425th District Court

The 425th District Court is one of five district courts in Williamson County.  The Court was created by the Legislature in 2007. Mark Silverstone was appointed the first judge of the court by Governor Rick Perry.  Judge Silverstone won the election in 2008 and served the court for 5 years. On November 6, 2012, Judge Betsy Lambeth was elected as the first female district judge in Williamson County.

The court is a general jurisdiction court, meaning it has original jurisdiction in civil actions over $200, divorce, title to land and contested elections, also felony criminal matters and juvenile matters.  Civil cases are cases which involve disputes between two or more parties (usually persons or businesses) and which are not criminal in nature, such as business disputes and suits to collect debts.  More specifically civil cases usually involve private parties where one party (the plaintiff) brings suit against another (the defendant) and asks the court to enforce a private right or to require the defendant to pay for some civil wrong done to the plaintiff.

The 425th currently handles a portion of the Williamson County family and civil dockets.

THE JUDICIAL BRANCH

The role of the judicial branch of the Judicial Branch is to interpret the law and to resolve legal disputes.  It is the smallest branch of state government.

The meaning of a constitutional provision is not always obvious; the intent of a statue is not always clear; the actions of an executive agency are not always correct.  The function of the courts is to resolve these issues, as well as to resolve disputes arising between citizens of the State.

All persons who serve as judges in this State must be knowledgeable in the law, and dispense justice in a fair and impartial manner.  To aid in the attainment of these goals, the Legislature has provided for the mandatory continuing professional education of judges, and the Supreme Court has promulgated the Code of Judicial Conduct.  The Code establishes professional standards which the State Constitution makes mandatory for Judges.

                                —from “The Texas Judicial System” prepared by the Office of Court Administration