Want to sue The Hartford in small claims court?

Your Guide to Sue The Hartford Insurance in Small Claims Court

Chances are, your contract with The Hartford Insurance says you can’t sue The Hartford Insurance in regular lawsuits, because of an arbitration clause. But what you can do is sue The Hartford Insurance in small claims court. While time consuming and complicated, we lay out the steps to get what you want. 

1

Can you sue The Hartford Insurance in small claims court? Does your situation qualify?

Before you can head off and sue The Hartford Insurance in small claims court, you need to make sure your case qualifies. There are two things in particular you have to pay attention to:

  1. The compensation you want.  Small claims courts are designed for very specific types of lawsuits. While in most situations you can ask for a variety of things from the court including monetary compensation or a dollar amount, and equitable compensation or a non-monetary form of compensation, with small claims courts you can usually only ask for monetary compensation.
  2. The amount of compensation.  You can also only ask for a specific amount of compensation. Most small claims courts have a limit based on the state in which you reside. For example, in Kentucky you cannot ask for more than $2,500 in compensation while in places like California you can ask for up to $10,000. This means that your compensation might be above that maximum limit in which case you can’t sue The Hartford Insurance in small claims court. You can find a list of all 50 states’ monetary limits here.

If your claim doesn’t fall within the limits of your state’s small claims court, you’ll have to arbitrate your claim instead.

 

2

Send a demand letter.

Before you run off and sue The Hartford Insurance in small claims court, most small claims courts will require that you send a demand letter. This is a formal but simple letter where you explain who you are (your name, address, phone number and account number), what the problem is, and what you want from them.

It doesn’t have to be much, no more than a few sentences. The whole point is to check a legal box and make sure that you follow the steps. When you are done, mail a hard copy to the official legal address. You want to make sure that this hard copy is sent via certified mail or some other form of mail that allows you to track and confirm delivery to the following address:

The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc.
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, you can find an excellent guide here.

3

Fill out court forms.

Assuming they don’t respond to your polite request, the next step is to officially sue The Hartford Insurance in small claims court. For this you have to fill out the right paperwork.

Each state has a specific set of forms that you need to fill out in their entirety in order to file your claim. There might be times when your county throws in some additional forms. Find your state court website here.

Make sure you have the right number of copies as well. Most courts will require three or four copies if you want to sue The Hartford Insurance.

 

 

4

File your forms with the court.

At this point you have to file your forms officially.

When you are done filling out the forms you now have to give them to your court which is an official legal process that usually requires you visit the courthouse during specific hours and days and hand-deliver all of your forms. If you are very lucky your court might allow you to file by mail, fax, or online.

Every Court will require that you pay a filing fee before you can sue the Hartford Insurance in small claims court. If you are a low-income plaintiff, that might be waived.

Bring your forms to the court and the clerk will give you a stamped copy of the forms after they’ve approved and accepted everything as well as a court date.

5

“Serve” your forms on The Hartford.

At this point you have to serve your forms officially. It’s very hard work to follow each of these steps but you have to be particularly careful at this point.

One of the copies you got back from the clerk is for The Hartford insurance. This is where you officially notified them that they are being sued.

Check out your court website for instructions on how to give the forms to The Hartford insurance or search for “[your state] small claims service of process”. Some courts have very unique rules and if you don’t follow them your claim will be dropped and you won’t be able to sue The Hartford Insurance in small claims court.

6

Show up for your hearing.

With that out of the way the only thing left is to go to your hearing at the right date. Make sure you go to the right Courthouse, many areas have multiple courthouses and it can be difficult to know which building and which room you have to visit.

Bring with you any evidence you have to explain why you decided to sue The Hartford insurance company in small claims court and why you deserve compensation. Bring your court documents as well.

The Hartford insurance company may or may not send anyone to oppose you but either way make sure that you focus on your side of the story.

Ready to sue The Hartford in small claims court?
If this sounds too hard and expensive, try consumer arbitration instead…

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