South Dakota Court Records

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Major South Dakota courts that have kept records of genealogical value were established in 1889, when South Dakota became a state.

Justices of the peace have county wide jurisdiction over minor civil and criminal cases.

Municipal courts have citywide jurisdiction over minor civil and criminal cases.

District county courts have county wide jurisdiction over records of misdemeanors, minor civil cases, probates, guardianship, and juvenile matters.

Circuit courts have county wide jurisdiction over felonies, divorces, equity matters, misdemeanors, and some appeals.

The Supreme Court is the statewide appellate court.

The Family History Library does not have copies of court records for South Dakota. They are available at the clerk's office in the various county courthouses.

Online Resources

Family History Library Resources

See the United States Research Outline (30972) for more detailed information on court records. Refer to the "Probate Records" and "Naturalization and Citizenship" sections of this outline for information about those specific court records.

Court records can be found in the Family History Library Catalog by using a Locality Search under:

SOUTH DAKOTA - COURT RECORDS

SOUTH DAKOTA - LAW AND LEGISLATION

SOUTH DAKOTA, [COUNTY] - COURT RECORDS