Greenville County
i.e. "Pay my taxes", "Parks & Recreation", "Marriage Licenses", etc.
Clerk of Court
Civil - Common Pleas
Subpoenas and Summons
What is a subpoena?

A subpoena is a document or writ issued under authority of the court for service upon a witness to compel their appearance in court. The attorney of record may sign civil subpoenas but the Clerk of Court must sign criminal subpoenas.

What is a summons?

A summons is a notice that a person or business has been sued. It is a mandate calling a person or business before the court to answer the claims or allegations made in a complaint attached to the summons. The person or business that issued the summons is called the "plaintiff". The person or business that receives the summons is called the "defendant".

If you receive a subpoena or summons, it is not necessary that you call the Clerk of Court. An attorney who is representing one of the parties in a lawsuit or a criminal case almost always issues the subpoena or summons. You should call your own attorney as to how to respond to the subpoena or summons. In the case of a subpoena, you might contact the attorney who issued the subpoena as to the exact date, time, and place you should appear to testify. In the case of a summons you should contact your own attorney as soon as possible.

Out-of-State Subpoenas

The rest of this heading deals with subpoenas for depositions and/or production of documents needed by an out of state attorney for witnesses who are in this state. In order to issue an Out-of-State Subpoena the following must be submitted to the Clerk of Court:

  • Civil Action Coversheet;
  • $50 Filing Fee. Cashier’s Check or Money Order made payable to the Greenville County Clerk of Court;
  • Certified Copy of a Mandate, Writ or Commission Or Certified Copy of a Notice or Written Agreement. The original of the document must be filed in the original out-of-state court. The copy must be time-stamped and additionally inked with a “Certified” or “True” copy stamp. Some jurisdictions, instead, include an additional “Certified” copy page to the document;
  • CompletedSouth Carolina Subpoena Form and a Completed Subpoena Form from The Other State. The Instructions must be identical between the two forms;
  • Listing of the Names, Addresses, and Telephone Numbers of All Counsel of Record in the Proceeding and of Any Party Not Represented By Counsel;
  • Please provide a self-addressed stamped envelope and additional copies of the documents which will be returned.

For further information regarding the filing of out-of-state subpoenas in South Carolina please refer to the follow links:

The Clerk’s Office does not serve subpoenas, however the Civil Division of the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office or a private process server can provide this service at your request and for a fee.