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How can I get a court date moved up in Tennessee court?

Memphis, TN |

I was recently in court for a class A petty theft misdemeanor and allowed to use the merchant restitution program in TN which allows the case to be dismissed upon the next court date.

I have done all of the necessary things for the Tennessee merchant restitution program and now want to move up the court date (February 22 to February 5 or sooner). It is a simple case where I need to show proof of payment from the accuser and after speaking with a lawyer, the actual time in court would be about 5 minutes.

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Attorney answers 3


I would call the court, explain why you need your court date moved up, and if they find the reason compelling & if the have space on the docket, they have the ability to move your court date. Make sure you call the correct number/circuit/division that your particular case is in. The court will have staff that can answer your question. The court may require a formal motion. Many states have motion forms available for simple motions such as these for pro se litigants (people without an attorney) to use.


To get your court date moved up, contact your local district attorney and explain your circumstances of your misdemeanor offense being dismissed due to participation in the merchant restitution program in TN and ask them to agree to move the case to an earlier date.

Most of the time the local court will accommodate your request to get your court date moved earlier in Tennessee.


If this is a matter of misdemeanor theft at the Shelby County Criminal Justice Center (201 Poplar), due to the volume of cases handled, it will be very difficult for you to do this on your own without a lawyer

If you hire a lawyer for your petty theft case, he or she should be able to have the matter advanced on the docket. It is not difficult to move your court date up in TN if you know the procedure but you will likely not be able to find court personnel who can take the time to do this for you.

Ruchee Janardan Patel

Ruchee Janardan Patel


Most any court will advance a case, but as Mr. Mosley stated, the courts at 201 are so busy that without an attorney, its going to take you all day to get heard since you will be the State's lowest priority. Get an attorney to get your matter before the court and get you out of the building quickly.

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