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5/30/14 3:18 PM

County Home Divisions/Departments Online Services FAQ Office of the County Attorney

Frequently Asked Questions

The Office of the County Attorney represents the Board of County Commissioners and various departments and agencies of County government primarily in civil matters. We cannot provide legal advice to citizens. We have set forth many frequently asked questions and other sources of information.

Criminal matters:
The State’s Attorney’s Office for Washington County has the responsibility for prosecuting criminal and serious motor vehicle cases before the Circuit and District Courts for Washington County . The State’s Attorney’s Office may be reached at 240-313-2000 .

Pending court cases:
The office is not connected with the court system and cannot provide information on pending court cases. For further information, you may contact the Clerk of the Circuit Court at 301-733-8660 or the Clerk of the District Court at 240-420-4600 .

Code of the Public Local Laws of Washington County, Maryland :
Our office maintains and provides copies of the Code of the Public Local Laws ($20.00 for the 1991 Code and binder, $5.00 for the 1994 supplement, $5.00 for the 1997 supplement, the most recent version in published form and $5.00 for mailing). A copy is also available at the Washington County Free Library, 100 South Potomac Street, Hagerstown, Maryland 21740 , telephone: 301-739-3250. The published version is current only through December 1997. An up-to-date version of the Public Local Laws is available on this site.

Board of Education:
Our office does not provide representation to the Board of Education. You may contact the Board of Education at Commonwealth Avenue in Hagerstown , Maryland .  Telephone:  301-766-2800 . 

Legal advice on private issues:
Citizens needing legal advice on private issues should retain a private attorney. Check the local Yellow Pages for informative listings by name and by area of practice. You may also obtain directories of attorneys by name, office location, and practice area on the directory of members of the Maryland State Bar Association or on one of the national legal directories, Findlaw or Martindale.com.

Legal Information Brochures:
The Maryland State Bar Association offers a series of twenty-four easy-to-read guides designed to inform the public about common legal problems. These brochures are free to the members of the public, who may download them from the following link or order up to 100 copies.

Legal services for the indigent:
These services may be obtained from the Legal Aid Bureau, Inc., telephone:  (301) 694-7414 (civil matters) or the Office of the Public Defender, 100 West Franklin Street, Hagerstown, Maryland 21740, telephone: 301-791-4735 (criminal matters).

Police matters:
While the office often provides legal services to the Washington County Sheriff's Office, any matters involving the Sheriff's Office should be communicated directly to the Office at the general number, 240-313-2100 . The Judicial Division may be reached at 240-313-2530 , the Patrol Division may be reached at 301-791-3020 , and the Detention Center may be reached at 240-313-2133 . You may also contact the Maryland State Police at 301-739-2101 or the Hagerstown Police Department at 301-790-3700 (for police matters within the city limits of Hagerstown ).

District Court Commissioner:
The County Commissioners have no relationship to the District Court Commissioners, who are judicial officers authorized to issue statements of criminal charges and perform other judicial functions for the District Court of Maryland. The District Court Commissioners can be reached at 240-420-4650 .

Consumer complaints about services rendered or purchases of faulty items:
These complaints are handled by the Consumer Protection Division of the Office of the Maryland Attorney General, which has a local office at 44 N. Potomac St. , Suite 104, Hagerstown , Maryland , 21740 , telephone: 301-791-4780 .

Complaints from homeowners:
Homeowners with complaints about licensed contractors or with general questions about a home improvement contractor performing repair, replacement, remodeling or modernization of home or property may contact the Maryland Home Improvement Commission at 1-410-333-6309 .

Permits and Inspections Department:
The Office of Permits and Inspections will address any questions concerning zoning classifications; issuance of building and other permits and code enforcement. Telephone:  240-313-2460 .

Planning and Community Development Department:
The Office of the Planning and Community Development accepts applications for rezoning of property and subdivision and site plan approval. Telephone: 240-313-2430 .

Land Development Engineering:
The Engineering Department handles grading permits and stormwater management issues. Telephone: 240-313-2400.