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Instructions for your Small Claims Court Paper

The purpose of this assignment is for you to learn how to file a small claims lawsuit.  As discussed in class, small claims court is a great way for people to be able to resolve their differences over relatively small amounts of money at little cost to either party.  The idea behind having such hearings is that there should be a cheap and easy way for people to be able to get a judge to rule on any given dispute.

All you have to do for this assignment is describe how you would file a small claims lawsuit in the event you ever had to.  In the future if you ever have any business disputes in your personal life you will have benefited by doing this assignment because you will know exactly what you need to do to file a small claims suit.  You will also know what to do in the event you are ever sued in small claims court.

You may use the San Mateo County or Santa Clara County Courts, or any other court in California. Please specify which court you are using in your paper.

Answer ALL of the following questions:

A) Where do you obtain the form you need to file a small claims suit against another person. Attach a copy or link to a website of this form to your paper.

B) In your own words, summarize the steps to file a small claims suit in Santa Clara County. Here are some questions you should answer in your paper:

  1. •     What are the legal requirements for Small Claims Court? 
  2. •     Where does one file such an action?  With whom?  What hours?
  3. •     What topics does a small claims suit include? 
  4. •     What is the age limit, if any, to file a claim?
  5. •     What is the dollar limit one can sue for? 
  6. •     What specific papers must be filed?  How much does it cost to file? 
  7. •     Can an attorney be present at your appearance?  Why or why not? 

C) Explain what you learned from this assignment.

Your paper should be typed in Times New Roman 12-point size fonts, 1-inch margin all around, doublespaced, and about 4-5 pages NOT including cover, title, or references.

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