Individuals have the right to be represented by an attorney, or to represent themselves. If you decide to represent yourself, please read Representing Yourself in Court (PDF) at the Texas Court Help website.
Help for Self-Represented Litigants
Please visit the Texas Office of Court Administration Self-Represented Litigants page, the Texas Justice Court Training Center page, and the Texas Law Library website for assistance. You may file Evictions and Small Claims online using eFile Texas Self-Help, where you will also find forms available for printing to file Occupational Driver License and Repair and Remedy cases in person or by mail.
Finding the Registered Agent of a Corporation
To sue a corporation, you must find the name and address of the Registered Agent, President, or Vice President of the corporation. When you file your suit, you will be filing against the corporation and serving the citation on one of the above-mentioned officers of the corporation. To obtain this information, contact the Secretary of State’s Public Information Department at 512-463-5555, or email the Texas Secretary of State about corporations.
To sue a defendant outside Denton County, you must provide the name and address of the Constable or Sheriff for service of citation and a separate money order for that agency’s fee (contact appropriate agency for payment amount and information).
Any requests for pretrial discovery must be presented to the court for approval.
How To File Exhibits
All of your exhibits must be received by both the court and the other party no less than three business days before a trial or hearing for an eviction or repair & remedy case, or seven days before a trial or hearing for a small claim or debt claim. You must properly format and label your exhibits, and you will need to bring two sets of labeled hard copies with you to court for the trial or hearing. For instructions and an example of how to format your materials, please read our Procedures for Filing Exhibits.
Small claim and debt claim cases: Defendant has fourteen days following the day of service of citation to file a written answer with the court. If the 14th day is a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday, the answer is due by the end of the first day following the 14th day that is not a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday. A default judgment may be taken against a defendant who fails to answer. For service by publication, see Texas Rules of Civil Procedure.
Plaintiff Must Request Default Judgment
In most cases, if the defendant does not answer a small claims or debt claims case after being served with citation, the plaintiff must request a hearing for a default judgment (see Rule 503.1 for more information). First go to Judicial Records Search page on the Denton County website to find out if the citation has been served in your case. Keep in mind that it may take several weeks to serve the defendant.
For information about how to collect on a judgment, please see the “What Do I Do After I Win?” section of the Texas Bar Association’s publication How to Sue in Justice Court, as well as the “What Happens if I Win My Small Claims Case?” section of the Texas Justice Court Training Center’s Filing a Small Claims Case Information Packet. To learn about obtaining possession of real property after an eviction judgment, please see the “What Happens If I Win My Eviction Case?” section of the Texas Justice Court Training Center’s Eviction Information Packet.