What Can I Do If The Other Party Gets A Default Judgment in A Breech of Contract Case?

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If the other party gets a default judgment in a breech of contract case in Oklahoma you need to act fast. Contracts are meant to protect all parties involved in business and financial situations. One of the purposes of a contract is to outline the consequences that will result if any party breaches its obligations as defined by the agreement. If a dispute arises out of the contract and a lawsuit gets filed you have to defend yourself. In particular you must take care to answer the allegations set out in the complaint within the statutory period.

What Is A Default Judgment in Oklahoma?

A default judgment may be entered if a defendant fails to file a response with the court to a lawsuit. If the court enters a default judgment, essentially everything alleged in the lawsuit will be deemed to be true.

Once a defendant has missed the deadline to respond to a breach of contract case (usually 20 days in Oklahoma), the plaintiff must file a motion in support of a proposed default with the court. This filing must include proof of service together with proof of breach of contract. The motion must also contain any other court orders regarding the claim, the amount of debt or damages, including interest, and any other specific requests from the judge including potential attorney fees.

Once a plaintiff has obtained a default judgment against a defendant, they can use it to collect a debt or damages in several ways. Collection efforts may include wage garnishments, property liens, seizure of assets held in bank accounts, and more.

For these reasons, it’s best to respond to any service of lawsuit papers promptly rather than risk missing the deadline for filing a response and losing a case by default. It’s a good idea to connect with an attorney as soon as you’ve been served with notice of a lawsuit.  

Challenging a Default Judgment In Oklahoma

Challenging a default judgment and how to do it depends on how long ago the default was entered. The Courts in Oklahoma generally disfavor default judgements. Because of this Judges have the aurthority to vacate their own oderes so long as the default was not entered more than 30 days ago. For motions to vacate the default after 30 days the process is much more difficult. To vacate a motion thats been in place after 30 days the petitioner must show there is good cause for the Judge to vacate the default. This good cause must demonstrate a lack of legal due process.

Potential Arguments

The court won’t grant a motion to vacate simply because an appellant chooses to file one. The petition must contain clear and convincing arguments backed by tangible evidence. Granting every motion to vacate that came through the courthouse doors would encourage judgment debtors to appeal default judgments instead of treating court deadlines seriously, which would result in a waste of court time and resources. Some of the arguments an appellant may make in a potentially successful appeals situation include:

  • Improper service, such as the wrong address or an unlicensed process server
  • Fraud or misrepresentation by the plaintiff
  • The debt or judgment has already been satisfied
  • Excusable neglect by the judgment debtor

Other arguments based on individual circumstances, as advised by an attorney

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Tulsa Default Judgement Attorneys Near You

Business related disputes can arise and end up in breach of contract lawsuits. Its important that in any business law dispute dispute that you get out in front of the problem. If the other party gets a default against you there are seriouse consequences. Among other things they will be entitled to everything they asked for in their original lawsuit. For a free and confidential consultation with a Tulsa business lawyer at Kania Law Office call 918.743.2233 or click here to ask a legal question.

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