This answer is written by AI. The information provided in this response is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as legal advice. Do not rely solely on the information provided in this response for any legal decisions. Consult with a qualified legal professional before making any decisions.

Can a Plaintiff’s Motion to Remove Default Be Granted Due to Lack of Notification?

Question from Irene, Can a Plaintiff’s Motion to Remove Default Be Granted Due to Lack of Notification?

Answer from AI:

When a plaintiff files a motion to remove a default judgment in a small claims housing court, claiming they were not notified of the trial date or received incorrect information for a Zoom motion meeting, the court will consider several factors before making a decision. It’s important to understand that the legal system aims to ensure fairness and due process for all parties involved. However, the specifics can vary significantly from one jurisdiction to another within the United States. Here’s a general overview of what might be considered:

Factors Courts Consider

  • Proof of Notification: Courts typically require that all parties are properly notified of hearings, trials, and any other procedural matters. The plaintiff would need to provide evidence that they did not receive notification or that the notification was incorrect.
  • Reasonableness of the Plaintiff’s Actions: The court will consider whether the plaintiff’s actions upon realizing the mistake were reasonable. For example, did they promptly contact the court or the opposing party’s attorney to rectify the situation?
  • Prejudice to the Defendant: The court will also consider whether granting the motion would unfairly prejudice the defendant, who has attended every hearing and followed the court’s procedures.
  • Integrity of the Judicial Process: Courts are concerned with maintaining the integrity of the judicial process. They may be more inclined to grant a motion if it appears that a technical error or genuine misunderstanding could lead to an unjust outcome.

Typical Steps for Filing a Motion to Remove Default

  1. File the Motion: The plaintiff must file a formal motion with the court, explaining the reasons for the request and providing any supporting evidence.
  2. Notify the Opposing Party: The plaintiff must serve the motion on the opposing party, giving them an opportunity to respond.
  3. Attend the Hearing: Both parties should attend the hearing on the motion, where they can present their arguments and evidence.

Legal Advice and Next Steps

It’s crucial for individuals in such situations to seek legal advice from a professional who understands the specific laws and procedures of their jurisdiction. A lawyer can help navigate the complexities of the legal system and advocate on your behalf.

For general guidance, individuals can refer to resources such as the U.S. Courts Forms page, which provides access to various legal forms, including those related to motions and small claims court procedures.


Whether a plaintiff’s motion to remove a default judgment will be granted depends on a variety of factors, including the specifics of the notification failure, the actions taken by the plaintiff upon discovery of the issue, and the potential impact on the defendant. Courts aim to balance fairness to both parties with the need to uphold the integrity of the judicial process. Individuals facing such situations should consult with a legal professional to understand their rights and obligations and to develop an appropriate strategy for their case.

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