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Hawaii Court Records

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What are Hawaii Small Claims Cases and Class Action Lawsuits?

Small Claims cases are civil disputes whose monetary value or compensation is not more than $5,000 minus the costs and interest payable as decided by the court. But if a defendant files a counterclaim whose monetary value is above $40,000, including charge and interest that may be awarded by the court, the court may not preside over the matter. In the State of Hawaii, the district court’s Small Claims Division is responsible for hearing small claims cases. Meanwhile, a class-action lawsuit is a group action of injured or wronged people against a body, corporation, or organization. In Hawaii, most class action lawsuits are filed by the state’s attorney general at the State’s Supreme Court or the Federal District Court.

What is a Class Action Lawsuit in Hawaii?

A class-action lawsuit is one that makes it possible for a lot of people (plaintiffs) who have been wronged to resolve similar claims against a body or an organization (defendant). There are four main types of class actions;

  1. Consumer class action lawsuit; this is when a company provides the consumer with false information about the product. This lawsuit can also be when a consumer group believes that the company is exploitative when charging or billing fees.
  2. Security class action lawsuit; this is a case where a company misleads shareholders concerning statements of earnings. This lawsuit can also be a case where the company withholds dividend payments.
  3. Employment class action lawsuit: this is where a company disobeys labor laws, and then the employees are placed under an unethical condition of service. For instance, unpaid overtime, disregard for safety rules caused physical injury on workers, outstanding remuneration, Etc.
  4. Product liability class lawsuit; this lawsuit includes product defect cases, for instance, a drug that causes more harm. This lawsuit can also be about a product that causes personal injury to the user.

How do I File a Claim in a Hawaii Small Claims Court?

To file a claim in the State of Hawaii, a petitioner may visit the office of the court clerk of the small claims court, or the petitioner can pick up the small claim form online. A small claim is a statement of a petitioner’s claim against the other person or body. After obtaining the form, the petitioner has to fill the forms either by typing or handwriting. When writing with a pen, ensure that the information is written legibly. Before submitting the documents, notarize the forms, this can be done at the bank or a courier store. After notarizing the forms, make at least two copies. After that, the files can be taken to the court clerk’s office for filing for $35. A petitioner can apply for an Ex Parte Relief From Cost to have the $35 cost waived.

Do I Need a Small Claims Lawyer?

A small claims court is different from a regular court, such that court decisions are made speedily, and all the customary courtroom formalities are eradicated. Most of the time, the role of a lawyer in a small claim case is advisory. A lawyer can help assess the case to point out which argument is relevant and which evidence is not admissible in court. A lawyer can also help in preparing a claim against the defendant or the plaintiff.

How do Class Action Lawsuits Work in Hawaii?

The state’s attorney general is mostly responsible for most class action lawsuits, especially if the claim is unfair, deceptive acts and practices. But in a case where private persons file a class action, the procedure as stated in HRS. §480–13.3 is that the filed copy of the petition, including all documents relating to the lawsuit, must be served on the state’s attorney general within seven days of filing the petition. The petition remains under seal for at least 60 days to allow the attorney general to probe further by requesting more documents. After 60 days, the attorney general decides whether the state is to proceed with the class action or not. When the state moves with the class action, then the claim filed by the class representative will be dismissed. However, if the attorney general allows the class representative to proceed with the lawsuit, the defendant is served and given 20 days to respond to the petition. A class action is usually complicated; most times, it takes longer than a single party suit.

Is a Class Action Better Than a Single Party Suit?

A class action is better than a single party suit in a civil case where a group of persons was wronged or injured.

Records that are considered public may be accessible from some third-party websites. These websites often make searching more straightforward, as they are not limited by geographic location, and search engines on these sites may help when starting a search for specific or multiple records. To begin using such a search engine on a third-party or government website, interested parties usually must provide:

  • The name of the person involved in the record, unless said person is a juvenile
  • The location or assumed location of the document or person involved

Third-party sites are independent of government sources and are not sponsored by these government agencies. Because of this, record availability on third-party websites may vary.

What Cases are Heard by Small Claims Courts in Hawaii?

The small claims court division of the district court in Hawaii has jurisdiction over the following matters;

  • Criminal offenses that involve sentencing of not more than one year
  • Civil disputes and issues like debts, interests, or monetary compensation that is not more than $40,000
  • Landlord-Tenant issues, security deposit between a landlord and a tenant, return of leased or rented property valued at $5,000 or less. Etc.
  • Specific performance issues whose value is not more than $20,000
  • Harassment, domestic violence, and all kinds of little misdemeanors
  • Appeals from the administration of motor vehicle registration, Etc.
  • Damages or repossession of unauthorized eradication of shopping carts or baskets from the premises of a business entity.
  • Criminal Records
  • Arrests Records
  • Warrants
  • Driving Violations
  • Inmate Records
  • Felonies
  • Misdemeanors
  • Bankruptcies
  • Tax & Property Liens
  • Civil Judgements
  • Federal Dockets
  • Probate Records
  • Marriage Records
  • Divorce Records
  • Death Records
  • Property Records
  • Asset Records
  • Business Ownership
  • Professional Licenses
  • And More!