Ex Parte Signatures

restrainn order

The in-person Ex Parte docket is currently suspended due to the COVID-19 restrictions. If you are in need of having documents signed by a judge or are seeking a protection order, take your papers to the second floor of the Hall of Justice and drop them at the Clerk's Office Window. Note the temporary building hours are from 9:00 AM until 3:00 PM daily. M-F. 

The Cowlitz County Superior Court holds an Ex Parte docket daily. Times vary and can be found on our weekly schedule (click here for schedule).

For obtaining a judge's signature on a document such as default orders, agreed orders (signed off by all parties), and emergency protection orders, documents for signature can be left with the Superior Court Clerk's office located on the second floor just outside of Courtroom 2. Documents are transmitted to the ex parte judge throughout the day for consideration and action. Contact the Clerk's Office for any process and applicable changes they may have to provide conformed documents.

You can also bring documents to the live docket for presentation to a judge for consideration. There is no charge for this service, though copies obtained from the clerk's office may have a cost.

The judicial officer will remain on the bench for no less than 15 minutes. See Local Rule 12.

Documents left by 10:00 AM with the clerk's office will be signed and every effort will be made to have them returned to the Clerk's office by 3:00 PM the same day if possible.

Documents signed by the Ex Parte Judge will be taken directly to the Superior Court Clerk. Conforming stamps are available in the Superior Court Clerk's office.

Process for obtaining an Emergency Domestic Violence Protection Order

Petitioners should file their petitions and related documents with the Clerk's office who will schedule them for appearance on the ex parte docket that day or the following court day. If your order is signed earlier than the appearance set, you will be notified and are not required to appear.

Process for obtaining an Emergency Order (other than a Domestic Violence Protection Order)

(Emergency, for purposes of this memo, is defined as a situation in which there exists a credible threat of imminent and irreparable harm to person, property, or a legal right.  Service deadlines are not an emergency.)

  1. Contact a judicial assistant via telephone.  Provide information regarding the emergency, the time frames you are available to appear at Superior Court Administration, and a phone number where you can be contacted.  A judge may request to review pleadings related to the case.
  2. The judicial assistant will relay the information and the request to a judge.  A judge will decide whether the matter is an “emergency,” and indicate time of availability.  The judicial assistant will inform you of the judge’s decision.  If the judge determines the matter is an emergency, bring the ex parte document(s) to Superior Court Administration within the specified time frame. If the judge determines the matter is not an emergency, the party may note the matter for a hearing.
  3. At Superior Court Administration, give your ex parte document(s) to the judicial assistant.  The judicial assistant will give the ex parte documents to the judge for review and possible signature.  Thereafter, the judicial assistant will provide the signed ex parte document(s) (either granting or denying the relief requested) to the Clerk’s office for filing.

Copies of documents and orders are available from the Superior Court Clerk for a fee. 

Documents may also be submitted for signature by mail or courier. Send any documents together with any fees needed (contact the Superior Court Clerk for current fee schedule and instructions). There currently is a $30.00 handling fee for documents submitted to the Clerk's office for processing.



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