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Can person who sued me change venue if I will not pay amount demeaned before trial

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Junior Member
I was sued in South Carolina in magistrates court for auto repair. As the owner of a body shop I painted a car a year ago for $650 (our economy job). After accepting the car the owner brought it back about 2 weeks later with complaint. I repainted at no charge. A year after that he returned with another complaint or asked that I repaint once again or I pay $400. I painted the car again at no charge. After painting for the third time he sued for $6600. Later that day he called and stated he had wanted to drop charges if I paid what he asked. I refused and the day of the pre trial hearing he told the judge that if I did not pay the entire $6600 before the trial he would have to take the case to a higher court. His reason was that he needed a professional photographer to offer proof of damage and he would have to hire additional expert witnesses. My question is can he change venue without the case being heard? Can he increase damages to take it to a higher venue and demand more money? He is now asking for over $10000 for a paint job I initially charged him $650 and repainted his car for free two times. His supposed damages are literally not noticeable to the naked eye. Can he do this? This seems somewhat like blackmail saying if I did not pay the demand that day he would increase it. Did the Magistrate do the correct thing allowing the case to be moved?
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