Default Judgment


Let’s say you know someone who is a defendant in a civil lawsuit representing himself.

Let’s also say this individual has done a few things that, you know, has made his situation VERY difficult during the preliminary stages of the lawsuit.

The primary reason this certain someone has caused himself to be put in a box is due to him ignoring the guidance of the court in reading and understanding the rules of civil procedure.

What do you suppose happens, if say, a certain someone decides he doesn’t want to follow the rules?

From Cornell Law Legal Information Institute website:

Default Judgment

A default judgment is a ruling granted by a court or judge. Default judgments arise in circumstances whereby one party to a suit has failed to perform a court-ordered action, and subsequently that failure has not only prevented the issue from being presented before the court but also results in the court settling the legal dispute in favor of the compliant party. For example, when a defendant is summoned to appear before the court in a case brought by a plaintiff, but fails to respond to the court’s legal order, the judge can rule for default judgment and thereby decide the case in the plaintiff’s favor. The defendant, though not present before the court, is obligated to abide by the court’s ruling for default judgment and subject to any and all punishment requested by the court.

Do we know anyone who might be thinking this is a good strategy as a defendant?



12 thoughts on “Default Judgment

  1. Interesting!! I’ve got a friend in a very similar situation, but his story is more complicated. He is in the same basic situation where he looks to be heading toward default in a lawsuit against him. However, he thought it a good idea to file a lawsuit of his very own against the person he will most likely soon default. My concern is what effect will his default in the case against him have on the case he has recently filed?

    Liked by 9 people

  2. Gee, we all seem to know people with legal troubles. The one I know, a radio personality, lost a case to a three year old a while back. More recently he represented himself in a second case. In that second case, he admitted that he did what plaintiff alleged but also admitted that his purported legal justifications were based on suppositions contrary to fact. He was very surprised to lose that second case after he had exercised to the fullest his charm and legal acumen. He is facing a decision in a third case on whether to appear in his own defense or default. No one likes to default; it creates an impression of either cowardice or incompetence among the pro ses’ community. Default, however, may be wise in this case as this guy may get the death penalty if he presents his argument that settlement agreements are voidable or void due to lack of consideration. Any advice is welcome.

    Liked by 5 people

      • If Witless tried suicide, he would fail at it and Howard would be so disappointed. For Howard’s sake, we had best hope that Willy does not make the attempt.

        Liked by 2 people

        • The Deranged Cyberstalker Bill Schmalfeldt will never attempt suicide. The Blob fancies himself as some sort of gift to mankind. He loves himself far too much. 🙄

          And, as you correctly stated, Jeff… the Fail Whale would find a way to fail at that, too.

          Liked by 2 people

        • Grace

          We must remember that there are many ways to be a gift to humanity, for example as a source of hysterical laughter, or as a cautionary tale, or as an inexhaustible supply of axle grease. So let’s not be so quick to judge.

          Liked by 2 people

  3. My bet is he will default. He doesn’t have the guts to show especially knowing how bad he screwed himself on discovery. Plus he’ll be able to whine about how unfair it was since he wasn’t there to defend himself totally ignoring the fact that it was his decision to not show up.

    Liked by 9 people

    • But it really is unfair. Someone is very sick (for example after a stroke), and they must still defend themselves even without speech. So unfair. Why I have heard that in some states you are expected to show up in court even if you have a hangover: there is no humanity in what is laughingly known as the justice system.

      Liked by 7 people

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