When facing a legal dispute, sometimes taking your case to small claims court may be the best way to fight for the restitution you seek. However, it is important to keep in mind that small claims court, like any legal case, involves various steps that if taken, can enhance a person’s chances of obtaining a favorable result. Sometimes, people mistake the word “small” for unimportant. This is certainly not the case when it comes to small claims court. Specifically, with any small claims matter, preparation, due diligence and hard work are certainly the keys to success. With this in mind, the following are some steps you can take to maximize your chances of prevailing in your small claims case:
- Always be prepared. Small claims court cases often move very quickly in Orange County. That means that the judge will likely hear numerous cases in one day. As such, you will only have about ten to fifteen minutes to make your case, so it is important to be as effective and efficient as possible. We recommend that you have all of your evidence organized and ready to be viewed by the judge and opposing side. Having to fumble through documents will unnecessarily eat up your time and also, likely annoy the judge who has several other cases to get through before the end of the day. In addition, be sure to have all of your facts straight and, present them in chronological order. It is never wise to present the details of your case in a way that causes confusion to the court. Therefore, always be organized and fully prepared to present your case.
- Do what it takes to make a positive impression on the court. This means getting to court on time and also, dressing in a professional manner. When people underdress, or, when they fail to appear at the courtroom on time, it leaves them vulnerable to not being taken as seriously by the court. This could end up costing you your case. Hence, be on time and dress for success, no matter what.
- Bring witnesses with you to court, if possible. In-person, testimonies are always preferable to hearsay. If you have witnesses, be sure to bring them to your court appearance. However, if they are unavailable for whatever reason, check with the court clerk to see whether they can participate by telephone or provide written testimony.
- Always remain calm, cool, and collected. Allowing your emotions to take over will certainly not give you a leg up in your case. Be sure to remain calm throughout your case, regardless of what the opposing side says or does during the process. The more calm and cool you remain, the better chance you will have of getting the judge’s attention and obtaining a more favorable result.
- Be upfront and realistic. During your case, be sure to be honest and straightforward about all of the applicable facts and circumstances. If there are negative aspects pertaining to your case, do not sugarcoat or hide them in any manner whatsoever. Should you do this, a judge may deem you as dishonest or “having something to hide”. This will likely have a negative impact on how the judge rules in your case.
- Consider hiring an experienced Ayo and Iken attorney. Despite the fact that you may think your case is minor, an attorney can still add value and help maximize your chances of success.
For more information on the above, or, if you are looking to pursue a case in small claims and would like to learn more about your legal rights and options, call us today at call now at 1-800-469-3486 or feel free to email us. We proudly represent clients located throughout the Tampa, Orlando, Miami, New Port Richey, Orlando, Clearwater, Lakeland, and Wesley Chapel areas.