Type: Client Alerts
I. Default Judgment in Court
Generally, the process for obtaining a default judgment in court is more streamlined than in arbitration, and does not require the production of extensive affirmative evidence in support of the party’s claim. In federal court, a default judgment may be granted against a party that has failed to plead or otherwise defend itself. See FRCP 55. A default judgment may be entered by the clerk of the court when only payment of a sum certain is sought, after plaintiff submits an affidavit stating that the defaulting party was properly served but failed to plead, and showing the amount due on a claim for a certain amount. A default judgment may also be entered by the court in all other cases when the moving party submits with its motion for default judgment (1) a clerk's certificate of entry of default, (2) a proposed form of default judgment, (3) a copy of the pleading to which no response has been made. The court will, upon these submissions, determine whether the plaintiff's allegations establish the defendant's liability as a matter of law, and ensure that there is a basis for the damages sought by a plaintiff.