W9RAC: Forget about Small Claims Court in cases like this. First, there's court costs; in 9-land that runs about $200 just to file your suit. Then you have to SERVE your defendant with the required documents; since there's a difference in the places of residence, you'd have to hire someone to serve the papers and to document that they've been served. Supposing the defendant doesn't show-up in court and you get a default judgment. THEN YOU HAVE TO COLLECT THAT JUDGMENT. That means hiring somebody to record your judgment; find your defendant; find his assets -- if he has any; seize those assets; and convert them to cash. In a case like this you can easily SPEND FIVE DOLLARS FOR EACH DOLLAR YOU COLLECT. IF HE HAS ANY TO COLLECT!