Frequently Asked Questions

The following is a listing of frequently asked questions by the general public. This information is provided to assist you in your court-related business.

Please see our links entitled About The Court or Divisions for specific court divisions and phone numbers to further assist you.

Q: I've received a traffic ticket. What must I do?

A: The traffic citation has a court date to come to court. If you miss the court date the court will automatically continue the case for one week.

Most traffic violations are waiverable. This means you waive your right to come to court by signing the statement on the back side of the traffic ticket and paying the fine and court costs from the waiver schedule and mailing it to the Lakewood Court with a check or money order. The total amount due for your citation is set out in the waiver schedule.

You can also waive your court appearance by paying the fine and court costs before the court date on your ticket:

Note: If you did not show proof of insurance at the time of the offense, you are required to show proof of insurance to the court by the next business day after payment. The payment screen will show if proof of insurance was shown under vehicle.

If you have any questions about your court appearance, the amount due or time limits for waiver, please call the Clerk’s Office at (216) 529-6720.

Q: I did not have proof of automobile insurance when stopped for traffic violation. What do I do?

A: Ohio law requires proof of insurance to be shown for the date of the traffic offense. Proof of insurance must show the beginning and ending dates of the insurance coverage period. A copy of the insurance policy or an insurance bill may not have this information.

The police officer will mark on the citation if proof of insurance was shown at the time of the stop. If proof of insurance is not shown, you are required to provide it when you:

All courts in Ohio are required to inform the BMV that proof of insurance was shown for any traffic offense. If proof of insurance is not shown, the BMV will suspend your driver’s license. This is not a court suspension and it can only be undone by going to the BMV.

If you have any questions about your court appearance, the amount due or time limits for waiver, please call the Clerk’s Office at (216) 529-6720.

Q: How do I file a Small Claims complaint and for what monetary limit?

A: You may file a Small Claims complaint in the Clerk's Office during normal office hours. See the Divisions page. The monetary limit is $3,000.

Forms may be downloaded via the Court Forms page. The filing fee is $36 for one defendant and $5 for each additional defendant. Also see the Fee Schedules pages.

Q: Can I file a Small Claims complaint through the mail?

A: Yes. The Small Claims complaint must be signed and notarized. It must be returned with the Request for Service form (see Court Forms) and with the proper filing fee.

Q: What is the territorial jurisdiction for filing a Small Claims complaint?

A: The defendant must reside in Lakewood or the action must have taken place in Lakewood.

Q: Where can I obtain legal forms?

A: See our Court Forms page or contact the following forms companies:

Ohio Legal Blank Co.
www.ohiolegalblank.com
9800 Detroit Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio 44102
(216) 281-7792

Michalske Printing
5808 Clark Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio 44102
(216) 631-0567

Q: What is the maximum monetary amount in a municipal court civil suit?

A: You may sue for up to $15,000.

Q: Can I continue my court date?

A: You may be eligible for a one-week continuance. Please see the Divisions page.

Q: Can I obtain public record information from the court?

A: Yes. Please go to the Divisions page and contact the appropriate division involved. There are fees associated with public record information.

Q: What are your office hours and how may I pay my costs?

A: See the Divisions and Fee Schedules pages. We accept cash, checks, credit cards and money orders.

Q: If I serve as a juror do I get paid?

A: Yes. Jurors receive $25 per day. See our Jury Duty Information page.