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The Guide to New Jersey Court Records


The New Jersey trial court system consists of Superior Courts, Surrogate's Courts, Municipal Courts, and Tax Court.
 
Superior Courts have general jurisdiction over all civil and criminal cases but generally handle cases beyond the jurisdiction of other courts. Municipal Courts have limited jurisdiction over some types of criminal cases. The New Jersey Tax Court is a specialized court that handles certain tax cases for the entire state.

Find court records by county Find court records by town or zip code Find court resources by category Find court records in other states
Please select a New Jersey county below to view directory of all courts with links to court record resources for each court. Find New Jersey court pages by Town or Zip Code. Select a court record or online resource category below to view all resources at both the statewide and county level. Go to the court records pages for another state.
 


 
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New Jersey Superior Courts

Superior Courts have general jurisdiction over all civil and criminal cases, and generally only handle cases that are beyond the jurisdiction of other courts.

Superior Courts may have divisions based on case type, such as civil, criminal, family, housing, general equity/chancery, probation or municipal.

The Family Part of Superior Court has exclusive original jurisdiction over all non-criminal child abuse or neglect cases, all matters relating to a juvenile-family crisis and juvenile delinquency cases that do not involve allegations of murder or manslaughter. The Family Part also handles divorce, annulment, maintenance, child support, parental notification waivers, adoption, paternity and cases related to domestic violence.

The Probate Part of Superior Court has exclusive jurisdiction over all contested probate matters, and some uncontested probate matters enumerated by statute. It has general oversight of Surrogate's Court proceedings.

Superior Courts may transfer cases to The New Jersey Tax Court when taxation expertise is appropriate. Superior Courts may grant Municipal Courts jurisdiction to handle motor vehicle cases resulting in death or bodily injury.

New Jersey Surrogate's Courts

Surrogate's Courts have jurisdiction over uncontested probate matters, such as admitting wills to probate, appointing personal representatives and administrators of estates, and appointing guardians of minors.

Surrogates are elected county officials as well as judicial officers, and serve as judges of Surrogate's Court and as Deputy Clerks of Superior Court, Chancery Division, Probate and Family Parts. All probate matters and adoption papers must be filed in the Surrogate's Office.

New Jersey Municipal Courts

Municipal Courts have jurisdiction over certain types of criminal cases.

Cases typically heard by Municipal Courts include felony preliminary hearings, violations of county or municipal ordinances, most violations of motor vehicle and traffic laws, most "disorderly person" offenses and violations of fish, game and boating laws. Municipal Courts may also handle "crimes of the fourth degree" and crimes punishable by imprisonment of less than one year.

Municipal Courts do not have jurisdiction over motor vehicle cases involving death or serious bodily injury, unless jurisdiction over a case is specifically granted by a Superior Court.

Many New Jersey municipalities have consolidated their courts into a single joint court, or agreed to share their individual court services at a single location.

New Jersey Tax Court

The New Jersey Tax Court has limited jurisdiction to review actions or regulations about tax matters involving a State agency, a State official, a county board of taxation or a county or municipal official. The Tax Court has a Small Claims division for certain tax cases.

The Tax Court will also handle cases transferred from Superior Courts when taxation expertise is appropriate for the case.

The Tax Court hears cases for the entire State and, while court sessions may occur in other cities, the Tax Court Management Office in Trenton handles all contacts and information for the Tax Court.

Where to find court cases in New Jersey

The chart below gives general information on the types of cases heard in each type of court in New Jersey.
 

Most Cases = Most or all cases.     Some Cases = Some cases.

Case Type Court Type
CivilSuperior CourtsSurrogate's CourtsMunicipal Courts
General Civil - Unlimited
 Most or all General Civil - Unlimited cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
General Civil - Limited
 Some General Civil - Limited cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Small Claims
 Most or all Small Claims cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Civil Equity
 Most or all Civil Equity cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Complex Commercial
 Most or all Complex Commercial cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Foreclosures and Liens
 Most or all Foreclosures and Liens cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Real Estate Title and Boundary
 Most or all Real Estate Title and Boundary cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Landlord / Tenant
 Most or all Landlord / Tenant cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Ordinance Violations
 Some Ordinance Violations cases can be found in the Superior Courts
 
 Most or all Ordinance Violations cases can be found in the Municipal Courts
Protection, No Contact, and Restraining Orders
 Most or all Protection, No Contact, and Restraining Orders cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Administrative Agency Appeals
 Most or all Administrative Agency Appeals cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
CriminalSuperior CourtsSurrogate's CourtsMunicipal Courts
Felony
 Most or all Felony cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Felony Preliminary Hearings
 Some Felony Preliminary Hearings cases can be found in the Superior Courts
 
 Some Felony Preliminary Hearings cases can be found in the Municipal Courts
Misdemeanors
 Some Misdemeanors cases can be found in the Superior Courts
 
 Some Misdemeanors cases can be found in the Municipal Courts
Ordinance Violations
 Some Ordinance Violations cases can be found in the Superior Courts
 
 Most or all Ordinance Violations cases can be found in the Municipal Courts
Juvenile
 Most or all Juvenile cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Traffic and Infractions
 Some Traffic and Infractions cases can be found in the Superior Courts
 
 Most or all Traffic and Infractions cases can be found in the Municipal Courts
Domestic RelationsSuperior CourtsSurrogate's CourtsMunicipal Courts
Divorce
 Most or all Divorce cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Child Custody and Visitation
 Most or all Child Custody and Visitation cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Child Support
 Most or all Child Support cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Paternity
 Most or all Paternity cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Domestic Violence Protection Order
 Most or all Domestic Violence Protection Order cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
JuvenileSuperior CourtsSurrogate's CourtsMunicipal Courts
Adoptions
 Most or all Adoptions cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Juvenile Delinquency
 Most or all Juvenile Delinquency cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Child Abuse and Neglect
 Most or all Child Abuse and Neglect cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Termination of Parental Rights
 Most or all Termination of Parental Rights cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Children in Need of Supervision
 Most or all Children in Need of Supervision cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Mental HealthSuperior CourtsSurrogate's CourtsMunicipal Courts
Involuntary Commitments
 Most or all Involuntary Commitments cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Other Mental Health Cases
 Most or all Other Mental Health Cases cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
ProbateSuperior CourtsSurrogate's CourtsMunicipal Courts
Wills & Estates
 Some Wills & Estates cases can be found in the Superior Courts
 Most or all Wills & Estates cases can be found in the Surrogate's Courts
 
Name Changes
 Most or all Name Changes cases can be found in the Superior Courts
  
Trusts
 Some Trusts cases can be found in the Superior Courts
 Most or all Trusts cases can be found in the Surrogate's Courts
 
Guardianships and Conservatorships
 Some Guardianships and Conservatorships cases can be found in the Superior Courts
 Most or all Guardianships and Conservatorships cases can be found in the Surrogate's Courts
 

Note: Some courts in New Jersey are not included in the chart above. Please use the following links for descriptions and types of cases heard:
 
  Tax Court


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