Usa Arizona

USA Statutes : arizona
Title : Justices of the Peace and Other Courts Not of Record
Chapter : CIVIL PROCEEDINGS IN JUSTICE COURTS
22-201 Jurisdiction of civil actions
A. Justices of the peace have jurisdiction only as affirmatively conferred on them
by law.
B. Justices of the peace have exclusive original jurisdiction of all civil actions
when the amount involved, exclusive of interest, costs and awarded attorney fees when
authorized by law, is five thousand dollars or less.
C. Justices of the peace have concurrent original jurisdiction with the superior
court in cases when the amount involved, exclusive of interest, costs and awarded
attorney fees when authorized by law, is more than five thousand dollars and less than
ten thousand dollars.
D. Justices of the peace have jurisdiction concurrent with the superior court in
cases of forcible entry and detainer when the amount involved, exclusive of interest,
costs and awarded attorney fees when authorized by law, is ten thousand dollars or less.
E. Justices of the peace have jurisdiction to try the right to possession of real
property when title or ownership is not a subject of inquiry in the action. If in any
such action the title or ownership of real property becomes an issue, the justice shall
so certify in the docket, at once stop further proceedings in the action and forward all
papers, together with a certified copy of the docket entries in the action, to the
superior court, where the action shall be docketed and determined as though originally
brought in the superior court.
F. In actions between landlord and tenant for possession of leased premises the
title to the property leased shall not be raised nor made an issue.
G. If in any action before a justice of the peace a party files a verified pleading
which states as a counterclaim a claim in which the amount involved, exclusive of
interest and costs, is more than ten thousand dollars, the justice of the peace shall
certify this in the docket, at once stop further proceedings in the action and forward
all papers, together with a certified copy of the docket entries in the action, to the
superior court, where the action shall be docketed and determined as though originally
brought in the superior court. The party shall pay to the clerk of the superior court the
same fees required to be paid by a defendant, and no other party in the action before the
justice of the peace shall be required to pay any sum. If the party is finally adjudged
to be entitled to recover on the counterclaim, exclusive of interest and costs, ten
thousand dollars or less, the superior court may deny costs to the party and may, in
addition, impose costs, including reasonable attorney fees, on the party. The superior
court shall have original jurisdiction of the action, but it may at any time in
furtherance of convenience or to avoid prejudice, or if it appears that the amount
involved in the counterclaim, exclusive of interest and costs, is ten thousand dollars or
less, remand the action, or any claim or counterclaim of which the justice court has
jurisdiction, to the justice court and may order costs.
H. The justice of the peace may require arbitration or other dispute resolution
methods that are approved by the supreme court in all civil actions, except forcible
entry or detainer actions.

22-202 Venue of civil actions
A. The rules governing venue of civil actions in the superior court shall govern
justice of the peace courts, and the word "precinct" shall be substituted for the word
"county" wherever applicable.
B. Actions against executors, administrators and guardians and against counties
shall be brought in the precinct in which the county seat is located.
C. Actions against persons who contract debts or obligations in one county and
thereafter remove to another county in this state, and against persons who contract debts
or obligations in one precinct of a county and thereafter remove to another precinct of
the same county, may be brought in any precinct of the county in which such person is
found, at the option of the plaintiff.
D. Actions for collection of an account, enforcement of a contract or any other
claim may be brought in the precinct where the account, contract or other claim was made
or entered into, or where the defendant lives, at the option of the plaintiff.
E. Actions filed in justice court against persons alleged to have committed civil
traffic violations shall be brought in any precinct in which the violation is alleged to
have occurred.

22-203 Venue when justice of precinct not qualified to try action
If there is no justice of the peace qualified to try the action in the precinct
where the venue lies, the action may be commenced before the nearest justice of the peace
of the county who is not disqualified.

22-204 Change of venue
A. If a party to an action before a justice of the peace makes an affidavit
supported by the affidavit of two other credible persons of the county that they have
good reason to believe, and do believe, that the party cannot have a fair and impartial
trial before the justice, or in such justice's precinct, the justice shall at once
request the justice of the peace of some other precinct within the county to conduct the
trial within the precinct where the action is pending, and hear all matters involved
therein, or to transfer the action to the nearest justice of the peace within the county
not subject to the same or some other disqualification. Only one such change of venue may
be had.
B. The venue may also be changed to another justice of the peace of the county upon
written consent of the parties filed in the action.

22-205 Procedure when justice disqualified; order and transmittal of papers
A. If a justice of the peace is disqualified in a civil action he shall transfer
the action to a justice of the peace of the county who is not disqualified, and whose
place of holding court is nearest by the ordinary route of travel.
B. The order of transfer shall state the reason for the transfer and the name of
the justice of the peace to which the transfer is made, and shall require the parties and
witnesses to appear before the justice named in the order, not less than two nor more
than five days after its date.
C. The justice of the peace who made the order shall immediately make a certified
transcript of all entries on his docket and of the costs in the action, and transmit it
with the original papers in the action to the justice to which the action is transferred.


22-211 Procedure and practice
The law governing procedure and practice in the superior court so far as applicable
and when not otherwise specially prescribed, shall govern procedure and practice in
justice of the peace courts.

22-212 Civil docket and records
A. Each justice of the peace shall keep a civil docket in which he shall enter:
1. The title of actions commenced before him.
2. The time when the first process was issued against defendant, when returnable
and the nature thereof.
3. The time when the parties, or either of them, appeared before him, either with
or without summons.
4. A brief statement of the nature of plaintiff's demand or claim, or the amount
claimed, and the nature of the defense made by defendant.
5. Every adjournment, stating at whose request it was granted and to what time.
6. The time when the trial was had, and whether by jury or by the justice of the
peace.
7. The verdict of the jury.
8. The judgment and the time of giving the judgment.
9. All applications for setting aside judgment or granting a new trial, the order
thereon and the date.
10. The time of issuing execution, to whom directed and delivered, and the amount of
debt, damages and costs. When an execution is returned, the return thereof and a
statement of the manner in which it was executed.
11. All stays and appeals and the time when taken, the amount of the bond and the
names of the sureties.
12. The account of costs.
B. The justice shall arrange and safely keep the dockets, books and papers
transmitted to him by his predecessor, all papers filed in any action in his court, and
books and dockets required to be kept by him.

22-213 Time for answer
The time in which the summons shall require a defendant to answer shall be the same
time as provided by rules of the supreme court or law for answer in the superior court of
the same pleading served in the same manner.

22-214 Summons; issuance; form
A. When an action is commenced before a justice of the peace he shall issue
forthwith a summons to defendant.
B. If there are several defendants residing in different counties a summons shall
be issued to each county.
C. The summons shall be in the same form as a summons in the superior court, the
word county being replaced where applicable by the phrase "______________ (insert the
name of the precinct) precinct of ____________ (insert the name of the county) county."

22-215 Oral pleadings
The pleadings in the justice of the peace court may be oral, except as otherwise
provided by law, but a brief statement thereof shall be noted in the docket.

22-216 Allegations required to be made by written and verified pleading
A. An answer or other pleading made in a justice of the peace court which alleges
any of the following matters shall be in writing, signed and verified by affidavit:
1. That the action is not commenced in the proper county or precinct.
2. That plaintiff has no legal capacity to sue.
3. That plaintiff is not entitled to recover in the capacity in which he sues.
4. That there is another action pending in this state between the same parties for
the same cause of action or counterclaim.
5. That there is a defect of parties, plaintiff or defendant.
6. That plaintiffs or defendants, suing or sued as partners, are not partners as
alleged.
7. That plaintiff or defendant, suing or sued as a corporation, is not a
corporation as alleged.
8. That a written instrument purporting to be signed by him and relied on by the
other party, was not executed by him or by his authority.
9. That the endorsement or assignment of a written instrument pleaded by the
adverse party was not executed by the party by whom it purports to have been executed or
by his authority.
10. That a written instrument pleaded by the adverse party is without consideration
or that the consideration has failed in whole or in part.
11. That an account pleaded by the adverse party and verified by affidavit is not
just, and in such case the answer shall set forth the items and particulars which are
unjust.
B. In an action to foreclose a mortgage or enforce a lien on personal property the
pleadings shall be in writing.

22-217 Subpoena for attendance of witnesses; issuance; service
A. A justice of the peace shall at the request of a party to an action pending in
his court issue a subpoena for any witness represented to reside within the county or to
be found therein at the time of trial.
B. The form, issuance and service of the subpoena shall be as provided in the
superior court, except as to the designation of the court from which it is issued and
made returnable.

22-218 Judgment on default
If a defendant who has been served with summons fails to appear within the time
specified in the summons, the justice of the peace shall proceed in the following manner:
1. If plaintiff's claim is liquidated and proved by an instrument in writing
purporting to have been executed by defendant or is upon an open account duly verified by
affidavit, the justice shall, whether plaintiff appears or not, give judgment in his
favor against defendant for the amount due upon such written instrument or sworn account.
2. If plaintiff's claim is not liquidated, the justice shall hear the testimony and
give judgment against defendant and in favor of plaintiff as the testimony shows
plaintiff entitled to. If plaintiff does not appear the action shall be dismissed.

22-219 Confession of judgment without issuance or service of process
A. A party may appear in person or by an agent or attorney before a justice of the
peace without issuance or service of process and confess judgment for an amount within
the jurisdiction of the justice of the peace, and such judgment shall be entered thereon
upon the filing by plaintiff, his agent or attorney of an affidavit of the justness of
plaintiff's claim.
B. Where the judgment is confessed by an agent or attorney, the warrant of agent or
attorney authorizing the confession shall be filed with the justice and noted in the
docket.

22-220 Appearance of defendant; demand or waiver of jury; time of trial; charging the jury
A. When a defendant appears his appearance shall be noted on the docket.
B. Either party may demand a jury at any time before trial, and if not then
demanded, trial by jury shall be deemed waived. This subsection does not apply to civil
traffic violations for which citations are issued under title 28.
C. When a jury is demanded, the trial shall be postponed to a time fixed for the
return of the jury.
D. Except as otherwise provided by law, the justice of the peace shall charge the
jury in all civil actions.

22-221 Postponement of trials
A justice of the peace may for good cause shown, supported by affidavit, postpone
the trial for a period not exceeding ten days, but where a postponement is requested for
want of material evidence, the postponement may be for as long as thirty days.

22-222 Oath to officer summoning jury
The justice of the peace on delivering the order to the officer shall administer to
him the following oath: "You do swear that you will to the best of your ability, and
without bias or favor toward any party, summon as jurors none but impartial, sensible and
sober persons having the qualifications of jurors under the law, that you will not
directly or indirectly converse or communicate with any juror concerning the case pending
for trial, and that you will not by any means attempt to influence, advise or control any
juror in his opinion, so help you God".

22-223 Forming jury; challenges
A. At the time appointed for the trial, the justice of the peace shall call the
names of the jurors summoned. If a sufficient number of qualified jurors do not attend,
the justice shall direct others qualified to be summoned.
B. Either party may challenge any juror either for cause or peremptorily and each
party shall have three peremptory challenges.

22-224 Oath of jury
When the jury has been selected, the justice of the peace shall administer to it
substantially the following oath: "You and each of you do solemnly swear that in the case
about to be submitted to you, you will a true verdict render according to the law and the
evidence, so help you God."

22-241 Announcement and docketing of verdict or decision
When a verdict is returned by a jury the justice of the peace shall announce the
verdict in open court, note it in his docket and give judgment on the verdict. When the
action has been tried without a jury, the justice shall announce his decision in open
court, note it in his docket and give judgment on the decision.

22-242 Recording judgment
The judgment shall be recorded at length in the docket and signed by the justice of
the peace. The judgment shall clearly state the determination of the rights of the
parties, who shall pay the costs, and shall direct issuance of such process as necessary
to carry the judgment into execution.


22-243 Judgment in replevin
Where judgment is for the recovery of specific articles, their value shall be
separately found by the verdict or decision and the judgment shall be that plaintiff
recover the specific articles if they can be found, and if not, then their value as
assessed with interest thereon at the legal rate from the date of the judgment.

22-244 Writ of execution
A. The judgment of a justice of the peace shall be enforced by execution or other
appropriate process.
B. The execution or process shall describe the judgment and command the sheriff or
constable to execute it according to its terms, whether the judgment is to make a sum of
money, or to deliver personal property or possession of real property, or to do some
other thing.
C. The execution or process shall be returnable in sixty days.

22-245 Certificate required with writ of execution sent to another county
A. Where an execution is sent to a county other than that in which judgment was
given, it shall be accompanied by a certificate of the clerk of the superior court, under
seal, that the officer issuing the execution is an acting justice of the peace in the
county where the judgment was given.
B. The cost of the certificate shall be collected as part of the cost of executing
the writ.

22-246 Levy upon real property; limitation and procedure
No real property or any interest therein shall be levied upon or sold by virtue of
any judgment given by a justice of the peace unless a certified transcript of the
judgment is first filed in the office of the clerk of the superior court of the county
where the judgment was given and entered by the clerk on the appropriate book kept by
him. Execution on the judgment shall be issued by the clerk of the superior court.

22-261 Judgments which may be appealed
A. Any party to a final judgment of a justice of the peace may appeal therefrom to
the superior court where the judgment or the amount in controversy exceeds twenty
dollars, exclusive of costs.
B. The party aggrieved by a judgment in any action in which the validity of a tax,
impost, assessment, toll or a statute of the state is involved may appeal to the superior
court without regard to the amount in controversy.
C. An appeal shall be on the record of the proceedings if such record includes a
transcript of the proceedings. De novo trials shall be granted only when the transcript
of the proceedings in the superior court's evaluation is insufficient or in such a
condition that the court cannot properly consider the appeal. A trial de novo shall not
be granted when a party who had the opportunity to request that a transcript of the lower
court proceedings be made and failed to do so. At the beginning of each proceeding the
judge shall advise the parties that their right to appeal is dependent upon their
requesting that a record be made of the justice court proceedings. Any party to an
action may request that the proceedings be recorded for appeal purposes. The cost of
recording trial proceedings shall be the responsibility of the court. The cost of
preparing a transcript, if appealed, shall be the responsibility of the party appealing
the case. The supreme court shall establish by rule the methods of recording trial
proceedings for record appeals to the superior court, including but not limited to
electronic recording devices or manual transcription.

22-262 Appeals procedure
The procedure for appeals from a justice court to the superior court shall be as
provided by rules promulgated by the supreme court.

22-263 Defective bond
No appeal shall be dismissed or judgment affirmed by reason of any defect,
informality or insufficiency of the appeal bond, if appellant, within such time and upon
such terms as the court orders, files a legal and sufficient bond.

22-264 Transmittal of docket entries and papers
A. When an appeal is taken the justice of the peace shall make a certified copy of
all docket entries and the record of the proceedings in the action and transmit it,
together with a certified copy of the bill of costs and the original papers in the
action, to the clerk of the superior court. The record of the proceedings shall be
certified by the justice of the peace or as stipulated by the parties.
B. The justice of the peace may be ordered by the superior court, upon motion and
cause shown, to transmit such papers, and may be fined by the superior court for neglect
or refusal to transmit them within the time ordered.
C. The copy of the docket entries and other papers shall be transmitted to the
clerk of the superior court within ten days after filing the bond on appeal. If not
transmitted within that time, appellee may file in the superior court an affidavit
stating:
1. The entry of judgment in the justice court and the date and amount thereof.
2. That notice of appeal was given.
3. That an appeal bond was filed, giving the names of the sureties and the amount
of the bond.
D. Upon filing the affidavit as provided in subsection C, appellee may move the
superior court to affirm the judgment, and the court, unless good cause is shown why the
record was not transmitted, shall affirm the judgment and render judgment against
appellant and the sureties on the appeal bond for the amount of the judgment in the
justice court.
E. If good cause is shown the court may extend the time for transmitting the record
on appeal upon such terms as it deems proper.

22-265 Notice to appellant for payment of fees
Upon receipt of the transcript or papers on appeal from the justice court, the clerk
of the superior court shall notify appellant that the transcript or papers will be filed
upon payment of the amount provided in section 22-283, and unless paid within fifteen
days after giving the notice, the appeal shall be deemed abandoned, and the transcript
and papers shall be returned to the justice of the peace, and the judgment may be
enforced as if no appeal had been taken.

22-281 Fees and deposits
A. Justices of the peace shall receive fees established and classified as follows
in civil actions:

Class Description Fee
A Initial case filing fee
Civil filing fees $ 45.00
B Subsequent case filing fee
Civil filing fees - defendant $ 24.00
C Initial case filing fee
Forcible entry and detainer filings $ 21.00
Small claims filing 16.00
D Subsequent case filing fee
Small claims answer $ 9.00

Forcible entry and detainer

filings - defendant 11.00
E Minimum clerk fee
Document and transcript transfer on appeal $ 17.00
Certification of any documents 17.00
Issuance of writs 17.00
Filing any paper or performing any act for
which a fee is not specifically prescribed 17.00
Subpoena (civil) 17.00
Research in locating a document 17.00
Seal a court file 17.00
Reopen a sealed court file 17.00
Record duplication 17.00
F Per page fee
Copies of any documents per page $ 0.50
G Special fees
Small claims service by mail $ 8.00

B. This section does not deprive the parties to the action of the privilege of
depositing amounts with the justice, in addition to those set forth in this section, for
use in connection with the payment of constable's and sheriff's fees for service of
process, levying of writs and other services for which fees are otherwise provided by
law.
C. Excluding the monies that are kept by the court pursuant to subsection D of this
section, justices of the peace shall transmit monthly to the county treasurer all monies
collected pursuant to subsection A of this section. The county treasurer shall distribute
or deposit all of the monies received pursuant to this subsection as follows:
1. 18.39 per cent to the state treasurer for deposit in the judicial collection
enhancement fund established by section 12-113.
2. 2.42 per cent to the state treasurer for deposit in the alternative dispute
resolution fund established by section 12-135.
3. 71.15 per cent to the county general fund.
D. 8.04 per cent of the monies transmitted pursuant to subsection C of this section
shall be kept and used by the court collecting the fees in the same manner as the seven
dollars of the time payment fee prescribed by section 12-116, subsection B.

22-282 Deposit at commencement of action; deposit of money or bond on appeal
A. Upon commencement of a civil action, each justice of the peace may require the
plaintiff to deposit not more than ten dollars to be applied toward payment of costs
incurred in the action. The justice of the peace may require the defendant at the time
of filing an answer or entering an appearance to deposit not more than five dollars to be
applied to fees and costs incurred by the defendant.
B. Notwithstanding the provisions of section 22-281, in civil actions brought for
the recovery of money only, other than on an assigned claim, where the amount in
controversy, exclusive of interest and costs, does not exceed fifty dollars, no fees
shall be required, except one dollar to be paid by plaintiff when instituting the action,
and one dollar to be paid by defendant when entering appearance, which fee shall include
constable's or sheriff's fees.
C. If a party desires to take an appeal, no appeal shall be taken until the party
has either paid into court the sum of twenty dollars as and for attorney fees to the
adverse party or has secured payment of attorney fees by a good and sufficient bond with
sureties approved by the justice of the peace. The bond shall be in the amount of the
judgment, costs and attorney fees, payable to the adverse party and conditioned that the
appellant prosecute the appeal to effect and pay and satisfy the judgment which may be
rendered against the appellant on the appeal, with costs and attorney fees.

22-283 Costs on appeal
The appellant in a civil action appealed to the superior court from a justice court
shall pay to the clerk of the superior court the fee of a plaintiff as provided in
section 12-284 at the time of filing the transcript and papers on appeal. The appellee
shall within twenty days after filing of the transcript or papers on appeal pay to the
clerk the fee of a defendant as provided in section 12-284.

22-284 Electronic filing and access; fee; county judicial collection enhancement fund
A. The presiding judge of the superior court may provide for the electronic filing
of documents and electronic access to justice court records, pursuant to rules adopted by
the supreme court.
B. The presiding judge may impose a fee of not more than one hundred dollars per
year for an annual on-line access subscription plus a fee of not more than two dollars
per minute for on-line access to justice court records. The justice court shall collect
the fees and transmit them to the county treasurer who shall account for them
separately. The justice court shall spend monies collected by the justice court
and deposited with the county treasurer pursuant to this section to improve access to
justice court records, subject to the approval of the presiding judge of the superior
court.
C. The county treasurer shall invest monies deposited pursuant to this
section. Interest earned on these monies shall be deposited with the fee monies that are
deposited pursuant to this section.
D. The monies deposited in the county treasury pursuant to this section shall be
continually available for purposes consistent with the purposes of this section.
E. Monies deposited pursuant to this section shall supplement monies already
provided to courts for purposes consistent with the purposes of this section.
F. All filings made electronically pursuant to this section are subject to the fees
established pursuant to section 22-281.