Consumer Basics

Small Claims Court

Duped by a false ad? You might consider filing a lawsuit in Small Claims Court.

If you’re not trying to recover big bucks, but rather just trying to recoup the money you spent on a product or service after being duped by a false ad, then you might consider filing a lawsuit in Small Claims Court.

Small Claims Courts are designed for people with fairly minor cases to bring a lawsuit without necessarily having to hire a lawyer.  The cases usually involve disputes about money owed.  After hearing evidence from both sides, the judge will decide whether money has to change hands.

To file a lawsuit in Small Claims Court, you can visit the court in your state and talk to the clerk about how to open a case and serve the other party with the suit.  Some courts even offer classes in how the process works so that everyone involved will know what to expect.

Typically, there’s a filing fee and a cost for bringing a lawsuit, which can range from $15 to $150, or sometimes more.  There’s also usually an upper limit on the amount of money you can recover in Small Claims Court, which typically ranges from $2,000 to $12,000.

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