Ryan Butler
Clerk of Circuit Court & Comptroller
Indian River County
2000 16th Avenue
Vero Beach, Florida 32960
Phone: (772) 226-3100

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Frequently Asked Questions

Provided below are answers to questions asked by the public regarding the constitutional and statutory duties, responsibilities, and services of the Clerk of Circuit Court & County Comptroller.


Financial Services

Q: I am often asked what my duties are as County Auditor in relation to the Board of County Commissioners and my constituency.

A: The basic duties of the Clerk, as County Auditor, are to see that sound accounting practices are being followed, that internal controls over the county’s assets are adequate, and that the Board’s budgetary policies are being met. All warrants (checks) drawn on county depositories must be signed by the Chairman of the Board of County Commissioners, attested by the Clerk, and affixed with the county seal.



Q: My husband received a summons for jury duty. He is an independent building contractor, and if he isn’t around, the work doesn’t always get done properly or in a timely manner. What are acceptable reasons for dismissal from serving on the jury?

A: The criteria for exclusion from jury include:

  1. Being under prosecution for any crime.
  2. Having convictions in Florida, federal court, or any other state, territory, or county for any felony.
  3. Holding public office as Governor, Lieutenant Governor, a Cabinet officer, Clerk of Court, or judge.

If none of these apply to your husband, there are other conditions which allow exemption from jury service if requested:

  1. Expectant mothers or parents who are not employed full-time and have custody of a child under the age of 6.
  2. Persons employed as full-time federal, state, or local law enforcement officers, or investigative personnel for these entities, who are vested with authority to bear arms and make arrests.
  3. Persons who have served as jurors in the county within the past 12 months.
  4. Persons who are 70 years of age or older.
  5. Persons who are responsible for the care of those who, because of mental illness or retardation, senility, or physical or mental incapacity, are incapable of caring for themselves.

None of these conditions applying, the judge does have discretion to excuse practicing attorneys, practicing physicians, persons who are physically infirm, or persons for reason of hardship or inconvenience. However, such excusals are carefully reviewed, and are not granted automatically. The medical excusal form is located at this link. You may also request a one-time postponement of jury duty by contacting the jury room at (772) 226-3104.



Q: Is there a waiting period in the State of Florida for getting married after a couple applies for a Marriage License? Are blood tests required, and do you have to apply in the County you live in? Can a minor apply for a license?

A: Yes and no. There is normally a 3-day waiting period. However, if both parties have taken a 4-hour premarital preparation course given by a minister or counselor registered with the Clerk of the Circuit Court, the waiting period is waived and the license fee is reduced.

  • If only one applicant took the course, the waiting period is still required.
  • If neither applicant is a Florida resident, the waiting period is not required.
  • If one applicant is not a Florida resident, and the other is a Florida resident and has taken the premarital course, the waiting period is still required.
  • Blood tests have not been required since this test was abolished October 1, 1986.
  • A marriage license may be applied for and solemnized in any Florida county.
  • Minors, who under oath, swear that they are parents or expectant parents of a child may apply. In addition, the pregnancy must be verified by a written statement from a licensed physician.
  • A previously married minor may also apply.
  • A person age 16 or 17 may apply with the consent of both parents or guardian, unless the parents are divorced and only one parent has full custody.


Q: My husband and I have mutually agreed on a divorce. We have heard the State of Florida has something called a “Simplified Divorce.” What is it and would we be eligible?

A: Simplified Divorce is a fast, easy and inexpensive procedure for ending a marriage for eligible couples. To be eligible:

  • Both must agree that the marriage cannot be saved.
  • Both must agree on how to divide property and debts.
  • There must be no minor children of the marriage, and the wife cannot be pregnant.
  • At least one of you must have been a resident of Florida for the past six months. 

Both parties must come to the Clerk of Circuit Court’s office with picture ID’s, and fill out a Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage. Forms are available in the Clerk’s office. An attorney is not required, but if either of you has any legal questions, consulting an attorney prior to filing is advised. A hearing to finalize the divorce will be scheduled as soon as possible after a 20 day waiting period. Both parties must appear at the hearing. The final judgment is then taken by both parties to the Circuit Civil Division of the Clerk’s office.


Foreclosure Sales

Q: I am interested in bidding on a piece of foreclosed property that is being auctioned by the Clerk’s office. What do I need to do? Also, how can I get a list of properties being auctioned?

A: You should come to the Clerk’s office on the day of the sale and register with the Clerk. Chapter 45, Florida Statutes, requires that a bidder other than the judgment holder must present a good faith deposit of 5% of your projected bid in cash or cashier’s check in order to confirm a bid. You may contact the Civil Division of the Clerk’s office for information regarding scheduled foreclosure sales.

Q: Ten years ago I received a judgment against someone who owed me money, and a lien for that amount was placed on their house. They recently sold their house, but my lien was not on record. What gives?

A: When your judgment lien was recorded in the Official Records of your county, it remained on the record for a period of 10 years. At the end of those 10 years, a certified copy of your judgment needed to be re-recorded, along with an affidavit containing your current address. Each time you recorded your judgment it was for a period of 10 years, and could have been re-recorded every 10 years up to 20 years. The re-recording would have to be done prior to the expiration of the lien. If your lien was still current and a title search was done on the property prior to the sale, the title company would locate the lien information, verify that the lien was valid and notify the seller. The sale could not have taken place until your lien was satisfied. Because your lien was not re-recorded, your lien was not considered to be valid. As a result, you were not notified and sent the money due you.

Q: I have some legal issues and cannot afford an attorney. I have heard that there are some forms that I can use to file a court proceeding that I fill out myself. How do I get these forms and how can I make sure I fill them out properly?

A: There are over 80 different self-help, or pro se, legal forms available relating to the following categories:

  • Dissolution of Marriage
  • Miscellaneous Petition
  • Injunction for Protection
  • Service and Notice
  • Documents Requesting Information From Opposing Party
  • Child Support
  • Miscellaneous Motions and Documents
  • Stepparent Adoption
  • Landlord and Tenant
  • Miscellaneous
  • Residential Leases

Some of these forms are also available on the Internet at www.flcourts.org at the Self-Help Center. Additionally, on this website is a listing of the entities that provide legal aid for people who cannot afford an attorney. If you need help filling out the forms or finding a phone number for the nearest legal assistance office, call the Clerk’s Office and ask where assistance is available.



Q: My niece from Georgia recently got a speeding ticket in Indian River County. She has lost the ticket and doesn’t know how to take care of it.

A: It is always distressing to get a traffic ticket when traveling, but the Clerk of Court’s office can help. When a ticket is issued, a copy is sent to the Clerk within several days. Please have your niece call the Clerk of Court’s office in Indian River County at (772) 226-3100. The Traffic Division can tell her the amount, the method of payment, and how quickly it must be paid to prevent her from incurring further penalties. It is important to pay out-of-state tickets, as they will show up on your driver license record.

Q: I ran a stop sign the other day and went to pay the ticket at the Clerk’s office. I was curious about where traffic ticket money ends up.

A: The money from traffic infractions is used in a variety of ways. The majority of the dollars and cents stays in the city or county where the ticket is written. The rest of the fine money is distributed to the state for general revenue and a variety of state trust funds and programs, such as: Emergency Medical Services, Brain and Spinal Cord Rehabilitation, Florida Endowment, Child Welfare Training, Juvenile Justice, foster care citizen review panels, Nongame Wildlife studies and state criminal justice programs. The Clerk of Court only retains a half of one percent. The percentage of money received from traffic tickets to be applied to each of the various funds is established by the Legislature, and it is the statutory responsibility of the Clerk of Court to see that the monies are properly distributed.

Q: I just received a traffic citation, what are my options?

A: Here are your options for handling a traffic citation:

  • Pay the citation (within 30 days of citation date)
  • Pay and Elect to take Traffic School (within 30 days)
  • Request a court hearing
  • Request a payment plan, sign the agreement and make a down payment

Q: What are the methods of payment accepted?

A: Here are the following payment methods that are accepted:

  • In Person:
    • Indian River County Courthouse: 2000 16th Ave, Vero Beach (M-F 8 AM TO 5 PM)
    • North County Office:  1921 US Hwy 1, Sebastian (M W F 8:30 AM TO 5 PM)
  • By Mail: Money Order or Certified Check only (NO personal/business checks)
    • To: IRC Courthouse P.O. Box 1028 Vero Beach, FL 32961
  • By Phone: Thru NCOURT: 877-794-0052; Select option#2
  • Online: Thru NCOURT: Indian River County Web Payment Portal

Q: What forms of payment are accepted?

A: Cash, Money Order, Cashier’s Check, Debit and Credit Cards (additional 3.5 % convenience fee)

Q: How do I find the citation number?

A: The citation number is printed on the upper right hand corner of the citation near the bar code. It usually starts with an A and ends with an E. The citation number may be all letters.

Q: How do I Elect Traffic School?

A: When you pay the citation, you will be asked if you want to take traffic school. You may elect to take traffic school to alleviate the points if:

  • You have not elected traffic school within the last 12 months
  • You have not elected traffic school more than five (5) times in your lifetime
  • You do not have a CDL – Commercial Driver License

You may check your eligibility by visiting the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) site. Search “FL DL Check

Q: I elected to take Traffic School, how do I find a traffic school?

To find a Florida approved traffic school provider; visit the DMSMV website and search “Traffic School Providers” You have 90 days from your payment date to submit a completion certificate for a four (4) hour Basic Driver Improvement (BDI) course from a course provider approved by the State of Florida.

Q: Do I need to bring in my Certificate of Completion for traffic school into the courthouse?

We receive electronic filings of the certificate of completion daily. Please check to make sure your certificate has been received by going online to our website and completing a Court Case Search.

Make sure you provided the traffic school provider your citation number and that the citation was issued in Indian River County. If not, contact the school to correct that information and ask them to resubmit the certificate.

Q: What happens if I do not complete the traffic school within 90 days (of the payment date)?

A: A penalty for not completing the traffic school will be assessed. If not paid timely, your driver’s license will be suspended. Contact the Traffic section (772-226-3188) to find out the amount you owe for not completing the traffic school or look online by doing a court case search. You will be assessed points for this citation. For more information regarding points, go to the DHSMV website. Search “Points for Traffic Violations

Q: How do I request a traffic court hearing to contest the citation?

A: You may request a non-jury court hearing before a Traffic Hearing Officer by:

  • Coming into the courthouse (or North County office) and completing a Written Plea of Not Guilty
  • Mailing in a written request for a court hearing. Please provide your current mailing address, phone number and email address. You will be notified by e-mail of your court date and time.
  • Email: [email protected]. You will be notified by e-mail of your court date and time.

Q: How can I request more time to pay (within the 30 days)?

A: As long as 30 days has not passed from the citation date, you are eligible for one of two options:

  1. Fourteen(14) day extension in time to pay – call 772-226-3188 to request this one time extension
  2. Payment Plan – You must pay ½ of the cost of the total fine which includes a $25 additional administration fee prior to due date and the other ½ within ninety (90) days. Requires signing a payment plan agreement. Email a request for a payment plan: [email protected]

Please note:  You are eligible for one or the other option; but not both. In other words, if you request the 14 day extension that will negate the option for a payment plan.

Q: What if it’s been more that 30 days since I received the citation and I am not able to pay?

A: If the 30 days has passed, a late fee of $23 will be added to your case and your Driver’s license number will be sent to State of Florida for suspension. The State will mail out a notice of the date that the suspension will be effective. If you are able to pay the amount due at least one business day prior to the suspension date, we will be able to block the pending suspension. If not, you will have to pay an additional $60 reinstatement fee in addition to the total fine to reinstate your driving privilege, if eligible.

Q: What do I need to do if I received a ticket for failing to display vehicle registration, insurance or a driver license upon demand?

A: If you received a citation for one of the following violations and are able to provide proof that at the time of the stop you had VALID proof; you may eligible to pay a $10 fee and receive a dismissal:

  • 320.0605        Fail To Display Registration
  • 320.07             Expired Registration
  • 322.065           Expired Driver’s license less than 6 months
  • 322.15              Drivers License Not Carried Or Exhibited on Demand
  • 316.646            Proof Of Insurance Required
  • 316.2935          Air Pollution Control Device

You have only 30 days from the citation date to mail a copy of proof that was VALID on the citation date and a $10 money order or cashier’s check. Or you may present this proof at the courthouse or North County office and pay the dismissal fee. After 30 days, the full fine will be due (no exceptions).


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