The small claims division was established by the Ohio General Assembly in 1967 and under current law each county and municipal court is required to establish a small claims division. A small claims division has jurisdiction in civil actions for the recovery of taxes and money only, for amounts not exceeding $3,000, not including interest and cost. And, our members are encouraged by efforts to increase the maximum dollar amount to $6,000 for all sizes of business through HB 387.
Adjusting the maximum level small claims courts have jurisdiction over will allow for additional business owners to participate in a process that was not available to them in years past. In addition, it would provide the business community with another useful tool at their disposal to recover losses and debts when it does not make good economic sense to go through a higher court due to the costs of attorneys’ fees, etc. Our business owners decided to support HB 387 because it will help them: contain legal costs, save time and effort that could be better spent managing their businesses, and utilize a more informal, expeditious, and inexpensive means to pursue claims for smaller sums of money through the small claims division.
While this issue may not individually command headline news, it makes a larger statement about Ohio’s desire to find ways to continue to eliminate barriers for businesses in our state. HB 387 is a step in the right direction to foster a strong, vibrant business community in Ohio.
Read our testimony in support of HB 387.