Suing Airbnb in Small Claims Court
People stay in Airbnb properties for all sorts of reasons. But not everyone has an enjoyable experience with the service or the property. If you find a property to be unsuitable, or are unhappy with Airbnb's support services, you can sue in small claims court.
Of course, any lawsuit comes with a risk. One way to up the ante in your favor is by using DoNotPay. We offer powerful technology ready to assist you in filing your case against Airbnb in small claims court. The app works in any browser making it easy to access forms online. It's simple. Just share the type of claim, the company, in this case, Airbnb, and provide some personal information.
Reasons to Sue Airbnb
Guests can have problems like what you may experience with hotels or motels. Therefore, there are several valid reasons for Airbnb hosts and Airbnb guests to file a small claims case against the company. These reasons include:
|Canceled Reservations||Cancelled reservation may qualify due to breach of contract and the related expenses.
In an actual case, a Texas host has taken Airbnb to task for $655 he says he is owed for canceled reservations, according to CNBC. His claims include breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, and violation of consumer protection laws in California.
All his claims could be issued in small claims. And although the host's property is in Texas, Airbnb's headquarters are in San Francisco. At the time of the article's publication, Airbnb was contesting the claim, saying the allegations were without merit. Time will tell.
|Property Damages||Whether guests throw a wild party or simply are careless with the host's property, they can leave damages that require major repair work. Whether Airbnb is responsible to pay for property damage expenses is up to a small claims judge to decide.|
|Lack of Refund||No matter the reason if you were promised a refund from Airbnb support and have not received it, and exhausted other measures of communication to get it done, you can issue a demand letter and subsequently, take the company to small claims court.|
|Double Booking||If you show up to your Airbnb ready for a week at the beach and find it occupied by another family, it can be devastating. Not only have you prepaid the rent, but now you must try and find another location to stay. Double booking could certainly be an issue for small claims.|
|Extra Charges||Perhaps you receive a message saying you have incurred an additional fee before your stay. If you don't pay, your reservation could be canceled. Or following a stay, you receive an additional bill for an erroneous expense. Another plausible reason for filing a small claims claim against Airbnb is for unexplained extra charges..|
Should You File a Small Claims Case Against Airbnb by Yourself?
By design, small claims court is meant to be simpler than civil court. But that doesn't mean you should go it alone. In California, home to Airbnb headquarters, you cannot have an attorney represent you in small claims court. Before filing your claim, according to California law, you must issue a demand to Airbnb. You can do this in person, by phone, or through a demand letter.
A demand letter should include:
- How to contact you
- The amount owed to you
- The reason for the owed amount
- Where payment should be sent
- State your intentions to sue if no response
- Give a response deadline
Writing a correctly worded demand letter can be difficult. DoNotPay makes it simple by creating a letter for you.
How to File a Small Claims Court Claim:
- You must locate the small claims form and fill it out completely.
- To file you need to submit it to the court along with supporting evidence and a fee. The fee varies upon how much you are asking in your claim. In California, you can file for up to $10,000 in damages.
- You will agree upon a court date with the clerk.
- You then must have Airbnb served either personally, but the local sheriff department, a court agent, or a process server.
If all this sounds a bit confusing, it certainly can be. DoNotPay can make it much easier for you.
Potential Problems with Filing a Small Claims Lawsuit by Yourself
Unless you have some background in law, navigating any legal claim filing can be confusing. There are lengthy guides available about how to go to small claims court. Such guides may include information on:
- Where to obtain forms
- How to research your case
- Where to file
- Filing fees and possible fee waivers
California even offers a comprehensive guide on small claims court. No doubt a lawyer could help, but that can cost a lot if you are seeking only a few hundred or a thousand dollars. That's where DoNotPay can help you file your claim against Airbnb.
How to Sue Airbnb With DoNotPay
Skip the hassle. Avoid the frustration. DoNotPay's robot lawyer will help you file and without the expense of going to an attorney. Simply:
- Log-in to DoNotPay and select the Sue Now product
- Enter the dollar amount you are owed
- Select whether you want a demand letter or court filing forms
- Describe the reason for the lawsuit and submit any applicable details, including photo proof
DoNotPay can make navigating the small claims process easier. We will mail your demand letter directly to Airbnb and you will receive a copy along with your court filing papers. If you don't hear back from Airbnb, you can move forward with your small claims court lawsuit.
What Else Can DoNotPay Do?
Airbnb is not the only big business that DoNotPay holds accountable. DoNotPay excels in helping people sue any company in small claims court without a lawyer. Check out other companies that DoNotPay has helped sue: