How to use the small claims court

The small claims court is a special process used for low-value claims for compensation made in the County Court. Normally, the small claims process will apply if you are making a claim for £10,000 or less, although for some cases including personal injury claims the figure is £1,000.
The small claims system is designed to be straightforward, quick and cheap. Typical small claims relate to compensation for faulty goods and services, landlord and tenant disputes, and outstanding wages.
In most cases, courts do not order the losing party in a small claims case to pay the legal costs of the other. However, taking legal advice can be highly advantageous nonetheless.

Low-cost consultations

Many solicitors offer consultations at a relatively low cost. This can be an excellent investment that could make the difference between winning and losing your case.
For example, a solicitor could review the documents you have prepared for your court hearing and advise you on how to present them for the best chance of success.


People making small claims are encouraged to negotiate with the other party first. Indeed, if you do not try to resolve matters this way you could be penalised by the court.
Speaking to a solicitor and getting their confirmation that you are in the right from a legal standpoint could greatly strengthen your negotiation position. A solicitor can also advise as to how far you should go in attempting to negotiate with the other party before resorting to the small claims process.
If you need more information and advice, Contact Law can refer you to solicitors in your local area who are experienced in small claims cases.

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