Administrator of court records and exhibits:
The Clerk receives and processes all documents presented in a Superior Court cause of action. The processing of court documents involves record classification, assignment of cause number, computerized docketing and manual filing of hard copy records. The Clerk is responsible for seeing that these records are maintained, retained and purged in accordance with statutory time constraints and required archival standards. The types of cases that are filed in the Clerk's Office are felony criminal, civil, domestic/family law, probate, adoptions/paternity, mental commitment, juvenile offender and juvenile dependency.
Financial Officer for the Courts:
As the court's agent, the Clerk collects statutory fees, fines, trust and support funds; maintains a trust account for monies received; disburses monies as ordered by the court and further provides an investment plan for monies held. The collection, accounting and investment of court monies is done to ensure that the interests of the public and the county are secured.
The Clerk serves a quasi-judicial function (to exercise discretion of judicial nature) for the issuance of writs, letters testamentary and other court related orders. In this function, the Clerk must review court documents for possible errors, perform acts required by law, issue letters testamentary, warrants of arrest, orders of sale, writs of execution, garnishment, attachments, restitution and set up judgments.
Ex Officio Clerk of the Court:
Under the Constitution of the State of Washington, the Clerk has the title of "ex officio clerk of the court." This requires the Clerk's presence at all court sessions for the purpose of establishing an independent record of each hearing called "minutes" which are available to the public. The Clerk must also be present at every court hearing or trial to receive and keep a record of all exhibits (evidence) entered by the parties.
Jury Management Officer:
In some counties, the Clerk's Office is responsible for the management of the jury panel for the courts.
As the administrator of a county department, the Clerk has the responsibility to establish office policies and procedures, oversee the budget and maintain the established guidelines and policies of the Board of County Commissioners. Accuracy and efficiency are critical in the Clerk's Office, as even the slightest error or omission in marking evidence; indexing, posting, or filing of thousands of legal documents yearly; or error in disbursing funds could affect the life or property of a private citizen. "Washington County Government" – Publication of Washington Association of County Officials (WACO), Eight printing, 2005.