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Attorney 1
Attorney 1, Attorney
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 2446
Experience:  Knowledgeable and Experienced Attorney
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Had a common pleas civil case from a credit card bill that

Customer Question

Had a common pleas civil case from a credit card bill that we were never notified of. There is no service. The court granted the plaintiff SJ, then the debt was sold to a company, then another company. There are 4 CJs from this one case from four different companies and the original judgment is defective due to no service. This has really damaged the credit report. How should we proceed and will all of these CJs be expunged (erased) due to the fact they are not valid and were awarded in error ?
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  Attorney 1 replied 8 months ago.

Hello, and welcome. I am a licensed attorney and happy to assist.

I'm sorry to hear of the situation, but happy to say that you likely have recourse. Since you were not properly served, you are correct that the judgments can be invalidated, but causing legal invalidation will take a little effort - it is not automatic. You will need to file a motion to set aside the judgment for failure of legal service, in each action in which a wrongful default judgment was awarded against you. If you lost on summary judgment after filing an answer, this will notapply because failure of service of process stops being an issue if you answer a complaint. But, where you did not answer, if you can show that you were not properly served, the judge will overturn the decisions, require proper service and allow the actions to go forward. The judgments should than be removed from your credit report. If you are successful in these actions, there will be no judgment entered against you at a later date. Taking prompt action is important if you want the court to grtant your request, because one of the factors considered is your diligence, upon finding out that these problems have occurred.

I hope this helps. If you need additional information or clarification, just let me know and I'll be happy to continue providing assistance. If I have addressed your issue and/or pointed you in a positive direction, please let me know that as well, and please remember to leave a positive rating when prompted, as that is the only way attorneys on this site are credited for the information we provide.

Good luck!

Best,

Attorney 1

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
can they be removed from record (there are 4 total), similar to being expunged as criminal items. Can the court order that they be eliminated rather than vacated since the damage is so great? Is there any liability from the plaintiff being that they filed a SJ and proceeding to file CJs (4) knowing that service was never perfected PER the docket?
Expert:  Attorney 1 replied 8 months ago.

Hi there. When a court grants amotion to set aside a default judgment, it will issue an order to that effect which can then be sent to the credit bureaus with a request to remove the judgment from your report. The courts can't specifically order that the information be removed, because they're not part of the reporting process. The information is simply grabbed by the credit bureaus as a public record. As far as ordering the creditor to remove the judgment information, the creditor cannot do it because the creditors not responsible for the reporting of it.

That said, if your motions are granted and you are successful in the underlying actions, the creditor can be ordered to remove all of its negative reporting information from your credit reports. To make that happen, you would need to ask for that and it's best practice to file a cross complaint and for injunctive relief which specifically requests that the creditor remove the information. If you don't filed a cross-complaint asking for this specific relief, the judge may not grant it to you, since the judge is only considering the plaintiff's claims at that point. Courts don't grant relief that is not requested a party's opening papers. A cross complaint for injunctive relief needs to be filed, if at all, at the same time a defendants answer is filed.

I hope this helps. If you need additional information or clarification, just let me know and I'll be happy to continue providing assistance. If I have addressed your issue and/or pointed you in a positive direction, please let me know that as well, and please remember to leave a positive rating when prompted, as that is the only way attorneys on this site are credited for the information we provide.

Good luck!

Best,

Attorney 1