The Clerk of District Court is the official keeper of all District Court records for Missoula County. These records include Adoption, Civil, Criminal, Dependent Neglect, Domestic Relations, Guardianship, Juvenile, Paternity, Probate and Sanity cases. The Clerk also issues, files and records all Missoula County marriage license applications and licenses. On an annual basis, the Clerk’s office files approximately 4,800 new cases and issues 800 new marriage licenses.
Clerk of District Court records date back into the 1860s and until 1989 were maintained in books. The books included an index of names to provide ease in accessing records and each case was assigned a register page into which all court documents were recorded. While these index and register books are still utilized, many have been microfilmed to provide easier access and to alleviate storage space issues. From 1989 to 1999, all records were stored and maintained electronically on the County mainframe (DSI). This system is still used but mostly on a read-only basis. All records from 1999 to present are maintained in FullCourt, a system now in use by all Clerks of District Court statewide.
The majority of all Clerk of Court records are open to the public. Records are searched daily by title companies, credit agencies, investigative agencies and the general public. It is the Clerk of Court’s responsibility to ensure accurate and up-to-date records. Searches, copies and certified copies are provided upon request. Fees for searches and copies are charged according to statute.
The Clerk of District Court also serves as Jury Commissioner for Missoula County. As required by statute, each May the Secretary of State provides a combined list of registered voters, licensed drivers and holders of Montana ID cards to the Clerk of District Court. This list is stored and maintained electronically and it is from this list that jurors are pulled for the Municipal, Justice and District Court Judges. It is the Clerk’s duty to maintain an accurate listing of all selected jurors and to pull individual jury panels for the District Court Judges upon request.
Following are a list of the basic services our office provides the public and the District Court system: