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What Happens If You Have a Default Entered Against You?

Sometimes an individual can miss court and the result can be a default entered against that individual. A default is not the preferred way for any court to handle a matter. However, at times when an individual is not present in court that is the only relief that the court may have.

A default essentially means that an inquest, or short hearing, has taken place where only one person, generally the Petitioner or Plaintiff, testifies before the Court. Thereafter, the relief that this party is seeking is granted as it is unopposed.

If a default is entered against an individual a motion can be filed to have the default overturned, or vacated to use the proper legal term. This motion (or request to the court) must be made within 1 year from the date that the default was entered. In addition, the default must be excusable with a legitimate reason that court was missed. Finally, the court will balance relevant factors related to the default including but not limited to the merit or lack of merit of the action.

This is a complex motion that one should always speak to an attorney about so that it can be brought before the Court in the proper way.