Effective July 1, 2022, the New Jersey Supreme Court has increased the jurisdictional limits in civil courts. The New Jersey Special Civil Part jurisdictional limit has increased from $15,000 to $20,000. The jurisdictional limit for New Jersey Small Claims Court has also increased from $3,000 to $5,000.
This increase will prove extremely beneficial to Community Associations whose collection cases are preferably brought in the Special Civil Part. Although it is preferred to bring these cases in Special Civil Part, with the old $15,000 jurisdictional limit, Association cases seeking judgments for $17,000 or $18,000 had to be filed in the Law Division. The Law Division has higher filing fees, requires personal service, has longer discovery schedules, and can often take a year or more to conclude. Conversely, the Special Civil Part has lower filing fees, requires service by mail, and can often conclude with a trial scheduled within approximately four (4) months. Increasing the jurisdictional limit in the Special Civil Part now allows Associations to file cases there, rather than in Law Division, for amounts up to $20,000.