Delaware does not have Small Claims Courts. Cases are heard by the Justice of the Peace.
- Statutes: Delaware Code Annotated, Title 10, Sections 9301-9590.
- Dollar Limit: $15,000.
- Where To Sue: Any county.
- Service: Certified mail, return receipt requested; personal service by constable or authorized process server.
- Hearing Date: Set by court.
- Attorneys: Allowed.
- Transfer: No provision.
- Appeals: By either side for new trial; to Court of Common Pleas within 15 days.
- Special provisions: Jury trial generally not allowed. Defendant must file written answer within 15 days after service is made, or may lose by default. Interest due on any cause of action may be added to the claim, even if adding it will make the amount exceed $15,000. Counterclaims: If defendant's counterclaim against plaintiff exceeds $15,000, plaintiff can still pursue the counterclaim in Justice of the Peace Court since there is no provision for transfer to another court. If defendant wins the counterclaim, two options are available: (1) the court will note the outcome on the record and defendant can prosecute the cause of action in higher court, or (2) defendant may waive the excess over $15,000 and accept $15,000 as the judgment.
Note: This section outlines the special rules that apply to the small claims courts of all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Filing fees are not listed because they vary greatly and change frequently. Because court rules may change at any time, always check with the clerk of the small claims court to verify the accuracy of the information given for your state.