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Marc
Marc, Attorney at Law
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 122
Experience:  Experienced Attorney
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What if you are sent a letter to go to court and they sent

Customer Question

What if you are sent a letter to go to court and they sent it to the wrong address and you don't find out till after the date what should you do
Submitted: 1 month ago.
Category: Business Law
Expert:  Marc replied 1 month ago.

Hello. My name is Marc. I am a licensed attorney, and I will be happy to answer your question.

In order to be summoned to court, a person has to receive proper Notice. I write Notice with a capital "N" because it has a very important meaning in legal proceedings. If a person does not receive legal papers, including a letter from the court, with proper Notice, then the person should not incur any consequences for failing to respond.

In your case, the court might have sent it to your last known address. If you can provide proof that you no longer reside there, then there should be no consequences for failing to appear on the scheduled date.

So, what should you do now? If the letter contains a phone number, call it and explain the situation. These things happen often, and whatever it is that you missed can be rescheduled. Just make sure to give them your proper address. If there's no phone number, try to find out what Part in the court the letter was sent from. Or see if the letter has the name of a judge or other court personnel. Then, look up the number for the court and ask for the appropriate person.

Again - even lawyers sometimes miss court appearances. It's usually not a problem as long as you take action now and communicate with the court. I trust this will resolve well for you.

I hope I have provided you with useful information and helped you to better understand your issues and options. Please let me know if you have any further questions. Otherwise, please feel free to rate my answer, as that is the only way I can receive credit.

Good luck and best wishes,

Marc

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Thank you so much for the response and it definetly makes me feel better I was freaking out that I would go to jail. It was an appearance for a debtors exam so not sure if that makes any difference
Expert:  Marc replied 1 month ago.

You're very welcome. And thanks for the additional info. Since it was a debtors exam, the only thing I can add to my answer is to stress the urgency of contacting the court ASAP. This is a very important and consequential hearing (depending on how much money is involved, of course), so I'm confident the court will provide a new date.

Cheers,

Marc

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Is there jail time trouble since I didn't show
Expert:  Marc replied 1 month ago.

No. This is a civil matter. In an extreme case, failure to answer a letter or other communication sent to you directly from the court could be judged contempt of court, which could be punishable by jail time. This is not such a case. And again - contempt of court, as with most criminal acts, is only a crime if it was done intentionally. Your failure to appear was clearly not intentional.

I hope this helps you sleep better tonight. But I suggest you reach out to the court tomorrow morning.

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