This office CANNOT and will not give legal
advice or opinions. For general legal assistance, you should seek advice
from your own private attorney.
What does the Civil
The Civil Division is responsible for receiving, processing and serving civil
and criminal court orders and legal documents.
There are service fees associated with a variety of documents processed by the
Civil Division. For a complete
listing of fees visit
There are many additional services the Civil Division
provides to include;
$5.00 fee for anyone other than the individual(s) involved in the accident.
A written request is required from Insurance companies, attorneys.
produced by the Civil Office, by written request only.
Sex Offender Registration
$25.00 annual fee for registrants residing in Iowa
County. Registrations as well as
tiered verifications will be conducted during Civil Office hours M-F
Appointments are preferred, 319-642-3496.
Fingerprinting (conducted by the jailers)
Residents not residing in
Iowa County will be charged $10.00 for employment fingerprints. This is
collected by the Civil Division.
In-House Records Checks
Related ONLY to records of Iowa County Sheriff.
It does not include a driving traffic record, nor a juvenile record, if
any, nor does it include a check for pending action against this individual, if
any. If a more thorough check is
required, you may contact the Iowa
Division of Criminal Investigations (DCI) at 515-725-6066.
What is a small claims?
According to the state of Iowa code, a small claim is any claim under $6,500.
No attorney is required for filing or representing oneself in a small
How do I start a small
Contact the Clerk of Court for the appropriate forms to be completed
electronically, or visit the website at
What is a Garnishment?
garnishment is a legal proceeding taken by a creditor after a judgment is
awarded from a court against a debtor.
If the creditor knows the debtor has money, or property, in the hand of a
third party (wages owed by the debtor’s employer, funds in a bank account,
etc.), the creditor may have a garnishment served to recover funds owed on the
debt. Iowa Code 642 governs
the amount allowed to be withheld.
Garnishments expire 120 days from the date it was issued by the Clerk of Court.
We suggest you contact your attorney for advice prior to coming to our
office. When you deliver the
documents needed to process the garnishment, we must receive from you the
General Execution, Notice of Garnishment and Directions to the Sheriff form
completed. Any funds collected from
the garnishment will then be dispersed to the Clerk of Court in which the
Execution was filed for a judge’s review.
It is your responsibility to follow up with the Courts to find out the
next step in the process of receiving the wages/funds that were collected.
Does court paperwork that
has been efiled get forwarded to the civil office automatically?
No, paperwork is not automatically forwarded to us
from the clerk of court. You will
need to bring or mail it to our office to be served.
We will NOT ACCEPT anything faxed or emailed to our office UNLESS it is
absolutely time sensitive.
Much of efiled court paperwork come with a page with the clerk of court seal at
the bottom and the court case number at the top.
Many people are missing this page when they bring it to us to be served,
but we need this to be included for service.
Small claims paperwork may also have a “Appearance and Answer” page to be
served as well. Please ask the
clerk’s office when you file your paperwork how to print these off.
It is not the responsibility of the Civil office to ensure what documents
are needed from you for service. Directions to the Sheriff is required for
What happens after
it is an efiled case, we will upload the return of service to the system
after payment is received by our
it is not an efiled case, we return the documents (upon request) to the
requestor after payment is received.
require advanced fees from anyone other than most Attorney offices.
Contact the Civil Division for a calculated amount,
Should there be a need for multiple trips, you may be billed any
significant added mileage costs.
Do you have eviction
notice forms to fill out?
we do not provide forms at our office.
You will need to find these on your own, either through an online search
or through the help of an attorney.
Our office cannot give legal advice and are unable to tell you what notice would
be appropriate for your situation.
(see attachment EVICTION)
I have a legal problem
but I can’t afford a lawyer, is there someone I can contact to ask questions or
The organization listed below might be able to assist you or get you headed in
the right direction for assistance.
IOWA LEGAL AID
1111 9th Street, Suite 230
Des Moines, Iowa 50314
you serve someone paperwork if they are a patient at a hospital?
Typically we only serve mental/substance abuse commitments, guardianship papers,
or no contact orders to patients at hospitals.
wrote me a bad check. What can I do?
You may request a 10- day check letter notice from the Civil Office. IF the
debtor resides in Iowa County, we will attempt service on that individual at
your request & with completed directions for service.
You may also choose to mail the notice via certified mail to the
individual as another option.
I file a commitment or No contact order at your office?
the Clerk of Court issues substance/mental
commitments as well as no contact orders.
Their phone number is 319-642-3914.
A No-Contact Order (Civil)
is a domestic violence case, an order forbidding the defendant from having any
contact with the protected party.
This order is issued at the request of the protected party according to Iowa
Code 236.3A. This process begins at the Clerk of Court for the county in which
the victim resides in. The Clerk of Court will provide the Sheriff’s Civil
office with the order to serve upon the defendant.
No-Contact Order (Criminal)
prohibits contact with the protected party by the defendant.
This order is issued automatically by the courts in a domestic violence
cases according to Iowa Code 664.3(1).
This normally involves an arrest of the defendant prior to the no-contact
order being issued.