A small claims court is the legal venue for cases that typically
encompass small private disputes in which large risks or settlements are not in
question. Typically, a small claims court will not review cases in excess of
$5,000 dollars. That being said, the United States small claims court system is
established by individual states. This simply means that each State is
responsible for setting its own limit associated with a small claims court.
The majority of disputes that are sent to a small claims court
are routine collections of small debts that were promised by one private party
to another. Small claims courts are rarely overseen by a trial by jury.
Typically the cases are reviewed by a small claims tribunal or are decided
directly by the judge in charge of the case.
Another common case observed by a small claims tribunal are
eviction cases and disputes brought on by on landlords or tenants of
apartments. Disputes between renters and landlords are covered in a small
claims court for jurisdictions that do not have a tenancy board to cover such
As a result of the cases’ simplicity and popularity, small
claims courts typically alter the rules of civil procedure to streamline the
trial process. One practice that simplifies the small claims court process is
that individuals have the right to conduct their own cases and represent
themselves without legal aid. In addition, expensive and time-consuming court
procedures such as depositions and interrogatories are typically not allowed in
a small claims court.