Small Claims Court Limitations

Certain other limitations in Small Claims Court can prevent you from winning your case.

Statute of Limitations

Each state specifies the time during which an action may be brought to court, so as to preserve evidence and to give people an expectation after the expiration of a specific period of time that they will not be sued. Consult with a lawyer as to your claim and the appropriate Statute of Limitations since it varies state to state. The Statute of Limitations is an affirmative defense, and usually must be raised by the defendant.

Statute of Frauds

Each state specifies certain limitations on specific types of contracts. Also, certain states require that oral contracts be in writing if the amount of the contract is more than a certain amount, for example $500.00. These are complicated issues and usually an attorney should be consulted.

Punitive Damages

Punitive damages are damage awards designed to punish certain intentional conduct by a defendant and set an example of that defendant. Many Small Claims Court judges are reluctant to make large punitive damage awards.

If you think you may have a good case for punitive damages, and they are likely to be awarded, it would be advisable to consult with your Plan Attorney to evaluate your claim. Remember, just because you are outraged by a person's conduct does not mean that this constitutes a punitive damage case.

Stress Damages

Most states strictly limit the amount of damages that a person can recover for becoming upset by a legal problem. It is easy to understand why almost all legal problems are upsetting.

There must be specific, identifiable medical treatment for such stress, in order to recover such stress-related damages in most cases.

When in doubt, feel free contact your plan attorney or member services. We’re here to help!

Posted in: Small Claims