Tribal Civil Cases

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Filing Fees

At the time of filing a petition the filing fee must be paid by money order or cashier’s check to Isleta Tribal Court. Persons who cannot afford to pay the filing fee may complete a Waiver of Filing Fee.

  • Civil Complaints: $25
  • Other Petitions: $15
  • Petitions for Protective Order or Restraining Order – filing fee waived
Requesting a Continuance (Civil Cases)

A party who cannot attend their court hearing must file a Motion to Continue at least seven (7) days prior to the hearing or as soon as possible in the event of an emergency.  A judge will usually grant a continuance if it does not significantly delay the case or when the party has not filed previous continuances.

 The Court may not grant a continuance if there have been numerous delays or when important issues must be addressed

Civil Cases Involving Children

Petitions can be filed for Children/Families in Need of Services, Custody, Guardianship, Adoption, Child Support, Paternity, Truancy and Name Changes. The Court will often appoint a Guardian Ad Litem (GAL) in cases involving children in need of services. The Court has a Multi-use Petition that can be used for filing petitions for Custody, Child Support, Guardianship, and Paternity matters. The name change process for children requires that both parents attend the hearing(s) or that the other parent have proper notice of the proceedings.

General Civil Cases

The Court accepts petitions regarding general civil matters including but not limited to Adults in Need of Services, Civil Complaints, Civil Injunctions, Restraining Orders and Name Changes.  There are petitions for each type of civil matter.  Please note that a Civil Injunction is between parties who are not and have not been in an intimate relationship, while a Restraining Order is between parties who have been in an intimate relationship such as ex-spouses or ex-boyfriend or ex-girlfriend.  When a Restraining Order is issued by the Court it is forwarded to the Isleta Police Department to be entered into the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) which is a national data system that alerts law enforcement agencies across the country that a restraining order is in effect.    

When filing a civil petition the Petitioner must provide the Court with the Respondent’s current mailing address and information.  The Petitioner is also required to serve the opposing party with the Civil Complaint and an Answer form.  If the Respondent is not an enrolled member of a tribe or does not reside within the Isleta Reservation the Court may not have jurisdiction to hear the matter.  Therefore the Petitioner must consider this when filing a petition in Isleta Tribal Court.  It may be necessary to file a petition in another jurisdiction.