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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Attorney
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I loaned someone some money($6200) and they have not paid me

Customer Question

I loaned someone some money($6200) and they have not paid me back. I have copies of the checks and text messages concerning repayment. Can someone assist me without costing upwards of $2000.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Hi,

My name is ***** ***** I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that you're not getting repaid.

A lot of lawyers don't take cases involving small amounts of money because it winds up not being worth it - the cost of the lawyer could wind up being almost as much as the judgment. The only way to find someone to represent you is to call around and ask what it would cost. Many lawyers charge by the hour for breach of contract - the fees could very quickly exceed the amount you're suing for.

However, it could be worth finding a lawyer to send a demand letter for a couple hundred dollars, if you think this person would pay you back after getting it. That could help.

You have two other options:
1. File in Small Claims Court and request the maximum of $5,000, even though you are owed more. Small Claims is designed to be user-friendly, the fees are low, you don't need a lawyer, and they have forms you can fill out to open the case.
http://www.courts.state.md.us/district/forms/civil/dccv001br.pdf

2. Draft a Complaint on your own and file in District Court, which doesn't have the $5,000 cap. A Complaint is a short and plain statement of the facts - essentially, it would have to lay out what happened, how much was loaned, when, when you were supposed to get repaid, and what payments, if any, you've received. Then you tell the judge how much you're asking for, including interest and court costs.

There are sites like www.legalzoom.com and www.uslegalforms.com that may be able to help you create your own Complaint.

This chart may help you decide by reviewing other differences between the courts.
http://www.courts.state.md.us/legalhelp/smallclaims.html

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