Published On: Wed, Jun 13th, 2018

Minister promotes small claims procedure

Minister Cornelius de Weever - Photo by Roland BrysonPHILIPSBURG – With the assistance of Judge Peter Lemaire, the Justice department is developing a standard form for the small claims court procedure. The form will be available on the website of the court starting in September, Justice Minister Cornelius de Weever said at Wednesday’s council of Ministers press briefing.

According to the minister, the small claims court procedure is in place but not very well known among citizens. The standard form will be available in English, Dutch and Papiamento, while other languages are still under consideration.

The procedure is open for claims up to 10,000 guilders and the initial court fee is 50 guilders, or 15 percent of the claim once collected.

“This procedure is open for citizens and for companies and no lawyer is required,” De Weever said.

The court administrator will send a copy of a filed claim to the debtor who has then three weeks to respond. If there is no response, or if there is no substantial defense, the court will issue a verdict. Otherwise parties can come to court to explain their points of view.

These court hearings could end in a amicable agreement and if that does not happen, the court will render verdict in six weeks.