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Texas Counties Deliver

Justice H.R. “Bob” Riley, Precinct 4, Place 1

TO PAY TRAFFIC CITATIONS USING MASTERCARD OR VISA CALL: 877-439-1900

Pay online at https://www.govrec.com/home/blancocotx

YOU MAY ALSO CALL THE JP OFFICE DIRECTLY: 830-833-4212

 

DURING THIS COVID-19 PANDEMONIUM, THE JUSTICE COURT IS TAKING EVERY PRECAUTION FOR THE SAFETY OF OUR EMPLOYEES AND CITIZENS CONDUCTING BUSINESS WITH THIS COURT.  WE ASK THAT EVERYONE ENTERING THE BUILDING WEAR A FACIAL COVERING AND THAT YOU DO NOT ENTER IF YOU HAVE COVID-19 SYMPTOMS, OR EXPOSED TO SOMEONE WITH COVID.
 
        WE ARE HANDLING MANY THINGS BY FIRST CLASS MAIL, EMAIL, AND FAX, INSTEAD OF

PERSONAL APPEARANCES. PLEASE PROVIDE YOUR EMAIL AND TELEPHONE NUMBER WHEN SUBMITTING DOCUMENTS TO THIS COURT. 

During voting seasons the office closes to foot traffic and handles business by telephone, fax or email.

Office Hours: Mon. thru Fri. - 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 noon, 1:30 p.m.- 4:30 p.m


MAIL PAYMENTS AND ALL CIVIL SUITS TO:

        BLANCO COUNTY
        P. O. BOX 596
        BLANCO, TEXAS 78606

PHYSICAL LOCATION: 402 BLANCO AVENUE
                                       BLANCO, TEXAS 78606
(DO NOT MAIL DOCUMENTS TO PHYSICAL LOCATION - post office will return.)

OFFICE PHONE: (830) 833-4212                        OFFICE FAX:  (830) 833-2667
EMAIL: blancojp4@co.blanco.tx.us 

  • You may only pay your traffic citations IN FULL online by using MasterCard or VISA only (American Express & Discover are not accepted). TO PAY ONLINE CLICK BLUE LINK: https://www.govrec.com/home/blancocotx  (if you have trouble call 830-833-4212).

    Partial payments, Driver Safety Course payments, or Deferral payments cannot be paid online.  They must be mailed, or call the clerk to pay with a card.  Credit card payments are posted three business days from the day you give payment to the clerk or pay online yourself.  If you are trying to renew your driving license and pay for your ticket with a credit card, anticipate at least five business days before your license can be renewed.

    All Class C Traffic violations require submission of your Written Plea, copy of driver license and proof of liability insurance, postmarked by the appearance date on the citation. If you did not receive a reply form click the blue written plea link above.

    DEFERRAL ORDERS are not always granted, but if granted, Judge Riley requires a driver safety course with 3 page report as part of deferral order, plus a deferral fee, and six month probation. Submit your request for a deferral order with copy of driver license and proof of liability insurance.  All deferral requests must be approved by the judge.  If approved, a copy of the order will be mailed to you, and you will have 30 days to submit the deferral fee and court cost.  If denied, I will respond to you with a letter, and payment is due in 30 days. 

    If you have not taken a driver safety course within the past 12 months and are therefore eligible for driver safety course you may want to request that.  If you decide to take a driver safety course (DSC) you must answer all the questions True or False in section B of the reply form, have your signature notarized, and submit the reply form with copy of driver license, proof of liability insurance and a type 3A driver record obtained from the Texas Department of Public Safetypostmarked by your appearance date.  Click the link for DPS above to pay for your type 3A driving record.   You may forward your record to us at our email which is blancojp4@co.blanco.tx.us.  You will need to type that in yourself, it is not a link.

    Once you submit the reply form with required documents for a driver safety class, you have 90 days from the appearance date on your citation to submit the court certificate of completion.   Driver's safety course requests must include cashier's check or money order for $146.00.

    If you wish to pay for your DSC by credit card, your documents must be received by the court postmarked by the appearance date before the clerk will accept your payment.  Allow ample time for the court to process your request before calling with your credit card payment, or, you may indicate on your reply form that you'd like the clerk to call you for your credit card payment of $146.00.  I accept Visa and MasterCard only.

    You must choose a driver safety class from this website for TEXAS APPROVED COURSES in Section C of the reply form .  When you choose your school for driver safety class, which you can take online, you will need to pay their cost for the class, and BE SURE TO INDICATE WHEN ENROLLING THAT YOU ARE TAKING THE CLASS FOR BLANCO COUNTY JUSTICE COURT PCT. 4.  If the certificate says municipal court or any other court I cannot accept it.  IF YOU DID NOT RECEIVE A COURT REPLY FORM CLICK THE LINK BELOW.

    COURT REPLY FORM

    THE COURT REQUIRES THE FOLLOWING DOCUMENTS FOR A DRIVER SAFETY COURSE:

    1.  Court Reply Form completely filled out, true or false questions answered, and SIGNATURE NOTARIZED by a NOTARY PUBLIC;
    2.  Copy of driver license (FRONT ONLY);
    3.  Copy of current liability insurance showing you as a covered driver, (not expired);
    4.  Payment of $146.00 (money order or cashier's check) NO PERSONAL  CHECKS
    5.  You can indicate on the form that you wish to pay with MasterCard or Visa, and I will call you.

    Mail all required documents to:            
    Blanco County
    P. O. Box 596
    Blanco, Texas 78606

    (It is helpful to me, in case I have any questions, if you will include a telephone number and email address on your plea form.)

  • FILING AN EVICTION

    Information for tenants and landlords is also in the left hand column, SRL (self represented litigants). 

    The CDC has issued extended the moratorium on evictions for non-payment of rent to expire October 3, 2021.

    Please visit: http://www.texasrentrelief.com/  for info on evictions or call 1-833-9TX-RENT. 

    NEW PROCESS FOR FILING EVICTIONS FOR NON-PAYMENT OF RENT:  YOU MUST VISIT THE TEXAS JUDICIAL BRANCH AND REVIEW THE TEXAS JUDICIAL DIVERSION PROGRAM (TJDP) ORDERED BY THE SUPREME COURT IN THE 31ST EMERGENCY ORDER (CAN VIEW ORDER IN LEFT COLUMN); AND YOU MUST STATE THAT YOU HAVE DONE SO IN THE PETITION:
    https://www.txcourts.gov/programs-services/eviction-diversion-program/

    The TEXAS EVICTION DIVERSION PROGRAM (TEDP) will be funded with over $1 billion allocated to Texas for rental assistance and eviction diversion and will be centrally administered by the TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY AFFAIRS (TDHCA).

    Funding for rental assistance and eviction diversion will be available for distribution to eligible landlords/tenants and can cover up to 12 months of past due rent and utilities (from March 13, 2020, to present) and up to 3 months of future rent. Landlords must agree to waive late payment fees and their previous claims (both for non-payment of rent or others), and the funding will be direct deposited with the landlord. Tenants must meet income eligibility requirements (at or below 80% of Area Median Income) and be financially affected by COVID-19. See the eligibility requirements and documents needed below.  If you wish to apply for the Texas Eviction Diversion Program you would have to have been served an eviction and have a court case number, and then you could visit texasrentrelief.com website or 833-9TX-RENT to complete the application process.  If you have an eviction that is NOT for non-payment of rent, follow directions below.

    The expiration of the Texas Supreme Court's 34th Emergency Order means that plaintiffs are no longer required to include in an eviction petition whether a property is a "covered dwelling" or whether a 30-day notice to vacate was given.

    However, as always, the plaintiff must prove that they have given the proper notice to vacate in order to receive a judgment of possessionIf the property is a "covered dwelling" and the eviction is based on nonpayment, the plaintiff is still required to give a 30-day notice to vacate. This requirement of the CARES Act DID NOT expire on March 31. If the property is not covered by the CARES Act or the eviction is not based on nonpayment, then the standard notice to vacate rules would apply. (For information on whether a property is a "covered dwelling" see the section in this category on "Determining if a Property is a "Covered Dwelling" Under the CARES Act.'" CAN ALSO READ INFO LEFT SIDE COLUMN)

    If a petition describes the notice to vacate given as well as the reason why that notice to vacate is proper, and the defendant does not appear or answer, the petition must be taken as true. This means that the plaintiff would have proven proper notice to vacate.

    If, instead, the petition doesn't lay out the notice given and why it is proper, or the defendant answers or appears, the petition is not sufficient to prove proper notice to vacate. Rule 500.6 makes clear that justice courts can develop the facts of the case at trial to determine whether the CARES Act applies to an eviction case and whether the proper notice to vacate was given. 

    On April 8, TJCTC received a brief from TAA outlining their position that the 30-day notice to vacate provision no longer applies.

    * An eviction MUST be filed in the precinct where the rental property is located. 
    * The notice to vacate must be in writing and should be unconditional, i.e., it should tell the tenant to vacate by a specific date in no uncertain terms (at least three days if a breach of contract) written notice to vacate before the landlord files an eviction (suggest 30 days if verbal agreement), unless the parties have contracted for a shorter or longer notice period in a lease or agreement). 
    * The notice to vacate must be in writing & shall be given in person or by mail at the premises in question, or posted to entry way.
    * To begin an eviction proceeding, the landlord must file a written and Eviction Petition Incorporating TEDP Information.pdf, Affidavit of Military Status Form (click here for website to find out if defendant is on active military duty) The petition must describe the premises of which the landlord is claiming possession with sufficient certainty to identify the premises, and state the facts which entitle the landlord to possession. 
    * Generally, all parties named in the lease should be sued and served with a citation in the eviction proceeding. Any judgment granted will run only against those who are specifically named and served. 
    * A suit for rent may be filed with the eviction suit if the amount due is within the jurisdiction of the justice court (<$20,000.00). Charges for items other than rent cannot be joined with suit for eviction and would need to be sued for those items in small claims court, after the eviction suit trial has been held. 
    * A court date for the eviction will be set after the citation has been served and both parties will be notified and are expected to appear at that date/time. Any continuance request must be in writing, timely and agreed to by all parties. 
    * Under the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure, either party to the lawsuit has five days to appeal the court’s decision. The filing of an appeal bond or paupers oath by that time completes the appeal. A properly filed appeal stops all further justice court proceedings until there is a resolution by the county court.  
    * If neither party appeals, the landlord may obtain a Writ of Possession from the court after the five (5) day period for appeal has passed. The writ fee of $200.00 plus a $10.00 processing fee is payable to JP court to cause the tenant to vacate the premises. Questions involving the execution of the writ should be directed to the appropriate constable's office.

    During this period of time relative to COVID 19, orders from the United States Supreme Court and the Office of Court Administration are being followed by all courts.  More information regarding evictions during COVID can be found on https://www.txcourts.gov/programs-services/eviction-diversion-program/
    MAIL ALL DOCUMENTS WITH MONEY ORDER OR CASHIER'S CHECK FOR $46.00 COURT COST, AND SEPARATE MONEY ORDER OR CASHIER'S CHECK FOR $75.00 FOR SERVICE OF CITATION.

    MAIL SUIT TO:

    BLANCO COUNTY
    P. O. BOX 596

    BLANCO, TEXAS  78606        (currently not accepting suits by email)

  • A small claims case is a lawsuit brought for the recovery of monetary damages, civil penalties, personal property, or other relief allowed by law.  The actual amount in controversy (not the amount sued for) cannot exceed $20,000.00, excluding statutory interest and court costs but including attorney fees, if any.   In left side column there is a link for SELF HELP FOR SMALL CLAIMS SUIT that is very helpful in understanding a Small Claims Suit.

    THESE INSTRUCTIONS ARE A BROAD INTERPRETATION OF THE LAWS THAT APPLY TO THE COURT.   ANY LEGAL QUESTIONS OR LEGAL INTERPRETATION SHOULD BE BASED UPON YOUR OWN RESEARCH OF THE MATTER, OR THE ADVICE OF YOUR ATTORNEY.  SMALL CLAIMS ARE GOVERNED BY RULES 500-507 of PART V of the NEW RULES.

    VENUE
    General Rule: Generally, a defendant in a small claims case or a debt claim case is entitled to be sued in one of the following venues:

    1. The county and precinct where the defendant resides;
    2. The county and precinct where the incident, or the majority of incidents, that gave rise to the claim occurred;
    3. The county and precinct where the contract or agreement, if any, that gave rise to the claim was to be performed; or
    4. The county and precinct where the property is located, in a suit to recover personal property.

    WHO YOU MAY SUE:

    1. INDIVIDUAL – list all known addresses on the form
    2. SOLE PROPRIETORSHIP – contact the Assumed Names Dept. 830-997-6515 or call 830-868-7357 in the Blanco County Clerk’s office for more information
    3. CORPORATION – serve its registered agent; the name and address can be obtained by calling the office of the Secretary of State at 512-463-5701 or http://ecpa.cpa.state.tx.us/coa/Index/html

    FILING SUIT:  
    The responsibility for filling out your Petition, FORM REQUIRED STATING DEFENDANT IS NOT IN  MILITARY SERVICEService Members Civil Relief Act (website to see if defendant is on active military duty), and Civil Case Information Sheet rests with you. The filing fee is $46.00 and the service fee for certified mail is $5.00, for constable service, $60.00 IF defendant resides in Blanco County.  We need name and address for service.  If Defendant is located out of the County you must research the physical address of Defendant to find out which County that address is located in and which Constable will serve petition and what their cost is.  The clerk will provide citation to you for you to send to that Constable for service. A litigant is entitled to alternative methods of satisfying the court cost, subject to acceptance by the Court.  

    APPEAL:
    After the trial, either party may appeal the judgment by filing a Notice of Appeal with the Court, and an Appeal Surety Bond, within (21) twenty-one days from the date of judgment.  If the appeal is filed by the Plaintiff, the appeal bond amount shall be $500.00.  If the appeal is filed by the Defendant, the appeal bond amount shall be two (2) times the judgment amount. Filing fees are required for filing in the County Court.

    AFTER THE JUDGMENT
    Should you receive a judgment, this Court does not collect the judgment for you, nor can we force the defendant to pay the judgment.  If you receive a judgment against the defendant, this Court can issue various instruments to assist you in collecting the judgment.

    1. Abstract of Judgment: $5.00; requested after (21) days after Judgment and filed with the County Clerk; and is good for a period of ten (10) years.
    2. Writ of Execution: $200.00 plus a $5.00 processing fee, requested (30) days after judgment.

     

    MAIL ALL DOCUMENTS FOR THE SUIT TO:

    BLANCO COUNTY
    P. O. BOX 596

    BLANCO, TEXAS  78606             

    (not accepting suits by email)

  • Filing a Repair & Remedy Suit:

    If you feel your landlord is not maintaining the residence you are renting you can file a Repair & Remedy Suit by filling out the PETITION and submitting to the post office box address below.  The filing fee is $46.00 and the cost of service of citation in Blanco County is $60.00.  If your landlord lives in a different county, you must provide the Court with mailing address for your landlord and the service fee will depend on what that County charges for their service fee.  The citation will then be mailed along with your payment that you have provided to the Court.  Information for filing a Repair & Remedy Suit is HERE.

    Mail to:

    Blanco County
    P. O. Box 596
    Blanco, Texas 78606, and PLEASE include your telephone number.

  • If you have been sued by a debt collector who is trying to collect on a debt from an old credit card account that you had, you can find helpful information on how to handle that suit HERE and also on the TEXAS COURT HELP website.  You should  appear for the trial because if you don't, there may be a default judgment entered for the entire amount they are suing for.  If you decide to settle without coming to trial be sure to have your signature notarized on all documents that you intend to submit to the Court.

    Mail all documents to

    Blanco County
    P. O. Box 596
    Blanco, Texas  78606

    Email:  blancojp4@co.blanco.tx.us  (currently not accepting suits by email)

Justice H.R. “Bob” Riley, Jr., has been holding office as Justice of the Peace in Blanco County, Precinct 4, since March of 2004. He has been employed with Blanco County since the 1990’s, previously in law enforcement and also as Constable for Precinct 4. Before working in Blanco County, Judge Riley worked law enforcement for Bexar and Comal counties. Judge Riley loves Blanco County and has lived here for 50+ years and raised three boys; Robbie, Clint and Charles, who all attended school in Blanco. Judge Riley has owned a tractor business, auction business, BBQ and steakhouse restaurants and a BBQ sauce and seasoning business, and now, he and his wife, Sheri Riley, raise Belties (lovingly known as oreo cows).   
The Justice Courts in Texas rule over 4 Civil Courts within the Justice Court namely, evictions, debt collections, small claims, and landlord/tenant disputes. The amount in controversy cannot exceed $20,000.00. It is considered the people’s court, and many suits are handled without an attorney.
Additionally, the Justice of the Peace may issue arrest and search warrants, and preside over many types of hearings; however, the only criminal cases filed in this court are Class C misdemeanors. Justices of the Peace are on call 24/7 to conduct magistrate hearings and inquests. Judge Riley is pleased to serve his constituents and community.   
The county seat for Blanco County is in Johnson City, but Judge Riley's Court is located in the remodeled South Annex of Blanco County, in the city of Blanco, Texas, the true 'gem' of the hills!