If you have had your property damaged by an ex-friend or partner or been otherwise slighted by some relatively small infraction of the law, it can seem very appealing to take your case into court and get revenge on someone you’ve wanted to take down for some time. This method of revenge via court case is actually not entirely uncommon in small claims court, and it is through such cases that many people realize they shouldn’t have sweated the small stuff.
The problem is, small claims court can often seem like the best option for teaching someone a lesson. Everyone has someone in their life who such seems to be around to cause trouble and make their life difficult. They often seem stupid or senselessly angry and invoking the letter of the law on such a person seems like a great way to get them to stop and think about their actions. When you put yourself in this position, however, you can find yourself putting on a charismatic, boastful show to the judge and anyone else present because you just know that you are right and you have done the entire world a favor.
Taking on this superior attitude is not something that will be appreciated in a courtroom. The judge will see right through your claim of a broken window (or something else equally mundane) to your hatred of the defendant. Revenge cases, while seemingly straightforward to the plaintiff in every since instance, never turn out the way they might expect. Where a person might be a menace, a constant irritant and certainly in need of some personal clarity, this does not mean that their one single small act of vandalism or slander will not generally incur any harsh penalties. In fact, in dealing with certain aggressive attitudes it may just be adding fuel to the fire.
In some cases, the court will treat the offender exactly as you might have wished, and you will see them shrink under scrutiny and possibly even break down in tears. You may discover truths about that person you had no idea about, and instead of elation at their prosecution simply wish you had left well enough alone. Believe it or not, your conscience could kick in and have you feeling so sorry for the person you dragged into court that you will wish you’d never considered taking it so far!
The bottom line is, if you are having issues with a neighbor or someone else in your family or community (and yes, revenge cases are often centered on feuding family members) it is best to try to work it out at home. You will save yourself court fees, the disapproving look of the judge who will know exactly what you are up to, and it will certainly reflect better on your own character to do so. No one likes to live with regret or remorse, so before you take it to court, ask yourself if you are simply being petty!