The Key To Setting Aside A Default Judgment

The key to setting aside a default judgmentIf you’re dealing with a debt collection lawsuit, and a default judgment is entered against you, you may wonder, “Is there any way to get rid of this?”

The key to setting aside a default judgment is to prove that we could not have been served properly.

We have to prove to the court that the court records showing us as being served is wrong because we weren’t served and could not have been served.

Here are a couple of examples of proving the court record wrong:

We’ve had a case where the consumer didn’t know there was a lawsuit against them until 15 years later, and they had a huge judgment against them.

We looked at the court file to see when the record says they were served.

Once we looked at that date, let’s say it was November 12th at 8:00am in Huntsville, we looked at their medical records.

As it turns out, the consumer was in a hospital’s ICU in Birmingham at that time.

Even if it had been in the same city, we doubt that the sheriff’s deputy would be knocking on the ICU door trying to shove a complaint in the face of an unconscious consumer.

Obviously, whoever served our client was wrong about the date.

Maybe they served the wrong person, or maybe they just shoved it in the mailbox of our client.

Regardless, our client was not served properly.

We’ve had another case where our client didn’t know about the judgment until 10 years later, when they realized that they were being garnished. 

We found out that they had been sued in Jefferson County, and supposedly they were served in Jefferson County.

However, at the time of service, our client was living in Dallas.

Our client had their pay stubs from work to prove that they were working the day they were served.

Now, it could be possible that our client got off work, immediately jumped on a plane, landed in Birmingham, got served got back on a plane to Dallas, then went back to work that night.

Kind of crazy, right?

However, our client also had a receipt from when they got gas and food from a gas station in between his work schedule.

This was evidence that there was no way our client was properly served.

We should also make sure they served us in the right place.

Because it may be that they “served” us at an address that we don’t live at anymore.

We can get a letter from Alabama Power stating when our power was cut off from our old residence.

We can provide evidence that we’ve sold that house.

The key is to ultimately find evidence outside of our own testimony to show that there’s no way we were served properly with a lawsuit, and we don’t deserve a default judgment because of that fact.

Once we can show this to a court, then we can make a strong argument to get rid of the default judgment.  Now this doesn’t make the lawsuit go away, but it does make the judgment go away if we are successful.

This is something you can do on your own if you understand the rules of court or we can help you

Contact Us.

If you have any questions, you can reach us by phone at 1-205-879-2447.

You can also fill out a contact form and we will get in touch with you as soon as possible.

I look forward to speaking with you!

Have a great day.

-John G. Watts

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