How to represent yourself, win and collect your judgment in Small Claims court
In Small Claims courts (SCC) ordinary people settle minor disputes concerning money or property with a neighbour, a merchant or a customer for amounts up to $25,000 (Alberta is now $50.000.00).
They are people's courts where simple disputes are resolved.
It will take you the better part of a year to go through the entire Small Claims Court process and have your trial and get judgment. You may win or you may lose.
Yes. you can represent yourself in Small Claims Court,
Suing is always a last and a very poor option. It usually costs more money and time than it is worth. Especially in Small Claims. Suing is a messy, time consuming business
You may be angry about that deadbeat today, but is it really worth a few hundred dollars and a year or so of aggravation to sue her?
In the end, most cases settle on the court room steps because both parties just want the matter over and done with.
A year from start to judgment is not unusual. In large cities it can be two years.
After you get a judgment you still have to collect and that can take another year if the debtor drags it out.
It will easily cost you about $300.00 and 4 or 5 full days of your time to file, serve, attend the settlement conference and the trial regardless if you win or lose your case.
If you lose you may have to pay costs to the other side.
IF YOU WIN you still have to collect. Is it worth it? Think twice before you answer
If your case is not strong enough to support the burden of proof, then you might as well just chalk it up to a learning experience.
Small Claims is not Judge Judy. You need real proof, not just a hunch.
No proof? You lose. Guaranteed.
If you lose, you will probably have to pay costs to the other side. Allow about 15% of the amount claimed for costs and you still have to collect.
Win with a CanLaw small claims court paralegals or lawyer
This is not legal advice, it is information
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