This is a situation that we are all privy to – we have loaned money to friends only to have problems trying to get it back later. Sometimes it’s a small amount that can be written off, or it may be a large amount, or it could simply be a matter of principle.
Hiring a lawyer can be equally as expensive but you can actually get your money back without involving lawyers using these 3 simple steps. This is known as a small claims procedure and it can be found in Order 93 of the Rules of Court 2012. If you are interested in reading a more detailed version of this article, click here.
Do note that this procedure only applies to loans which do not exceed RM5,000 because the law has defined small claims as such.
Step 1: Get Form 198 from your local Magistrate Court
Kickstarting the process is as simple as filling up a form that is readily available from the court. In a nutshell, the information that you have to fill in are as follows:
- Fill in your (Plaintiff) full name, IC number, and current address
- Fill in the borrower’s (Defendant) full name, IC number, and last known address
- State the exact amount you are claiming for
- State the particulars of your claim e.g when it happened, why it happened. If you have proof of money borrowed such as bank in slips, text messages, etc include details on that as well such as the transaction number and so on.
- Sign the form and hand over 4 copies to the Registry of the Second Class Magistrate together with RM10
The Registrar will then affix the Court’s seal on the forms and set a hearing date for you. While you may consult a lawyer when filling up the form, you cannot be represented by the lawyer during the hearing.
You can find your local Magistrates Court in this list here.
Step 2: Post out that filled and sealed form
After the form has been sealed, you have to send it to your borrower either in person or via registered post only.
It is important to only use either of these methods because it is prescribed by law to ensure that you have done all you can to bring your claim and the hearing date to your borrower’s attention.
Step 3: Show up in court at the given date
This is a pretty important final step as if you fail to show up, the court can dismiss the action or they can even make an order in favour of your borrower (if he has submitted a counterclaim) and make you pay for the costs he has incurred in defending himself against your claim.
Aside from losing by default, it is also important to show up in order to present your case to the court and show the judge the necessary proof to back up your claim (this is where the bank in slips and so on come in).
Third, it is also important to show up to...get your money. If the court decides to rule in your favour then it would be important to show up in court to get the judgment so that you would know how to enforce it.
There you have it folks. 3 easy steps to get your money back and as mentioned, if you want the detailed version, click here.