If I’m owed approximately $900 from an individual and cannot collect, is it worth taking legal action?

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If I’m owed approximately $900 from an individual and cannot collect, is it worth taking legal action?

Asked on February 26, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Florida

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You could file a lawsuit in Small Claims Court for the amount that you are owed.  You would need to obtain the forms from Small Claims Court, complete them and file the forms with the court and pay a court filing fee.  Then, you will need to have the defendant (the person being sued) served with your summons and complaint (the complaint is the lawsuit attached to the summons).  You will need a process server to serve the documents on the opposing party.  Process servers are listed under attorney services in the Yellow Pages or online.  After the person has been served, file the proof of service with the court or have the process server do that for you. It would be advisable to use a private process server instead of the marshal because  the marshal will only make a limited number of attempts to serve the defendant and if the marshal is unsuccessful, will keep the fee you have  paid and nothing will have been accomplished.  Don't serve the defendant by certified mail return receipt because the defendant won't pick up the mail. Your damages (the amount of compensation you are seeking in your lawsuit) would be the amount you are owed plus court costs.  Court costs would include the court filing fee and process server fee.  If you obtain a court judgment against the defendant, it would be advisable to pursue a wage garnishment in case the person doesn't pay the court judgment.

 


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