General Information

The Magistrate Court is located in the Law Enforcement Center located at 825 Thompson Drive, Douglas. Our hours are Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. We can also be reached by telephone at 912-384-1381 or by fax at 912-383-0800.

The Magistrate Court staff includes the Clerk of Court, three deputy clerks, and three Judges. Our Clerk of Court is Tammy Rivers. In addition to the Chief Judge, the Magistrate Court also has another full-time Judge, Kema Fussell, and one part-time Judge, Danny Burkhalter. Any member of our staff can be reached at the above numbers.

The Magistrate Courts of Georgia were established in 1983 when the current Georgia Constitution was ratified. The Constitution required the Magistrate Courts to replace the Justice of the Peace, and a variety of other small claims courts. Each county in the state of Georgia has a Magistrate Court. The Coffee County Magistrate Court is handles both criminal and civil actions. 

The civil division handles monetary claims that are $15,000.00 or less. Any amount in excess of $15,000.00 should be filed in either the State or Superior Court of Coffee County. Actions filed in the Magistrate Court include, but are not limited to, contract disputes, dispossessory actions (evictions), personal injury and suits on account. This Court does not handle divorce, child support actions, or actions involving title to property. You may appear on your own behalf or may be represented by an attorney. No jury trials are held in this court.

The criminal division handles the issuing of arrest warrants for Coffee County after probable cause has been determined. The Magistrate Court also conducts first appearances, bond hearings, preliminary hearings, and ordinance hearings for Coffee County, as well as deposit account fraud trials.  This court does not handle any traffic citations. 

This is just a brief introduction to what the Magistrate Court has to offer the citizens of Coffee County. We will continually update this information. If you have any questions or comments, please contact this office. While we cannot give you any legal advice, we may have resources available to you. Thank you for your interest in the Coffee County Magistrate Court.

Julia Phillips
Chief Magistrate Judge