What is a Default Judgment in Washington?
When Oregon and Washington consumers do not respond properly to lawsuits, the creditors of debt buyers that filed the lawsuits will likely get default judgments. These judgments will be obtained despite the fact that no evidence is presented. Where a default judgment is obtained, whatever legitimate defenses that an Oregon or Washington consumer may have raised (such as the Statute of Limitations) are lost.
A national survey recently revealed that nearly three-quarters of those sued never appeared for their court hearing. Somewhere between sixty to ninety percent of lawsuits filed by debt buyers resulted in a default judgment. In fact, the percentage of cases resulting in default judgments was actually higher for debt buyer cases.
This is a frightening development given defenses are more likely to be present in debt buyer cases. The High default rates allow courts to dispose of a high volume of collection lawsuits. A recent national survey showed that ninety percent of these cases were disposed of within six months.
Default obviously does not mean that the consumer owes the debt. Sometimes, the consumer does not learn of the lawsuit until their wages have been garnished or their bank accounts have been levied. Often consumers are served but do not understand how to respond or feel intimidated by the process.
I cannot count how many times an Oregon or Washington consumer believed that it was too late to respond to a lawsuit because they believed that the time for responding ran from the date that the case was filed rather than from the date that they were actually served. Many consumers feel that appearing or having counsel appear won’t make any difference. Elderly consumers or consumers with children or nine to five jobs also face serious challenges in the absence of counsel in dealing with the requirements for defending a lawsuit.
If you have been served, please reach out to our Vancouver WA debt defense attorneys at Northwest Debt Relief or to another firm before a default judgment can be entered.
Northwest Debt Defense Law Firm
650 NE Holladay St, Suite 1640
Portland, OR 97232, United States
NW Debt Defense Law Firm is a Debt Relief Agency. Where appropriate we file petitions for relief under the Bankruptcy Code solely for consumers in the District of Oregon. We represent both Oregon and Washington consumers in collections law suits in Oregon and Washington state courts.