What Is the Minimum Threshold for Small Claims Court

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Yes, but trials are usually quick and are decided by a judge. There is no jury trial in a small claims court. Small Claims Court can be held either in a courtroom or in the magistrate`s office. The applicant first presents their case and may testify, call witnesses or provide other evidence such as documents or records. The defendant may examine the plaintiff`s witnesses after they have testified. Once the plaintiff has closed his or her case, the defendant may also testify, call witnesses, and provide evidence, and the plaintiff may examine the defendant`s witnesses. The magistrate may put questions to the parties and witnesses and announce his decision immediately after the filing of both cases. Legal Aid of North Carolina provides a small claims court guide in English and Spanish. This guide provides information on how to complete forms for Small Claims Court.

A magistrate is an appointed official of the District Court. Its statutory duties include deciding on cases before a civil small claims court, deciding on pre-litigation procedures in criminal matters and the conduct of marriages. Magistrates may or may not be lawyers. A hearing date is usually set and mailed to both parties. The parties must inform the Registrar of the Supreme Court and the Coordinator of the Court of First Instance of any change of address while the case is pending. The new trial will take place before a judge, unless a party requests a written jury trial within 10 days in a timely manner. Cases involving money can be set up for arbitration. For more information about this procedure, see the Arbitration and Mediation Help topic.

If a small claim is served on the defendant less than 5 days before the court date (or less than 2 days before the court date in eviction cases), the magistrate must allow it to continue, which means that the court date will be postponed. Otherwise, the judge will decide whether to authorize the extension if a party requests it. If the other party disagrees, the party requesting continuation must prove a good reason. See the Small Claims section for more information on Small Claims Court. Either party may appeal the judge`s decision to the District Court to conduct a new trial before a judge or jury. The appeal may be filed orally by informing the judge of the court when the court makes a decision, or by filing a written notice of appeal with the Clerk of the Supreme Court within 10 days of the judge`s decision. A complaint form can be found here. A copy of the notice of appeal must be served on the other party. The party appealing shall bear the legal costs of the appeal in a timely manner. In the event of non-payment of legal costs, the appeal is dismissed. If a party is unable to pay the legal costs of the appeal, they can file an application for appeal as a needy using this form.

An appellant may also be required to post bail to end the enforcement of the judge`s decision while the case is appealing. More information on eviction cases can be found in the Landlords and Tenants help section. The Small Claims Court is a special court where disputes can be resolved quickly and cost-effectively. The rules are simple and informal. The person suing is called the applicant. The accused person is called the defendant. You are not allowed to be represented by a lawyer at the hearing in Small Claims Court. But you can talk to a lawyer before or after court. Court staff cannot provide legal advice (see section below).

You can speak to a lawyer at any time to get help with your claim, but lawyers are not allowed to attend small claims hearings without the judge`s permission. Once you`re ready, you can start your lawsuit by going to the small claims department at the courthouse. The court clerk will give you the appropriate forms to make your claim and can help you with limited information. However, he or she cannot give you legal advice. If you need legal advice, you can call the Oregon State Bar Attorney Referral Service at 503-684-3763. A lawyer referred through the service will not charge more than $35 for an initial consultation. The lawyer can also advise you on whether your case qualifies for attorneys` fees and whether a small claims court is the best option for your situation. If Small Claims Court is your best option, the lawyer can review your records. You may have to pay more or decide to proceed without a lawyer if it takes longer to view and review your documents. .