Magistrate Court

Magistrate Court


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*A Letter from Chief Magistrate, Melinda Anderson - July 17, 2020*


The 1983 Constitution of Georgia provided for a uniform Magistrate Court System throughout the State to replace what was formally known as justice of the peace and small claims courts.  These newly formed Magistrate Courts allowed ordinary citizens to represent themselves without the help of an attorney.  There are forms and instruction sheets available to the public for all actions and services provided by Magistrate Court. 


Magistrate Court works just like State or Superior Court in that it is not a collection agency nor can it help determine the financial circumstances of the defendant. Civil claims up to $15,000.00 to include garnishments and foreclosures on personal property are handled in Magistrate Court.  Landlord/tenant cases called dispossessories are handled regardless of dollar amount.  County Ordinance violations, arrest warrant hearings, bad check warrants, bond hearings, abandoned motor vehicles, and good behavior bonds are also handled through Magistrate Court. 


There are four full-time deputy clerks in the Magistrate Court office, which is located in the Liberty County Justice Center Building, three part-time Magistrates in addition to one full-time Associate Magistrate, and the Chief Magistrate.  There is a Magistrate on call 24 hours a day 365 days a year to be available for law enforcement if search warrants or arrest warrants are necessary. 


Civil actions are filed in the Superior Court Clerk’s office where Ms. Linda Dixon Thompson is the Clerk of Courts.  Ms. Dixon Thompson also serves as the Magistrate Court Clerk; her office is located in the Liberty County Justice Center, 201 South Main Street, Suite 1200, Hinesville, Georgia.  Civil Claims and Dispossessories can be filed in person, by mail, and online through Magistrate Court Civil E-Filing.  All criminal matters are handled in the Magistrate Court located in the Justice Center Building at 201 South Main Street, Suite 2100, Hinesville, Georgia or at the Liberty County Regional Jail.  There is a courtroom in the Justice Center Building on the Second Floor that is where civil and criminal cases are heard; arrest warrants and bond hearings are also handled at the jail.


If we can be of any service to you don’t hesitate to call our office. 


 Disclaimer:  The information and forms available on this website are not intended as legal advice and should not be considered as such; they are provided for reference ONLY.  Consult an attorney for legal advice.



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Melinda Anderson
Melinda Anderson,
Chief Magistrate Judge

201 S Main St
Suite 2100
Hinesville, GA 31313
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