Summary Court Judges (Magistrates) have countywide jurisdiction over traffic, criminal, and civil matters that fall within the guidelines of magistrate level cases.

Mission Statement

BY ORDER OF
THE SOUTH CAROLINA CHIEF JUSTICE
DATED JULY 30, 2020

EVERY PERSON ENTERING A COURTHOUSE IN SOUTH CAROLINA IS REQUIRED TO WEAR A PROTECTIVE MASK OR OTHER FACIAL COVERING WHILE INSIDE THE COURTHOUSE AND TO BE SCREENED FOR FEVER BY STAFF WITH INFRARED THERMOMETER WHEN ENTERING.

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Department Functions

The Summary Courts are under the guidance of the South Carolina Court Administration. Magistrates are appointed to four-year terms by the Governor upon the advice and consent of the Senate.

Each county has a chief magistrate appointed by the Chief Justice of the South Carolina Supreme Court.

Magistrates generally have criminal trial jurisdiction over all offenses subject to the penalty of a fine, as set by statute, but generally, not exceeding $500.00 or imprisonment not exceeding 30 days, or both. Assessments and court costs may be added to the fine.

In addition, they are responsible for setting bail, conducting preliminary hearings, and issuing arrest and search warrants.

Magistrates have civil jurisdiction when the amount in controversy does not exceed $7,500.

Magistrate civil jurisdiction include such matters as Summons and Complaints (Small Claims), landlord/tenant actions, sales of abandoned property, and Claim and Delivery.

Additionally, magistrates may also issue Restraining Orders under the Harassment and Stalking statute as well as Emergency Orders of Protection when Family Court is not in session.

These services are provided by magistrates in different areas of the county for the convenience of the citizens.

For these services, citizens would see the magistrate in the area in which the person lives that they are attempting to take to court. For an arrest warrant the public would need to contact their local law enforcement agency.

Latest News

Post List #4

Berkeley County Government Offices, Courthouse Closing at 2 p.m. TODAY, March 18

Jenna Ley JamisonMarch 18, 20211 min read

MONCKS CORNER, S.C. – (Thursday, March 18, 2021) – All Berkeley County Government Offices and the Courthouse will close at 2 p.m. today, Thursday, March 18 due to the threat of severe weather.…

Court Operations to Resume Normal Scheduling September 21

Court Operations to Resume Normal Scheduling September 21

Jenna Ley JamisonSeptember 16, 2020

Starting Monday, September 21, 2020, South Carolina court operations will resume normal scheduling and docket management, including in-person hearings in Circuit Court and Family Court, as well as General Sessions and Common Pleas…

Berkeley County Offices Closing at 2 p.m.

hmoldenhauerAugust 3, 2020

MONCKS CORNER, S.C.- (August 3, 2020) — All Berkeley County Offices will close at 2 p.m. Monday, August 3 due to Tropical Storm Isaias. This closure includes the Berkeley County Courthouse, Libraries, Animal…

County Courthouse Announces Reopening Plan

hmoldenhauerMay 26, 2020

MONCKS CORNER, S.C.- (Tuesday, May 26, 2020) – Berkeley County Clerk of Court Leah Dupree announces the following reopening plan for the Berkeley County Courthouse. On June 1, Family Court will resume a…

Berkeley County Offices to Reopen to the Public May 20

MONCKS CORNER, S.C.- (Friday, May 8, 2020) – Berkeley County Government buildings will reopen to the public on Wednesday, May 20. The Voters Registration and Elections Office will be open to the public…

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