Magistrate Court- Small Claims Cases

Magistrate Court And Small Claims Cases

In Georgia, magistrate court cases are small claims and are limited to cases in which the amount sought is $15,000 or less.

Claims in magistrate court are heard and decided by a magistrate judge without a jury.

Frequently, these cases relate to credit card debt or other small claims for money.

Just because a claim is brought in magistrate court does not change the burden of proof. The plaintiffs still have to prove their claim.

Common Types of Cases Handled in Small Claims Court

  • Dispossessory [Evictions]
  • A landlord not returning a security deposit
  • Gym contract disputes
  • Credit card lawsuits
  • Overcharges for car repairs or faulty work
  • Unlawful eviction notices
  • Construction lawsuits
  • Pet disputes
  • Debt Collection Lawsuits

Do I Need a Lawyer for Small Claims Court?

Whether you need an attorney in magistrate court depends on your specific situation. Either way, you may want to consult a lawyer.

You may wish to have a consultation in which you discuss the facts and circumstances of the case with a neutral party. In this manner, you can get the lawyer’s opinion about the strength of your case. You may also learn about weaknesses in your case that you may not have considered.

A lawyer may advise whether or not you should pursue the action against the other party. They may discuss the problems with collecting on a judgment even if you do win. This can help you make a more informed decision about the likelihood of actually collecting on a judgment.

A lawyer may also be able to assist plaintiffs and counter-defendants with the preparation of evidence. They may describe the process involved in getting evidence admitted in court. They can also point out if some types of evidence may not be admissible.

When you should hire an attorney

  • When the other party has a lawyer in small claims court

If you find out an attorney is representing the other party in a magistrate case and you aren’t, you probably need a lawyer, too.

After all, you don’t want the defendant having what seems like the unfair advantage of professional help.

  • When facing a corporation or business in small claims court

If you are going against a corporation or business [such as a credit card company or a debt collector] in magistrate court, it’s prudent to hire a lawyer if possible.


If you are dealing with a claim in magistrate court, contact Diwan Law, the credit card defense attorney, to discuss your legal options. Call Diwan Law, 404-635-6883, for a free consultation today.

Diwan Law Handles Cases in:

Gwinnett County Magistrate Court; Dekalb County Magistrate Court; Cobb County Magistrate Court; Fulton County Magistrate Court; Henry County Magistrate Court; and most other magistrate courts in Georgia.