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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    89

    Default What Happens After You File a Small Claims Case

    My question involves small claims court in the state of: South Carolina. I filed a suit the 31st of August. I'm told the defendant has 30 days to answer and that the court will send me the reply. Then I have the opportunity to answer. One of the women at the window in the court building is not very helpful and it's difficult to get answers and information without a grumble or a snide comment. What happens if the defendant does not reply? Does it automatically get scheduled for a hearing?

    Mike

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    CT & IL
    Posts
    5,273

    Default Re: What Happens Now

    You have the opportunity to REPLY to their answer (it won't mean anything if you don't though-w/small claims I would advise against a reply brief unless you are trying to argue a legal point & wish to cite court cases). After 30 days, if no answer is filed, then a default judgment may be entered upon your request for one. Do you have a court date assigned for the hearing of the case yet? If not, you would need to file a motion for default judgment (serving via US Mail) and ask for a court date for a hearing on the motion. And then the defendant may have 30 days (or possibly more) to motion to vacate the default judgment (you should be able to find the practice or court rules for your state for further guidance-they are pretty easily written on in most states).

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    98,846

    Default Re: What Happens Now

    Read this.
    Quote Quoting Default in Small Claims Court
    Once your written complaint is filed, the magistrate will issue a summons requiring the defendant to file an answer with the court within 30 days after he receives your complaint. Both the summons and complaint are then served upon or delivered to the defendant. Should the defendant fail to answer your complaint within the 30 days required, you may be given a judgment by reason of default. When your damages cannot be measured with certainty, you may be required to appear in court and provide testimony and evidence to support your claim.

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