Representative Kay L. McIff proposes the following substitute bill:




Chief Sponsor: Todd Weiler

House Sponsor: Kay L. McIff


8     General Description:
9          This bill raises the jurisdictional limit of small claims court for breach of contract
10     actions to $12,500.
11     Highlighted Provisions:
12          This bill:
13          ▸     raises the jurisdictional limit for small claims court for breach of contract actions to
14     $12,500.
15     Money Appropriated in this Bill:
16          None
17     Other Special Clauses:
18          None
19     Utah Code Sections Affected:
20     AMENDS:
21          78A-8-102, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2013, Chapter 368

23     Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
24          Section 1. Section 78A-8-102 is amended to read:
25          78A-8-102. Small claims -- Defined -- Counsel not necessary -- Breach of contract

26     actions -- Removal from district court -- Deferring multiple claims of one plaintiff --
27     Supreme Court to govern procedures.
28          (1) A small claims action is a civil action:
29          (a) for the recovery of money where:
30          (i) the amount claimed does not exceed $10,000 including attorney fees but exclusive
31     of court costs and interest; and
32          (ii) the defendant resides or the action of indebtedness was incurred within the
33     jurisdiction of the court in which the action is to be maintained; [or]
34          (b) involving interpleader under Rule 22 of the Utah Rules of Civil Procedure, in
35     which the amount claimed does not exceed $10,000 including attorney fees but exclusive of
36     court costs and interest; or
37          (c) involving breach of contract, other than contracts subject to Title 31A, Insurance
38     Code, in which the amount claimed does not exceed $12,500 including attorney fees but
39     exclusive of court costs and interest.
40          (2) (a) A defendant in an action filed in the district court that meets the requirement of
41     Subsection (1)(a)(i) may remove, if agreed to by the plaintiff, the action to a small claims court
42     within the same district by:
43          (i) giving notice, including the small claims filing number, to the district court of
44     removal during the time afforded for a responsive pleading; and
45          (ii) paying the applicable small claims filing fee.
46          (b) No filing fee may be charged to a plaintiff to appeal a judgment on an action
47     removed under Subsection (2)(a) to the district court where the action was originally filed.
48          (3) The judgment in a small claims action may not exceed $10,000, or $12,500 for
49     breach of contract as provided in Subsection (1)(c), including attorney fees but exclusive of
50     court costs and interest.
51          (4) Counter claims may be maintained in small claims actions if the counter claim
52     arises out of the transaction or occurrence which is the subject matter of the plaintiff's claim. A
53     counter claim may not be raised for the first time in the trial de novo of the small claims action.
54          (5) Claims involving property damage to a motor vehicle may be maintained in small
55     claims actions, and any removal or appeal thereof, without limiting the ability of a plaintiff to
56     make a claim for bodily injury against the same defendant in a separate legal action. In the

57     event that property damage claim is brought as a small claims action:
58          (a) any liability decision in an original small claims action or appeal thereof is not
59     binding in any separate legal action for bodily injury; and
60          (b) no additional property damage claims can be brought in any separate legal action
61     for bodily injury.
62          (6) (a) With or without counsel, persons or corporations may litigate actions on behalf
63     of themselves:
64          (i) in person; or
65          (ii) through authorized employees.
66          (b) A person or corporation may be represented in an action by an individual who is
67     not an employee of the person or corporation and is not licensed to practice law only in
68     accordance with the Utah rules of small claims procedure as promulgated by the Supreme
69     Court.
70          (7) If a person or corporation other than a municipality or a political subdivision of the
71     state files multiple small claims in any one court, the clerk or judge of the court may remove all
72     but the initial claim from the court's calendar in order to dispose of all other small claims
73     matters. Claims so removed shall be rescheduled as permitted by the court's calendar.
74          (8) Small claims matters shall be managed in accordance with simplified rules of
75     procedure and evidence promulgated by the Supreme Court.