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If I made an online purchase and I live in Nevada do I need to sue the seller who lives in Illinois in her state or mine?

Las Vegas, NV |

The seller asked me to return the item for a refund and has had the item for 2 months (I shipped it back to her). I was never refunded by her so she is in possession of the item and my money. I am in Las Vegas and she is in Illinois. I consulted with a lawyer in Illinois and he said I will not get any of my travel expenses back for when I have to travel to Illinois for court. I would like to do small claims court so my fees are not astronomical. I'm confused. One lawyer says I need to sue in her state and another says I can file in my state.

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Attorney answers 2


It really depends on the amount of damages. If this is a small claims type case (under $7500 in Nevada), you have to sue where the defendant resides in Nevada. Since they reside in IL, you can't use Nevada, and would have to sue in IL. But if the damages are over $7500, you could sue in the Justice or District court, which would probably have jurisdiction over the defendant, depending on your state's long arm statute (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 14.065).


Assuming that this is the $12,000 bag referenced in a previous post, your damages are in excess of $10,000, and therefore, the District Court would be the proper court. Whether the court has jurisdiction over a defendant is very fact specific, and you have good facts that indicate Nevada would have jurisdiction over the defendant. However, additional information is needed, and you should consult with an attorney.

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