Petitionary matters constitute the largest group of cases dealt with by the district court. Petitionary matters pertain to the everyday life of people and there are many different types of petitionary matters.
- are initiated by way of a petition,
- relate to a court approval for a transaction or
- relate to the entry of a matter in a public register.
Petitionary matters are normally decided in chambers without a hearing being held, if no one is opposing the petition, or are decided in a hearing, if the parties disagree in the matter.
Petitionary matters include divorce, matters relating to child custody and right of access, appointment of guardians, appointment of estate distributors, bankruptcies and the adjustment of the debts of private individuals.
As of 1 january 2010 registration of titles and mortgages over real property have been dealt with by the National Land Survey of Finland.
As of 1 March 2003, matters relating to registration of marriage settlement agreements and confirming the acknowledgement of paternity have been dealt with by the local registration offices.