Office of the Magistrate Court

Tracy Maddux, Chief Magistrate


What is a Magistrate Court?

Magistrate courts are specialized courts that are part of the Georgia Judicial Branch. magistrate courts have jurisdiction over the following: certain minor criminal offenses, distress warrants and dispossessory writs, civil claims of $15,000 or less, county ordinance violations, preliminary hearings, bad checks/deposit account fraud, summonses, arrest and search warrants. A chief magistrate heads the court. Magistrate courts exist in all 159 of Georgia’s counties.

Meet your Magistrates

Tracy L. Maddux is the Chief Magistrate for Chattooga County. As Chief Magistrate, he presides over the Magistrate Court. He assigns cases, sets court sessions, appoints other magistrates (with consent of superior court judges) and sets basic policy for the magistrate court. Chief Magistrate Maddux can also grant bail in cases wehre the setting of bail is not reserved to a judge of another court. Though Chief Magistrate Maddux does sit as presiding officer of the magistrate court, he cannot lead a jury trial. If a defendant submits a request for a jury trial, the case will be removed from the magistrate court and sent to superior or state court. Maddux’s post is an elected one, and he must seek reelection every four years for his four-year term.

Magistrate Maddux is able to appoint people to assist him as deputy magistrates. Currently, Jon Payne and Douglas Jones are deputy magistrates.


Contact info

Office of the Magistrate Court
10017 Commerce Street
Summerville, GA  30747
Telephone: 706-857-0711
Fax: 706-857-0686

Open: M-F 9:00-5:00 excluding holidays