Waupaca County Small Claims Procedures

Small Claims Guide     Small Claims Summons and Complaint Form(SC-500)

Small claims return dates for Waupaca County are normally held on the 2nd and 4th Mondays of each month.

10:30 a.m. - return time for cases filed by attorneys.   

11:00 a.m. - return time for cases filed pro se (unrepresented) litigants.

When a case is filed, the Clerk will insert the next available small claims return date.

The Clerk of Courts office requires an original summons and complaint for each action, plus one photocopy for each defendant to be served.  If the plaintiff/attorney wishes to have a copy for their own records, they must provide an additional copy.  Originals must bear the original signature and date of the plaintiff/attorney.


When personal service is required, the plaintiff/attorney is responsible for forwarding all copies to the proper process server or Sheriff's Department for service, and is also responsible for filing the appropriate certificates of service with the Clerk of Courts office prior to the return date.  No judgment will be entered until proof of service is filed.

Once a judgment has been entered, the plaintiff may pay a docketing fee of $5.00.  Docketing a judgment places a lien against real estate owned by the defendant in Waupaca County.  Docketing also places the judgment on the public record, which may be inspected by banks, credit bureaus, etc.

Small claims forms may be purchased from the Clerk of Courts office in 2 ways.

Small claims forms packet for $5.00. Small claims guide for $10.00.  The guide includes the small claims forms and also gives information about the small claims court process in Wisconsin.

Please remember that a small claims judgment does not guarantee payment.  Once a judgment has been entered, you may wish to pursue other avenues, such as garnishment or docketing, to try and collect the amounts due.

1) Collect Account (Money Judgment)

   If the defendant(s) reside in Waupaca County, they will be served by regular mail.  If the defendant(s) reside outside of Waupaca County, the plaintiff will be responsible for forwarding the copies to the proper Sheriff's Department or to a private process server for personal service.


Circuit Court Fee Summary

   On collect accounts, appearance is not required by the plaintiff/attorneys.  At the time the action is filed, a letter of appearance and request for judgment may be filed with the Clerk of Courts office prior to the return date.

2) Replevin (Return of Property)

   If the defendant(s) reside in Waupaca County, they must be served by certified mail return receipt requested or by personal service.  If the defendant(s) reside outside of Waupaca County, personal service is required.

   If a pro se (unrepresented) litigant files a replevin action, appearance at the initial return date is mandatory.  Attorneys may appear by letter.

3)  Eviction

   All eviction actions require personal service on the defendant(s) by either the Sheriff's Department or by a private process server.  Eviction hearings are held on specific dates assigned by the Circuit Court Branch office.  Appearance is mandatory for all parties, as testimony may be required.

4) Filling Fees, as personal service is required on all evictions.

**Additional questions on Landlord Tenant rights Please contact: Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection

Or contact by phone at: 1-800-422-7128

Earnings Garnishment (Garnishment of Wages)

   To file an earnings garnishment, the plaintiff/attorney must submit the following forms:

  1. Copy of "Earnings Garnishment Notice"
  2. Copies of Earnings Garnishment

The filing fee is please see the Circuit Court Fee Summary (if amount due is under $5,000.00)

 PROCEDURE:    The Clerk of Courts keep the Earnings Garnishment Notice for the court file.  The Court seal is placed on the 2 Earnings Garnishment forms and returned to the plaintiff/attorney.  The plaintiff is then responsible for mailing the sealed copies to the debtor and the employer with certain attachments.


  • Earnings Garnishment form with Court seal
  • Earnings Garnishment Debtor's Answer
  • Exemption Notice
  • Exemption Worksheet
  • Poverty Guidelines for Earnings

The 4 forms listed MUST BE ATTACHED to the earnings garnishment form the debtor receives.


  •  Earnings Garnishment form with Court seal
  •  Instruction to employer form
  • $15.00 check made payable to the employer

One Earnings Garnishment will run for 13 weeks.  Normally, the amount withheld is 20% of the debtor's net wage.  If a debtor pays child support, he may be partially or totally exempt from garnishment.  Be aware that there are other circumstances which could make a defendant exempt from garnishment.  Please refer to the Guide to Small Claims if you have questions.

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