clw1212

Is this Grounds To Vacate a Judgment in Florida

Recommended Posts

I received my Final Judgment a few days ago. The Plaintiff could not prove Open Account or Money Lent. The Final Judgment claimed they proved Account Stated.

I disagree: The exact words (other than dollar amount) in the Account Stated portion of the Final Judgment are as follows:

"The Plaintiff proved that before the institution of the lawsuit, the Plaintiff and the Defendant had business transactions between them. The statement which shows account activity between February 4, 2010 and March 4, 2010 was rendered by the Plaintiff to the Defendant; said statement shows resulting balance of $XXXX.XX (a little over 3600.00). The Defendant did not object to the resulting balance. The court finds the Defendant's lack of objection was an agreement to the resulting balance of $XXXX.XX, and therefore, the Plaintiff proved Count One."

Count Two: Money Lent "The court finds that the Plaintiff did not prove the dates of all of the money lent because there was some money lent (pre-December 6, 2004) for which the Plaintiff did not provide statements in evidence. Therefore, the Plaintiff did not prove Count Two."

Count Three: Open Account " The court finds that the Plaintiff did not prove the items, time of accrual of each, and amount of each because the pre-December 6, 2004 statements were not submitted into evidence. Therefore, the Plaintiff did not prove Count Three."

First off, I never agreed to the total amount, even before the hearing. In fact the first 2 lines of the Final Judgments states: "A Pretrial Conference in this action was held on (in April 2012) and the Defendant agreed she owned the account, but disputed the amount of damages."

How could it be stated that I had disputed the amount on one page, then stated the Plaintiff proved Account Stated because I did not object to the final amount?

Here in Florida for Account Stated in the Note at the bottom it states: “A copy of the account showing items, time of accrual of each, and amount of each must be attached.” The same thing it stated in Count Three, which the Plaintiff did not prove.

As stated in Counts Two and Three of the Final Judgment, the first 4 years of statements were not included.

I know I never agreed to the balance. I went to the courthouse on Monday to see the transcripts, but was told that because the Plaintiff requested the court reporter, they would not have access to those at the courthouse. I do know what I said, but cannot prove it.

I'm still within the 10 days, so would this be grounds for Motion to Dismiss, or Motion to Vacate Judgment? Does anyone think I may have a chance?

Thanks for all advice or assistance I may receive. I appreciate all input.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest usctrojanalum

Was this a written decision by a judge? If so, a motion to vacate or a motion to dismiss is not proper. The only way a judges order can be overturned is via appeal.

Only different types default judgments get vacated, where there was no trial or decision issued by a judge granting judgment. If this is a judges order, the only way for it to be overturned is going through the proper appeal process.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The info you posted states a Judgement of $3600, so I'm assuming you're in small claims court. You can file an appeal within 10 days. Don't just look over the issues you've posted, but procedural issues to see if they have been properly followed. Check out the Small Claims Rules of Procedure...its a quick read and there is great info here that can assist:

http://www.floridabar.org/TFB/TFBResources.nsf/0/5E3D51AF15EE8DCD85256B29004BFA62/$FILE/Small%20Claims.pdf?OpenElement

Re Court transcripts, call the attorney and ask for the name of the court reporter. They may no cooperate, so you might have to call the Florida Bar (or suggest that you may have to...)

I'm curious regarding which Court you're in, please feel free to PM me or post it here, if you're comfortable in doing so.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Defendant did not object to the resulting balance.

Defendant agreed she owned the account, but disputed the amount of damages."

There is a subtle difference here. You may have disputed the total amount owed, some of which is interest, legal fees, etc. Disputing the amount on the CC statement is what they are referring to, that is part of account stated. If you want a copy of the transacript, contact the other side and order it from the stenographer. It's prob about 3 bucks per page. (my sister was a court reporter)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the replies. From my original post, in reference to an appeal, does it look like I would have a good case? Thanks

Determined1 - I cannot post private messages yet. The county is Pasco County.

It states on the pasco clerk website, that I have 30 days to appeal. It states I would need an "Original Notice of Appeal" and "Conformed copy of the order being appealed"

Could someone tell me if these are official forms and can I get them at the courthouse?

I am new to all of this legal stuff, so excuse all my questions.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Based upon what you posted, I'd have to say no, there are no grounds for an appeal. Appeals are based on judicial error. The review is plenary, the court cannot and will not set aside a decision because they felt they might have made a different decision based on the facts. They can only reverse if they find error, I see none here, others will chime in. You'd have to overcome the judge's opinion concerning account stated. In Florida? "Fugeddaboudit." No chance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.