Sunday, April 21, 2019

Civil / Small Claims

The District Division of the Isabella County Trial Court has jurisdiction over Small Claims (claims not exceeding $5,000.00), General Civil Complaints (claims not exceeding $25,000), Landlord-Tenant disputes and Land Contract forfeitures.

The Isabella County Trial Court provides an informational brochure regarding the Small Claims process. A copy of this brochure may be obtained at Windows #3 or #5 of the Isabella County Courthouse, 300 North Main, Mt. Pleasant, Michigan.

For further information contact the Civil Division Coordinator at (989) 317-4219.

Points to Consider before filing

The Court is only a tool that is available to you for settling disputes or establishing and reducing your claims to judgment. You are responsible for locating the parties, determining your course of action, gathering your witnesses and evidence. The necessary forms may be picked up at window's #3, #4 or #5 at the Trial Court Business Office, or downloaded here.

Before filing your claim, you should have some idea what your chances are of collecting. A judgment does not mean automatic payment. It simply means you have proven to the satisfaction of the court that the person you sued owes you money. There are often cases where a judgment is not particularly difficult to obtain, but the collection of money is difficult if not impossible.

The party you have sued may be penniless or bankrupt. He or She may have gone out of business or left town, or may not earn enough for you to garnishee wages. Income such as welfare, unemployment, social security, etc., cannot be garnisheed. If you can't collect, a judgment in your favor may turn out to be a hollow victory.

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Settlement Prior to Hearing Date

Often the defendant may want to settle out of court before the hearing date.

  • If settlement is made before he is served with the summons, you are not entitled to your court costs.
  • If settlement is made after he is served, you are entitled to add your court costs. If the claim is paid you should notify the Court in writing by filing a Dismissal (MC09) before the hearing.

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