Clerk of the Court

LOCATION:  North Tower 3rd Floor, Rm 3200

HOURS:  Monday-Friday, 8:30am - 4:30pm

PHONE:  240-777-9467

General Duties

MARYLAND COURTS AND JUDICIAL PROCEEDINGS Code Ann. § 2-201 delineates the general duties of the Clerk of a Maryland court as follows:

  1. Have custody of the books, records, and papers of the office.
  2. Make proper legible entries of all proceedings of the court and keep them in well-bound books or other permanent form.
  3. When requested in writing to do so, record any paper filed with his/her office and required by law to be recorded in the appropriate place, whether or not the title to land is involved.
  4. Unless prohibited by law or order of the court, provide copies of records or papers in his/her custody to a person requesting a copy, under the seal of the court if required.
  5. Issue all writs which may legally be issued from the court.
  6. Deliver a full statement of the costs of a suit to a party requesting a copy.
  7. Receive all books, documents, public letters, and packages sent to him/her pursuant to law, and carefully dispose of them as the law requires.
  8. Administer an oath.
  9. Replace worn books and records with new ones.
  10. In conjunction with the Motor Vehicle Administrator, establish uniform procedures for reporting both traffic cases and criminal cases involving a motor vehicle in the Circuit Court to the Motor Vehicle Administration.
  11. Perform any other duty required by law or rule.


Roles & Responsibilities

In order to execute the tasks described above, the Clerk of the Court is assisted by approximately 190 state-employed staff working in eight key functional areas of the Court:

In addition, the Clerk of the Circuit Court administers the Oath of Office to elected officials, judges, county police officers, sheriff officers, special police officers, assistant and deputy state's attorneys, fire department members, and gubernatorial appointees.

While the functions of the Clerk of the Court are multifaceted, the main function is to serve the public and the residents of Montgomery County, in particular. Some of the key services provided by the Office of the Clerk of the Court in 2023 included:

  • Issuing 5,425 marriage applications;
  • Recording 5,010 marriages;
  • Performing 2,049 marriage ceremonies;
  • Issuing 9,028 business licenses;
  • Swearing in 2,385 Notary Public; and
  • Addressing questions or concerns raised by court patrons regarding a variety of issues related to their cases.

If there are issues of concern, please contact the Clerk's Office by calling 240-777-9467. Suggestions and comments regarding ways to improve the Court’s service to Montgomery County residents are highly appreciated.

Karen Bushell


Welcome to the Office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court Clerk. The Clerk of Court is rich in Maryland tradition and history. Established by the Maryland Constitution under Article 4, the Clerk of Court is one of the oldest public offices in our state and dates back as far as 1658 to the first settlement in Maryland to what is now St. Mary’s County.

The Clerk of Court is a locally elected state official who occupies an integral position within the judicial branch of government. Their duties and responsibilities are established and regulated by the laws of Maryland and the Rules of the Court of Appeals of Maryland. Since 1658, the office of Clerk of Court has provided the citizens of Maryland with a variety of essential services. The revenue collected by the clerks for these services is distributed to city, county, and state governments.

Each year the Clerk’s office files, processes, and maintains civil, criminal, and juvenile actions. Land deeds, mortgages, plats, conveyances, and other documents are recorded and electronically maintained by the Clerk. The Clerk issues business licenses and marriage licenses in addition to performing civil marriage ceremonies. The Clerk administers oaths to notary publics, city, municipal and county officials, judges, and appointees commissioned by the Governor. Every resident in Montgomery County is a potential recipient of the many services provided by the Clerk.

Our staff is here to help the many residents and visitors of Montgomery County by providing excellent, efficient, and prompt customer service. Please browse through the links and do not hesitate to contact us for further assistance.

Karen A. Bushell

Not Seeing What You Are Looking For? Need Some Help?

Our FAQs
Give Us
a Call