Grady County Courthouse
250 North Broad Street
Cairo, GA 39828
Monday thru Friday
8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Office: (229) 377-4132
Judge Pat Pollock
History: The Magistrate Courts of Georgia were established in 1983 when the current Constitution was ratified. The Constitution mandated the Magistrate Court to replace the Justice Courts and a variety of small claims courts or limited jurisdiction courts that were known by a variety of different names.
Jurisdiction: The Magistrate Courts are courts of limited jurisdiction as outlined as follows by the official Code of Georgia Annotated, Section 15-10-2:
Each Magistrate Court and each Magistrate thereof shall have jurisdiction and power over the following matters:
1. The hearing of applications for and the issuance of arrest and search warrants.
2. Issuance of warrants and related proceedings related to bonds for good behavior and bonds to keep the peace.
3. The holding of courts of inquiry.
4. The trial of charges of violations of county ordinances and penal ordinances of state authorities.
5. The trial of civil claims including garnishment and attachment in which exclusive jurisdiction is not vested in the Superior Court and the amount demanded or the value of the property claimed does not exceed $15,000.00, provided that no prejudgment attachment may be granted.
6. The issuance of summons, trial of issues, and issuance of writs and judgments in dispossessory proceedings and distress warrant proceedings.
7. The punishment of contempt by fine not exceeding $200.00 or by imprisonment not exceeding 10 days or both.
8. The administration of any oath which is not required by law to be adminstered by some other officer.
9. The granting of bail in all cases where the granting of bail is nnot exclusively committed to some other court or officer.
10. The issuing of subpoenas to compel attendance of witnesses in the Magistrate Court and subpoenas for the production of documentary evidence before the magistrate court.
11. Such other matters as are committed to their jurisdiction by other general laws.
12. The trial and sentencing of misdemeanor violations of Code Section 16-9-20, relating to criminal issuance of bad checks.
13. The execution or subscribing and the acceptance of written waivers of extradition in the same manner provided for in Code Section 17-13-46
Legal Advice: If you plan to file a claim in the Magistrate Court or a claim has been filed against you, please be advised that neither the Judge nor the clerks can provide legal advice. Not only is it unethical and inproper for the Judge or clerk to give either party legal advice, it is also illegal. If you have legal questions concerning your case, please consult the attorney of your choice. If you have questions concerning scheduling, please contact the Magistrate Court and one of the clerks will be glad to assist you.
Cases: Many of the Magistrate Courts litigants represent themselves and are called Pro Se. An over whelming majority of the litigants in the Grady County Magistrate Court are pro se: however, an increasing number of parties are represented by attorneys.
As a court of inquiry, the Magistrate Court is often called upon to determine probable cause or sufficient evidence in criminal cases. In felony cases and cases assigned to the Superior Court the Magistrate Court cannot make a determination of guilt or innocence: it can only determine if there is sufficient probable cause for the case to go forward. The only cases in which the Grady Magistrate Court adjudicates guilt or innocence is in misdemeanor county ordinance violations.
The Magistrate Court is holding an increasing number of pre-issuance hearings on warrant applications. The purpose of these hearings is to allow all parties involved in dispute to present evidence before a Judge so that he can better determine if probable cause exists for a warrant to be issued. In approximately 80% of these hearings, the parties resolve their differences without anyone being arrested.
Magistrate Court Forms
- Complaint in Trover.pdf
- Dispossessory Warrant.pdf
- Foreclosure of Personal Property.pdf
- Default Judgment.pdf
- Entry of Appearance.pdf
- Statement of Claim.pdf
Civil Case Filing Fees:
Abandoned Vehicle $10.00
Scire Facias/Revival $10.00/$95.00
Statement of Claim $95.00