Thanks to an arbitration clause written into your Allstate terms of service contract you probably can’t sue the company in any court except small claims court. It can be a complicated and time consuming process, but suing Allstate in small claims court usually gets you what you want.
Are you ready to sue Allstate in small claims court? Small claims courts are only for certain types of claims. Therefore,the first step is to make sure you are eligible to file a claim in small claims court. Here are two important things to remember:
If your claim doesn’t fall within the limits of your state’s small claims court, you’ll have to arbitrate your claim instead.
Your demand letter can be simple and straightforward. Tell Allstate your name, address, phone number and account number. Then, explain the problem, and how you want the company to address the problem. The entire letter can run just a few sentences.
When you’re done writing, you need to mail a hard copy of the letter, preferably as certified mail that allows you to confirm delivery, to their legal address. Allstate is legally based in Delaware and receives mail at this address :
THE ALLSTATE CORPORATION
THE CORPORATION TRUST COMPANY
CORPORATION TRUST CENTER 1209 ORANGE ST
WILMINGTON, DE 19801
If you would like examples of demand letters or more information about how to write them, use this helpful guide.
Each state has a set of forms that need to be filled out to file a claim, and sometimes counties require additional forms. The correct forms for your location will be available for free on the state court’s website.
Make sure you fill out enough forms. Most states that require you to file forms by mail or in-person will ask for 3 or 4 copies. If you don’t submit the right number of copies, expect the state court to deny your claim.
When you’re done filling out the court forms, it’s time to submit the forms to the court.
All courts require you to pay a filing fee before they allow you to sue Allstate in small claims court. The fee, which is published on your court’s website, is sometimes waived if you are a low income plaintiff.
When you submit the court forms, the court clerk provides you with a stamped copy of the forms and a court date.
Now that you’ve filed the papers required to start your case against Allstate, you need to tell Allstate about the lawsuit. This is a called “serving” Allstate. To do this, you need to deliver a copy of your submitted paperwork to Allstate.
Look at your court’s website for instructions on how to properly deliver your forms to Allstate, or search for “[your state] small claims service of process”. Courts have many strange rules about how to serve a defendant. If you do not closely follow the rules, expect the court to deny your claim.
Know where the hearing is to take place, as well as the time of the hearing. Arrive at least 15 minutes before the hearing to discuss the case with your attorney. Bring copies of your submitted forms, and any other evidence that backs up your case against Allstate.
Sometimes, Allstate will not show up to oppose you. If that happens, take advantage of the situation to present on your side of the story.
Are you ready to sue Allstate in small claims court?
If this sounds too hard and expensive, try consumer arbitration instead…
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