Frequently Asked Questions




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Bookkeeping

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  1. How do I contact BOOKKEEPING, where is Bookkeeping located and what hours is Bookkeeping open?
  1. How do I contact BOOKKEEPING, where is Bookkeeping located and what hours is Bookkeeping open?

    Bookkeeping can be reached by dialing (336) 779-6306 and Bookkeeping is located on the second (2nd) floor, room 217, of the Forsyth County Hall of Justice, 200 North Main Street, Winston-Salem. Bookkeping is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. till 5:00 p.m. except for holidays.

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Civil Division -- Civil Filings and Civil Records

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  1. How do I contact the CIVIL DIVISION – Filing(s) Department, where is the Civil Filings Department located and what hours is Civil Filings Department open?
  2. How do I contact the CIVIL DIVISION – Records Department, where is Civil Records Department located and what hours is the Civil Records Department open?
  3. What types of cases are civil cases?
  1. How do I contact the CIVIL DIVISION – Filing(s) Department, where is the Civil Filings Department located and what hours is Civil Filings Department open?

    The Civil Division – Filing(s) Department can be reached by dialing (336) 779-6303 and the Civil Filings Department is located on the second floor, room 243 of the Forsyth County Hall of Justice, 200 North Main Street, Winston-Salem. Civil Filing’s is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. till 5:00 p.m. except for holidays.

  2. How do I contact the CIVIL DIVISION – Records Department, where is Civil Records Department located and what hours is the Civil Records Department open?

    The Civil Division – Records Department can be reached by dialing (336) 779-6308 and is located on the second floor, room 245 of the Forsyth County Hall of Justice, 200 North Main Street, Winston-Salem. Civil Record’s Department is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. till 5:00 p.m. except for holidays.

  3. What types of cases are civil cases?

    There are many types of civil cases. The most common civil cases are:

    • Domestic
      • Divorce
      • Child Support
      • Custody and Visitation
      • Division of Marital Property
    • Contracts
      • Complaint In Summary Ejectment (AOC-CVM-201)
        • Writ Of Possession (AOC-CV-401)
        • Writ Of Possession of Real Property When Judgment more than 30 days old (AOC-CV-412)
      • Complaint for Money Owed (AOC-CVM-200)
        • Notice of Right To Have Exemptions Designated (AOC-CV-406)
        • Motion to Claim Exempt Property (Statutory Exemptions) (AOC-CV-415)
      • Complaint To Recover Possession of Personal Property (AOC-CVM-202)
      • Notice of Appeal to District Court (AOC-CVM-303)
      • Notice of Voluntary Dismissal (AOC-CV-405)
      • Report of Foreclosure Sale/Resale (AOC-SP-400)
      • General Civil Action Cover Sheet (AOC-CV-751)
      • Domestic Civil Action Cover Sheet (AOC-CV-750)

    AOC forms can be retrieved by going to the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts web site “www.nccourts.org” clicking on Forms and entering the appropriate form number.

    For a list of Civil forms, click here.

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Child Custody
  1. Does the Forsyth County Clerk’s Office have the forms I need to file my own custody case?
  1. Does the Forsyth County Clerk’s Office have the forms I need to file my own custody case?

    No. The Forsyth County Clerk’s Office does not have the forms necessary for filing a custody case. It is strongly recommended you consult with an attorney or be prepared to file the necessary documents on your own in accordance with the laws of the State of North Carolina.

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Child Support
  1. How do I contact CHILD SUPPORT, where is Child Support located and what hours are Child Support open?
  2. Does the Forsyth County Clerk’s Office collect past due child support?
  3. What address do Parents send child support payments to?
  4. What address do Employers send Child Support payments to?
  5. Who do I contact to get help collecting support for a minor child?
  6. Where do I file a motion to modify child support?
  7. Who can provide legal advice about child support?
  8. Who can I talk to about not receiving my most recent child support payment?
  1. How do I contact CHILD SUPPORT, where is Child Support located and what hours are Child Support open?

    The Child Support Division can be reached by dialing (336) 779-6309 and Child Support is located on the second floor, room 203 of the Forsyth County Hall of Justice, 200 North Main Street, Winston-Salem. Child Support is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. till 5:00 p.m. except for holidays.

  2. Does the Forsyth County Clerk’s Office collect past due child support?

    The Forsyth County Clerk’s Office does not collect or enforce the collection of payments or enforce the collection of past due payments for child support. Federal and State Laws require all child support payments to be sent to a centralized collection and distribution unit. Payments must be made payable to North Carolina Centralized Collections.

  3. What address do Parents send child support payments to?

    Parents send payments to: NC Child Support Centralized Collections, P.O. Box 900006, Raleigh,NC 27675-9006. Please be sure to reference your MPI account number on all checks.

  4. What address do Employers send Child Support payments to?

    Employers send payments to: NC Child Support Centralized Collections, P.O. Box 900012, Raleigh,NC 27675-9012. Please be sure to reference your MPI account number on all checks.

  5. Who do I contact to get help collecting support for a minor child?

    To assist you in collecting support for your minor child you will need to contact the Forsyth County Department of Social Services- IV-D Enforcement Agency or you can hire an attorney to assist you. If you apply for IV-D assistance you may have to pay a $25.00 non-refundable application fee and possibly an annual service fee. The IV-D Enforcement Office is located at 741 Highland Ave, Winston-Salem, NC 27101. The phone number is (336) 703-3801.

  6. Where do I file a motion to modify child support?

    Individuals that are currently under court order to pay child support may file motions to modify with the Clerk of Superior Court. Motions may be filed in Room 203 of the Forsyth County Hall of Justice. Please bring with you your civil docket number and the name of the IV-D case worker. There will be a $3.00 fee to process the filing and a $30.00 Sheriff fee for providing Service, or you can mail certified mail.

  7. Who can provide legal advice about child support?

    Individuals seeking legal advice as to child support issues are advised to seek legal counsel. The Court can only appoint legal counsel if an individual is at jeopardy of being held in custody for contempt.

  8. Who can I talk to about not receiving my most recent child support payment?

    You should contact the North Carolina Centralized Collection Unit at 1-800 992-9457 for more information.

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Support Obligations -- Child Support, Alimony, and Purge Payments
  1. Where do I make a Purge payment or Alimony payment?
  2. Who can help; locate a parent, establish paternity, assist with support obligation(s), collect support and enforce court orders for support including medical insurance?
  1. Where do I make a Purge payment or Alimony payment?

    Purge payments and Alimony payments are made in Bookkeeping, Room 217. For more information call Bookkeeping (336) 779-6306.

  2. Who can help; locate a parent, establish paternity, assist with support obligation(s), collect support and enforce court orders for support including medical insurance?
    1. The Forsyth County Department of Social Services. Located at 741 North Highland Avenue, Winston-Salem, NC, 27101 (336) 703-3400, and on line at: http://www.co.forsyth.nc.us/DSS/TEAM_child_support.aspx
    2. North CarolinaCentralized Collections – http://www.ncchildsupport.com
    3. North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Child Support Guidelines/Worksheets –https://nddhacts01.dhhs.state.nc.us/home.jsp?TargetScreen=WorkSheet.jsp
    4. North Carolina Department of Health and Human Service Division of Services/Child Support Enforcement – http://www.dhhs.state.nc.us/dss/cse/

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Court Appointed Attorneys
  1. I cannot afford an attorney; can the Court appoint me one?
  1. I cannot afford an attorney; can the Court appoint me one?

    The State of North Carolina does not provide for a court appointed attorney in civil matters.

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Court Filing Fees
  1. What are the fees for filing an action in Small Claims, District, Superior or Divorce Court?
  2. What is the fee for filing a Foreclosure?
  3. What is the fee for filing for Divorce?
  4. What is the fee for filing for Name Change?
  1. What are the fees for filing an action in Small Claims, District, Superior or Divorce Court?

    Small Claims Court – $96.00, District Court – $150.00, Superior Court – $200.00, Foreclosures – $300.00, Name Change-$120.00, Divorce – $225.00

  2. What is the fee for filing a Foreclosure?

    The fee for filing a Foreclosure is $300.00.

  3. What is the fee for filing for Divorce?

    The fee to file for Divorce is $225.00.

  4. What is the fee for filing for Name Change?

    The fee to file for a Name Change is $120.00.

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Court Closings and Holidays
  1. What days will the Forsyth County Hall of Justice be closed for the holidays in 2015?
  2. In case of inclement weather how do I know if I need to report for jury service?
  1. What days will the Forsyth County Hall of Justice be closed for the holidays in 2015?

    Click on the following link to see the “2015 Forsyth County Courts Schedule

  2. In case of inclement weather how do I know if I need to report for jury service?

    Once a decision is made as to whether there will be court held on a given day our office will change the message on the jury phone as well as on the home page of our website. The jury line number to call is (336) 779-6305. Closing will also be announced on WXII, WFMY and FOX 8 television stations web sites as well as NCFCC.us.

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Court Locations and Times
  1. Where is Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court located in Forsyth County?
  2. Who assigns Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court dates and times?
  3. When are Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court Calendar calls?
  4. Where and when is Traffic Court?
  5. Where and when is Infraction Court?
  6. Where and when is Infraction/DWLR Court?
  7. Where and when is Criminal District Court?
  8. Where and when is IV-D Child Support Court?
  9. Where and when is Preliminary/ Probable Cause Court?
  10. Where and when is Equitable Distribution Court?
  11. Where and when is Truancy Court?
  12. Where and when is Civil District Court?
  13. Where and when is Divorce/Attorney Show Cause Court?
  14. Where and when is Mental Commitment Court?
  15. Where and when is Child Support UIFSA / Clerk Show Cause?
  16. Where and when is Juvenile Court?
  17. Where and when are District Chambers Calendar Calls?
  18. Where and when is DWI Court?
  19. Where and when is Juvenile Drug Court held?
  20. Where and when is Mental Health Court held?
  21. Where and when are Civil Domestic Violence cases heard?
  22. Where and when are Criminal District Domestic cases heard?
  23. Where and when are District Criminal and Traffic cases scheduled for Kernersville Court Held?
  24. Where and when is Custody Mediation Court?
  1. Where is Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court located in Forsyth County?

    The 5th and 6th floors of the Forsyth County Hall of Justice.

  2. Who assigns Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court dates and times?

    The Trial Court Administrator’s Office assigns Criminal Superior and Civil Superior court dates and times. The Criminal Superior Courtroom clerk is in room 616 and the Civil Superior Court Clerk can be reached at (336) 779-6328 in room 243, Civil Division.

  3. When are Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court Calendar calls?

    Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court Calendar calls begin on Monday at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday through Friday court begins at 9:30 a.m. unless time schedules are changed by the Court.

  4. Where and when is Traffic Court?

    Traffic Court is located in courtroom 1A (first floor), Monday through Friday. Calendar call begins (defendants should be in court) at 9:00 a.m. and Court begins at 9:30 a.m.

  5. Where and when is Infraction Court?

    Infraction Court is located in courtroom 1B, Tuesday and Thursday, 8:00 a.m. through 1:00 p.m.

  6. Where and when is Infraction/DWLR Court?

    Infraction/DWLR Court is located in courtroom 1B, Wednesday, 8:00 a.m. through 1:00 p.m.

  7. Where and when is Criminal District Court?

    Criminal District Court is located in courtroom 1C, Monday through Friday. Calendar call begins (defendants should be in court) at 9:00 a.m. and Court begins at 9:30 a.m.

  8. Where and when is IV-D Child Support Court?

    IV-D Child Support Court is located in courtroom 3A, Tuesday and Wednesday. Calendar call begins (defendants should be in court) at 9:00 a.m. and Court begins at 9:30 am.

  9. Where and when is Preliminary/ Probable Cause Court?

    Preliminary/Probable Cause Court is located in courtroom 3A, Thursday and Friday beginning at 9:30 a.m. Felony PC Court will be heard on Thursdays and PC Criminal Drug Court cases will be heard on Fridays.

  10. Where and when is Equitable Distribution Court?

    Equitable Distribution court is calendared by the Judge’s office and is located in courtroom 4A.

  11. Where and when is Truancy Court?

    Truancy Court is located in courtroom 4A and is held on the first (1st) and third (3rd) Thursday of the month during the school year.

  12. Where and when is Civil District Court?

    Civil District Court is located in courtroom 4C, and is held during the first and last week of each month beginning at 9:30 a.m.

  13. Where and when is Divorce/Attorney Show Cause Court?

    Divorce/Attorney Show Cause Court is located in courtroom 4C on Monday(s), beginning at 2:00 p.m.
    Effective February 4, 2013 court will be held on Monday at 2:00 p.m. in courtroom 3A.

  14. Where and when is Mental Commitment Court?

    Mental Commitment Court is located in courtroom 4C on Thursday(s), beginning at 9:00 a.m.

  15. Where and when is Child Support UIFSA / Clerk Show Cause?

    Clerk Show Cause is located in courtroom 4C on Thursday(s), beginning at 10:00 a.m.
    Effective March 5, 2013 court will be held on Tuesday(s) at 2:00 p.m. in courtroom 3A.

  16. Where and when is Juvenile Court?

    Juvenile Court is located in Court Room 4J, Monday through Friday beginning at 9:30 a.m.

  17. Where and when are District Chambers Calendar Calls?

    Chambers Calendar Calls are on Tuesday(s) at 9:00 a.m. in courtroom 4C.

  18. Where and when is DWI Court?

    Effective Tuesday, February 5, 2013 the DWI Court will be held in courtroom 4A on Tuesday(s) and Thursday(s). Note: Subject to change depending on courtroom assignment for Equitable Distribution.

  19. Where and when is Juvenile Drug Court held?

    Juvenile Drug Court is held the first (1st) and third (3rd) Wednesday of each month at 4:00 p.m. in courtroom 3C.

  20. Where and when is Mental Health Court held?

    Mental Health Court is held on the second (2nd) and fourth (4th) Wednesday of each month at 2:30 p.m. in courtroom 3c.

  21. Where and when are Civil Domestic Violence cases heard?

    Civil Domestic Violence hearings are scheduled in courtroom 3B, Monday through Friday. Parties need to report to courtroom 3C for calendar call at 9:00 a.m.

  22. Where and when are Criminal District Domestic cases heard?

    Criminal District Domestic cases are heard Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday(s) in courtroom 3C. Calendar call begins (defendants should be in court) at 9:00 a.m. and Court begins at 9:30 am

  23. Where and when are District Criminal and Traffic cases scheduled for Kernersville Court Held?

    District Criminal and Traffic cases are scheduled for Kernersville Court are held on Wednesday(s) in the Kernersville, N.C. Town Hall. Calendar call begins (defendants should be in court) at 9:00 a.m. and Court begins at 9:30 am.

  24. Where and when is Custody Mediation Court?

    Custody Mediation Court is located in Court Room 4H.

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Criminal District Records
  1. How do I contact the CRIMINAL DISTRICT RECORDS DEPARTMENT, where is the Criminal District Records Department located and what hours is the Criminal District Records Department open?
  1. How do I contact the CRIMINAL DISTRICT RECORDS DEPARTMENT, where is the Criminal District Records Department located and what hours is the Criminal District Records Department open?

    Criminal District Records can be reached by dialing (336) 779-6302 and the Criminal District Records Department is located on the second (2nd) floor, room 216, of the Forsyth County Hall of Justice, 200 North Main Street, Winston-Salem. Criminal District Records Department is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. till 5:00 p.m. except for holidays.

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Safe on Seven / Domestic Violence Center
  1. What is Safe on Seven?
  2. How do I contact the CIVIL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CENTER – SAFE ON SEVEN, where is the Domestic Violence Center located and what hours are they open?
  3. What is a “50 B”?
  4. What is involved in filing for a domestic violence protective order?
  5. What are the requirements for an Order for Stalking or Non Consensual Sexual Conduct or what is known as a 50C?
  6. What do I need to bring to file a 50B or 50C?
  7. Where do I go to obtain a “50B” or a “50C”?
  8. What forms will I have to fill out and can I get them?
  9. Can I take a 50B out on someone under 18 years of age?
  10. Can I take a 50B out on someone if I am under 18 years of age?
  11. Where and when are Civil Domestic Violence cases heard?Quick Links
    Family Services Inc.: http://fsifamily.org/
    Legal Aid of NC: http://www.legalaidnc.org/
  1. What is Safe on Seven?

    The Safe on Seven program is a collaborated effort among the various partners to create “one-stop” services for victims of domestic violence. The original funding from a 2005 grant helped establish the program and has been a successful endeavor for all of the partners. The Clerk’s office along with the District Attorney’s office, Family Services, Inc., Legal Aid Society of North Carolina and the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Department have staff available on the seventh floor of the Forsyth County Hall of Justice to assist victims of domestic violence.
    The Clerk’s staff is available from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. to provide the necessary forms for individuals to file for a domestic violence restraining order and assist them in getting before the Court at the appropriate designated times.

  2. How do I contact the CIVIL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CENTER – SAFE ON SEVEN, where is the Domestic Violence Center located and what hours are they open?

    The Civil Domestic Violence Center – Safe on Seven can be reached by dialing (336) 779-6320 and the Civil Domestic Violence Center is located on the seventh (7th) floor of the Forsyth County Hall of Justice, 200 North Main Street, Winston-Salem. Civil Domestic Violence Center – Safe on Seven hours are Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. till 5:00 p.m. except for holidays.

  3. What is a “50 B”?

    A “50 B” actually refers to the North Carolina General Statute, Chapter 50B, that pertains to the laws that govern domestic violence and the issuance of protective orders.

  4. What is involved in filing for a domestic violence protective order?

    An individual filing for a domestic violence protective order must first prove to the court that there has been some type of “personal relationship”. The law defines a personal relationship between a victim and the aggressor as follows:

    • Current or former spouses;
    • Persons of the opposite sex who live together or have lived together;
    • Are related as parents and children or as grandparents and grandchildren;
    • Have a child in common;
    • A current or former household member;
    • Are persons of the opposite sex who are in a dating relationship or have been in a dating relationship. A dating relationship is one where the parties are romantically involved, not a casual acquaintance.

    Next you must show to the court that there has been a recent act of domestic violence committed. An act of domestic violence would be as follows:

    • Attempting to cause bodily injury, or intentionally causing bodily injury; or
    • Has placed the victim or member of the victim’s household in fear of imminent serious bodily injury (made a specific threat of bodily injury); or
    • Is in fear of continuous harassment that rises to such a level to inflict substantial distress; or
    • Has committed a sexual offense against the victim.

    The victim will come in and file a Complaint and a Motion for Domestic Violence Protective Order. These are preprinted forms provided by the State of North Carolina. When a complaint is filed the matter is taken before a District Court Judge to determine if the plaintiff (victim) has met the qualifications under the law and is in need of emergency protective relief.
    The Court at that time may sign an emergency protective order to be served on the other party and schedule a hearing within ten (10) days. In some cases an emergency protective order is not issued and the plaintiff (victim) may only get a hearing date to present their case for a one (1) year order of protection. At the scheduled hearing the Court then will hear from all parties and make a determination as to whether a protective order is needed for a (1) one year period.

  5. What are the requirements for an Order for Stalking or Non Consensual Sexual Conduct or what is known as a 50C?

    A “50C” much like a “50B” refers to the North Carolina General Statute Chapter 50C pertaining to Civil No-Contact Orders. The victim of a 50C is a person whom an act of unlawful conduct has been committed by another person not involved in a personal relationship. Upon the court making a determination that the victim has suffered an unlawful conduct committed by the defendant, the Court can them issue temporary or permanent civil no-contact orders. An “unlawful conduct” as defined in that statute is a non-consensual sexual conduct or stalking. Stalking would be considered if a person 16 years or older follows you on one or more occasion or otherwise tormented, terrorized or terrified the plaintiff (victim) with the intent to place the plaintiff in reasonable fear of their safety or the safety of the plaintiff’s immediate family or close personal associates, or with the intent to cause and which did case the plaintiff to suffer substantial emotional distress by placing the plaintiff in fear or death, bodily injury or continue torment or terror.

  6. What do I need to bring to file a 50B or 50C?

    You must have the name and address of the defendant in order to file a “50B” or “50C”.

  7. Where do I go to obtain a “50B” or a “50C”?

    To file for a complaint for a protective order, come to the Hall of Justice, 200 North Main Street, go to the 7th floor to the Domestic Violence Center, operating hours are 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday except holidays (see holiday schedule). However, to have the paperwork processed on the same day, the Complaint must be completed and sworn to no later that 10:30 a.m. or 2:30 p.m. The paperwork is rather lengthy so please allow enough time (2 hours) to complete your paperwork. We suggest you come in no later than 8:30 a.m. or 12:30 p.m. to complete your paperwork. If your paperwork is not completed by 10:30 a.m. or 2:30 p.m. (no exceptions) you will be asked to bring it back the following day for processing.

  8. What forms will I have to fill out and can I get them?

    You should read, understand and follow the directions in; 1) “Victim Information Sheet” (see AOC-CV-323), and 2) the “Instructions for Domestic Violence Forms” (see form AOC-CV-303).
    The forms can be obtained from the Civil Domestic Violence Center on line from www.nccourts.org, go to forms where you can download and print each of the following:

    • Victim Information Sheet AOC-CV-323
    • Instructions for Domestic Violence Forms AOC-CV-303
    • Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office – Domestic Violence Protective Order Information Sheet
    • Complaint and Motion for Domestic Violence Protective Order AOC-CV-303
    • Notice Of Hearing On Domestic Violence Protective Order AOC-CV-305
    • Ex Parte Domestic Violence Protective Order AOC-CV-304
    • Civil Summons Domestic Violence AOC-CV-317
    • Identifying Information About Defendant /Domestic Violence Actions AOC-CV-312
    • Affidavit As to the Status Of The Minor Child AOC-CV-609
    • Appoint Guardian Ad Litem AOC-CV-318, if you or the defendant is under the age of eighteen (18)
  9. Can I take a 50B out on someone under 18 years of age?

    If you wish to file a complaint against an individual under the age of 18, you must have the name and address of their parents or legal guardians so they can be legally served with the civil lawsuit.

  10. Can I take a 50B out on someone if I am under 18 years of age?

    No, you must bring a parent or guardian to file on your behalf.

  11. Where and when are Civil Domestic Violence cases heard?

    Civil Domestic Violence hearings are scheduled in courtroom 3B, Monday through Friday. Parties need to report to courtroom 3C for calendar call at 9:00 a.m.

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Divorce
  1. I just recently separated from my spouse, when can I get a divorce?
  2. Does the Forsyth County Clerk’s Office have the forms I need to file my own divorce?
  3. I just recently got a divorce, what do I need to do to change my name?
  4. What is the fee for filing for Divorce?
  5. How do I obtain a copy of my separation agreement?
  1. I just recently separated from my spouse, when can I get a divorce?

    Most divorces can occur after the parties have been separated and lived apart for one year.

  2. Does the Forsyth County Clerk’s Office have the forms I need to file my own divorce?

    Yes. A packet has been assembled for your assistance.

    PRO SE (SELF-HELP) DIVORCE INFORMATION
    IMPORTANT-PLEASE READ CAREFULLY

    This information packet DOES NOT cover; child support, custody, distribution of property, or spousal support. Recognizing the legal system can be very complicated and confusing, this packet is designed to assist an individual who is not represented by an attorney (“Pro Se”) by providing information and sample forms to be used to obtain an absolute divorce.
    If you obtain an Absolute Divorce without first properly filing for, or obtaining any legal rights you may have for spousal support, (lawsuits known as post separation support and alimony), or for the division of marital property, including martial debt, (a lawsuit known as equitable distribution), YOU WILL LOSE THESE RIGHTS. Therefore, it is VERY IMPORTANT that if you have any questions about whether you are entitled to property (or division of martial debt) from the marriage and or spousal support, YOU MUST TALK TO AN ATTORNEY, or your legal rights may be LOST FOREVER.

    NO ONE EXCEPT AN ATTORNEY
    CAN ADVISE YOU ABOUT YOUR LEGAL RIGHTS

    Because it is the nature of laws, which can change at any time, the forms and information in this packet may become outdated, without notice. The 21st District Clerk of Court, Clerk of Court Staff, or anyone else contributing to the production or dissemination of these forms, instructions or guidelines WILL NOT BE LIABLE for any indirect or consequential damages resulting from your use of the forms or information provided in this packet.
    You are responsible to make certain that the information and instructions in this sample packet are appropriate for your situation. You should review and research applicable laws, rules and civil procedures, and cases that apply to your type of situation. If you are not able to do so, you should speak with an attorney.
    If you wish to represent yourself (“Pro Se”), you should read and understand all the information in this sample packet. READ ALL THE INSTRUCTIONS carefully and understand the process before completing any of the forms.
    You or your spouse must be a resident of Forsyth County to file for divorce in Forsyth County. You cannot start the process to get an Absolute Divorce until you and your spouse have been separated for at least one year and one day.
    These sample documents have been assembled for your convenience in preparing your own divorce. This package is designed ONLY to assist in a simple, uncontested divorce. If you have questions about whether this package is suitable for your situation, YOU SHOULD CONTACT AN ATTORNEY, click on the following link to locate a Forsyth County attorney “Forsyth County Bar Association“.

  3. I just recently got a divorce, what do I need to do to change my name?

    To return to your maiden name or a previously married name, you would need to come to the Clerk of Superior Courts Office Room 245 to complete an Application/Notice of Resumption of Prior Name. If you were divorced in a county other than Forsyth or a state other than North Carolina then you would need to bring a certified copy of your divorce judgment. The fee is $10.00.

  4. What is the fee for filing for Divorce?

    The fee to file for Divorce is $225.00.

  5. How do I obtain a copy of my separation agreement?

    Separation Agreements are filed in the Register of Deeds Office, unless they have been incorporated with your divorce. The Register of Deeds Office is located at 201 North Chestnut Street,Winston-Salem,N.C.27101, (336) 703-2701. If the Separation Agreement was incorporated with your divorce, you may obtain it at the Clerk of Superior Courts Office Room 245.

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Estates -- Wills, Successions, Inheritance, etc.

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  1. How do I contact the ESTATES DIVISION, where are they located and what hours are they open?
  2. What is a will and why should a person have one?
  3. What are the Intestate Succession Laws?
  4. How long do I have after someone dies to open an estate?
  5. Why do I need to open an estate?
  6. What are the costs involved in opening an estate?
  7. Will I have to pay inheritance taxes?
  8. What are your hours?
  9. Do I need an appointment?
  10. How do I get a copy of a will?
  11. How long does it take to administer an estate?
  12. Does my will have to be recorded before my death?
  13. Can I write my own will?
  14. Am I required to hire an attorney?
  15. What information is available for beginning a Decedent’s Estate?
  16. Are there any basic instruction after Qualification?
  17. Are there any basic instruction for Final (or annual) accounting?
  1. How do I contact the ESTATES DIVISION, where are they located and what hours are they open?

    The Estates Division can be reached by dialing (336) 779-6304 and is located on the second floor, room 268 of the Forsyth County Hall of Justice, 200 North Main Street, Winston-Salem. The Estates Division hours are Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. till 5:00 p.m. except for holidays.

  2. What is a will and why should a person have one?

    A will is a written document in which you direct who is to receive your property upon your death. If you have real or personal property that you want to give to a specific person you must have a will. Otherwise, the property will pass to persons in accordance with the Intestate Succession Laws.

  3. What are the Intestate Succession Laws?

    These laws set forth how property is to be distributed when someone dies without a will. Generally, the property will pass to surviving spouse and children, but not in equal shares.

  4. How long do I have after someone dies to open an estate?

    There is no set time limit, but if there is a spouse surviving, they should come to the Clerk’s office within one year from the date of death.

  5. Why do I need to open an estate?

    When a person dies, there may be assets, such as bank accounts, real estates, stocks, vehicles, etc. in that person’s name only. Until the Court has issued paperwork to the appropriate person, no one is authorized to handle the deceased person’s assets.

  6. What are the costs involved in opening an estate?

    Cost vary depending on the size of the estate, but generally around $150.00.

  7. Will I have to pay inheritance taxes?

    You will need to speak with an accountant to determine if there will be an inheritance tax.

  8. What are your hours?

    We are open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday except certain holidays. We operate during lunch hours between 12:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. with a minimal staff.

  9. Do I need an appointment?

    Yes.

  10. How do I get a copy of a will?

    To get a copy of the will you will need to contact the Clerk’s office in the county where the estate was administered. Call us at (336) 779-6304 to make sure we have the will within our office. Copies are $2.00 for the first page and .25 cents for each additional page. You may mail the fee along with a self-addressed, stamped envelope and we will return your copies to you.

  11. How long does it take to administer an estate?

    It varies depending on the type of administration that is needed or required. If an Executor or Administrator has been sworn in by the Court, they generally have one year to close the estate.

  12. Does my will have to be recorded before my death?

    No, wills of living persons are not recorded. We have a secured area for people to file their wills for safekeeping in the Clerk’s office if you wish to, but it is not required.

  13. Can I write my own will?

    Yes, you can write your own will, but you are strongly encouraged to seek legal advice to ensure you have met all the requirements of the North Carolina General Statutes so your wishes are carried out.

  14. Am I required to hire an attorney?

    No, but it may be in your best interest to do so since the Clerk’s Office is not allowed to give legal advice.

  15. What information is available for beginning a Decedent’s Estate?

    Click on the following link for a guide to “Beginning a Decedent’s Estate

  16. Are there any basic instruction after Qualification?

    Click on the following link for a guide to “Basic Instructions after Qualification

  17. Are there any basic instruction for Final (or annual) accounting?

    Click on the following link for a guide to “Basic Instruction’s for Final (or annual) Accounting

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Guardianship
  1. My mother or father is having trouble remembering to do things, such as taking her medicine, pay bills, etc. what can I do?
  2. What is a guardian?
  3. How is someone determined to be incompetent?
  4. My grandfather has been in a nursing home for a number of years, he does not recognize any of us, and he is unable to feed or care for himself. Should I have him declared incompetent?
  1. My mother or father is having trouble remembering to do things, such as taking medicine, pay bills, etc. what can I do?

    If your mother has not already executed a power of attorney, you may want to encourage her to do so. However, she must be competent at the time she does this, so if she is not able to understand what you are asking of her it may possibly be too late. In that instance, you may want to seek to have your mother declared incompetent and have yourself or someone else appointed to serve as her guardian.

  2. What is a guardian?

    A “guardian” is someone who is appointed by the Clerk of Superior Court to act on behalf of an incompetent adult. In North Carolina there are three types of guardians for an incompetent adult (ward), they are:

    • Guardian of the Person: This person makes decisions about the ward’s personal care and well-being, such as housing and medical decisions. The Guardian of the Person cannot handle the ward’s money.
    • Guardian of the Estate: This person handles the ward’s finances (estate), but cannot make decisions about the ward’s personal care and well-being.
    • General Guardian: The general guardian is someone who has the power to make personal decisions for and handle the finances of the ward.
  3. How is someone determined to be incompetent?

    A petition seeking to have someone declared incompetent must be filed. The person is entitled to a jury trial, or the matter may be heard before the Clerk of Superior Court. Generally, there has to be medical or psychological evidence to assist the jury or Clerk in determining whether the person no longer has the ability to make decisions or care for himself or herself.

  4. My grandfather has been in a nursing home for a number of years, he does not recognize any of us, and he is unable to feed or care for himself. Should I have him declared incompetent?

    The guardianship process is very emotionally trying, and is not something that should be done without carefully considering all options. The major advantage of a guardianship is that it gives someone else the legal authority to make decisions. If you do not have that legal authority AND someone questions your right to make placement or medical decisions, your instructions may be ignored.

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Jury Duty
  1. How do I contact someone about JURY DUTY, where are they located and what hours are they open?
  2. Who is qualified to serve as Juror?
  3. Who do I contact and how can I be excused from service?
  4. As a juror am I subject to the Security Search upon entering the building?
  5. Where do I park and do I have to pay for parking?
  6. How much do I get paid for serving on Jury Duty?
  7. Will I receive my regular salary from my employer for the time I serve on Jury Duty?
  8. Can I be fired from my job for serving on Jury Duty?
  9. In case of inclement weather how do I know if I need to report for jury service?
  10. How do I know if I have been selected for jury service?
  1. How do I contact someone about JURY DUTY, where are they located and what hours are they open?

    The Jury Clerk can be reached by dialing (336) 779-6305 and is located on the (4th) fourth floor, room 432-A of the Forsyth County Hall of Justice, 200 North Main Street, Winston-Salem. The Jury Clerk is available Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. till 5:00 p.m. except for holidays.

  2. Who is qualified to serve as Juror?

    All persons at least 18 years of age who reside in Forsyth County are qualified to serve as jurors who are citizens of the United States and North Carolina, have not served as jurors during the preceding 2 years in State courts, are physically and mentally competent, can hear and understand the English language, have not been convicted of or pled guilty or no contest to a felony (unless citizenship has thereafter been restored), and have not been adjudged non compos mentis.

  3. Who do I contact and how can I be excused from service?

    Jury Service is the solemn obligation of all qualified citizens. People 72 years of age or older are entitled to establish in writing exemption from jury service. Persons seeking to be excused for health reasons must attach a letter from a licensed health care provided. Excuses will be granted ONLY for reason of compelling personal hardship or because requiring service would be contrary to the public welfare, healthy or safety. Request for excuses and postponements for jury duty must be made IN WRITING and RETURNED IMMEDIATELY to the Chief District Court Judge before your scheduled appearance date. Your Excuse can not be handled by phone. Please submit your request on the back of the Jury Summons you have received and mail it to:
    Chief District Court Judge, C/O Clerk of Superior Court, P.O. Box 20099, Winston-Salem, NC 27120.

  4. As a juror am I subject to the Security Search upon entering the building?

    Yes, all jurors and individuals that are not issued a security pass to the building are subject to a security search. It is unlawful to carry or possess any weapon in the building. Items found are subject to be taken by security and not returned. Prohibited items include but are not limited to the following: aerosols (spray cans), alcohol (liquor), ammunition (in any form), belts/extra large buckles, box cutter, can opener, carabiners, chains, combs, corkscrews, drug paraphernalia, fingernail files, fish hooks, forks/spoons (metal), gun/gun belts, hair picks (metal), handcuffs/handcuff keys, knitting needles, knives (any size), large laundry pins, meat thermometers, pad locks, personal defense items, razors, scissors, tape measures (metal), tools (leatherman, etc) tweezers and any other item as may be deemed potentially dangerous.
    There are two security entrances to the Hall of Justice: one on Liberty Street and one on Main Street. All jurors are requested to use the Main Street Entrance as it is normally faster and more convenient. Security Officers will try to move jurors who show their summons through as quickly as possible in keeping with proper security screening.

  5. Where do I park and do I have to pay for parking?

    Your parking will be paid for as long as you park in one of the following 3 designated areas:

    • Liberty Plaza Parking Deck (Height Restriction 7 feet), located behind the Hall of Justice on Liberty Street, just before Second (2nd) Street.
    • BB&T/TriadPark(Height Restriction 6 ft 6 inches), is located on Liberty Street
    • Oversized vehicles can park in the city parking lot, next to City Hall, on the corner of Main and Second Street.
    • Click here for link to map
  6. How much do I get paid for serving on Jury Duty?

    North Carolina law provides for the compensation of citizens who are called for jury duty at the rate of $12.00 per day for the first day, $20.00 per day for days two through five and $40.00 per day of each day of service beyond five days.

  7. Will I receive my regular salary from my employer for the time I serve on Jury Duty?

    This is left up to the individual company as to whether or not they pay you during the time you serve. Please refer to your employer as to what their policy is.

  8. Can I be fired from my job for serving on Jury Duty?

    No. Pursuant to North Carolina General Statute §9-32 Article 5, it is against the law to fire an employee for serving on jury duty.

  9. In case of inclement weather how do I know if I need to report for jury service?

    Once a decision is made as to whether there will be court held on a given day our office will change the message on the jury phone as well as on the home page of our website. The jury line number to call is (336) 779-6305. Closing will also be announced on WXII, WFMY and FOX 8 television stations web sites as well as NCFCC.us.

  10. How do I know if I have been selected for jury service?

    A recording will be placed on the jury clerk’s phone line letting individuals know if you have been selected and should report to the Hall of Justice for jury duty. You may call after 5 pm the night before to see if you juror number was selected. Please call the Clerk’s office Jury Clerk’s number at (336) 779-6305. You may also click on the following link “Who should report for Juror Duty“. The information should be listed by 5:00 pm the day before you are to report.

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Marriage, Birth, and Death Certificates
  1. How can I get a copy of a marriage, birth certificate, or death certificate?
  1. How can I get a copy of a marriage, birth certificate, or death certificate?

    Marriage, birth certificates and death certificates are maintained by the Register of Deeds. Usually in the county where the marriage took place, the minor was born, or where the decedent died. The Forsyth County Register of Deeds Office is located at 201 North Chestnut Street,Winston-Salem,N.C. 27101, (336) 703-2701.

    Quick Links:
    North Carolina State Archives: http://www.archives.ncdcr.gov/about.aspx

    Forsyth County Register of Deeds: http://www.co.forsyth.nc.us/ROD/

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Name Changes
  1. I just recently got a divorce, what do I need to do to change my name?
  2. I want to change my name to something else, how can I do this?
  3. What is the fee for filing for Name Change?
  1. I just recently got a divorce, what do I need to do to change my name?

    To return to your maiden name or a previously married name, you would need to come to the Clerk of Superior Courts Office Room 245 to complete an Application/Notice of Resumption of Prior Name. If you were divorced in a county other than Forsyth or a state other than North Carolina then you would need to bring a certified copy of your divorce judgment. The fee is $10.00.

  2. I want to change my name to something else, how can I do this?

    If you want to change your name for any reason other than divorce, you will have to comply with the provisions of the North Carolina General Statutes on name changes. You will file for your name change in Child Support Room 243.
    For more detailed instructions go to the home page, click on “Family”, then click on “Name Change” and from there you can read about the steps involved to change a name. It is strongly recommended you review the entire section in detail before you begin filling out any form(s) or contacting our office.

  3. >What is the fee for filing for Name Change?

    The fee to file for a Name Change is $120.00.

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Record Requests
  1. How long do you hold on to court records?
  2. How do I obtain copies of a civil court document and how much do they costs?
  3. How do I obtain a copy of my separation agreement?
  4. How can I get a copy of a marriage, birth certificate, or death certificate?
  1. How long do you hold on to court records?

    The retention of court records often depends on the type of action and the final disposition. Most court actions that are filed are retained for ten years. Some of the domestic, custody-child support matters may be held to the child reaches the age of eighteen. The court files are filmed or scanned after disposition so that there is a permanent record of the file and copies can be obtained. The North Carolina State Archives retains many of our older court records.

  2. How do I obtain copies of a civil court document and how much do they costs?

    Copies of court documents may be obtained in person or by mail.

    • By Mail: Copies of court documents are charged by the page, $2.00 for the first page and .25 cents for each additional page. Therefore, you must call the Clerk’s Office (336) 779-6308 to determine the costs for the copies you are requesting. Thereafter, you must mail your request along with payment to this office. Provide your name, address, and the court file number. Include information that will identify the document(s) you are requesting along with the costs for the documents. Payments must be made by certified check or money order. The court does not accept personal checks. Payments are to be made payable to Clerk of Superior Court. Mail to the Clerk of Superior Court Forsyth County P. O. Box 20099 Winston-Salem, NC 27120-0099 (Attention Civil Records Division) and include your return address. Also include a self addressed stamped envelop for our office to return your copy of the documents.
    • In Person: Come to Clerk of Superior Courts Office 200 N. Main Street Winston-Salem,N.C. 27101, second floor, Room 245 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. to obtain copies of documents. Copies of court documents are charged by the page, $2.00 for the first page and .25 cents for each additional page. Please remember the Court does not accept personal checks.
    • By Email: (click here)
  3. How do I obtain a copy of my separation agreement?

    Separation Agreements are filed in the Register of Deeds Office, unless they have been incorporated with your divorce. The Register of Deeds Office is located at 201 North Chestnut Street,Winston-Salem,N.C.27101, (336) 703-2701. If the Separation Agreement was incorporated with your divorce, you may obtain it at the Clerk of Superior Courts Office Room 245.

  4. How can I get a copy of a marriage, birth certificate, or death certificate?

    Marriage, birth certificates and death certificates are maintained by the Register of Deeds. Usually in the county where the marriage took place, the minor was born, or where the decedent died. The Forsyth County Register of Deeds Office is located at 201 North Chestnut Street,Winston-Salem,N.C. 27101, (336) 703-2701.

    Quick Links:
    North Carolina State Archives: http://www.archives.ncdcr.gov/about.aspx

    Forsyth County Register of Deeds: http://www.co.forsyth.nc.us/ROD/

     

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Small Claims Court
  1. How do I file a claim in small claims court?
  1. How do I file a claim in small claims court?

    The Civil Filings Department of the Forsyth County Clerk’s Office has paperwork for money owed, possession of property and summary ejectment (eviction) proceedings. The paperwork must be filed in the county where the defendant resides. The paperwork can be picked up in The Civil Filings Office, room 243 located on the second (2nd) floor of the Hall of Justice or can be obtained from the Administrative Office of the Courts website www.nccourts.org. The filing fee is $96.00, payable in cash or money order (payable to The Clerk of Forsyth County Superior Court). The service fee for the sheriff is $30.00 per defendant. The monetary limit that a person can sue for is currently $10,000.00 (increased from $5,000 September 2013).
    For more detailed information, go to the small claims section of this website located under the “Civil” section of the navigation menu at the top of the page. There you can read about the steps involved in the small claims process. It is strongly recommended you review the entire section in detail before you begin filling out any form(s).

    Quick Links:
    Small Claims Booklet: http://www.nccourts.org/Courts/Trial/SClaims/

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Superior Court
  1. Where is Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court located in Forsyth County?
  2. Who assigns Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court dates and times?
  3. When are Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court Calendar calls?
  1. Where is Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court located in Forsyth County?

    The 5th and 6th floors of the Forsyth County Hall of Justice.

  2. Who assigns Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court dates and times?

    The Trial Court Administrator’s Office assigns Criminal Superior and Civil Superior court dates and times. The Criminal Superior Courtroom clerk is in room 616 and the Civil Superior Court Clerk can be reached at (336) 779-6328 in room 243, Civil Division.

  3. When are Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court Calendar calls?

    Criminal Superior and Civil Superior Court Calendar calls begin on Monday at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday through Friday court begins at 9:30 a.m. unless time schedules are changed by the Court.

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    State Law prohibits the Clerk’s Office staff from; providing any legal advice, providing instructions for completing forms, referring an attorney, or recommending specific ways to pursue legal action.

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