Civil Process

The Civil Process Unit of the Sheriff's Office offers several unique services to the community.  The primary responsibility of this unit is to ensure all processes of service are done in a timely and respectful manner.  The term "process" refers to all legal papers the Sheriff must serve.  Information on our most common services can be found by clicking on the links provided to the left.  If you need additional information, please contact Pauline at 218-547-7308.

The information contained on this website is for informational purposes only.   It is not intended as to serve as legal advice.   Those in need of legal advice should see an attorney. 

Fees - Back To Top
Click here for current civil fees.
Evictions - Back To Top

An Eviction Action is required in order to evict a tenant from rental property.  Minnesota Statutes Chapter 504B regulates this law.  To initiate an Eviction Action, the landlord must start the process in the Court Administrator’s Office.  The Court Administrator’s Office will issue an Eviction Summons and Complaint, which must be served or posted at least seven days before the court date.  In order for the Cass County Sheriff's Office to serve these papers, the original Summons and Complaint, plus copies and the appropriate fee must be received.  If a Sheriff's Deputy does not find the defendants at home after making attempts on two different days, one day before 6:00 p.m. and one between 6:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m., the Deputy will post the Summons and Complaint on the property.  The Deputy will then complete the appropriate Affidavits and return the originals to the landlord. 

If the judge rules in favor of the landlord at the hearing, a Writ of Recovery will be issued.  This is an Order for the Sheriff to evict the tenant, if the tenant is still occupying the premises.  The Writ must be taken to the Sheriff's Office.  The Writ is only valid for 30 days, so it is important to bring it to the Sheriff's Office without delay.  Once the Writ is received, a Sheriff's Deputy will serve the tenants or post the Writ on the door.  The tenant has exactly 24 hours from the time the Writ was served or posted to vacate the premises.  If the tenant has not moved out of the premises at that time, the landlord needs to notify the Sheriff's Office.  At this time a Sheriff's Deputy will go out to the premises and remove the tenant from the property.  If the tenant has abandoned property, the landlord may store it on the premises or contract a licensed mover to remove the property. If the property is stored off site, the landlord has a lien on the storage and moving expenses only.  A Sheriff's Deputy will standby until the inventory is complete.  The landlord must store the property for 30 days.  If the defendant wants their property, they must notify the landlord within the allotted 30 days.  The landlord is then obligated to return the property.

Please visit the  Minnesota Attorney General's website for specific questions regarding landlord and tenants rights and responsibilities.  You may also request a booklet from the Sheriff's Office that details landlord and tenant rights and responsibilities.  This booklet is issued by the Minnesota Attorney General.

Harassment Restraining Orders - Back To Top

Harassment can involve a single incident of physical or sexual abuse.  Victims of harassment have the ability to obtain a restraining order from the court.  Harassing gestures must have a considerable detrimental effect or be intended to have a considerable detrimental effect on the individual's privacy, safety, or security.

Harassment Restraining Orders differ from Orders for Protection.  Harassment Restraining Orders involve parties who are not related or do not live in the same household.  Orders for Protections involve family members or members of a significant relationship.  If you have any additional questions regarding the differences in these two orders, please refer to our Orders for Protection in the next section.

To obtain a Harassment Restraining Order (HRO), you need to file a Petition and Affidavit with Cass County Court Administration. The Sheriff's Office does not charge for the service of any Harassment Restraining Order.

Orders For Protection- Back To Top

Anyone who has been a victim of domestic violence may obtain an Order for Protection (OFP) from Cass County Court Administration. According to Minnesota Statute 518B.01 Subd. 2 (b), domestic abuse occurs to a family or household member if it is committed by a family or household member. The definition of a family or household member consists of one or several of the following:

  • Spouse or former spouse
  • Parents and their children
  • Any person related by blood
  • Persons who are currently residing together or have resided in the same household in the past
  • Persons who have children together, or are expecting, regardless if there was a marriage
  • Persons involved in a romantic or sexual relationship

An adult has the ability to file a Petition for an Order for Protection on behalf of any minor victim or any vulnerable adult. 

When the District Judge reviews the Petition and Affidavit for an Order for Protection, the Judge will determine the validity of the Petition and Affidavit. The Judge may issue a hearing to review the Order for Protection. At the hearing, a Judge will listen to both the petitioner and respondent. The Judge will then determine the amount of time the Order for Protection will be in effect. 

If the Order for Protection is granted, Cass County Court Administration will have you bring the order down to the Sheriff’s Office.  Once the Civil Process Unit receives the Order for Protection they will arrange for service immediately. The Sheriff's Office does not charge for the service of any Orders for Protection. 

If you have been or currently are a victim of domestic violence, the following local organizations can assist you: 

Family Safety Network  218-547-1636

Writs Of Execution - Back To Top
Writ of Executions are Orders from Court which allow the Sheriff's Office to collect on a judgment. They must be directed to the Sheriff of the county in which the assets of the debtor are located. 

The Writ of Execution document itself is good for the duration of 180 days. Judgments issued from Court are typically good for ten years. It is the responsibility of the creditor to locate assets of the judgment debtor which can be levied upon. The two most common levies are bank levies and wage levies. For any levy, the creditor must thoroughly complete the Writ of Execution Instruction Sheet. 
Wage Levy - Back To Top
If a creditor wants the Sheriff's Office to conduct a wage levy they must complete the Writ of Execution Instruction Sheet. The creditor must also endorse the Writ of Execution. This is done by signing the bottom line on the first page of the Writ. The creditor also needs to send an Exemption Notice to the debtor, 10 days before the Sheriff's Office can levy on the wages. By law the creditor must also provide the Sheriff's Office with a $15.00 check written to the employer. This is paid to the employer for their efforts in garnishing the wages. This check will be given to the employer when the wage levy is served by the Sheriff's Deputy. Once these steps are completed in their entirety, you can forward the paperwork to the Civil Division at the Sheriff's Office. 

The Civil Division will calculate the amount to be collected. This amount will include the amount of the judgment, the accruing daily interest at the rate indicated on the Writ, a $75.00 service fee, a 5% Sheriff's Office commission and the $15.00 the creditor issued to the employer. If the judgment is totally satisfied, the Sheriff's Office will issue a check to the creditor for the amount of the judgment. If the judgment is partially satisfied, the Sheriff's Office will deduct their fees and then forward the remaining money to the creditor. If no funds are collected the creditor will be billed $75.00 for the Sheriff's services. 

Wage Levies are conducted during a 70 day period. After 70 days, the employer will send the money collected to the Sheriff's Office. If the money collected does not satisfy the judgment, the Sheriff's Office will conduct another levy if the creditor chooses to do so. The creditor must provide the Sheriff's Office with another $15.00 check written to the employer for the next levy to begin.
Bank Levy- Back To Top
If a bank levy is preferred, the Creditor must also complete a Writ of Execution. An exemption notice does not need to be served prior to a bank levy. The exemption notice is sent to the debtor after the funds have been held. The creditor must give the Sheriff's Office a $15.00 check written to the bank. The name on the bank account must be the same as the name on the judgment; otherwise the bank may not honor the levy.
Mortgage Foreclosures - Back To Top

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