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The Franklin County Municipal Court will close today at 12:30 PM.
In custody arraignments (4D) for Saturday, July 20 will be in person. 

Home / Judiciary / Judges / Jessica G. D'Varga

Administrative and Presiding Judge

Jessica G. D'Varga




Judge D’Varga took the bench on the Franklin County Municipal on January 3, 2020. A native of Monroe County, Ohio, she received her bachelor’s degree in History from the University of Dayton in 2002 and her JD from the Ohio State University Moritz College of Law in 2005. She transitioned into a civil law practice from 2003 through 2010. In 2010, D’Varga joined the law firm of Saia & Piatt, Inc., where she focused her practice on criminal defense. She practiced in several counties throughout the State, defending individuals charged with misdemeanor and felony crimes. She was on the board of the Ohio Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, an organization through which she mentored young lawyers and organized and instructed at defense bar CLE's. D’Varga has published several articles on topics in criminal law and was rated both a Rising Star and Super Lawyer from 2012 to 2020. 

Judge D’Varga is an active member of the Ohio Judicial Conference’s Law and Procedure Committee, the National Association of Blacks in Criminal Justice, and the Municipal Court’s Rules and Policy and Judicial Pretrial and Probation Committees. 

D’Varga resides on the north side of Columbus with her husband and twin boys. She is an avid runner, group fitness instructor, music lover, and enjoys spending as much time outdoors with her family as she can.

Judge D'Varga is the Presiding Judge over the Recovery Court Specialized Docket. Learn More  


It is the Court's practice that continuances and extensions will be granted if reasonable. Requests for continuances must be presented to the Court a minimum of five (5) days prior to the court date. Agreed requests are preferred. Motions must specify whether the request is agreed or opposed.


Proper courtroom etiquette must be observed. No hats, food, drinks, or use of cellular phones when court is in session. Appropriate attire is required for attorneys and litigants. Professionalism and respect toward court and opposing counsel is expected at all times. 

Motions & Briefs

For most civil cases, the court will refer the case for mediation shortly after it is assigned. If mediation is unsuccessful, the case will be set for pretrial. Additional pretrials may be scheduled by the court if necessary.


Motions are to be submitted timely with a proposed Entry and served on opposing parties. Motions may be ruled on without oral hearing unless requested by the parties. All motions will be reviewed and decided in a timely manner. Continuances will be granted for good cause.

Pretrial/Status Conferences

Civil counsel for the parties should have authority to act on behalf of their clients. Counsel are required to confer before the hearing and make a sincere effort to settle the case. Requests for telephone pretrials should be agreed on by all parties and will be granted.


Criminal and traffic cases are automatically set for pretrial after a jury demand is filed. Criminal defendants are to be present for a plea unless their counsel has a court-approved Plea in Absentia form. Hearing dates for motions will not be scheduled until a motion is filed. 

Motions & Briefs

The Court will entertain motions for bond modification only on the record, in open court, and with prior notice to the prosecutor. The court will entertain requests for warrant set asides only in the presence of the defendant and the prosecutor.


Discovery must be requested prior to the pretrial date via the Columbus City Attorney's Matrix application. Contact the courtroom prosecutor directly to discuss any issues with discovery. Prosecutors' Courtroom Assignments  

Jury Procedures

The Court will provide jury instructions with copies to each counsel to review and will make any changes necessary if agreed upon. Jurors will be permitted to take notes and are permitted to inspect exhibits that have been admitted during deliberation in the jury room. Jurors will be permitted to ask questions in writing during deliberations.

Contact Information