The Circuit Court is a trial court of general jurisdiction established by the Michigan Constitution of 1908. At one time the Circuit consisted of Eaton, Barry and Calhoun Counties and later Barry and Eaton Counties.
In 1991, the Circuit Court was split ,and Eaton County became a separate circuit, the 56th Circuit Court.
Judges & Jurisdiction
The Circuit Court has two judges. Honorable Janice K. Cunningham and Honorable John D. Maurer are the present Circuit Court Judges. The Court has original jurisdiction over:
All cases involving equitable remedies
All civil cases over $25,000
All criminal felonies and high court misdemeanors
All domestic relations cases
Appellate review of District and some state administrative agencies
All juvenile matters previously with the Probate Court
In 1998 the Eaton County Family Division of the Circuit Court was created. The Family Division now has jurisdiction over all domestic cases and juvenile matters under the concept of One Judge-One Family.
Probate Judge Thomas Byerley is assigned to the Family Division and with the two circuit judges, hears all cases involving families.