Greene County, OH – Official Website
Portage County Portage County OH
Fairfield County Fairfield County, Ohio Official Website Fairfield County, Ohio Official Website. Lancaster, Ohio court offices and agencies.
Clark County Clark County, OH – Official Website
Wood County Wood County, Ohio
Richland County Richland County, Ohio Richland County, Ohio
Wayne County Wayne County Ohio | Government Agency Located in Wooster, Ohio Wayne County Ohio website. Complete information for those visiting, moving to, or living in the Wooster/Wayne County area. Participants include the City of Wooster, Wooster Area Chamber of Commerce, Main Street Wooster, Wayne County, Wayne County Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the Wayne Development Council.
Columbiana County Columbiana County
Allen County Allen County Ohio
Miami County Miami County, OH – Official Website
Ashtabula County Ashtabula County, OH – Official Website
Geauga County Geauga County
Tuscarawas County Welcome to Tuscarawas County, Ohio
Ross County Ross County Ohio
Erie County Erie County
Belmont County Belmont County Ohio
Marion Countyt Marion Countyt
Athens County Welcome to Athens County, Ohio
Lawrence County Lawrence County, Ohio || LawrenceCountyOhio.org LawrenceCountyOhio.org is your portal to the Greater Lawrence County Chamber of Commerce and associated entities. (Ohio)
Washington County Washington County, OH – Official Website
Sandusky County Sandusky County, Ohio – Sandusky County, Ohio