District Court - Summons
District Court offices
Most summonses dealt with are as a result of garda applications for the prosecution of various road traffic and other criminal offences.
Other cases relate to prosecutions (or court proceedings) initiated by State and semi-State bodies and local authorities. These cases may be of a civil or criminal nature.
More cases are appeals to the District Court and complaints made by private individuals.
The court forms used in these applications are available from the office or to download in the Court Forms section.
The current District Court Fees Order indicates the appropriate stamp duty applicable.
In all cases the office will have to be consulted in relation to providing a suitable court, date and time for the hearing of the application or complaint.
If a summons is issued against you
If a summons is issued against you it will contain an outline of the complaint or allegation and will indicate the date, time and place that you are due to appear in court for a hearing of the case.
A copy of the summons must be served on you and the original summons, together with a Statutory Declaration as to the service of same, is then lodged with the office at least 4 days before the date of court.
If you are the recipient of a summons you may contact the office with any query you may have.
The body of the summons will contain an outline of the complaint / allegation and will indicate the date, time and place that the defendant / accused / respondent is due to appear in court for a hearing of the case.
A copy of the summons must be served on the defendant / accused / respondent and the original summons together with a statutory declaration as to the service is lodged with the office at least 4 days before the date of court.
Under section 108(3) of the Environmental Protection Agency Act, 1992, a person may make a complaint to the court against another party in relation to noise. A notice of intention to make the complaint must be served on that other party.
Control of dogs
Complaints may also be made to the court under the Control of Dogs Act 1986. Section 22(1)(a) provides for complaints against a dangerous dog while section 25 deals with the excessive barking of a dog. The owner of the dog must be notified of the intention to make a complaint.
Assault - breach of the peace
A person may also make a complaint directly to a judge of the District Court against another party alleging that an assault and / or a breach of the peace has taken place. The judge if satisfied, will cause a summons to issue against that other party.
Appeals may be made to the District Court under a number of Acts including the Fire Services Act, 1981, Wildlife Act, 1976, and Road Traffic Acts, 1961- 1987. The most common of these being under the Road Traffic Act against either a refusal to grant a Small Public Service Vehicle Drivers Licence or refusal to issue a Certificate of Competency.
Other applications made to the District Court include an application for an excluding order under Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 1997 which may be made either by a housing authority or a private individual, or an application to have proceedings set aside under section 22(6)(a) of the Courts Act, 1991.