What is the process for filing a small claims suit against an employee?

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What is the process for filing a small claims suit against an employee?

The business is in one county but the employee in question is in another county, so in which court would I file? Also, I withheld pay from him to pay back a lost deposit. Once I read that this is not legal, I immediately sent him another paycheck to cover the difference. If I go to court for the lost deposit, will he be able to use that against me?

Asked on July 19, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, South Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If he committed the act which caused the loss at your business, you can probably file in your own county; otherwise, you'd probably need to file where he lives. If you think that the bad or negligent act occured in the county of your business, try filing there; if it's the wrong county, the court will probably remove it to the right county or ask you to refile it there.

Since you did end up voluntarily paying him the correct amount, that should not be held  against you; in this case, there is no damage or injury to him, for example, so there would be no offset for unpaid wages which he could claim, and your act of sending him the right check shows that it was an innocent error, not a wrongful act which would possibly preclude you from taking action under the theory that one must come to court with "clean hands."


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