COVID-19 Updates from Public Health
COVID-19 Limited Operations, Procedures and Closures

All services are by appointment only at this time.

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20th Circuit Court

  • 20th Circuit Court Response to COVID-19

    The Chief Judges of the 20th Circuit and Ottawa County Probate Courts, acting pursuant to Michigan Supreme Court Administrative Order No. 2020-1, MCR 8.1 10(CX2)(c) and (3XC), and recognizing the states of emergency declared by the President and the Governor, hereby order the 20th Judicial Circuit of Michigan and Ottawa County Probate Court shall remain open to serve the public, but shall limit activities to essential operations, as follows:

    20th Circuit Court – Trial Division

    Felony criminal matters at the Ottawa County Courthouse, Grand Haven, including:

    • arraignments on the information for incarcerated defendants
    • emergency bond motions
    • proceedings related to the arraignments on bench warrants and of probationers arrested on warrants for violations of probation
    • trials for incarcerated defendants only
    • scheduled sentencings for incarcerated defendants
    • hearings on matters at the discretion of the assigned judge

    Civil proceedings heard at the Ottawa County Courthouse, Grand Haven:

    • requests for emergency show cause and injunctive orders
    • Business Court emergencies
    • infectious disease cases
    • initiation of personal protection orders (PPOs)
    • hearings on denied PPOs
    • arraignments on alleged violations of PPOs
    • hearings for PPO Respondents not able to make bail following an arraignment
    • parental waivers
    • motions to terminate PPOs
    • approving and/or hearing emergency hearings at the discretion of the assigned Judge
    • the signing or preparing of any emergency orders necessary for the safety and well-being of a litigant or child, at the discretion of the assigned Judge

    20th Circuit Court – Family Division

    Juvenile and Child Protective Proceedings heard at the Probate/Family Division Courthouse, West Olive:

    • emergency proceedings for abuse/neglect cases
    • preliminary hearings, scheduled trials and disposition hearings for detained youth
    • waiver hearings for youth to be charged as or with the rights attributed to an adult
    • hearings on matters at the discretion of the assigned judge

    Domestic Relations Proceedings heard in Grand Haven and West Olive:

    • the signing or preparing of any emergency orders necessary for the safety and well-being of a litigant or child, at the discretion of the assigned Judge
    • hearings on matters at the discretion of the assigned judge

    Ottawa County Probate Court

    Probate Proceedings heard at the Probate/Family Division Courthouse, West Olive:

    • Probate pleadings may be filed electronically, see mfile.courts.michigan.gov for instructions
    • emergency proceedings for decedent estates, trusts and wills
    • emergency proceedings for guardianships and conservatorships
    • emergency proceedings for mental illness and judicial admission proceedings
    • hearings on matters at the discretion of the assigned judge
    • if you have Probate issue needing immediate attention, please contact the court to schedule a hearing a 616-768-4110

    20th Circuit and Ottawa County Probate Courts

    Those persons with hearings and trial previously scheduled on or before Monday, April 13, 2020 should contact the court to confirm the status of such hearings and trials. No further hearings or trials will be scheduled except as stated above.

    At the discretion of the assigned Judge, hearings will be conducted using available telephone and video conferencing technology.

    Pending motion hearings will be evaluated by the assigned Judge for application of MCR 2.119 (E)(3), allowing the Court to dispense with or limit oral arguments on motions.

    Please be advised that County Clerk/Register and Probate Clerk operations will be staffed to handle essential services identified in the Courts’ of State of Emergency. Non-essential operations will be processed as staffing levels permit.

    In the interest of public health, the public is encouraged not to attend court proceedings unless necessary.

Judges of Circuit Court

Jon A. Van Allsburg
Jon A. Van Allsburg
Chief Circuit Judge
Jon H. Hulsing
Jon H. Hulsing
Kent D. Engle
Kent D. Engle
Karen J. Miedema
Karen J. Miedema

Key Staff

Kevin J. Bowling

JD, Circuit Court Administrator
(616) 786-4100

Susan M. Franklin

Trial Court Director
(616) 846-8320

Jennell L. Challa

Friend of the Court
(616) 846-8210

Thom Lattig

Juvenile Court Director
(616) 786-4124

Mission Statement

To administer justice and restore wholeness in a manner that inspires public trust.

Vision Statement

As a leader among Courts we exemplify high standards for justice and public service.

Values Statement

As courts serving the public, we embrace the following values:
C = Collaboration
O = Operational Excellence
U = Understanding
R = Restoration
T = Transparency
S = Service

Important Information

Please note that all 20th Circuit Court filings after case initiation for most case types must be e-filed. This includes most civil and domestic cases.

The Michigan Court Rules provide that fines, costs and other financial obligations imposed by the court must be paid at the time of assessment, except when the court allows otherwise, for good cause shown. MCR 1.110.

Court Forms for Filing

Forms specific to the 20th Circuit Court are provided below:

Forms for all other case types can be obtained through the State Court Administrative website. Within this directory, forms will be categorized by general types of cases.

Referee Hearings

Forms can be obtained through the Michigan Supreme Court to file a motion to change child support and motion to modify parenting time.

Upon proper completion of the form(s), the Circuit Court office will assign a hearing time and date before a Circuit Court Referee.

Interpreter Needs

The Circuit Court will provide an Interpreter to those in need in order to over come any language barrier that may exist. Any party involved in a Circuit Court proceeding needing an interpreter must contact the Circuit Court office, in writing, so an interpreter can be secured.

Request for Interpreter Form

A review of the Request for Interpreter form is available in the following languages: Arabic, Chinese, Korean, Serbo-Croatian, Spanish and Vietnamese.

Strategic Plans