Jurisdiction: The jurisdiction of this court is confined to cases for recovery of money, (includes tort claims Svanes v. Grenz, 492 N.W.2d 576 (N.D. 1992)) or the cancellation of any agreement involving material fraud, deception, misrepresentation, or false promise, when the value of the agreement or the amount claimed by the plaintiff or the defendant does not exceed ten thousand dollars.
No discovery, informal hearing: No formal pleadings other than the claim affidavit and order for appearance may be required, and the hearing and disposition of actions must be informal.
Defendant may file counterclaim of $10,000 or less. The compulsory counterclaim rule does not apply to counterclaims in excess of ten thousand dollars.
No jury trial is allowed. A trial by jury is not allowed in small claims court. N.D. Cent.Code, § 27-08.1-03.
Judgment: At the hearing the Court may take action to assist in the collection of the judgment. “After the court has found that money is owing by any party to the proceeding, the court may, in the presence of the prevailing party, inquire of the debtor as to plans for payment of the debt. The court may examine the debtor concerning the property owned by the debtor, at the hearing, as would be made under chapter 28-25. The examination may be made without first having issued an execution against the property of the debtor and without further notice as otherwise provided in chapter 28-25.” “The court shall enter a written judgment indicating its decision on all cases filed with the court on the basis of the evidence presented. A judgment must be entered even if either party fails to appear at the hearing. The court may award the costs of the action to the prevailing party. For purposes of enforcement and execution, a judgment of the small claims court has the same force, effects, and attributes of a judgment of the district court.” N.D. Cent. Code, § 27-08.1-05.
Plaintiff’s claim is subject to dismissal with prejudice and “the plaintiff waives the right to appeal to any other court from the decision of the small claims court.”
“The defendant waives the right to appeal from the decision of the small claims court upon receiving the order for appearance as required herein, unless the defendant elects to remove the action from the small claims court to district court.” “If the defendant elects to remove the action from small claims court to district court, the district court shall award attorney’s fees to a prevailing plaintiff.” N.D. Cent. Code, § 27-08.1-04.
There is a Montana case that states if the small court procedures deny the right to a jury trial then the statute is unconstitutional. ORTH CENTRAL SERVICES, INC., vs KENNETY M. HAFDAHL, 625 P.2d 56; (Mont. 1981).