Delaware County Small Claims Court, Pennsylvania


Where Can a Small Claims Court Case Be Filed?

Each county in Pennsylvania (except for Philadelphia) is divided into districts. Each district has a Magisterial District Judge. The plaintiff should file the case in the Magisterial District where:

  • the Defendant resides or where the business is located
  • the contract involved was signed or performance was made
  • the accident occurred
  • the property that the case is about is located

Once you locate what the appropriate court should be, you should contact the court to determine whether it is the appropriate place to file your claim. The plaintiff should also inquire from the clerk what the filing fee will be. You will pay the filing fee when you file the Complaint with the court. The plaintiff needs to complete the form “Civil Complaint.” If the plaintiff intends to place confidential information on the “Civil Complaint,” the plaintiff also needs to complete the “Confidential Information Form” which is located on the same page.

Types of cases handled in Small Claims Court in Delaware County

Two types of civil cases are generally heard in Magisterial District Court in Delaware County: negligence and contract actions. A breach of contract action is where parties enter into an agreement that can be either oral or in writing. Contracts are used in many situations including:

  • contractors and homeowner to make improvements
  • insurance services between an insurance company and a consumer
  • credit card companies when providing credit to consumers

Breach of contract occurs when one party does not complete what they are required to do under the contract. Negligence is where a party that is supposed to act with reasonable care fails to do so and someone else is injured from that. Negligence actions usually arise in an automobile accident or other times where someone sustains personal injuries or property damage.

Before Filing a Small Claims Court Claim in Delaware County

You should send a demand letter to the defendant asking for payment before filing your claim. This is usually the quickest and easiest way to resolve your dispute. In addition to the amount you are requesting, you should also set a reasonable deadline for the defendant to respond by. If the demand letter does not resolve your case, you can consider filing your case. It is also important to know the name and address of the party you wish to file your action against. The Magisterial Court cannot accept a post office box. If the party the plaintiff is suing is not an individual, the plaintiff needs to ascertain what corporate form the defendant is using as well as the name of that corporate entity. For help determining the proper name, you should contact Pennsylvania’s Corporation Bureau online or by phone at 717-787-1057. Before going to the Magisterial District Court to file your claim, you should know the following information:

  • your name and address
  • defendant’s name and address
  • the amount of money you are filing your claim for (including all expenses)
  • short statement of facts surrounding the circumstances of the case (including dates and locations)

The court allows a plaintiff to file a complaint through the mail, but a plaintiff should file it in person so the court clerk can notify you if there are any problems with your complaint. The plaintiff can also pay the filing fee in person at the courthouse. In addition to the filing fee, you will also have to pay for the cost for personal service of your claim on the defendant (which varies depending on how it is served). A Defendant can be served by certified mail or in person by a deputy sheriff or constable. Service by certified mail is cheaper but might not be as quick as personal service by a sheriff or constable.

What does a Magisterial District Judge Handle?

Magisterial District Judges are judges elected by the people of their district to handle criminal preliminary arraignments and preliminary hearings, summary criminal offenses, traffic offenses, municipal code violations, landlord / tenant actions, and civil actions where the damages do not exceed $12,000 (commonly known as small claims court).

Advantages of Filing in Magisterial District Court in Delaware County

A claim of $12,000 or less is also able to be filed in Common Pleas Court. However, the Magisterial District Court is not as formal and is cheaper than a case in common pleas court. Additionally, you need an attorney to file your case in the court of common pleas. In Magisterial District Court, an attorney is not required.

After the Delaware County Magisterial District Court Hearing

If the judge rules in favor of the plaintiff, the judge may set up a 12 month installment plan for the Defendant to make payments. Also, the defendant has thirty days to file an appeal to the Common Pleas Court. If there is an appeal, a Notice of Appeal is filed with the prothonotary in the county courthouse. A copy of the Notice of Appeal will be served on the judge (who made the decision) and the plaintiff in the case. The Notice of Appeal prevents the plaintiff from collecting any money until the appeal is decided. The plaintiff can also appeal the Magisterial District Judge’s decision if the judge ruled for the defendant at the hearing.

Delaware County Magisterial Districts

Delaware County has 30 Magisterial Districts which are:

32-1-20

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-20 is Wilden H. Davis . The 32-1-20 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

160 East Seventh Street
Second Floor
Chester, PA 19013

The phone number for 32-1-20 Magisterial District is: 610-876-2151. The fax number for 32-1-20 Magisterial District is: 610-874-7864.

32-1-21

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-21 is Dawn L. Vann . The 32-1-21 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

160 East Seventh Street
Second Floor
Chester, PA 19013

The phone number for 32-1-21 Magisterial District is: 610-874-7180. The fax number for 32-1-21 Magisterial District is: 610-874-7864.

32-1-22

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-22 is Spencer B. Seaton . The 32-1-22 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

160 East Seventh Street
Second Floor
Chester, PA 19013

The phone number for 32-1-22 Magisterial District is: 610-874-1790. The fax number for 32-1-22 Magisterial District is: 610-874-7864.

32-1-23

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-23 is Gregory J. Loftus . The 32-1-23 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

100 Clifton Avenue
Collingdale, PA 19023

The phone number for 32-1-23 Magisterial District is: 610-534-3443. The fax number for 32-1-23 Magisterial District is: 610-534-5978.

32-1-24

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-24 is Robert M. D’Agostino . The 32-1-24 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

796 Parkway Blvd.
Broomall, PA 19008

The phone number for 32-1-24 Magisterial District is: 610-338-2250. The fax number for 32-1-24 Magisterial District is: 610-338-2253.

32-1-25

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-25 is Robert R. Burke . The 32-1-25 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

Suites 103 & 105
525 West Chester Pike
Havertown, PA 19083

The phone number for 32-1-25 Magisterial District is: 610-449-8250. The fax number for 32-1-25 Magisterial District is: 610-789-9167.

32-1-27

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-27 is David Hamilton Lang . The 32-1-27 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

4655 West Chester Pike
Newtown Square, PA 19073

The phone number for 32-1-27 Magisterial District is: 610-356-7430. The fax number for 32-1-27 Magisterial District is: 610-356-0692.

32-1-28

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-28 is Deborah A. Krull . The 32-1-28 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

349 West Baltimore Avenue
PO Box 97
Media, PA 19063

The phone number for 32-1-28 Magisterial District is: 610-566-0872. The fax number for 32-1-28 Magisterial District is: 610-566-2732.

32-1-30

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-30 is Vincent D. Gallagher . The 32-1-30 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

Ridley Township Municipal Building
100 East MacDade Blvd.
Folsom, PA 19033

The phone number for 32-1-30 Magisterial District is: 610-532-0320. The fax number for 32-1-30 Magisterial District is: 610-532-0953.

32-1-31

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-31 is Philip S. Turner . The 32-1-31 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

1201 Haverford Road
Crum Lynne, PA 19022

The phone number for 32-1-31 Magisterial District is: 610-833-2581. The fax number for 32-1-31 Magisterial District is: 610-833-2651.

32-1-32

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-32 is Andrea E. Puppio . The 32-1-32 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

56 Powell Road
Springfield, PA 19064

The phone number for 32-1-32 Magisterial District is: 610-543-2366. The fax number for 32-1-32 Magisterial District is: 610-543-1920.

32-1-33

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-33 is Harry J. Karapalides . The 32-1-33 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

Barclay Square Building
1550 Garrett Road
Upper Darby, PA 19082

The phone number for 32-1-33 Magisterial District is: 610-626-6900. The fax number for 32-1-33 Magisterial District is: 610-622-2751.

32-1-34

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-34 is Robert J. Radano . The 32-1-34 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

Barclay Square Building
1550 Garrett Road
Upper Darby, PA 19082

The phone number for 32-1-34 Magisterial District is: 610-626-6900. The fax number for 32-1-34 Magisterial District is: 610-622-2751.

32-1-35

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-35 is Ann Berardocco . The 32-1-35 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

Barclay Square Building
1550 Garrett Road
Upper Darby, PA 19082

The phone number for 32-1-35 Magisterial District is: 610-626-6900. The fax number for 32-1-35 Magisterial District is: 610-622-2751.

32-1-36

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-1-36 is David R. Griffin . The 32-1-36 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

526 West Ridge Road
Linwood, PA 19061

The phone number for 32-1-36 Magisterial District is: 610-859-9748. The fax number for 32-1-36 Magisterial District is: 610-859-9751.

32-2-37

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-37 is Leonard V. Tenaglia . The 32-2-37 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

150 South MacDade Boulevard, Suite E
Darby, PA 19023

The phone number for 32-2-37 Magisterial District is: 610-534-3504. The fax number for 32-2-37 Magisterial District is: 610-534-0714.

32-2-38

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-38 is Diane M. Holefelder . The 32-2-38 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

Riddle Valley Industrial Park
1 New Road
Aston, PA 19014

The phone number for 32-2-38 Magisterial District is: 610-558-3520. The fax number for 32-2-38 Magisterial District is: 610-558-3528.

32-2-39

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-39 is (Vacant) McCray . The 32-2-39 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

Brookhaven Municipal Building
2 Cambridge Road, Suite 300
Brookhaven, PA 19015

The phone number for 32-2-39 Magisterial District is: 610-874-8178. The fax number for 32-2-39 Magisterial District is: 610-874-7893.

32-2-40

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-40 is Steven A. Sandone . The 32-2-40 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

11 Bartram Avenue
Glenolden, PA 19036

The phone number for 32-2-40 Magisterial District is: 610-583-6646. The fax number for 32-2-40 Magisterial District is: 610-583-1197.

32-2-42

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-42 is Michael A. Burns . The 32-2-42 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

36 East Boon Avenue
Glenolden, PA 19036

The phone number for 32-2-42 Magisterial District is: 610-583-6647. The fax number for 32-2-42 Magisterial District is: 610-583-0386.

32-2-43

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-43 is Leon Hunter . The 32-2-43 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

4655 West Chester Pike
Newtown Square, PA 19073

The phone number for 32-2-43 Magisterial District is: 610-356-2997. The fax number for 32-2-43 Magisterial District is: 610-356-0692.

32-2-44

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-44 is Jack D. Lippart . The 32-2-44 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

1028 Lincoln Avenue
Prospect Park, PA 19076

The phone number for 32-2-44 Magisterial District is: 610-534-5627. The fax number for 32-2-44 Magisterial District is: 610-534-5610.

32-2-46

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-46 is Andrew Goldberg . The 32-2-46 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

939 North Providence Road
Media, PA 19063

The phone number for 32-2-46 Magisterial District is: 610-566-3495. The fax number for 32-2-46 Magisterial District is: 610-566-7016.

32-2-47

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-47 is Will Keith Williams . The 32-2-47 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

536 Church Lane
Yeadon, PA 19050

The phone number for 32-2-47 Magisterial District is: 610-259-8848. The fax number for 32-2-47 Magisterial District is: 610-259-8920.

32-2-48

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-48 is Walter A. Strohl . The 32-2-48 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

27 South Pennell Road
PO Box 93
Lima, PA 19037

The phone number for 32-2-48 Magisterial District is: 610-565-4110. The fax number for 32-2-48 Magisterial District is: 610-565-1640.

32-2-49

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-49 is Wendy B. Roberts . The 32-2-49 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

485 Baltimore Pike
Glen Mills, PA 19342

The phone number for 32-2-49 Magisterial District is: 610-558-3605. The fax number for 32-2-49 Magisterial District is: 610-558-3618.

32-2-51

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-51 is Christopher R. Mattox . The 32-2-51 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

Barclay Square Building
1550 Garrett Road
Upper Darby, PA 19082

The phone number for 32-2-51 Magisterial District is: 610-626-6900. The fax number for 32-2-51 Magisterial District is: 610-622-2751.

32-2-52

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-52 is Kelly A. Micozzie-Aguirre . The 32-2-52 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

409 Ashland Avenue, Suite 1
Secane, PA 19018

The phone number for 32-2-52 Magisterial District is: 610-622-8102. The fax number for 32-2-52 Magisterial District is: 610-622-8105.

32-2-53

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-53 is Elisa C. Lacianca . The 32-2-53 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

Suites 103 & 105
525 West Chester Pike
Havertown, PA 19083

The phone number for 32-2-53 Magisterial District is: 610-449-5189. The fax number for 32-2-53 Magisterial District is: 610-789-9167.

32-2-54

The Magisterial District Judge for 32-2-54 is James J. Merkins . The 32-2-54 Magisterial District courthouse is located at:

56 Powell Road
Springfield, PA 19064

The phone number for 32-2-54 Magisterial District is: 610-690-7668. The fax number for 32-2-54 Magisterial District is: 610-543-1920.

Delaware County Small Claims Court

Delaware County Small Claims Court

Delaware County Small Claims Court

Small Claims Court cases are handled in Pennsylvania at the Magisterial District Court. A party is not required to have an attorney for a small claims court case in a Magisterial District Court. The claim, or amount in controversy, cannot exceed $12,000.00. The plaintiff is also required to file a filing fee (which varies depending on how much money the plaintiff is asking for). In addition to the filing fee, the plaintiff will need to pay for the defendant(s) to be served. If the plaintiff prevails in the case, these costs can be recovered from the defendant.

Delaware County Magisterial District Court Small Claims Court Hearing

After the claim is filed, the clerk will usually set a hearing between 12 and 60 days of the filing of the claim. Prior to the hearing, you should gather all documents and papers related to your case. You should also arrange to have any witnesses that may support your position present on the date of the hearing so they can testify. On the day of the hearing the courtroom will include the following: court clerk, judge, plaintiff, defendant, and any witnesses that either side intends to call. Courtrooms are open to the public so there may be additional persons in the gallery (who may include additional parties if there is more than one case set for a hearing that day). At the beginning of the case (or calendar), the Magisterial District Judge will usually briefly explain the procedures used at the hearing. The plaintiff and defendant will both be sworn in to present testimony to the judge. The court will give the plaintiff a chance to present its case through testimony. During his or her testimony, the plaintiff should be sure to discuss and show to the court any documentary evidence (agreements, receipts) or other evidence (photographs or videos) to support the plaintiff’s case. The court will then give the Defendant a chance to ask questions to the plaintiff. Once the plaintiff is done, the witnesses that the plaintiff brought will also be given a chance to provide testimony. The defendant will have the chance to ask questions for these witnesses too. After the plaintiff is finished presenting his or her case, the court will allow the defendant a chance to present a defense (including testimony from the defendant). The defendant can also bring witnesses to provide testimony to the judge as well. The judge will usually make a decision at the hearing (or within five days).