Civil Procedure Keyed to Friedenthal
Coulas v. Smith
The Plaintiff brought a suit against the Defendant and another Defendant (Cross-Claimant) for an open account and promissory note. The Cross-Claimant answered the Plaintiff’s complaint denying any liability and filed a cross claim against Defendant for any amounts the Plaintiff may have been awarded against him. The Defendant answered the Plaintiff and Cross-Claimant and countersued the Plaintiff. Plaintiff answered the Defendant’s counterclaim. The court clerk notified all parties of the trial date. Before trial, however, the Plaintiff and Cross-Claimant agreed to postpone the trial by two months and the court clerk notified all parties of the new date. Though the Defendant’s attorney did not ask for the postponement and was not present at the courthouse, the court clerk maintained that the Defendant was notified as well. On the new trial date, Defendant was not present and a judgment was entered against him. The Plaintiff received judgment against the Defendant on both count s and against the Cross-Claimant on the promissory note. The Cross-Claimant in turn obtained judgment against the Defendant on the promissory note. Nearly two years later, the Defendant filed a motion to vacate the judgment and was denied by the trial court.
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