$5,000 Cap Should Boost Small Claims Court’s Load

Honolulu Star Advertiser
July 11, 2011

The Governor in Hawaii just signed a bill to increase the maximum monetary claim in small claims court from $3,500 to $5,000 which will increase the number of cases in small claims court and proportionally decrease the number of regular claims in District Court. Small claims cases typically involve matters about property damage, breach of contract, security deposit, personal loan, car repair, defective product, and personal injury among other things.

Small claims courts offer parties a quick and inexpensive resolution because attorneys are not required. Moreover, small claims courts provide ample opportunity to work out a mutually acceptable agreement with the assistance of a neutral mediator of the Mediation Center of the Pacific, or alternatively appear before the judge. Mediation is common in small claims courts and allows parties to craft creative resolutions that benefit both parties.

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