What is a default judgement
A default judgement means the defendant did not fight the charges the plaintiff made, and as a result the plaintiff wins by default. This usually only happens when the defendant doesn't show up to their trial or doesn't file any kind of response with the court. This is surprisingly common, particularly in cases where the tenant does not have a rational basis for refusing to follow a notice to vacate.
As many as 60% of court cases against individual defendants result in a default due to the defendant not showing up. Before the court will issue a default, a number of steps have to be followed correctly to ensure the defendant was in fact aware of, and had sufficient time to respond to, the court case.
When can a plaintiff get a default judgement?
In order to get a default judgement, a plaintiff needs to file a case in court, correctly serve the defendant, ensure the proof of service is filed by the process server, attend their court hearing, and then file the Motion for Clerk's Default form. After the Clerk's Default, there will be another motion to request the judge in the case to enter a Final Default (which happens on this form).
What is the Motion for Default Final Judgement (Damages) Used For?
The Motion for Default Final Judgement form is used in Florida evictions cases to ask the judge to issue a judgement in favor of the plaintiff due to the defendant not arguing their case (i.e., due to a default). This form is used in evictions cases after the Clerk's Motion has been filed and accepted. The 'Damages' part just means this eviction case includes a claim by the plaintiff for money from the defendant, usually to pay the cost of damage to the property, or unpaid backrent.