Consumers may sue businesses that may have engaged in unfair or deceptive acts or practices against them. For claims of actual damages under $7,000, a consumer may file a legal action in the Small Claims session of the District Court, Boston Municipal Court, or if the claim involves housing issues, in the housing court Small Claims session.
The filing fee for small claims $500 and under is $40.
The filing fee for claims of $501 to $2000 is $50.
The filing fee for claims of $2001 to $5000 is $100.
The filing fee for claims of $5001 to $7000 is $150.
The filing fee for claims of property damage of more than $7000 arising from an automobile accident is $150.
You will pay the filing fee to the court when you file your Small Claim. Attorneys are not always needed in Small Claims Court, but you are permitted to hire an attorney if you wish. In a Small Claims proceeding, the case may be resolved by a mediator, or if not, a trial will be held before a magistrate.
The Massachusetts Court System website provides extensive information about Small Claims Court and the process. For detailed information about Massachusetts laws governing Small Claims Court, visit the Massachusetts Trial Court Law Libraries website.