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How-To: Write a Motion for Clerk Default


Background: You sued someone for affirmative relief
Problem: That person has failed to respond to your complaint
Solution: You ask the clerk to enter default against the defendant

I. Definitions

Default
"failure to discharge a duty... in the context of judicial proceedings: failure of one of the parties to take procedural steps to prevent entry of a judgment against him (called a default judgment)." Default Judgment
"1. a judgment against defendant who has failed to respond to plaintiff's action or to appear at the trial or hearing."

"2. judgment given without the defendant being heard in his own defense."
Pleadings
"statements, in logical and legal form, of the facts that constitute plaintiff's cause of action and defendant's ground of defense. Pleadings are other allegations by the parties affirming or denying certain matters of fact, or other statements in support or derogation of certain principles of law, which are intended to describe to the court or jury the real matter in dispute."

II. Legal Citations

Rule 1.110(a)(1) Fla. R. Civ. P. | Pleadings and Motions - Pleadings
(a) Pleadings.
There must be a complaint or, when so designated by a statute or rule, a petition, and an answer to it... No other pleadings will be allowed.

Rule 1.140(a)(1) Fla. R. Civ. P. | Defenses - When Presented
Unless a different time is prescribed in a statute of Florida, a defendant must serve an answer within 20 days after service of original process and the initial pleading on the defendant, or not later than the date fixed in a notice by publication. A party served with a pleading stating a crossclaim against that party must serve an answer to it within 20 days after service on that party. The plaintiff must serve an answer to a counterclaim within 20 days after service of the counterclaim...
Rule 1.500 Fla. R. Civ. P. | Defaults ands Final Judgments Thereon
(a) By the Clerk.
When a party against whom affirmative relief is sought has failed to file or serve any document in the action, the party seeking relief may have the clerk enter a default against the party failing to serve or file such document.

III. Samples

# PDF Comments
1± TBD case. Pro Se Filing | Duval | 2021 | Defendant failed to appear.
2✓ Duval | 1980 | Commissioner's Filing. Wife vs Husband. Failure to Answer.
3✓ Duval | 1982 | Attorney Filing. Wife vs Husband. Failure to Answer.
4✓ Duval | 2007 | Attorney Filing. Person vs Corporation. Failure to Answer.
5✓ Duval | 2009 | Pro Se Filing. Person vs Corporation. Failure to Answer.
6✓ Duval | 2010 | Attorney Filing. Corporation vs Person. Failure to Answer.
7✓ Duval | 2011 | Attorney Filing. Landlord vs Tenant. Failure to Answer.
8✓ Duval | 2011 | Attorney Filing. Person vs Corporation. Defendant Moved to Dismiss.
9✓ Duval | 2011 | Attorney Filing. Corporation vs Person. Failure to Answer.
10✓ Duval | 2011 | Attorney Filing. Person vs Corporation. Defendant Moved to Dismiss.
11✓ Duval | 2012 | Attorney Filing. Person vs Person. Failure to Answer.
12✓ Duval | 2012 | Attorney Filing. State vs Property Owner. Probable Cause, Service by Publication.
13✓ Duval | 2012 | Attorney Filing. Corporation vs Person. Failure to Answer.
14✓ Duval | 2012 | Attorney Filing. Corp. vs Person. Failure to Answer. Proposed Entry Attached.
15✓ Duval | 2012 | Attorney Filing. Corporation vs Person. Failure to Answer. Pretrial Conference.
16✓ Duval | 2019 | Attorney Filing. State vs Property Owner. Probable Cause, Service by Publication.
17✓ Duval | 2019 | Attorney Filing. State vs Property Owner. Probable Cause. Proposed Entry Attached.
18✓ Duval | 2020 | Attorney Filing. Person vs Corporation. Failure to Answer. Proposed Entry Attached

IV. Templates

# Word Comments
1Duval Version | Replace all placeholder tags (eg "[plfName]" becomes "John Doe").

V. Quick Commentary

VI. Additional Notes

VII. Conclusion

If your civil opponent fails to file anything in Court then ask the Clerk to enter a Default as soon as the 20-day window closes.

Congratulations! You're now booked up on how to write a Motion for Default!

Please get the justice you deserve.

Sincerely,



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