Small Claims

Legal Terms You Should Know

  • Plaintiff - A person who initiates a legal action; the party who complains or sues.
  • Defendant - A person who is being sued.
  • Counter Claim - A legal claim presented by a defendant in opposition to the claim of a plaintiff.
  • Garnishment - A proceeding whereby property or money is applied to the debt owed by the defendant (judgment debtor) to the plaintiff (garnishor).
  • Summons - An order directing a sheriff or other officer to notify a named person that a legal action has been commenced against them, they are required to appear within a certian time to answer the complaint.
  • Judgment - The official decision of a court determining the rights of the parties involved.
  • Appeal - A legal proceeding by which a party seeks a higher court review of the action taken by a lower court.
  • Subpoena - An order to a witness to appear and testify at a certian time and place.
  • Service - The presentation of a summons to the defendant in legal action.
  • Judgment Creditor- In this case is the party or parties to whom money is owed and the judgment debtor is the party or parties who owe money. If this judgment has not been paid within 15 days of the date of this judgment, the judgment creditor shall mail a copy of this judgment form to the judgment debtor together with the statement of assets.
    • Within 30 days of receiving the statement of assets forms, unless the judgment has been paid, the judgment debtor shall complete the statement of assets form and return it to the Clerk of the District Court.
  • Judgment Debtor - If the looser (Judgment Debtor) does not pay or return the statement, you, the Judgment Creditor, may write to the Court and request that the Debtor be called into court to show cause why he or she should not be punished for contempt for failure to complete the form and return it.

Filing Fees

Docket fees may be higher in some counties due to a law library tax imposed in addition to the docket fees.

  • $47.50 for a claim of $500 or less
  • $67.50 for a claim of $500.01 to $4,000

For the exact filing fees in each county, check with your District Court Clerk.