What is a Small Claims Court?
In Rhode Island, small claims court provides a quick and inexpensive way to resolve minor disputes. Attorneys are allowed but may not be necessary since the process is not complex. Any individual, business or corporation may bring a small claims suit for the recovery $2,500 or less. More
Filing a Small Claims Court?
Before you file a small claims suit make sure that you have some proof of the debt such as a receipt, note, bill of sale, warranty or witness. To start a small claim, you must file a claim form with the district court. The amount of the claim may not exceed $2,500. More
Small Claims Trials
The plaintiff and the defendant need to prepare for trial and should bring all witnesses and necessary papers to court. After both parties have presented their witnesses, testimony and evidence, the judge will make a decision, called a judgment. More
Witnesses at a Small Claims Trial
Witnesses are people who come to court to tell what they have seen or heard. These people should either be witnesses who saw what happened or experts on the subject matter of the claim involved. Whether you are the plaintiff or the defendant, you may bring witnesses to trial to support your story. More
After Small Claims Court
Generally, the judge's decision will be announced at the end of small claims trial. If the defendant loses and doesn't appeal, the court will issue an execution with the judgment. If the plaintiff wins, the plaintiff becomes the judgment creditor and the defendant becomes the judgment debtor. More
Collecting the Judgment
The small claims process isn't necessarily over just because you filed a claim, went to trial and won a court judgment. You may need to take action and spend money to enforce the judgment. The court won't collect the judgment for you. More
Alternatives to Small Claims Court
There are alternative ways to solve your legal problems outside of court. These alternatives are called alternative dispute resolution or ADR for short. All forms of ADR use a neutral person to decide a case or help both sides come to an agreement without a trial. More