My question involves small claims court in the state of: South Dakota.
Long story short.
My ex-g/f and I lived together for 2.5 years in S. Dakota. I made the money, while she attended school for 2 years. She asked me to move to CO, with her for her internship. We leased an apartment together in Denver. One month after moving, I caught her cheating on me with another guy. She decided to leave our apartment on her own. Her new guy pulled a knife on me and she got violent, as well. I changed the locks, and got a TPO against her for domestic violence.
Before she could take anything from our apt. I signed her off the lease, due to much harrassment from her parents and her. I was emotionally and financially unprepared for this. I invested so much of myself in her, that I didn't want to see her screw her education up so I showed compassion to her and let her "borrow" furniture etc.. so she could finish her internship, under the impression she was depressed, made a poor decision and we would reconcile.
Instead, she lied and cheated again. So I requested my things back and tried to move on.
She took off with my stuff and moved back to S. Dakota. I returned as well, to get my old job back.
No more than 3 days was I in town and she served me with a stalking/restraining order, and made harrassing calls to my parents. Simply, because I called her parents, ONCE, to see if they would be willing to help me.
I am fed up. I want to take her to court and sue for my possesions and any bills/rent I had to eat due to her transgressions. I have receipts and bank statements that show I paid on her accts. But it is her word against mine, when it comes to whether or not I "gave" or "loaned" her possesions or money.
Do I have any chance at all in small claims court? Is there any way I can recoup her share of the rent/bills for the remainder of the lease? Or the costs of moving? Can I even get my possesions from her? What is the burden of proof in small claims court? Should I file harrassment charges against her? Should I take out a TPO?
BTW, we DO NOT meet the requirements for a common law marriage in CO, so I cannot file for divorce.
How can I handle this? What are my options? If any?
Thank you very much for any advice offered.