- County Clerk
Duties & Responsibilities
The Berrien County Clerk’s Office has three major functions: to manage County elections; to manage the county’s vital records; and to process and maintain all Circuit Court files. The Clerk, by statute, also serves on the following boards and commissions:
- Clerk of the Board of Commissioners
- Clerk of the County Election Canvassers
- Clerk of the Election Commission
- Clerk of the Jury Board
- Clerk of the Plat Board
The County Clerk’s Elections Division oversees all elections conducted in Berrien County including school elections. This division also monitors campaign finance law for county and local candidates and officeholders.
The Clerk files, stores, and retains original vital records (e.g. birth, death and marriage records), and makes certified copies of said records available to the public. The Clerk also processes applications for concealed weapons license, notary public commissions, business registrations and records military discharges.
Clerk of the Court
As Clerk of the Circuit Court, the clerk opens, maintains, tracks and stores the records for all cases filed in the Circuit Court. Court files are public records and may be inspected at the Clerk’s office at the Courthouse.
Litigants file at the Clerk of the Court’s office for divorce, other family matters (e.g. paternity, custody and juvenile support), civil actions for which the amount of damages exceeds $25,000 and other civil matters over which the Circuit Court has jurisdiction. All felony criminal cases are filed with the County Clerk’s Office.
The Clerk is the filing official for oaths of office for county officials and their deputies and is the keeper of the official Circuit Court seal and the County seal, which is used for general obligation bonds.
The mission of the County Clerk’s Office is to provide quality customer service to the citizens of Berrien County. This service includes information and records that are accurate, timely and professional.