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Mx-52010

Landlord trying to sue me

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Not sure if this is relevant for this site, but you all have helped a ton in the past when gunk debt buyers tried to sue me. So, I have a landlord that I moved out of a condo that wants to sue me. They are claiming that there is 9k worth of damage. This is NOT the case, and I have pictures, witnesses, etc. to prove it. They also harassed me during my stay there. They tried to go to my fathers address because I did not give them my new ones and basically blocked them from calling me. A sheriff went to my dads and told him to get ahold of me to get papers served. My dad said we were "estranged" then called me telling me about it. I need to be legally served/aknowledge the serving to go to court right? I know I can beat them in court, they are insane, but I don't want to get a misjudgement due to not responding to any sort of request to get papers. Someone PLEASE help me on this, what should I do? Wait until they can find me? It's not like it's THAT hard to find someone. They tried to add me on LinkedIn too which I denied.

 

Please Help

 

C

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5 hours ago, Mx-52010 said:

I know I can beat them in court, they are insane, but I don't want to get a misjudgement due to not responding to any sort of request to get papers.

What they will do is use alternative service process like publishing in the local paper because you are intentionally dodging service.  You would need to monitor the court docket to ensure they do not do this.  If you are never served by a valid method they cannot get a default judgment.  

IF you have witnesses and proof of no damage my gut says get the papers and go after them.

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There is a serious danger they could do some sort of publication service or other alternative service and get a default judgment if you don’t show.

You can file a counterclaim as part of your answer.  File a counterclaim for harassment. 

You have two main goals:

1. Make sure they can’t get a default judgment against you.  If you really are confident you can win the case, you have nothing to fear by an answer and counterclaim  

2.  Get all your evidence and witnesses set and prepare to fight this thing in court.   

 

 

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If you think you have a decent case against them, I think you could go to the Sheriff's Office or courthouse and request that they serve you then and there. That would then allow you to answer and avoid the default. If you need to gather the evidence and witnesses then do it just before or immediately after being served. You have a set number of days to file your answer and then there will be more time before the court hears the case so you should have some time to get your evidence together.

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I agree with everyone else.  Accept service and then file a counter claim against them.  Did they not return your deposit?  If you have photos and everything was good on move-out then I would at least file the counter claim for the amount of your deposit and also add in harassment (although in a small claims court, it can be hard to get a dollar amount for harassment).

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Well, I don't even know if it's them. It could be a private student loan I defaulted on. They didn't inform my dad who it was from. So, at this point, I don't have knowledge of it technically, so I can't imagine there would be a default judgement. I'm not even "dodging" it, I just didn't give them my forwarding address. Yes they kept my deposit. I wrote a letter saying they could keep it in return for me not paying for the last 10 days of my lease. I was paying two leases and had already moved, I also stated it would give them more time to get the place ready for a new tenant. They also immediately put it back on craigslist, which I took a picture of. They claimed on the ad they were renovating, hence why they are trying to squeeze money out of me. There is NO way possible I did any damages that would warrant 9000 dollars. I know for a fact they do their own repairs and not pay contractors also to save money. They have verbally abused me for trying to prorate rent when the water heater was broken for a week also, but I don't have that on a recording. Anyway, a lot of people just say wait until you get served to deal with it, especially because after having my dad clarify that it wasn't specified who was trying to serve me.

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You left that part out that you have other debts that you have defaulted on. That would have been important in formulating a response.

If you want to know who is suing you, have a friend go to the courthouse to review the case and report back to you. Then you know what is going on before you are even served.

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They can't serve the person on behalf of me for inquiring? Like my girlfriend for example?  And I apologize, yeah, you all have helped me in the past against JDB with MTC Arb. they often dropped it but w/out prejudice so they start back at me after a little while. Sorry I didn't include that in my original post. Also, the county of the officer was Williamson County, which is what's on my driver's licence (my parents house because I move a lot), not Davidson county, which is where I was living at the time of the Landlord issue. The Landlords also live in Davidson county (greater Nashville). Could that make a difference also? A lot of these old JDB have my parents address as I ignored them for some time. 

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6 hours ago, Mx-52010 said:

They can't serve the person on behalf of me for inquiring? Like my girlfriend for example?  And I apologize, yeah, you all have helped me in the past against JDB with MTC Arb. they often dropped it but w/out prejudice so they start back at me after a little while. Sorry I didn't include that in my original post. Also, the county of the officer was Williamson County, which is what's on my driver's licence (my parents house because I move a lot), not Davidson county, which is where I was living at the time of the Landlord issue. The Landlords also live in Davidson county (greater Nashville). Could that make a difference also? A lot of these old JDB have my parents address as I ignored them for some time. 

If your last known address was in Williamson Co they could sue you there.  Was that where the suit was filed? If so, have someone drive to Franklin.   The court records are public.  Anyone can view them.   Most courts charge a per-page fee for copying documents   

Generally the service must either be in person or to an adult at the address.  Doubtful they could serve a friend.  

I happened to know that Franklin was the county seat because my great-great uncle was a judge there many years ago.  He finally retired about 1970 when he was 80.  I visited him in a nursing home around there in 1977.  My relatives had a farm in Nolensville from 1830-1980, where the judge was born.  I still have relatives in the Nashville area; some of them attorneys.  

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The court has no clue who the person is when someone goes up to the clerks window and asks to review a case file. In fact, here in Minnesota, you will be directed to the computers where you can review most case document (except private one by law for certain probate and family cases) at your leisure. No ID needed. I have reviewed cases for genealogy all of the time and the clerks have never asked who I was or my relation to the case.

If you are that worried, then tell your girlfriend to simply tell the clerk that she does not live with you, or she can simply say that she is reviewing the case a part of a research project, or a ton of other reasons that don't involve you. Or she can give them your address so that they can serve you at some point. You still will have the information before being served so you can plan on how to fight.

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If you have a lot of JDBs plus defaulted private student loan and this landlord issue, you might want to look into Bankruptcy.  It sounds like a huge thing, but since you are living with your parents with no assets right now, it actually could potentially help you clear all of this out with one action and start the road to recovery immediately rather than drawing this out with several court cases over years.

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