What follows is a brief but informative summary of rules, procedures, and filings requirements for small claims court in Maryland. Keep in mind that rules and laws change. It’s always a good idea to confirm the rules with the court or with further research.
Maximum Jurisdictional Dollar Amount: The maximum dollar amount is $5,000.
Where Suit May Be Brought: Case may be brought where the defendant resides, has regular business or is employed, or where injury occurred. Cases to recover personal property may be brought where the property is. Nonresident individual defendants may be sued in any county. A corporation is deemed to reside where principal office is. Nonresident corporate defendants may be sued where plaintiff resides.
Proper Manner of Service of Process upon Defendant: Service may be made by certified Mail, sheriff or non-party adult (May be an attorney for a party). If refused, clerk may re-mail and service is presumed.
How the Hearing Date Is Selected: The hearing date is set by the court, and is at least 60 days from filing of complaint (90 days for out-of-state defendants).
Attorney Representation Rule: Attorneys are allowed.
Special Provisions Regarding Transfer or Jurisdiction of Cases: If either side counterclaims for more than $2,500 or if defendant requests a jury trial, the case shall be tried under regular civil procedure of Court.
Availability of Appeals: Either litigant may appeal for a new trial to Circuit Court within 30 days.
Special Rules and Notes: No injunctive relief is available in small claims court. No discovery is allowed. Jury trials are not allowed.
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Michael Spadaccini is the author of 8 books on self-help legal matters such as, Ultimate LLC Compliance Guide: Covers All 50 States (Ultimate Series), Ultimate Book of Forming Corps, LLCs, Partnerships & Sole Proprietorships, and Ultimate Guide to Forming an LLC in Any State, Second Edition (Ultimate Series).
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