District Court

District Court Hearing Information

  • Those wishing to participate in court hearings by telephone, video or other remote means must contact the Clerk's Office by telephone at (360)778-5400 or by e-mail at districtcourtservices@co.whatcom.wa.us at least three business days before the hearing to verify the method is acceptable to the Court and to coordinate appropriate arrangements for such appearance. The three day notification period can be waived by the Court or the presiding judicial officer for good cause, for example, if an order shortening time for the hearing has been entered. 


Whatcom County District Court is committed to protecting the safety and security of our community while performing our Constitutional duties. 

The Whatcom County Health Department has declared a Whatcom County health emergency to reduce the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) in our community. The Department has recommended that people at higher risk of severe illness stay home and away from large groups of people as much as possible, including public places with lots of people and large gatherings where there would be close contact with others. The Whatcom County Health Department recommendations can be viewed at the following link: https://www.whatcomcounty.us/3369/Current-Recommendations-For-Whatcom-Coun
Jurors: If you meet any of the following criteria, you may contact the District Court Jury Coordinator at (360)778-5435 to defer your service to a later date. If you’d like to be considered for exemption, please complete your questionnaire with a written request and submit it for review.

  • You have a chronic health condition such as heart disease, lung disease and/or diabetes;
  • You have a weakened immune system;
  • You are pregnant;
  • You are age 60 or older and you do not wish to report for jury duty, or
  • You are sick or have recently been in contact with someone who is sick.

 About the Court

The Whatcom County District Court consists of 2 Judges, elected for 4 years, 1 appointed Commissioner, and professional and paraprofessional staff. The court hears criminal, civil, infraction and miscellaneous cases.

Criminal Cases

Criminal misdemeanor cases carry a maximum penalty of up to 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine. Criminal gross misdemeanor cases carry a maximum penalty of up to 1 year in jail and a $5,000 fine. Some examples of criminal cases heard by the court are:

  •  Assault (Including Domestic Violence)
  • Driving While License Suspended
  • DUI
  • Theft and Miscellaneous Property Crimes

Civil Cases

Civil cases including both general civil actions and small claims actions. General civil actions with damage claims in the maximum amount of $100,000. The court does not hear cases involving title to or possession of real property. Small claims actions with money claims in the maximum amount of $10,000. The small claims court may only grant a judgment for monetary damages. The court may not order the other party to return property or do any action except the payment of money.


Infractions including traffic and code violations.


Miscellaneous proceedings including:

  •  Anti-harassment Petitions
  • Domestic Violence Petitions
  • Name Change Petitions
  • Vehicle Impound Hearings