How canI sue a friend that borrowed $2,000 from me?

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How canI sue a friend that borrowed $2,000 from me?

He asked me to lend him $2,000 5 months ago, which I did. However he stopped taking my calls because he lives in PA while I live in IL.

Asked on March 16, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Illinois

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

A lawsuit can be filed where you the plaintiff resides or where your friend the defendant resides or where the claim arose.  You can file in Illinois Small Claims Court.  You can have a process server in PA, serve your friend with the summons and complaint.  The complaint is the lawsuit.  Check with the court in IL because it may allow your friend to participate in the hearing by telephone. 

Your damages (the amount you are seeking to recover in your lawsuit) should include the $2000 loan plus interest plus court costs.  Court costs would include the court filing fee and process server fee.  You can find a PA process server by looking under attorney services in the Yellow Pages or possibly on-line.  To reduce costs, try to find a PA process server in or near the town where your friend lives.

If you don't know your friend's address in PA, you could have him served by publication unless you want to pay the process server extra to do a skip trace.  Service by publication is having the notice of your lawsuit appear in the legal notices section of a newspaper for a certain period of time.  The Illinois court could tell you how long the notice has to run in the newspaper to satisfy the requirement for service by publication.  You can run the notice in an IL newspaper.  It is still effective service of process even if your friend does not see the notice in the newspaper.


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