Under the "Decentralization of Magistrates Courts Act of 1965", proclaimed to commence on 1 January 1966, the Brisbane Magistrates Courts District, Inala Division was established. The Magistrates Court, Inala, however, began operation in approximately December 1965.
Under the "Magistrates Courts Act 1921", magistrates courts inherited the civil functions of small debts courts. With the abolition of district courts by this same Act, their jurisdiction increased to claims of £200 or less in the following civil actions: personal actions, actions for the unliquidated balance of a partnership account, actions for a distributive share under an intestacy or for a legacy under a will, equity suits for recovery of money or damages, actions for replevin concerning distress for rent, summary actions for ejectment between lessors and lessees, and complaints for maintenance. In 2000 Magistrates Courts hear claims to $50000.
Under the "Justices Act Amendment Act 1964", magistrates courts inherited the petty criminal jurisdiction of courts of petty sessions. Petty criminal jurisdiction is a complicated matter of law involving numerous Commonwealth and State statutes but can be briefly described as jurisdiction over summary trials of simple offences and committal proceedings for indictable offences sent to the Supreme Court.
Actions brought before a Magistrates Court are heard and determined by a magistrate sitting alone. Originally under the "Decentralization of Magistrates Courts Act of 1965" and most recently from 2004 the Magistrates Court, Inala is within the Brisbane Magistrates Courts District, the area of which is the district is the City of Brisbane, and the names of the divisions are Central (city), Holland Park, Inala (Richlands), Sandgate and Wynnum.