Skip to Content

General Civil

2nd Floor 

The Civil Division processes cases in which one party (a person, group, business, corporation, or organization) brings an action against another for money damages not exceeding $25,000.00.  Reasons may include but are not limited to overdue accounts, rental security deposits, repair bills, physical damage or breach of contract.

The person being sued must do business or live within the city of Detroit, or the action must have occurred in the city of Detroit.  To begin a lawsuit in the Civil Division, you must fill out the forms, file the appropriate forms and pay the necessary fees. Pleadings requiring filing fees must be either filed in person, online or via mail. The Civil Division Counter is locate on the 2nd floor, 421 Madison, Detroit, Michigan.

The General Civil docket handles all lawsuits started in the Civil Division that are not Small Claims or Landlord-Tenant cases.  In these cases, either party has the right to an attorney, the right to a jury trial, and the right to appeal the decision of the court.

A civil action begins with the filing of a Summons and Complaint with a court.  A complaint is the original pleading in a civil action where the plaintiff states the basis for the lawsuit.  A summons is a notice that is served (delivered) to a party advising that a lawsuit has been started against him or her.  The summons directs the person to file an answer (response to the complaint) with the court within the given time or a judgment will be entered.