small claims court

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small claims court

A court of limited jurisdiction, meaning it will not hear disputes larger than a certain dollar amount.It is usually intended to be fast,informal,and not dependent on technical rules of procedure or evidence that would give an advantage to persons with lawyers. Matters pertaining to title to real estate,rights of occupancy under leases,or requests for injunctions normally cannot be heard in small claims courts, but suits for real estate commissions, collection of unpaid rent, or minor property damage would be appropriate. Normally the losing party may appeal to a somewhat higher court and automatically obtain a completely new trial. Most states allow corporate officers or employees to represent the corporation in small claims court, even though this technically constitutes practicing law.

References in periodicals archive ?
centrality of small claims and conciliation courts to the Progressive
Bentham ultimately concluded that conciliation courts were
factor was that Americans concluded that conciliation courts were
For Progressive lawyers, eager to develop some variant of the conciliation court as a mechanism for Americanization, but also to insist that these courts were bound by the rule of law, the conjunction of small claims and conciliation was the solution to the logical quandary in which they found themselves.
Like Bentham before him, Vance and his fellow Progressives understood the conciliation court model ultimately to hinge on the judge's (communally grounded) power vis-a-vis the disputants--and on the concomitant willingness of the disputants to defer to his good counsel.
As we have seen, the inherited European model of the conciliation court suggested that a powerful, discretion-laden judge--one who was in some way grounded in the community he served--could lead the disputants to correct (American) living.
Moley, Justice Through Common Sense: The Conciliation Court, 33 Surv.
7, at 677-680; Association of Family and Conciliation Courts , Model Standards of Practice for Child Custody Evaluations (1994).
Barcus, The Use of Psychological Tests in Child Custody Evaluations, 38 FAMILY AND CONCILIATION COURTS REVIEW no.