Small Claims

Statement of Claim Form

Small Claims Court
“Small Claims Court” is a term used to describe the procedure of resolving civil disputes involving amounts of money or value of property not exceeding $8,000.00. Any dispute involving money or property valued above this amount is considered a Civil Action and falls under a completely different set of rules set up by the Florida Small Claims Rules adopted by the Supreme Court of Florida. If you are unsure of which rules govern your civil dispute, it would be to your advantage to consult an attorney.

$ 0.01 – $ 99.99 – $ 55.00
$ 100.00 – $ 500.00 – $ 80.00
$ 501.00 – $2,500.00 – $175.00
$2,501.00 – $8,000.00 – $300.00

In addition, a $10.00 service charge is required for each summons issued.
In order to have the summons and suit papers delivered to or be served upon the other person (defendant), you must pay $40.00 per person for sheriff’s service. Bring a money order or check made payable to the Union County Sheriff’s Department.

Commencing a Case
A case is commenced by filing a Statement of Claim, along with an appropriate fee (see filing fees), with the Clerk of the Circuit Court. Forms and assistance in ONLY the preparation of the forms is provided by the Clerk’s office. Please understand that Judges, Judicial Assistants, Clerks of Court, and Sheriff’s Department employees CANNOT practice law or give you legal advice. They can ONLY point out the existence of certain procedures, but CANNOT tell you how to follow them or how effective they will be. ONLY A LAWYER CAN GIVE YOU LEGAL ADVICE.
If your claim is based upon a written document, the written document must be attached to the Statement of Claim. The person filing the Statement of Claim must sign it and include thereon his or her address and telephone number, including area code. Furthermore, the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of all person who are parties to the lawsuit must be stated in the claim.
If a written document is to be used as evidence, two copies must be given to the Clerk. Additional copies may be needed if more than one party is being sued. You must also have the correct address where the person or corporation can be found. The Clerk cannot supply this information for you, so you must get it before you file suit. If you are suing a business, it may be a corporation. You must have the exact name for the Clerk. Information on corporations may be obtained by contacting the Corporate Division Secretary of State Office, Tallahassee, FL 32304, (850) 488-9000 or you may check the internet at

Pre-trial Conference
A notice to appear is attached to, and served with, the Statement of Claim. This notice informs the Defendant of the time, date, and place of the pre-trial conference. On this appointed day, the Plaintiff and the Defendant are to appear before the court in order to discuss the case.
At this conference, the court will determine if there are any contested issues of fact. If there are contested issued of fact, the case will be referred to mediation in an effort to aid the parties in settling the case. Mediators will be present at the pre-trial conference. If the case is not settled at this conference, the court will set a time, date and place for the trial. The Plaintiff and Defendant are NOT to bring witnesses to the pre-trial conference.
At the final hearing you must appear at the time scheduled with your evidence and witnesses. If you will need a witness who will not come voluntarily, you can have the clerk prepare a “Witness Subpoena”. The fee for preparing the subpoena will be $7.00. You must attach a witness fee to the subpoena of $5.00 plus $.06 per mile mileage to and from the Court made payable to the witness. The Sheriff will charge $40.00 to serve the subpoena. At the trial the Judge will listen to both sides, review evidence and make a decision. If you prevail, the Clerk will send you a Final Judgment entered by the Court.

Dismissal and Default
Failure to attend either the pre-trial conference or the trial can result in dire consequences for the party failing to attend. If the plaintiff fails to attend, the case can be dismissed. If the Defendant fails to attend, and was properly served, the Plaintiff is entitled to a default and the Plaintiff prevails.

Voluntary Dismissal
The Plaintiff in a Small Claims case may end the lawsuit by voluntarily dismissing the suit. In order to properly do this, property must not have been seized, nor may property be in the custody of the courts and, the plaintiff must inform the defendant or the Courts of dismissal prior to trial date; or the parties must enter into a joint stipulation for dismissal.

After Judgment
When you receive your final judgment, you can do certain things in order to collect your money. The Court is not a collection agency and they do not contact the defendant in an effort to make them pay you the amount awarded in your Final Judgment. The Clerk’s Office cannot assist you with this. You will need to seek the advice of an attorney.