Florida Small Claims Court: An Overview

From maximum dollar limits to statutes of limitations, learn the basics about small claims court in Florida.

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What's the dollar limit for small claims court cases in Florida?

The most you can ask for in a small claims case is $5,000.

Which court hears small claims cases in Florida?

Small claims cases in Florida are heard in the Small Claims Procedure or Summary Procedure (County Court).

What is the statute of limitations period for filing a claim in small claims court in Florida?

For information on Florida's statute of limitation periods for claims related to written contracts, oral contracts, injuries, and property damage, see Nolo's 50-state Statutes of Limitations chart.

How long does the defendant have to answer the small claims court complaint?

In Florida, the defendant is not required to file a written response but must file any counterclaim in writing at least five days before pretrial conference. The defendant must appear personally or by counsel at the pretrial conference.

Are attorneys allowed in small claims court in Florida?

You are allowed to have an attorney represent you in small claims court in Florida. If attorneys are used, parties are subject to discovery.

Can a landlord bring an eviction lawsuit in small claims court in Florida?

Eviction cases are allowed in small claims court in Florida.

Do I have a right to a jury trial in small claims court in Florida?

In Florida, either party may demand a jury trial. The plaintiff must make the demand when filing suit; the defendant must make the demand within five days of being served or notice of suit, or at mediation/pretrial conference.

Where can I get more information about small claims court in Florida?

For more information about Florida small claims court, see http://www.flcourts.org/resources-and-services/family-courts/family-law-self-help-information/small-claims.stml.

Nolo's Small Claims Court area has many helpful related articles. For more detailed help with filing a case, using the best strategy in court, and collecting your money if you win, see Everybody's Guide to Small Claims Court, by Attorney Ralph Warner (Nolo).

Updated: October 1, 2015

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