Do You Need a Debt Collection Attorney if Your Claim is $5,000.00 or Less Against a New York City Business?

There is good news for companies with their main office in New York State; you may not need a debt collection attorney to collect your money. If you are owed $5,000.00 or less from a business operating in any of the five (5) boroughs of New York City, you can sue your non-paying customer in Commercial Small Claims Court.



Advantages to bringing a Small Claims case are:

  • Quick Resolution. In Small Claims Court, you are able to get a Court date faster than if you were to hire an attorney and sue in Civil or State Court. After the Judge or Arbitrator has heard your case, he/she will mail you the verdict.
  • You Represent Yourself. You do not need an attorney, even corporations can represent themselves.
  • Cost Effective. Your attorney tries to have settlement include attorney’s fees; however, it’s not always possible. Using Small Claims Court saves you money on expenses you may have spent on an attorney. Also, trying a case in Civil or Supreme Court in New York City will cost you much more money in time and very often it is not cost effective due to the size of the case.

Some disadvantages are:

  • Personal Appearance. While you don’t need to bring an attorney, New York City does require you to appear in person with a witness.
  • Need Documentation. The Court requires you to bring supporting documentation to prove your case on the assigned Court date.

As experienced NYC debt collection attorneys, FFGN recommends using Small Claims Court instead of regular Supreme or Civil Court whenever possible. To download a summons or for more information on Commercial Small Claims Court visit the NY Courts.