The Guide to Oregon Court Records

Overview of Oregon Courts

The Oregon trial court system consists of Circuit Courts, County Courts, Municipal Courts, Justice Courts, and Tax Court.
 
The official state trial courts of Oregon are Circuit Courts and The Oregon Tax Court. Municipal Courts, County Courts and Justice Courts are local courts and are not part of the state-funded trial court system. The Oregon Tax Court has exclusive and general jurisdiction over most cases involving Oregon tax laws. Circuit Courts have general jurisdiction over all types of cases but typically handle cases that are beyond the jurisdiction of other courts. Local courts have limited jurisdiction over certain types of civil, criminal and traffic cases.

Please select a Oregon county below to view directory of all courts with links to court record resources for each court.
Find Oregon 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.
Oregon Circuit Courts
Circuit Courts have general jurisdiction over all civil and criminal cases, and typically handle cases beyond the jurisdiction of other courts.

Circuit Courts may have specialized divisions for certain types of cases, including Juvenile Court, Family Court, Commercial Court, or Drug Court.

Criminal cases heard in Circuit Courts include preliminary hearings, felonies and capital murder. Circuit Courts share jurisdiction over criminal and quasi-criminal cases that are also within the jurisdiction of Justice Courts and Municipal Courts.

Civil cases heard in Circuit Courts include general civil claims without financial limits and some small claims cases. Circuit Courts also handle dissolution of marriage, child custody, disputes over title to land, probate matters, juvenile cases, guardianship, adoption, involuntary commitment, and requests for injunctions.

Some Circuit Courts have a Family Court division that handles most family-related cases, including certain types of criminal cases involving domestic violence.

Circuit Courts in cities without Justice Courts have a Small Claims Court division. If a Justice Court exists, the Circuit Court and Justice Court will decide which court handles small claims cases.

Small Claims Court divisions handle some general civil claims for the recovery of money, damages, specific personal property, penalty or forfeiture, if the claim is for less than $5,000. If the case involves eligible small claims that are less than $750, the case will only be heard in Small Claims Court. For cases that involve claims of more than $750 but less than $5,000, filing in Small Claims Court is optional.

Circuit Courts also have a specialized Commercial Court program that has statewide jurisdiction and is based in the Lane County Circuit Court. The Commercial Court handles certain types of complex business and commercial cases.

Cases handled by the Commercial Court program include internal and external affairs of a business, trade secrets, securities transactions, commercial insurance disputes, electronic technology, intellectual property, commercial real property, construction defects, professional malpractice, product liability, mass torts and environmental litigation.

Circuit Courts exercise jurisdiction over cases that were handled by District Courts before District Courts were abolished.
Oregon County Courts
County Court jurisdiction is limited to probate matters and juveniles cases. Some County Courts will only have jurisdiction over probate matters, and some County Courts will only have jurisdiction over juvenile cases. County Courts have limited jurisdiction to grant certain injunctions in pending Circuit Court cases.
Oregon Municipal Courts
Municipal Courts have limited jurisdiction to handle certain types of criminal, traffic and ordinance violation cases.

Cases typically heard by Municipal Courts include traffic violations, non-felony traffic criminal cases, municipal ordinance violations, vehicle impoundments, as well as some tobacco, liquor and drug violations.

Municipal Courts share jurisdiction with Circuit Courts and Justice Courts over ordinance violations and misdemeanor criminal cases. Justice Courts may lack jurisdiction to handle city ordinance violations if the city does not grant such jurisdiction to a Justice Court.
Oregon Justice Courts
Justice Courts have limited jurisdiction over certain types civil, criminal and ordinance violation cases.

Criminal cases heard by Justice Courts include felony preliminary hearings, and some misdemeanors. Whether a Justice Court handles misdemeanors depends on whether it is a court of record. Justice Courts of record have jurisdiction over misdemeanors, but Justice Courts not of record must transfer misdemeanors to Circuit Courts after preliminary hearings.

Justice Courts also handle county ordinance violations, including traffic, boating, fish and wildlife cases. Justice Courts may handle city ordinance violations if an agreement exists with a city.

Civil cases heard by Justice Courts include most general civil claims for less than $5,000, exclusive of costs and fees, such as landlord-tenant cases, recovery of money or damages, recovery of specific personal property, and the recovery of a penalty or forfeitures. If a Justice Court is located in a city with a Circuit Court, the Circuit Court and Justice Court will decide which court handles small claims cases.

Justice Courts do not have jurisdiction over certain types of civil cases, including disputes over title to real estate, false imprisonment, libel, slander and malicious prosecution.

Some Justice Courts will operate as courts of record, but Justice Courts within fifty driving miles of a Circuit Court will generally not be courts of record.
Oregon Tax Court
The Tax Court has exclusive jurisdiction to handle all questions of law and fact arising under most Oregon tax laws. The Tax Court shares some jurisdiction with Circuit Courts over the priority of property tax liens and the validity of some property transfers when the Department of Revenue has an interest in the property.

Where to find court cases in Oregon
The chart below gives general information on the types of cases heard in each type of court in Oregon.
 
Most Cases = Most or all cases.     Some Cases = Some cases.

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

Note: Some courts in Oregon 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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