JP Court and Family Court

We want to give everyone a baseline knowledge of the main courts in Delaware and the types of cases that each court hears because almost everyone has to deal with a court at some point in their lives.

JP Court stock photo

The main courts in Delaware are the JP courts, Family Court, Court of Common Pleas, Superior Court, Chancery Court, and the Supreme Court.

Justice of Peace Court

JP Court has jurisdiction in civil cases worth 15,000 or less, some criminal misdemeanors, most motor vehicle violations (except felonies) and all landlord/tenant matters. There are no jury trials in JP Court, and you can represent yourself – although that isn’t always the best idea.

Family Court

Family Court has a very broad jurisdiction. The types of matters heard in family court are protection from abuse, divorce, and annulments, alimony & property settlements, adoption, visitation, guardianships and child custody. In addition to these matters, Family Court has jurisdiction over misdemeanors by adults against juveniles AND crimes committed BY juveniles with the exception of murder, rape or kidnapping. In general, Family Court has jurisdiction over juveniles until they reach the age of 19.

Like JP Court, there are no jury trials in Family Court, and you can represent yourself. We are not suggesting that you always should but recognize that sometimes you just can’t afford an attorney. There is a resource center at each Family Court to help people file paperwork if they can’t afford an attorney so that they can represent themselves.

Learn about other Delaware courts: 

LEGAL CONSULTATION

Mr. Ronald Phillips and Ms. Julianne E. Murray offer free criminal legal consultation so you can talk to them to discuss your case. They can be reached by telephone at 302-855-9300 (Georgetown) or 302-422-9300 (Milford) or 302-628-9300 (Seaford). You can also send an email through the site’s contact form. Rest assured that you will be treated with the utmost respect. 

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