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Ruhl Votes To Raise Monetary Limit In Small Claims Court


February 25, 2016 - 2:24 PM



Rep. Margaret Ann Ruhl



COLUMBUS - State Representative Margaret Ann Ruhl (R-Mount Vernon) voted in favor of legislation that doubles the monetary cap in small claims courts during yesterday’s session.


House Bill 387, sponsored by Cincinnati-area lawmakers Reps. Lou Terhar and Jonathan Dever, increases from $3,000 to $6,000 the amount of money that is available for recovery in small claims divisions of county and municipal courts, marking the first time in nearly 20 years that the cap has been raised. The adjustment also puts Ohio on par with both the national average and surrounding states.


“This increase in the dollar limit will help small businesses and individuals recoup some of their losses,” Ruhl said. “Therefore, they will not having to increase their costs by possible hiring of an attorney.”


The previous $3,000 cap made it difficult for small businesses to recover losses in small claims courts, especially after additional court costs were factored in. Similarly, going through higher-level courts is not an option for many businesses due to high attorney fees. HB 387 both preserves the role of small claims courts being a quicker, less expensive alternative, while still allowing businesses to recoup losses when seeking monetary recoveries in civil disputes.


HB 387 now heads to the Ohio Senate for further consideration.

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