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Encyclopedia > Small claims court

For the Australian television movies see Small Claims. Small Claims is a series of Australian television movies starring Rebecca Gibney and Claudia Karvan, which first aired on Network Ten in 2004. ...

Small claims courts are courts of limited jurisdiction that hear civil cases between private litigants. Courts authorized to try small claims may also have other judicial functions, and the name by which such a court is known varies by jurisdiction: it may be known by such names as county court or magistrate's court. Small claims courts can be found in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and many U.S. states. A trial at the Old Bailey in London as drawn by Thomas Rowlandson and Augustus Pugin for Ackermanns Microcosm of London (1808-11). ... In the common law, civil law refers to the area of law governing relations between private individuals. ... A magistrate is a judicial officer. ...


Purpose and operation

The business of small claims courts typically encompasses small private disputes in which large amounts of money are not at stake, usually a maximum of $5,000 in most U.S. States. The routine collection of small debts forms a large portion of the cases brought to small claims courts, as well as evictions and other disputes between landlord and tenant unless the jurisdiction is already covered by a tenancy board. $, the dollar sign, is primarily used to represent currencies: Many different dollars Many different pesos Different escudos The Brazilian real The Tongan paanga The Nicaraguan córdoba $ may also be: $ (film), also known as Dollars A sigil (computer programming) Category: ... Federal courts Supreme Court Circuit Courts of Appeal District Courts Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures (List) State Courts Local Government Other countries Atlas  Politics Portal      A U.S. state is any one of the fifty subnational entities of the... For other uses, see Debt (disambiguation). ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... A landlord, is the owner of a house, apartment, condominium, or real estate which is rented or leased to an individual or business, who is called the tenant. ... A tenant (from the Latin tenere, to hold), in legal contexts, holds real property by some form of title from a landlord. ...

In California an individual cannot ask for more than $7,500 in a claim. Corporations and other entities (like, government entities) cannot ask for more than $5,000. You can file as many claims as you want for up to $2,500 each. But you can only file 2 claims in a calendar year that ask for more than $2,500.

You can only sue a guarantor for up to $4,000 ($2,500 if they don't charge for the guarantee). But, if you are a natural person filing against the Registrar of the Contractors' State License Board you can sue a guarantor for up to $7500. A "guarantor" is a person who promises to be responsible for what another person owes.

Typically, a small claims court will have a maximum monetary limit to the amount of judgments it can award; these limits vary. Upper limits are set in the thousands of dollars/pounds. By suing in a small claims court, the plaintiff typically waives any right to claim more than the court can award. The plaintiff is allowed to reduce a claim to fit the requirements of this venue. In some jurisdictions, a party who loses in a small claims court is entitled to a trial de novo in a court of more general jurisdiction and with more formal procedures. A currency is a unit of exchange, facilitating the transfer of goods and services. ... A judgment or judgement (see spelling note below), in a legal context, is synonymous with the formal decision made by a court following a lawsuit. ... A plaintiff, also known as a claimant or complainer, is the party who initiates a lawsuit (also known as an action) before a court. ... In law, the expression trial de novo literally means new trial. It is most often used in certain legal systems that provide for one form of trial, then another if a party remains unsatisfied with the decision. ...

The rules of civil procedure and sometimes evidence are typically altered and simplified in order to make the procedures economical: one guiding principle usually operating in these courts is that individuals ought to be able to conduct their own cases and represent themselves without recourse to a lawyer. In some jurisdictions corporations must still appear, represented by a lawyer, in small claims court. Rules of pleading are likewise simplified; in many court systems, no answer is required of the defendant, and default judgment is not available for failing to file a written response. Expensive court procedures such as interogatories and depositions are usually not allowed in small claims court. Practically, all matters filed in small claims court are set for trial. Under some court rules should the defendant not show up at trial and not have requested postponement, a default judgment may be entered in favour of the plaintiff. Civil procedure is the body of law that sets out the process that courts will follow when hearing cases of a civil nature (a civil action, as opposed to a criminal action). ... The law of evidence governs the use of testimony (e. ... A lawyer, according to Blacks Law Dictionary, is a person learned in the law; as an attorney, counsel or solicitor; a person licensed to practice law. ... Corporate redirects here. ... A trial at the Old Bailey in London as drawn by Thomas Rowlandson and Augustus Pugin for Ackermanns Microcosm of London (1808-11). ... A defendant or defender is any party who is required to answer the complaint of a plaintiff or pursuer in a civil lawsuit before a court, or any party who has been formally charged or accused of violating a criminal statute. ... In law, a default is the failure to do something required by law or to appear at a required time in legal proceedings. ... In legal parlance, a trial is an event in which parties to a dispute present information (in the form of evidence) in a formal setting, usually a court, before a judge, jury, or other designated finder of fact, in order to achieve a resolution to their dispute. ...

Trial by jury is seldom or never conducted in small claims courts; it is typically excluded by the statute establishing the court. Similarly, equitable remedies such as injunctions, including protective orders, are seldom available from small claims courts. Trial by Jury is a comic Gilbert and Sullivan operetta in one act (the only single-act Savoy Opera). ... The Statute of Grand Duchy of Lithuania A statute is a formal, written law of a country or state, written and enacted by its legislative authority, perhaps to then be ratified by the highest executive in the government, and finally published. ... The Court of Chancery, London, early 19th century This article is about the concept of equity in the jurisprudence of common law countries. ... Look up Injunction in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...

Separate family courts may exist to hear simple cases in family law. For reasons having more to do with history than with the sort of case typically heard by a small claims court, most US states do not allow domestic relations disputes to be heard in small claims court. A family court is a court convened in the UK to make orders in respect of childrens residence. ... Family Law was a television drama starring Kathleen Quinlan as a divorced lawyer who attempted to start her own law firm after her lawyer husband took all their old clients. ... In the common law tradition, the law of domestic relations is a broad category that encompasses: divorce; property settlements; alimony; maintenance; the establishment of paternity; the establishment or termination of parental rights; child support; child custody; visitation; adoption; and the emancipation of children. ...

Winning in small claims court does not automatically ensure payment in recompense of a plaintiff's damages. This may be relatively easy, in the case of a dispute against an insured party, or extremely difficult in the case of an uncooperative, transient or indigent defendant.

Most courts encourage parties with disputes to seek alternative means of resolving disputes, if possible, before filing for suit. For example, the Superior Court of Santa Clara provides guidelines for resolving disputes out of court. Additionally, the parties can both agree on a third party to arbitrate their dispute outside of court. A lawsuit is a civil action brought before a court in which the party commencing the action, the plaintiff, seeks a legal remedy. ... Arbitration is a legal technique for the resolution of disputes outside the courts, wherein the parties to a dispute refer it to one or more persons (the arbitrators or arbitral tribunal), by whose decision (the award) they agree to be bound. ... A trial at the Old Bailey in London as drawn by Thomas Rowlandson and Augustus Pugin for Ackermanns Microcosm of London (1808-11). ...

Small claims courts in the United States

The movement to establish small claims courts typically began in the early 1960s, when Justice of the Peace courts were increasingly being seen as obsolete, and it was felt to be desirable to have such a court to allow people to represent themselves without legal counsel. In New York State the establishment of small claims courts was in response to the findings of Governor Thomas E. Dewey's Tweed Commission on the reorganization of the state judiciary, which issued its findings in 1958. Since then, the movement to establish small claims courts has led to their establishment in most U.S. states. There is no equivalent to a small claims court in the U.S. federal court system, although certain types of civil claims are routinely referred to U.S. magistrates for preliminary handling. The 1960s decade refers to the years from January 1, 1960 to December 31, 1969, inclusive. ... A Justice of the Peace (JP) is a puisne judicial officer appointed by means of a commission to keep the peace. ... State nickname: Empire State Other U.S. States Capital Albany Largest city New York Governor George Pataki Official languages None Area 141,205 km² (27th)  - Land 122,409 km²  - Water 18,795 km² (13. ... Thomas Dewey - Wikipedia /**/ @import /skins/monobook/IE50Fixes. ... Year 1958 (MCMLVIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... A magistrate is a judicial officer. ...


Some jurisdictions offer classes in small claims court procedures. As such courts are open to the public, attendance at a few sessions may be useful to a person involved in a case, whether as plaintiff or defendant.

External links by state

There may be enough similarities between states that useful information may be obtained, but should not be relied upon. Your local Superior Court or similar judicial entity should be consulted for amount limits, filing procedures, and time limits.

Official language(s) English Capital Montgomery Largest city Birmingham Area  Ranked 30th  - Total 52,419 sq mi (135,765 km²)  - Width 190 miles (306 km)  - Length 330 miles (531 km)  - % water 3. ... Official language(s) English[1] Spoken language(s) English 85. ... Official language(s) English Spoken language(s) English 74. ... Official language(s) English Capital Sacramento Largest city Los Angeles Area  Ranked 3rd  - Total 158,302 sq mi (410,000 km²)  - Width 250 miles (400 km)  - Length 770 miles (1,240 km)  - % water 4. ... Official language(s) English Capital Denver Largest city Denver Area  Ranked 8th  - Total 104,185 sq mi (269,837 km²)  - Width 280 miles (451 km)  - Length 380 miles (612 km)  - % water 0. ... Official language(s) English, Hawaiian Capital Honolulu Largest city Honolulu Area  Ranked 43rd  - Total 10,931 sq mi (29,311 km²)  - Width n/a miles (n/a km)  - Length 1,522 miles (2,450 km)  - % water 41. ... Official language(s) English [1] Capital Boise Largest city Boise Area  Ranked 14th  - Total 83,642 sq mi (216,632 km²)  - Width 305 miles (491 km)  - Length 479 miles (771 km)  - % water 0. ... Official language(s) English Capital Indianapolis Largest city Indianapolis Area  Ranked 38th  - Total 36,418 sq mi (94,321 km²)  - Width 140 miles (225 km)  - Length 270 miles (435 km)  - % water 1. ... Official language(s) English Capital Boston Largest city Boston Area  Ranked 44th  - Total 10,555 sq mi (27,360 km²)  - Width 183 miles (295 km)  - Length 113 miles (182 km)  - % water 13. ... Capital Saint Paul Largest city Minneapolis Area  Ranked 12th  - Total 87,014 sq mi (225,365 km²)  - Width 250 miles (400 km)  - Length 400 miles (645 km)  - % water 8. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... New York, New York and NYC redirect here. ... Official language(s) (none)[1] Capital Salem Largest city Portland Area  Ranked 9th  - Total 98,466 sq mi (255,026 km²)  - Width 260 miles (420 km)  - Length 360 miles (580 km)  - % water 2. ... Official language(s) English Capital Olympia Largest city Seattle Area  Ranked 18th  - Total 71,342 sq mi (184,827 km²)  - Width 240 miles (385 km)  - Length 360 miles (580 km)  - % water 6. ... Nickname: Motto: Justitia Omnibus (Justice for All) Location of Washington, D.C., in relation to the states Maryland and Virginia Coordinates: , Country United States Federal District District of Columbia Government  - Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D)  - D.C. Council Chairperson: Vincent C. Gray (D) Ward 1: Jim Graham (D) Ward 2...

Small claims court on TV

Over the years several small claims court television shows have appeared on network daytime television, but these are not truly courts of law, even though they attempt to give that appearance; they are merely forms of arbitration. Such shows include Judge Judy and Judge Joe Brown. For the person, see Judith Sheindlin. ... Joe Brown Joe Brown, (b. ...

Small claims courts in Canada

In Ontario, Small Claims Courts adjudicate claims under CAD10,000. Small Claims Court procedure is regulated both by Ontario Court of Justice Act and Small Claims Court Rules. Comparing with Ontario Rules of Civil Procedure, Small Claims procedure is simplified: there are no strict pleadings requirement, no formal discovery process and parties costs are limited to $300.

External links by province and territory

Motto: Fortis et liber(Latin) Strong and free Capital Edmonton Largest city Calgary Official languages English (see below) Government - Lieutenant-Governor Norman Kwong - Premier Ed Stelmach (PC) Federal representation in Canadian Parliament - House seats 28 - Senate seats 6 Confederation September 1, 1905 (split from Northwest Territories) (8th [Province]) Area Ranked... Motto: Splendor Sine Occasu (Latin: Splendour without diminishment) Capital Victoria Largest city Vancouver Official languages English Government - Lieutenant-Governor Iona Campagnolo - Premier Gordon Campbell (BC Liberal) Federal representation in Canadian Parliament - House seats 36 - Senate seats 6 Confederation July 20, 1871 (6th province) Area  Ranked 4th - Total 944,735 km... Motto: Multis E Gentibus Vires (Latin: The Strength of Many Peoples) Capital Regina Largest city Saskatoon Official languages English Government - Lieutenant-Governor Gordon Barnhart - Premier Lorne Calvert (NDP) Federal representation in Canadian Parliament - House seats 14 - Senate seats 6 Confederation September 1, 1905 (Split from NWT) (9th (province)) Area  Ranked... Motto: Gloriosus et Liber (Latin: Glorious and free) BC AB SK MB ON QC NB PE NS NL YT NT NU Capital Winnipeg Largest city Winnipeg Official languages English Government - Lieutenant-Governor John Harvard - Premier Gary Doer (NDP) Federal representation in Canadian Parliament - House seats 14 - Senate seats 6 Confederation... Motto: Spem reduxit (Hope restored) Capital Fredericton Largest city Saint John Official languages English, French (the only constitutionally bilingual province in the country) Government - Lieutenant-Governor Herménégilde Chiasson - Premier Shawn Graham (Liberal) Federal representation in Canadian Parliament - House seats 10 - Senate seats 10 Confederation July 1, 1867 (1st... For other uses, see Newfoundland (disambiguation). ... Motto: Munit Haec et Altera Vincit(Latin) One defends and the other conquers Capital Halifax Largest city Halifax Regional Municipality Official languages English Government - Lieutenant-Governor Mayann E. Francis - Premier Rodney MacDonald (PC) Federal representation in Canadian Parliament - House seats 11 - Senate seats 10 Confederation July 1, 1867 (1st) Area... Motto: Ut Incepit Fidelis Sic Permanet (Latin: Loyal she began, loyal she remains) Capital Toronto Largest city Toronto Official languages English Government - Lieutenant-Governor James K. Bartleman - Premier Dalton McGuinty (Liberal) Federal representation in Canadian Parliament - House seats 106 - Senate seats 24 Confederation July 1, 1867 (1st) Area [1] Ranked... Motto: i lost P.E.I. again mom:well, look under the couch Capital Charlottetown Largest city Charlottetown Official languages English Government - Lieutenant-Governor Barbara Oliver Hagerman - Premier Pat Binns (PC) Federal representation in Canadian Parliament - House seats 4 - Senate seats 4 Confederation July 1, 1873 (7th) Area Ranked 13th... Motto: Je me souviens (French: I remember) Capital Quebec City Largest city Montreal Official languages French Government - Lieutenant-Governor Pierre Duchesne - Premier Jean Charest (PLQ) Federal representation in Canadian Parliament - House seats 75 - Senate seats 24 Confederation July 1, 1867 (1st) Area  Ranked 2nd - Total 1,542,056 km² (595... Motto: none Capital Yellowknife Largest city Yellowknife Official languages Chipewyan, Cree, English, French, Gwich’in, Inuinnaqtun, Inuktitut, Inuvialuktun, North Slavey, South Slavey, TłįchÇ« [1] Government - Commissioner Tony Whitford - Premier Joe Handley (Consensus government (no party affiliations)) Federal representation in Canadian Parliament - House seats 1 - Senate seats 1 Confederation 1870... Motto: Nunavut Sannginivut (Inuktitut: Nunavut our strength or Our land our strength) Capital Iqaluit Largest city Iqaluit Official languages Inuktitut, Inuinnaqtun, English, French Government - Commissioner Ann Meekitjuk Hanson - Premier Paul Okalik (Consensus government) Federal representation in Canadian Parliament - House seats 1 (Nancy Karetak-Lindell) - Senate seats 1 (Willie Adams) Confederation... This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject. ...

Small claims courts in Australia

Small claims courts in Australia are handled by the State system. The following links may be general links to the Department dealing with justice in the given State.

  • Australian Capital Territory Department of Justice and Community Safety
  • New South Wales Office of Fair Trading
  • Northern Territory Department of Justice - Consumer and Business Affairs
  • Queensland Small Claims Tribunal
  • South Australia Courts Administration Authority
  • Tasmania Courts and Tribunals Tasmania
  • Western Australia Department of the Attorney-General
  • Victoria Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal

  Results from FactBites:
Small claims Court (2162 words)
Small claims court is for all claims for money or the recovery of personal property valued at under $750.
Small claims court also can be used for the same kinds of claims valued at from $750 to $5000 by people who do not want to use a lawyer and who want to get their case heard relatively quickly.
When you file your claim with the court, you will be asked to sign a sworn statement called an affidavit stating that you have made a genuine effort to collect on the claim.
  More results at FactBites »



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