The Small Claims court is designed to quickly decide disputes involving amounts of $5,000.00 or less. In small claims you give up your right to a jury trial, to be represented by an attorney and your right to an appeal beyond this court.
The simple fact that the court decides in your favor does not automatically mean that the defendant will pay the judgment and costs. The court can only award judgment for money. You may have to take additional legal steps (ie. garnishment of wages) to obtain your money, and in the end, success in collecting may depend upon whether the other party has the money to pay you.
What Can I Sue for in Small Claims Court? You can sue only for money damages in Small Claims court, up to $5,000.00. You may have a valid claim for more than $5,000.00, but a judgment in Small Claims court cannot exceed $5,000.00.
You may also file a Small Claim for up to $1,000.00 due to an automobile accident under the Michigan No Fault law. You may file for more than $1,000.00 if you can prove that the defendant has no insurance. You will need a letter from the insurance company stating that the defendant IS NOT insured. This letter MUST accompany your Small Claims form.
If you are filing for damages due to an accident, a copy of the police report and an estimate of the damage to your car is also required.
Select one of the links below for more Small Claims information: