If I was involved in a car accident with an out of state driver, do I sue them here in my state or in the state where the driver lives?

My car was hit by a car with out of state license plates. I want to bring a small claims suit against the other driver for what it cost me to get my car fixed. Do I have to file suit here or where the defendant lives?

Asked on July 20, 2015 under Accident Law, New Jersey


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

For small claims, you'd have to file where the defendant lives, since small claims courts are courts of limited geographic jurisdication. Given that for the trial, you'd have to travel to and appear in that other state's courts--and possibly make multiple appearances, if the trial is adjourned from one day to another or otherwise not completed on the first trial date--it is not likely to be the case that it is worthwhile to do this economically.

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