If you find yourself in a dispute for less than $10,000, you can take your case to small claims court. You must file your claim through the court of the county where the opposing party is located and/or where the events occurred.

Five Tips For Filing Disputes Less Than $10,000

Here are some tips for filing your own small claim:

  1. Create a “paper trail” in support of your position with a reasonable payment demand letter before filing your claim, laying out the facts in support of your position.
  2. Consumers and businesses owned by individuals can file claims for up to $10,000 twice per year, thereafter the maximum amount is $2,500.
  3. Corporations, Limited Liability Companies and other entities cannot ask for more than $5,000 twice per year, thereafter the maximum amount is $2,500.
  4. Only defendants can appeal and many of them do. Attorneys are allowed for the hearing on the appeal.
  5. For claims in Orange County, visit the California Courts website: www.courtinfo.ca.gov/selfhelp/smallclaims