Cumberland County Small Claims Court
What Actions are Normally Filed in Cumberland Small Claims Court?
- Breach of contract (written or oral)
- Action for the Return of a Down Payment
- Damage to a Motor Vehicle
- Damage or Loss of Property
- Consumer complaints of faulty workmanship or defective merchandise
- Payment for labor
- Checks Written Without Funds in the Account
- Actionf or Back Rent
- Recovery of Security Deposit (Special Note: Can ask for up to and including $5,000 for recovery of a security deposit)
Claims That Should NOT be filed in Small Claims:
- You cannot file an action alleging malpractice in Small Claims Court
- You cannot file an action for support (child) or alimony.
- Probate matters (you are claiming you are owed under a will, trust, or other estate instrument)
Cumberland County Special Civil Part
The Special Civil Part handles cases where the amount in controversy (amount being sought by plaintiff) is more than $3,000, but less than or equal to $15,000). The rules are more formal than in small claims. Note: If your case exceeds $15,000, it needs to be filed in the Law Division of Cumberland Superior Court.
Small Claims Court is one of three sections of Cumberland Superior Court’s Special Civil Part (the other two sections are Landlord / Tenant and regular Special Civil Part). Small Claims cases allow one party to sue another for monetary damages. Procedures for small claims court in New Jersey are much simpler than in other courts. This makes it that a non-attorney is able to file a case and present it quickly and without needing to learn lots of legal terminology and procedures. Generally, people file their own cases and represent themselves in court. A party can only ask the court for monetary relief not exceeding $3,000. If a party has a claim more than $3,000, but less than $15,000.01, than the case should be filed in the regular Special Civil Part. Special Note: You can file in small claims court if your claim exceeds $3,000 but you waive or forego your right to recover money in excess of the $3,000 limit (you also cannot file an additional action to recover the excess).
Ombudsman for Cumberland County Small Claims Court
Each County has an Ombudsman assigned to assist small claims litigants (amongst other responsibilities). Part of their job responsibilities is to assist you with questions with your small claims court case. The ombudsman for Cumberland County is Sandra Lopez, Esq.. They can be reached at 856-453-4538. The fax number is 856-455-9490. Their email address is CumOmbudsman.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Caution: A minor cannot file an action in small claims court on their own behalf. He or she must have their parent or guardian file it on their behalf.
Appeals from Cumberland Small Claim Court Rulings
If a party doesn’t agree with a decision on a small claims court case, an appeal may be filed to the Appellate Division of the Superior Court within 45 days of the judgment. You need to file a Notice of Appeal, a copy of the Request for Transcript, and a Case Information Statement within the 45 days with the Clerk of the Appellate Division located at the Hughes Justice Complex, Trenton. You also need to provide copies to all the parties to the case (usually the opposing party or parties), the clerk of the Special Civil Part where your case was first heard, and the judge who decided the case. You must also pay a $200 filing fee with the Notice of Appeal and deposit an additional $300 with the Clerk of the Appellate Division within 30 days of the Notice of Appeal. This deposit can be used to pay settlement costs or court costs associated with the appeal if you lose on appeal. This deposit is returned to you if you prevail. Additionally, you need to obtain a copy of the transcript from the original trial. The transcript is the official record of the proceedings and should have everything that was said at the trial. Transcripts can be very expensive. You are usually ordered to pay the estimate of the cost of making the transcrip or charged $300 for each day or partial day of trial. Because of the expense of an appeal, it is very important to ensure you are ready and prepared for the original trial – to save you the time and headaches of appealing an incorrect ruling. If you have additional questions or want more information regarding appeals of New Jersey small claims court cases, you should contact the Clerk’s Office of the Appellate Division at (609) 292-4822.
Areas Served by the Cumberland County Small Claims Court
The Cumberland Court serves the following areas: Vineland, Millville, Bridgeton, Maurice River Township, Upper Deerfield Township, Fairfield Township, Commercial Township, Hopewell Township, Lawrence Township, Deerfield Township, Downe Township, Stow Creek Township, Greenwich, and Shiloh.
Can I file my small claims case in Cumberland County?
A case may be filed in a County if at least one defendant resides there (or the business is located there). A business is located there is the business is actually conducting business in that county (“doing business”) or it is where the business’s registered office is located. For example, if you entered into a contract with someone and they live in Cumberland County, you can file the case in this County. If there are several defendants in a case, it is persmissible to file the action in any County where a defendant resides. If no defendants in the case live in a New Jersey County, the claim needs to be filed in the County where the action arose.
Location of Cumberland County Small Claims Court
The Cumberland County Small Claims Court is located at:Special Civil Part 60 West Broad Street Bridgeton, NJ 08302
The Court’s telephone number is (856) 453-4350.