Clerk of Court Scams
Inboxes are often hit by fake "Notice to Appear in Court" emails that were supposedly sent by the "Clerk to the Court". The emails claim that a court notice with further details is included in an attached file. They specify a date for the appearance along with the city where the hearing is to be held. The emails use address spoofing to make it appear that they come from well-known US law firms.
None of the claims in the messages are valid and they do not come from genuine law firms or court clerks.
The emails are not official court messages and recipients do not need to appear in court as claimed. The messages are designed to trick recipients into installing malware. The attachment contains a malicious .exe file hidden inside a .zip file. The subject line, the name of the clerk, the city where the hearing will supposedly be held, and other details may vary in different incarnations of the scam emails. If you receive one of these emails, do not open any attachments or click any links that it may contain.
Be wary of any email that claims that you must appear in court and should open an attached file for details. Remember, even if a legitimate entity sends you documents via an email attachment, they will not be in the form of an executable (.exe) file.
The Mecklenburg County Clerk of Superior Court’s Office does not contact citizens by email. If you want to verify the legitimacy of an email or phone call claiming to be from the Mecklenburg County Clerk of Superior Court’s Office, you can call (704) 686-0420.
Jury Service Scams:
Citizens are often targeted by phone calls and threatened with prosecution for failing to comply with jury service in state courts. During the calls, the threat of a fine for shirking jury service is used to coerce those called into providing confidential data, potentially leading to identity theft and fraud. These calls are not from real court officials.
Jury Management staff will NEVER contact you by phone or email and ask for Social Security numbers, credit card numbers or other sensitive information. If you want to verify the legitimacy of an email or phone call claiming to be from the Mecklenburg County Jury Management Office, you can call (704) 686-0195
Be on the alert:
If you are not involved in a court proceeding and have not supplied the Mecklenburg County Courts with a phone number and/or an email address for receiving court notifications, the courts do not communicate with you by phone or email. The court system does not make phone calls or send unsolicited emails or requests for personal information. The court system does not make phone calls or send emails threatening sanctions if you do not appear in court. Nor does the court system send emails that ask you to open attachments in order to obtain additional information.
Find more information about avoiding consumer scams or filing a complaint with the Attorney General’s Office