Ordinary courts – introduction
County Courts are ordinary courts of first instance and hear all civil, criminal and misdemeanour cases and conduct other proceedings which are placed under their jurisdiction by law. Legal proceedings in the county courts are regulated by the following Codes: the Code of Civil Procedure in civil cases, the Code of Criminal Procedure in criminal cases and the Code of Misdemeanour Procedure in misdemeanour cases.
Judgments and rulings of county courts are reviewed by district courts, as courts of second instance, on the basis of appeals against those judgments and rulings. Proceedings in the administrative courts are regulated by the same Acts as proceedings in the courts of first instance.
Courts of first instance
There are four county courts in Estonia. The county courts are divided into courthouses.
Harju County Court (Harju Maakohus):
- Tallinn courthouse
Viru County Court (Viru Maakohus):
- Jõhvi Courthouse
- Narva Courthouse
- Rakvere Courthouse
Pärnu County Court (Pärnu Maakohus):
- Pärnu Courthouse
- Haapsalu Courthouse
- Kuressaare Courthouse
- Rapla Courthouse
- Paide Courthouse
Pärnu County Court also has a department for payment orders, which handles applications for the accelerated procedure for payment orders.
Tartu County Court (Tartu Maakohus):
- Tartu Courthouse
- Jõgeva Courthouse
- Viljandi Courthouse
- Valga Courthouse
- Võru Courthouse
Tartu County Court also has registry and land registry departments. The land register and the register of ships are maintained in the land registry department. The commercial register, the register of non-profit associations and foundations and the commercial pledges register are maintained in the registry department.
Courts of second instance
There are two district courts in Estonia.
- Tallinn District Court
- Tartu District Court
The contact information for Estonian courts is available on the courts’ website. Access to the contact details is free of charge.
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