What happens after filing a small claims action?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Jul 16, 2021

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After you file your Small Claims action, depending on local practice, the Court may send a copy of the Claim Form to the party you are suing by registered or certified mail, or have you hire a process server to deliver it to the defendant. The Small Claims Court will want to make sure that the party you are suing has “actual notice” of the claim you bring.

In some Small Claims Courts a tentative date for the judge or arbitrator to hear the matter is set when you file the claim. In other courts that is done only after the Claim Form is received by the party you are suing.

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