Can I file a judgement againsta wifeif onlyher husband signed the defendant’s reply and counterclaim?

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Can I file a judgement againsta wifeif onlyher husband signed the defendant’s reply and counterclaim?

I served both of my former renters (husband and wife) . It was for non-payment of rent and deposit along with damages done to my property and unpaid water bill that defaults onto me. They have filed a counter-claim for their unreturned deposit (for more then they ever paid in deposit). The paperwork is very clear that both defendants must sign the response but only the husband did. Do I have any options to just go after the wife for judgement since she did not sign?

Asked on July 16, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Oregon

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If only the husband answered the complaint that you filed against him and his wife, the wife was personally served with the summons and complaint and has not filed an answer in the time required, you can request the entry of a default judgment against her.

This requires the filing of a special default request with the court clerk and it needs to be served upon the husband and the wife you are suing.

If you serve and file the request for entry of default if the wife did not answer the complaint after being served with it, you essentially win your claim against her by default. However, under the laws of most Staes in this country she can file papers to have the request for entry of default set aside. If a default is entered against her and she fails to have it set aside, you then prove up your damages against her and end up with a judgment.


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