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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 111537
Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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A car rental firm in San Diego threatens to sue us for $800

Customer Question

A car rental firm in San Diego threatens to sue us for $800 for damage they claim occured on the panels under the front bumper of a car we rented from them. We do not think we caused the damage and have resisted paying. They say they are taking it to a small claims court in california. We live in Pa. Can they cause us any grief?
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 6 months ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.If your rental contract said that the jurisdiction would be CA, you need to read the contract, then they can sue you in CA and that court would have proper jurisdiction over you I am afraid. If the contract does not say that CA would be the jurisdiction of the contract, THEN the CA small claims court has no personal jurisdiction and no long arm jurisdiction to serve you in PA and you could seek to have the case dismissed in CA and make them come to PA to sue you. This all depends on the choice of jurisdiction in the contract you signed that you need to read.If there is a jurisdiction clause saying CA is jurisdiction, then if you do not answer, they can get a default judgment against you and then can try to come after you to collect in PA by filing a motion to enforce foreign judgment and seek to get the PA court to enforce the judgment to collect against you.

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