Wakulla County Small Claims Court Courthouse
Small claims court cases can be filed at the Wakulla County Courthouse which is located at: 3056 Crawfordville Highway Crawfordville, FL 32327 The courthouse can be reached at: 850-926-0905.
Who is Able to File a Case in Wakulla County Small Claims Court?
The following people can file a small claims court case:
- You are 18 years or older
- Parents or Guardians can file on behalf of a minor
- You are filing or acting on behalf of a corporation as an officer with prior written authorization
Wakulla County Small Claims Court Pre-Trial Conference
The pre-trial conference is used for the court to attempt to see if your case can be resolved without a trial. This is usually done with an informal settlement conference or mediation. If the pre-trial conference is not successful in resolving your case, the court will set it for trial. You need to make sure the Defendant has been served prior to the pre-trial conference or it will be cancelled by the court. Appearance at the pre-trial conference is mandatory. Persons representing parties must have full settlement authority otherwise the court may impose court costs and attorney fees on the party failing to comply with this rule. At a pre-trial conference, a corporation can be represented by an officer of an employee if the employee has been designated by an officer. Multiple defendants may have pre-trial conferences set on different dates. The plaintiff is still required to attend all of these pre-trial conferences.
Rules for Wakulla Small Claims Court Cases
All small claims court cases in Florida are governed by the Florida Small Claims Rules.
Cases that Cannot Be Filed in Wakulla County Small Claims Court
Wakulla County Small Claims Court handles all types of cases except:
- alimony payments
- traffic court fines
Serving a Defendant in Wakulla County Small Claims Court Cases
Once a case is filed, the case cannot proceed until the Defendant has been served. The plaintiff needs to know the full names of all the individuals you are suing. You also need to a good address of where that person can be served. If the plaintiff is suing a business, you need to determine whether the business has incorporated. If a corporation is being sued, you must have the full name of the corporation and the name and address of a corporate officer or registered agent for the business. The plaintiff can search for this information on the Florida Department of State, Department of Corporation websites at http://www.sunbiz.org or by phone at 850-245-6052. You also need to learn if the business is operating under a ficitious name. The fictitious name information can be obtained through the Department of State, Division of Corporations as well.
How do I file a small claims court case in Wakulla County?
You need to contact the Wakulla Clerk’s Office and obtain and complete a Statement of Claim form. The form needs to be typed or printed with a pen to ensure the legibility.
Are Jury Trials available in Wakulla County Small Claims Court Cases?
Jury trials are available in small claims court cases in Florida. Even though a jury trial is available, the large majority of small claims court cases are heard in front of a judge. Either party may make a request for a jury trial. Small Claims Court Rule 7.150 allows for a jury trial upon written demand of the plaintiff (when the suit is filed) or defendant within five days after being served with notice of the suit or at the pre-trial conference. If neither the plaintiff or defendant request a jury trial, the case will be tried in front of a judge.
Court Costs and Fees for Wakulla County Small Claims Court
The costs for filing a Small Claims case in Wakulla County include the filing fee, which is based on the amount of your claim, as well as a service fee for summoning each party to court. If a party obtains a judgment in its favor, these court costs can be added into the total amount of the judgment. A person interested in filing a small claims court case should contact the Wakulla County Clerk Court to ask about the fee for your specific case.
Wakulla County Small Claims Court Jurisdiction
In Florida, you can only file a small claims court action in the county where the Defendant lives, where the situation giving rise to the action occurred, or where the property involved is situated. If none of the above apply, then jurisdiction is not property in Wakulla County and the court will not be able to hear your case. This may open a judgment you obtain to attack when you try to collect it. Small Claims court cases in Wakulla County can hear cases concerning claims up to $5,000.00 (with costs, attorneys fees and interests added on top of that). Chapter 34 of the Florida Statutes and Rule 7.010 authorize the limit on small claims court cases.
Preparing to File a Wakulla County Small Claims Court Case
Before filing a case, it is important that you attempt to discuss your case with the opposing party about what the actual issue is. The easiest way for this is to draft and deliver a letter to the other party which succintly details your complaint. This may resolve your issue before you even have to file a case. This is the simplest and easiest way of resolving your case before the court system becomes involved (and will resolve it far quicker).