Q: If you file a small claim and lose will you have to pay the defendant the amount that you requested?
What is owed if you file a small claim and lose?
It depends on the nature of the claim. In some cases, the defendant may recover its attorney fees. In others, the defendant may assert a counterclaim for its own damages.
But typically, each party’s claims and damages stand and fall on their own merits. If your damages are $20,000 and you sue but lose, that does not automatically mean you have to pay the Defendant $20,000.
In most cases, court costs are taxed against the losing party. In a small claims case where no depositions are taken, it would be unusual for a defendant’s taxable court costs to be more than a couple hundred dollars, maybe not even that much.
Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.
The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.
Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.