Updated November 22, 2019

"Small claims courts throughout the U.S. provide easier, less formal, access to judicial enforcement of the law than do the more familiar trial courts (so-called courts of record). 

{Forty years ago,} "one case in a California small claims court, a claim for monetary damages due to airplane noise nuisance, was remarkably effective in dealing with a major commercial airport and has had important legal consequences."  http://airportnoiselaw.org/smclaims.html

The Strategy