The Idaho trial court system consists of District Courts and Magistrate Divisions.
District Courts are the primary trial courts of Idaho, but each District Court has a Magistrate Division that handles certain types of cases, including Small Claims. An independent Tribal Court system shares some jurisdiction with District Courts.
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Idaho District CourtsDistrict Courts have original and general jurisdiction to hear all civil and criminal cases. District Courts each have a Magistrate Division that handles certain types of cases. District Courts typically handle cases that are beyond the jurisdiction of the Magistrate Division.
Criminal cases heard by District Courts include felonies and lesser included offenses.
Civil cases heard by District Courts include general civil cases with more than $10,000 in dispute. District Courts also handle some domestic relations, some probate and some juvenile cases.
Some District Court have specialized court divisions for certain types of cases. These court divisions include Adult Drug Courts, Adult Mental Health Courts, DUI Courts, Juvenile Drug Courts, Family Dependency Treatment Courts and Youth Courts.
Idaho Magistrate DivisionsMagistrate Divisions operate within District Courts and have limited jurisdiction over certain types of civil and criminal cases.
Criminal cases heard by Magistrate Divisions include misdemeanors and preliminary hearings for all criminal cases. Magistrate Divisions also handle traffic infractions.
Civil cases heard by Magistrate Divisions include general civil claims for less than $10,000, most domestic relations cases, most probate matters, most juvenile proceedings, guardianships of minors and adults, civil commitment, driver license suspension and name changes.
Magistrate divisions also have Small Claims departments for certain types of general civil claims within the financial limits. The dollar amount, value of the property, or combined total (if you are seeking a dollar amount and property) in your claim must be $5,000 or less. Punitive damages and damages for pain and suffering cannot be awarded in the Small Claims division, and jury trials are not available.
Idaho Tribal CourtsIdaho has an independent Tribal Court system that shares some civil and criminal jurisdiction with District Courts.
Where to find court cases in IdahoThe chart below gives general information on the types of cases heard in each type of court in Idaho.