Consumer Legal Forms Tips

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What types of claims are handled in small claims courts?

Types of Complaints Handled in Small Claims Court

Small claims courts provide consumers with an affordable option for collecting relatively small debts owed to them. Many different types of consumer complaints can be handled in small claims court.

Small Claims courts can assist with Claims Related to:

  • Breach of contract
  • Return of down payment
  • Property damage
  • Loss of property
  • Defective merchandise
  • Faulty workmanship
  • Collection of payments owed
  • Non-sufficient fund (NSF) claims
  • Back Rent
  • Security Deposit returns
  • Other consumer claims falling within the court's scope

Small claims courts do not handle the following types of claims, regardless of the amount of damages requested:

  • Alimony Child Support
  • Probate Matters
  • Professional Malpractice

Before filing small claims forms, make sure you are clear on the limits on damage recovery in your jurisdiction. If you feel you are owed more money than the maximum allowed award, you may want to consider filing your complaint in a higher court.

   
What information needs to be included in a complaint letter?

How to Write a Complaint Letter

At one time or another, most consumers find themselves in the position of needing to know how to write a complaint letter. If your purchase an item that is defective or does not perform as promised, the first step in recovering damages is usually writing and sending a complaint letter to the vendor from whom you purchased the item and/or the manufacturer.

Complaint Letters Should Include the Following:

  • Name of specific person for whom the letter is intended
  • Details about item purchased (make, model, etc)
  • Purchase transaction details (when and where purchased, purchase price, etc.)
  • Specific complaint (not functional, does not do what it is supposed to do, etc.)
  • Reasons for dissatisfaction
  • Request for corrective action (refund, replacement, etc.)
  • Your complete contact information
  • Other relevant information

It is very important to include all relevant information in a complaint letter. The best way to approach creating a complaint letter is by using a preformatted complaint letter template.

   
Why should I bother to write a complaint letter to a company that didn’t do what it was supposed to do?

Reasons to Write a Complaint Letter

Consumer transactions often don't go as planned. If you are dissatisfied with a product you purchase or a service you receive, it is a good idea to write a complaint letter. Depending on the nature of your complaint, you may want to send your complaint letter to the vendor from whom you purchased the product, the manufacturer, the Better Business Bureau in your community and/or any applicable regulatory agencies.

Writing a complaint letter can serve a number of constructive purposes, including the following:

  • If you don't let the company know you are dissatisfied, the organization doesn't have an opportunity to correct the problem.
  • Grumbling to yourself about being unhappy with a product or service won't lead to the problem being fixed, but asking for corrective action might have a positive outcome.
  • Most companies genuinely want to improve and appreciate feedback from their customers.
  • Even if the company doesn't take action, you are likely to feel better once you vent your frustration.
  • Notifying a company about a safety hazard associated with a product can protect you and other consumers from future harm related to the product.
  • Reporting unethical business practices to companies can prevent consumers from being victimized.
  • In the event that your complaint escalates to the point where legal action must be taken, records of complaint letters can demonstrate that you exercised due diligence in trying to correct the problem on your own.

Writing a complaint letter doesn't have to be a difficult endeavor.

   
Why should I bother to write a complaint letter to a company that didn’t do what it was supposed to do?

Reasons to Write a Complaint Letter

Consumer transactions often don't go as planned. If you are dissatisfied with a product you purchase or a service you receive, it is a good idea to write a complaint letter. Depending on the nature of your complaint, you may want to send your complaint letter to the vendor from whom you purchased the product, the manufacturer, the Better Business Bureau in your community and/or any applicable regulatory agencies.

Writing a complaint letter can serve a number of constructive purposes, including the following:

  • If you don't let the company know you are dissatisfied, the organization doesn't have an opportunity to correct the problem.
  • Grumbling to yourself about being unhappy with a product or service won't lead to the problem being fixed, but asking for corrective action might have a positive outcome.
  • Most companies genuinely want to improve and appreciate feedback from their customers.
  • Even if the company doesn't take action, you are likely to feel better once you vent your frustration.
  • Notifying a company about a safety hazard associated with a product can protect you and other consumers from future harm related to the product.
  • Reporting unethical business practices to companies can prevent consumers from being victimized.
  • In the event that your complaint escalates to the point where legal action must be taken, records of complaint letters can demonstrate that you exercised due diligence in trying to correct the problem on your own.

Writing a complaint letter doesn't have to be a difficult endeavor. Using one of the free to try complaint letter template forms available online makes it easy to write an effective complaint letter that includes all necessary information.

   
What information needs to be included in a complaint letter?

How to Write a Complaint Letter

At one time or another, most consumers find themselves in the position of needing to know how to write a complaint letter. If your purchase an item that is defective or does not perform as promised, the first step in recovering damages is usually writing and sending a complaint letter to the vendor from whom you purchased the item and/or the manufacturer.

Complaint Letters Should Include the Following:

  • Name of specific person for whom the letter is intended
  • Details about item purchased (make, model, etc)
  • Purchase transaction details (when and where purchased, purchase price, etc.)
  • Specific complaint (not functional, does not do what it is supposed to do, etc.)
  • Reasons for dissatisfaction
  • Request for corrective action (refund, replacement, etc.)
  • Your complete contact information
  • Other relevant information

It is very important to include all relevant information in a complaint letter. The best way to approach creating a complaint letter is by using a preformatted complaint letter template.

   
What types of claims are handled in small claims courts?

Types of Complaints Handled in Small Claims Court

Small claims courts provide consumers with an affordable option for collecting relatively small debts owed to them. Many different types of consumer complaints can be handled in small claims court.

Small Claims courts can assist with Claims Related to:

  • Breach of contract
  • Return of down payment
  • Property damage
  • Loss of property
  • Defective merchandise
  • Faulty workmanship
  • Collection of payments owed
  • Non-sufficient fund (NSF) claims
  • Back Rent
  • Security Deposit returns
  • Other consumer claims falling within the court's scope

Small claims courts do not handle the following types of claims, regardless of the amount of damages requested:

  • Alimony Child Support
  • Probate Matters
  • Professional Malpractice

Before filing small claims forms, make sure you are clear on the limits on damage recovery in your jurisdiction. If you feel you are owed more money than the maximum allowed award, you may want to consider filing your complaint in a higher court.

   
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Guru Spotlight
Barbara Gibson