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Ask Delta-Lawyer Your Own Question
Delta-Lawyer, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 3546
Experience:  10 years practicing IP law and general litigation
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I am a defendant in a post divorce case with my exe as the

Customer Question

I am a defendant in a post divorce case with my exe as the plaintiff. I am trying to get the house refinanced solely in my name. Anyhow, I received an Order from the Jefferson County, Alabama Birmingham division. Here it is:This cause was submitted the the court on the plaintiff's petition for RULE NISI. There being no answer or default submitted to the court on said date nor subsequent thereto, the court is of the opinion the following order should be entered accordingly, it is
Ordered and adjudged by the court:
1. That an answer or default shall be due on or before 12:00 pm on the 23rd day of May, 2916 or said cause shall be dismissed without further order of the court.What does that mean? Do I need to do anything, or is that an order that the plaintiff must follow up on?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Delta-Lawyer replied 1 year ago.
I hope this message finds you well, present circumstances excluded. I am a licensed attorney with over a dozen years of experience handling matters of this nature. It is a pleasure to assist you today. Have you filed any response to the plaintiff's initial petition or motion? The reason that I ask is that a "Rule Nisi" is basically a ruling without effect unless a particular condition is met. In other words, if you did not file a response to a petition or complaint from the plaintiff, and the plaintiff has not made a motion for default judgment, then any ruling the court institutes now would not take effect until the plaintiff does something file a Motion for Default Judgment. I look forward to hearing back from you at your convenience. Best!
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I responded to the initial complaint a couple of months ago. I am in the process of refinancing the house, but the refi is not complete yet. With that said, the plaintiff asked for a compliance hearing be set for 60 days after April 22nd. Then, I received this order from the court...
In non lawyer language ( I'm saying that with a smile), should Injust stand pat or do I need to go to the courthouse and put an update of the current state of the refinance project on file with them, in writing?
Expert:  Delta-Lawyer replied 1 year ago.
If they simple requested a compliance hearing without a motion to produce this information to you, or without a subpoena or discovery request to produce this information, then it appears as though the court is attempting to force their hand here and you should not respond in any way. If they have subpoenaed or requested this information, then you will need to supply it today. The language in the courts order here is ambiguous. It appears as though they are stating two different things: (1) Plaintiffs need to submit something or this is dismissed; and (2) the court seems to be stating that there has been no answer supplied by you. The question I would have is if you have no been supplied with something to file an answer to, like a subpoena or discovery request, then what could you possibly answer? In the end, this appears to be addressed to the plaintiff and is requiring them to provide an answer or a motion for default...and if they do not, then the court will dismiss their petition. So, how do you proceed forward? Well, it seems as though you need to sit tight and the court will dismiss this if they hear nothing from the plaintiff today. In an abundance of caution, however, I would contact the court clerk and ask them to clarify this order for you, just to make sure you are understanding things correctly. As stated above, this is an ambiguous legal filing that is, at best, ***** ***** My advice is to not respond, though I would contact the court clerk and ask them to interpret this order and what it is asking you to do, just in case due to the ambiguous language here. Let me know if you have any other questions. Please also rate my answer positively (THREE OR MORE Stars). Best wishes going forward!
Expert:  Delta-Lawyer replied 1 year ago.
You have any other questions or concerns?
Expert:  Delta-Lawyer replied 1 year ago.
Did you have any other questions or concerns? I want to make sure you are as comfortable as possible as you move forward here. Thanks