Lake Charles City Court was established by the State of Louisiana. It is called a City Court, but it has jurisdiction over all of Ward 3, Calcasieu Parish. It has authority to decide certain Juvenile, Traffic, and criminal matters as well as civil disputes up to $50,000 in amount.
Monica Abshire, Clerk, (337) 491-1564, FAX: (337) 491-1303
The City Judges and the employees of Lake Charles City Court are not allowed to give legal advice. The technical rules of evidence are relaxed and all relevant evidence is admissible provided the Judge is satisfied as to its reliability, and the Judge has sufficient evidence on which to base the judgment. See Civil Procedures. Though the procedure at Lake Charles City Court is relatively informal, you must still prove by the competent evidence that the defendant owes you the money you seek. You do not have to have a lawyer in this court, but it is advisable to get the legal advice before you file a lawsuit. If you cannot afford to hire a lawyer, you may contact the Southwest Louisiana Legal Services at (337) 436-3308.
The Lake Charles City Court exists as a service to you, however, it is not free. You will be required to pay a deposit before filing your suit. The Clerk’s Office can provide you with a schedule of fees and tell you how much the deposit will be. The deposit is an advance toward the actual costs incurred during the suit. If the costs exceed the deposit, you will be required to post additional deposits as the case progresses. The Court cannot guarantee that you will get your money back, even if the judgment is rendered in your favor and the Court orders the defendant to reimburse you for the costs. Whoever files the suit is ultimately responsible to the Court for payment of all costs. We accept payments of Cash, Money Order, or Credit Card. If a credit card is used, then a 5% transaction fee is collected in addition to the payment. Please see Louisiana Statue R.S. 13:1898.
The Civil Department conducts Court 3 days a week. The schedule for Civil Court is as follows:
Monday 11:00 am
Tuesday 11:00 am
Thursday 9:00 am
Schedule of Fees
(337) 491-1565, Fax: (337) 491-8745
The Criminal Department is responsible for preserving the record for all arraignments and trials. Please refer to our Violation FAQ if you have questions about our dockets It also accepts payments for some citations prior to their arraignment date. The following citations must appear before the Judge on their assigned court date:
Operating a motor vehicle under the influence of liquors, alcoholic beverages, or drugs.
Reckless Operation of a motor vehicle.
Speeding in a School Zone.
Speeding in excess of 20 miles over the applicable speed limit.
Leaving the scene of an accident.
Operating a motor vehicle with a suspended or revoked license.
Operating a motor vehicle without a driver’s license.
Most other tickets may be paid before your assigned court date. We only accept cash, money orders, and credit cards. We do not accept checks. Credit card payments can be accepted on the phone. There is a 5% credit card handling fee collected under Louisiana Statue R.S. 13:1898 added to all credit card transactions.
Below are the fines for speeding:
|MPH Over Posted Speed Limit
|1 – 9 MPH
|10 – 20 MPH
Over 20 MPH and School Zone must appear in Court!
Your ticket is your signed, written promise to appear in court and enter a plea of Guilty, Not Guilty, or No Contest. If we do not receive payment for your ticket BEFORE the date indicated or you appear in person on your appointed court date, you will be charged under Louisiana Statue R. S. 32:57.1, Failure to honor written promise to appear. Once charged, your ticket will be assessed a $100 Warrant penalty and will be reported to the Louisiana Department of Motor Vehicles immediately. The DMV will then suspend your license until you pay your ticket with City Court. After you pay your additional fines and court costs, you will be required to pay an additional $50 to the DMV to reinstate your license. Please, do not let this happen.
Violations Department, (337) 491-1565, FAX: (337) 491-8745
In order for you to be eligible to file an expungement, you must have been sentenced under Louisiana Code of Criminal Procedure Article 894 or the charge was rejected or dismissed. Before filing the expungement, you need to call Lake Charles City Court, Violations Office to determine if you are eligible for expungement for city charges or state (DA) misdemeanor charges that were handled at Lake Charles City Court and to find out what filing fees apply to you.
After your Motion for Expungement has been signed and all required documents and fees have been provided to Lake Charles City Court (Violations Office), 118 West Mill Street, Lake Charles, the Clerk of Court will then file your Motion.
If it is a State charge, it is the individual’s responsibility to get the Certificate of No Opposition signed by the District Attorney’s office and then brought to Lake Charles City Court for filing along with the money orders.
To view or download the forms needed for expungements please use the navigation bar at Online Forms –> Expungements.
Under the provisions of LSA R.S. 44:32 C. any requests for copies of public records shall be in writing using an approved form provided by the court. Said request will indicate the date the request is made.
Public Records Request Form
In compliance with Federal Law, all personal identifying information for those persons other than the person requesting the information (or that person’s legal representative) shall be redacted to remove information that could lead to identity theft such as Social Security numbers, Drivers License numbers and dates of birth.
There will be a $5.00 minimum fee for certified copies of traffic tickets, criminal summons, and some Civil matters. Ordinary non-certified copies will bear a charge of $2.00 for each page copied. The per page fee for certified documents after the first page will be $3.00. R.S. 13:841 et seq.
Recordings will bear a fee of $25.00 which includes the cost of the CD. All fees payable to the general operating account of Lake Charles City Court. Transcripts will bear the per page cost as charged by a certified court reporter.
All Civil record requests will be handled by Monica Abshire, Clerk of Civil.
All Criminal record requests will be handled by Tammy Young, Clerk of Criminal.