Today every state in USA has a small claims court where you can sue for small amounts of money. The maximum award varies depending on the state. Filling a suit in small claims court is very inexpensive. Attorneys are not required (in some states in USA they are not allowed) and there are few time-consuming delays. Filling a suit in small claims court involves three general steps.

First, call or go to the local courthouse to discuss your case with the court clerk. The clerk will be able to determine if the court can handle your claim. If so, you’ll fill in the forms and pay a small filing fee.

Second, prepare for your case in advance. In most states the court will notify the defendant of the date and place of the hearing. Then you should gather all the evidence, necessary to present your case. This includes receipts, letters, canceled checks, sales slips and estimates of repair. You should also find witnesses.

Third, be on time for court on the date scheduled for the hearing. Once your hearing begins, the judge will ask you to tell your story. Do this by presenting your facts, witnesses and any evidence you may have. Don’t get emotional. Be prepared for questions from the judge.

Слова и выражения:

sue (v) – предъявлять иск, преследовать, возбуждать судебное дело

attorney (n, С) – юрист, поверенный, адвокат

suit (n, С) — прошение

fee (n, С) – плата, гонорар

defendant (n, С) – подсудимый, ответчик, обвиняемый

evidence (n, С/U)улика, свидетельство, доказательство

lip (n, С/U) – ошибка, описка, опечатка, промах, скольжение

II. Ответьте на следующие вопросы.

1. Where can you sue for small amounts of money in the USA?

2. Is it expansive to fill the suit in small claim?

3. Are attorneys required in small claims courts?

4. What are small claims courts?

5. What are three general steps in small claims court?

6. What does the necessary evidence of the case include?

7.What can you say about the third step of the claims courts?

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