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Home Self Help Cases for $15,000 or Less
Home Self Help Cases for $15,000 or Less
Cases for $15,000 or Less
These standard instructions are for informational purposes only and do not constitute legal advice about your case. If you choose to represent yourself, you are bound by the same rules and procedures as an attorney.

  • How do I file my case?
    • 1. General Information
      • You may file your Complaint in the County where the transaction occurred or the in County where the Defendant lives.

        The amount you are claiming cannot exceed $15,000.00.

        If you are the Defendant do not disregard the Complaint. A judgment could be entered against you, and the other party could start collection procedures.

        If you are the Plaintiff do not disregard an answer or counterclaim. A judgment could be entered against you, and the other party could start collection procedures.

        The Court cannot collect your judgment for you.

        Representation by an attorney may be required for Corporations, Limited Partnerships, Closely Held Entities, etc. Please see §13-1-127, C.R.S.

        For additional information, please review the relevant Colorado Rules of Civil Procedure Chapter 25.

        Complete instructions can be found in  JDF 110 Instructions for a County Court Civil Case (Money Demand).

         

    • 2. Filing my case
      • STEP 1: Fill out your forms.

        See JDF 110 Instructions for County Court Civil Cases for complete instructions on how to complete the required forms.

        Fill out CRCCP Form 2 County Civil Complaint. You are the Plaintiff and the person(s), company, or other entity you are suing is the Defendant. If you are filing against multiple Defendants in the same case, list all of them.

        Complete the caption box only on CRCCP Form 1 Summons and CRCCP Form 3 Answer Under Simplified Civil Procedure. You'll need to include all of the information in the box except for the Case Number, Division and Courtroom. The Court will provide this information when you file the case.

         

        STEP 2: File your documents with the Court.

        Take your completed forms to the courthouse and give them to the clerk to file your case. You'll need to provide the Court with two copies of the documents that you've completed in Step 1.

        The court will ask you to pay a filing fee. If you do not think you can afford it, you can request a waiver of the filing fee by completing form JDF 205 Motion to File Without Payment and Supporting Financial Affidavit, and the caption box of JDF 206 Finding and Order Concerning Payment of Fees. For more information go to the File Without Payment section.

         

        STEP 3: The clerk will set your case for a court date.

        The court date is the date you will return to court to set a trial date, inform the Court if an agreement has been reached, or for the Court to enter a judgment in your favor if the other party(ies) fail to appear for this court date. It will be scheduled no less than 14 days or no more than 63 days from the date you filed your case.

    • 3. Serve the Defendant(s)
      • STEP 4: Serve the Defendant(s)

        Information on how to serve the Defendant(s) can be found in the Service of Process information.

        The process server will return the original Summons and a completed JDF 98 Affidavit of Service to you. They need to be returned to the Court on or before your court date.

        Each Defendant must be served with the Complaint, Summons and Answer, so be sure to provide enough copies for the person that is serving the those documents.

        Service by mail or publication is allowed only if the Court approves it.

         

         

         

  • Forms
    • Forms
    • How do I issue a Subpoena?
      • A Subpoena must be served no later than 48 hours prior to the appearance date.

        A Subpoena to Appear is a document issued by the clerk at the request of one of the parties to require the appearance of a witness at a deposition, hearing or trial.

        A Subpoena to Produce (Subpoena Duces Tecum) is a document issued by the clerk at the request of one of the parties to require the witness to bring certain documents or evidence in their possession with them to a deposition, hearing or trial.

        A Court hearing or trial must be set prior to requesting the clerk to issue a Subpoena.

        For additional information, please review C.R.C.P 345.

        Instructions and Forms can be found by clicking on http://www.courts.state.co.us/Forms/Forms_List.cfm?Form_Type_ID=154

         

         

  • How do I collect my judgment?
    • General Information and Forms on Money Judgments
      • The Court cannot collect your money judgment for you.                                                                                                                                                 The Court must have awarded a money judgment in your favor.
        The money judgment is good for six years in County Court and for 20 years in District Court.
        For additional information, please review Colorado Rules of County Court Civil Procedure - Rule 369 and Rule 403 and Colorado Rules of Civil Procedure - Rule 69 and Rule 103.

        FORMS

        JDF 76       General Motion                                                                         

        JDF 77       General Order                                                                           

        JDF 89       Notice to Garnishee, Application of Funds to Judgment and Release of Funds to Judgment Creditor

        JDF 105     Pattern Interrogatories Under C.R.C.P. 369(g) - Individual

        JDF 108     Pattern Interrogatories Under C.R.C.P. 369(g) - Business                        

        JDF 111     Satisfaction of Judgment                                                         

        Form 26     Writ of Continuing Garnishment                                                 

        Form 27     Calculation of the Amount of Exempt Earnings                          

        Form 28     Objection to Calculation of Amount of Exempt Earnings            

        Form 29     Writ of Garnishment with Notice of Exemption and Pending Levy          

        Form 30     Claim of Exemption to Writ of Garnishment with Notice              

        Form 32     Writ of Garnishment - Judgment Debtor other than Natural Person

         

         

         

  • What do I do if I'm the one being sued?
    • Respond to the Summons
      • As a Defendant, you can file a CRCCP Form 3 Answer with the Court, stating in writing your defense(s).  You can also file a Counterclaim with any accusations against the Plaintiff. The Counterclaim is included in the CRCCP Form 3, as well.

        The purpose of the Answer is for you, the Defendant, to respond to the accusations in the complaint and to state any claims against the Plaintiff that  you might have.

        The Answer and/or Counterclaim can be filed with the Court on the date of your court appearance (listed on the Summons you were served) or before that date.

        There is a filing fee for the CRCCP Form 3 Answer. There is a different filing fee if you are filing an Answer AND a Counterclaim together on the CRCCP Form 3.  If you do not think you can afford it, you can request a waiver of the filing fee by completing form JDF 205 Motion to File Without Payment and Supporting Financial Affidavit, and the caption box of JDF 206 Finding and Order Concerning Payment of Fees.

        You may also request a trial by jury if the jury demand fee is paid, along with the Answer or Counterclaim fee. The decision to allow a jury trial is up to the judge to decide and the jury demand fee is non-refundable.

         

  • Day of Court and Possible Outcomes
    • 1. Day of Court
      • Day of Court

        Make sure that you appear on your court date. If you fail to appear, your case may be dismissed.

        It is important that you are on time or early for your court hearing and that you have all of your information with you.

        Please turn off your cell phone and respect all parties in the courtroom.

        You may be asked to speak to the other party before the court hearing to determine if the claim can be settled to avoid going to trial.

    • 2. Possible Outcomes
      • If both the Plaintiff and Defendant appear, then one of the following situations may occur:

        1. The Plaintiff and the Defendant can agree to talk and work out certain acceptable conditions that could include, for example, the payment of the claim, a payment plan, etc. The agreements, called a Stipulation, need to be put into writing on a JDF 75 Stipulation form, which you can get from the clerk's office. The JDF 75 Stipulation form must be signed in the presence of a court clerk or notary public.

        If a Stipulation is reached, a JDF 106 Stipulation Order must be filed along with the JDF 75 Stipulation form. Complete the caption box only on the JDF 106 Stipulation Order. The Court will complete the remaining sections and give you a signed copy.

        2. The Defendant can file an Answer disagreeing with the claim of the Plaintiff any time after being served with the Complaint, up to and including the first court date. The purpose of the Answer is for the Defendant to respond to the accusations in the Complaint and to state any claims against the Plaintiff that the Defendant might have. The Defendant may file an Answer on the court date as an opportunity to discuss the issues with the Plaintiff or his/her attorney in the courtroom before the case proceeds.

        3. The Plaintiff can ask for an extension of the court date by filing a JDF 76 General Motion if the Plaintiff feels that further discussion with the Defendant is necessary or if the Defendant is given another opportunity to fulfill a pre-arranged agreement. This can create an opportunity for everyone to agree without a trial.

        4. A court or jury trial can be requested and set for a future date.

         

        If the Plaintiff appears and the Defendant does not appear, and an Answer or Counterclaim was not filed by the Defendant, and the Plaintiff has followed the procedure correctly, the next steps for the Plaintiff are:

        1. Complete JDF 104 Motion for Entry of Judgment.

        2. Complete the caption box only on JDF 107 Order for Entry of Judgment with Issuance of Interrogatories. The Court will complete the remaining sections on the form and give you a signed copy.

        3. The Court may award a money judgment to the Plaintiff(s).

         

        If the Defendant appears and the Plaintiff does not appear, one of the following situations may occur:

        1. If a Counterclaim has been filed and personally served to the Plaintiff, the Court may award judgment to the Defendant.

        2. If no Counterclaim has been filed, the Court may dismiss the case.

  • How do I file a Motion to Set Aside Default Judgment?
    • How to file a Motion to Set Aside a Default Judgment
      • A Defendant can file JDF 78 Motion to Set Aside Default Judgment asking the Court for one more chance to provide information on the case before the Plaintiff can start a money or property collection process. The Defendant must also file CRCCP 3 Answer Under Simplified Procedure (including any Counterclaims and or Crossclaims) with the Court at the same time along with paying the filing fee. After the Court reviews the JDF 78 Motion and the CRCCP 3 Answer, an additional hearing may be scheduled by the Court to determine the outcome of the case.

  • How do I file a Contempt Citation?
    • How to file a Contempt Citation.
      • General Information 

        You must file your documents in the case in which the Court awarded a money judgment in your favor.

        A money judgment from County Court is good for six years from the judgment date.

        A money judgment from District Court is good for 20 years from the judgment date.

        You may file if the Judgment Debtor has not complied with the Court Order, e.g. failed to respond to interrogatories following service or has filed an answer that does not adequately respond to the questions.

        The Court cannot collect your money judgment for you.

        For additional information, please review the Colorado Rules of County Court Civil Procedure – Rule 369 and 407 or Colorado Rules of Civil Procedure – Rule 69 and 107.

        Instructions and forms to file for a Contempt Citation.

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