If I received a request for entry of default via mail on old credit card debt but have never been served, is this still valid?

Looking online a request for entry of default only happens once a person has been served and has not responded. I have not been served in any way shape or form so how are they entering this against me?

Asked on December 12, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, California

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

The default should not have been entered since you were never served.  However, if the opposing party did not know your whereabouts, you may have been served by publication.  Service by publication is running the notice of the lawsuit in the legal notices section of a newspaper for a certain period of time (the required period of time varies from state to state).  Even if you didn't see the notice, it is still valid service by publication.

If there wasn't any proper service, you never received notice and could not have filed an answer to the complaint (complaint is the lawsuit attached to the summons) within the time set forth in the summons.  You will need to file a motion to set aside the default.  Your argument will be that you were never served and therefore could not have filed a timely answer to the complaint with the court and  could not have served the answer to the complaint on the opposing party.  If the court grants your motion to set aside the default, the case will then be back on track and litigation will continue.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.