As an attorney representing clients in the Brockton Courthouse, I have learned many “ins and outs” and some tips that might make things go smoother for you. The main Trial Court Department has significantly changed over the years. When I first practiced in Brockton, Juvenile court was next door to the old Brockton District Court in a trailer with kids and parents waiting outside, even in the freezing cold! The lock-up in District Court was overcrowded as you might imagine in a Dickensian novel. Probate Court had courtrooms in the basement only slightly larger than a walk-in closet. The facilities have greatly improved but going to court is still can confusing and anxiety provoking process.
The George N. Covett Courthouse, Brockton Trial Court is located at 215 Main Street, Brockton, MA 02301.
Jurisdiction Towns for Brockton District and Juvenile Court include Abington, Bridgewater, Brockton, East Bridgewater, West Bridgewater and Whitman; Probate and Family Court includes all towns within Plymouth County. The court hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Parking: There is a free parking lot at the back of the courthouse along with a small parking lot on the corner. Both fill up quickly. There is meter street parking, but usually short time limit, and court is unpredictable in terms of how long you may be in court, so unless you are filing pleadings, meters can be risky. Across the street from the courthouse is a public parking garage that you pay by the time spent. Behind the courthouse is a small private lot that you pay a flat fee
There is public transportation with the closest stop being the Brockton Station approximately 1/2 mile from the courthouse.
Except for jurors, you cannot bring a phone, tablet, etc. into the courthouse and you need to allow time to go through a metal detector when entering. Sometimes it can be a slow long line (exceptions are for lawyers, employees and police).
There is a Dunkin Donuts outside near the back entrance and a coffee stand in the lobby of the courthouse. There are several places to eat a short ride from the courthouse. Generally, the lunch recess at court is about 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. but varies depending on the Judge and caseload. The Westgate Mall is also a short car drive. After Court the Fuller Craft Art Museum might bring some sanity once court is done. (My wife is an art teacher and the Fuller is a nice hidden gem). There is also the Easton Sheep Pasture about 15 or 20 minutes away to get fresh air and nature after Court.
The rest rooms are on the first floor of the courthouse on the left after entering through the metal detectors and before the elevators. The rest rooms are in the same location on each floor.
On the first floor, there is an Information Desk that is sometimes manned and sometimes not. Listed on the bulletin board are the case names and courtrooms for District Court. The elevators and stairs are across from bulletin board. If you continue down the first-floor hall, you will find the Probation Department for District Court and further down the Clerk’s Office for District Court.
On the second floor, there is a bulletin board for Probate and Family Court with case names and courtrooms. On the second floor, there is the Probation Department (Family Service and Mediation) for Probate and Family Court and further down is the Clerk’s Office and Probation Department for Juvenile Court. An attorney’s room is also located on the second floor.
The third and fourth floors contain the courtrooms for all departments. It is important to know which courtroom to go to for your case.
Brockton District Court
Clerk and Probation: (508) 587-8000
Fax Criminal Clerk: (508) 587-6791
Civil Fax: (508) 587-6719
You should check in with the Probation Department before your first court appearance for criminal cases as you are required to provide information and let them know whether you have hired or are going to hire a private attorney, or whether you are representing yourself or seeking a court-appointed attorney.
For jurors, the main number is 1 (800) 843-5879. The Brockton number is (508) 897-4999 and you should appear by 8:00 a.m. in Room 405 (as well as letting the Security Officer know you are there).
Brockton Juvenile Court
Juvenile Court courtrooms are on the third floor and the Juvenile Probation Department and Clerk’s Office are located on the second floor.
Brockton Probate and Family Court
(508) 897-5400 ext. 2964
(508) 897-8400 ext. 5422
Fax Register’s Office:
The Plymouth number is (508) 747-6204
The Registry Office and Probation Department are on the second floor.
Probate Court has a website where you can download forms and get information. www.Plymouthcountyprobate.com
The Brockton Superior Court is nearby at 72 Belmont Street, Brockton.
Telephone number is (508) 583-8250
Fax clerk is (508) 584-5639
Fax Probation is (508) 583-7701
Registry of Deeds is at the old Brockton District Court, 155 West Elm Street, Brockton.
The main number is (508) 586-6998, but the main number for the entire Registry of Deeds is (508) 830-9200.
The fax for Brockton is (508) 830–9200.
The Trustee Meetings for Chapter 7 Bankruptcies are on the first floor, but you will need to contact the trustee or Bankruptcy Court first.
Free parking is next to the Registry, and easily accessible.
The Plymouth DA’s office has a location in the Brockton District Court and the phone number is (508) 587-8000 and fax is (508) 583-3118.
The Brockton DCF is 1110 Mulberry Street, Brockton, MA and the number is (508) 894-3700.
A couple of tips are:
- arrive early
- dress formally (sign of respect to court and may make a difference with how you are treated to a certain extent)
- treat not only the Judge with respect but all court employees as that may make a difference
- expect that you may be in court much longer than you expect