Law Office Of Paul DePetris
paul@newjerseylemon.com

Defending Special Civil Part Debt Collection Lawsuit FAQS

INTRODUCTION
Read below to learn more about this topic.  Or, to receive a no cost phone consultation, call Mr. DePetris at 609-714-2020 or send him an email.  Warning – this article does not necessarily include every New Jersey court rule, code or law that may apply to your New Jersey lawsuit!  The Law Office of Paul DePetris does not guarantee that the statutes, rules, codes, files or forms on this website are the latest versions, that they lack typographical errors or that they have not changed, repealed or superseded by other laws.  Before taking any action, read all applicable federal and state source law and lawsuit law and consult with an attorney.  Court addresses, hours of operation and directions may change so check with the court in advance of mailing documents to court or going there!  Some of the webpages on this site don’t apply to all types of New Jersey lawsuits, since there are different rules for different lawsuit types!


DEFENDING SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUIT FAQS


WHAT IS A SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUIT?
A Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit is a New Jersey civil court lawsuit filed in the Special Civil Part – a branch of the New Jersey Superior Court.  Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuits involve New Jersey civil disputes for damages of $15,000.00 (but attorney’s fees and court costs or litigation costs may exceed the Special Civil Part damages limit of $15,000.00).  In a Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit, a person or business that claims they are owed a debt files a Special Civil Part collection lawsuit against the person or business that supposedly owes the debt at a New Jersey courthouse.  The Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit usually seeks the recovery of money damages from the person or business who allegedly owes the debt.  The purpose of a Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit is normally for the Special Civil Part plaintiffs – the persons or businesses filing the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit – to recover a money judgment against the Special Civil Part defendants identified in the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit (called a Special Civil Part collection complaint).   This article discusses how to defend a Special Civil Part collection lawsuit.


WHAT ARE SOME TYPES OF NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUITS?
Bills for the sale of goods or services
Bounced check disputes
Condominium dues disputes 
Contract disputes
Credit card bill disputes 
Defaults and deficiency balances on car loans and leases
Medical bill disputes
Security deposit disputes
Unpaid rent disputes


HOW DO I DEFEND A NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUIT? 
To defend a Special Civil Part collection lawsuit, you must take a series of specific steps.  If you are sued in a New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit, you shall be named to a New Jersey Special Civil Part collection lawsuit called a Special Civil Part “collection complaint” or to a New Jersey Special Civil Part counterclaim and must file a written response to the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint or Special Civil Part counterclaim, called a Special Civil Part “answer”.   Failure to do so will normally result in your being defaulted and exposes you to the risk of having a Special Civil Part money judgment entered against you and thereafter, possibly losing money or property.  You may file a New Jersey Special Civil Part answer in civil court by preparing a written Special Civil Part answer disputing claims made against you in the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint or Special Civil Part counterclaim and requesting that the New Jersey Special Civil Part dismiss the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit.  If a Special Civil Part plaintiff or someone that isn’t named in the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint owes you money or property based on the same set of facts as those in dispute in the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint or facts related to the dispute, in addition to filing a New Jersey Special Civil Part answer, you may also be able to file a New Jersey Special Civil Part counterclaim or Special Civil Part third party collection complaint to recover the money or property (discussed below).  Forms are often available at the appropriate New Jersey Special Civil Part court office and via the worldwide web.  However, neither Special Civil Part court forms, websites nor advice from Special Civil Part court personnel are good substitutes for a Special Civil Part attorney’s legal services.  Each Special Civil Part collection lawsuit has its own particular legal issues and therefore, its own challenges.  It is very common for people to file inadequate or incorrect New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaints that result in the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaints or Special Civil Part answers to New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaints being rejected by the New Jersey Special Civil Part or being dismissed by the New Jersey Special Civil Part after filing and before or after a Special Civil Part trial because of procedural deficiencies.  It is important to be truthful and not to make misstatements of facts when answering New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaints and Special Civil Part counterclaims.   It is extremely important that you prepare your New Jersey Special Civil Part answer very carefully and make sure that you include in the Special Civil Part answer a detailed list of all defenses against the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint or Special Civil Part counterclaim that you are responding to, since failure to do so could cause you to lose your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit.  Accordingly, to defend a Special Civil Part collection lawsuit, you should seriously consider hiring a Special Civil Part trial attorney to prepare your response to the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint or Special Civil Part counterclaim, to prepare written Special Civil Part requests for information to the Special Civil Party that sued you (discussed further below) and if you can afford it, to have a Special Civil Part trial attorney represent you in Special Civil Part Court.  After your New Jersey Special Civil Part answer is prepared, you must file it by either visiting the New Jersey Superior Courthouse or appropriate Superior Court of New Jersey Court Finance Office in the county where the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint was filed – all of which are located in the county seat of the appropriate county -- or by sending the necessary Special Civil Part paperwork to the appropriate county office of the Superior Court of New Jersey.  You must pay a fee to file your New Jersey Special Civil Part answer that is determined based on the amount of the original dispute and the type of Special Civil Part trial you want and whether you intend to add parties to the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit (discussed below).   Only persons age 18 or older are able to file a New Jersey Special Civil Part  answer for themselves (minors must file a New Jersey Special Civil Part answer through their parent or guardian).   If you are not represented by a Special Civil Part trial attorney in a Special Civil Part collection lawsuit, you are called a Special Civil Part “pro se litigant”.  Most Special Civil Part collection complaints filed in New Jersey Special Civil Part that go to trial are not New Jersey Special Civil Part  jury trials but what are called Special Civil Part “bench trials”, meaning that only a Special Civil Part judge hears the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit.  For an extra fee paid only when you first file your first Special Civil Part collection complaint (or paid when you file your first Special Civil Part answer, if you are responding to the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint), you may demand a Special Civil Part trial by 6 jurors in New Jersey Special Civil Part.  In the Law Division, Civil Part, you merely file the appropriate jury request with no additional fee beyond the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint filing fee necessary to secure a New Jersey Special Civil Part jury trial.   New Jersey Special Civil Part jury trials are much more complex than Special Civil Part nonjury trials and usually require much more preparation, including extensive paperwork.  However, a New Jersey Special Civil Part jury trial demand may result in the facts of your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit being decided by a Special Civil Part jury of ordinary people rather than by a single Special Civil Part judge.  Even where a party requests a New Jersey Special Civil Part jury trial, the legal issues in the New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection trial are normally decided by the judge hearing the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit. 


CAN I RELY ON NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART FORMS PROVIDED BY THE NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART COURT?
To defend a Special Civil Part collection lawsuit, the New Jersey Special Civil Part usually provides certain types of Special Civil Part legal forms to the public and those forms are often very helpful.  However, beware relying on New Jersey Special Civil Part forms provided by the New Jersey Special Civil Part court – the forms are often deceptively simple, while Special Civil Part collection lawsuits often are much more complex than they first appear to be.   There is simply no substitute for a Special Civil Part attorney licensed to practice law in New Jersey who has experience handling New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuits.  Special Civil Part forms don’t talk and Special Civil Part forms and their directions rarely, if ever, cover every possible situation, set of facts or legal issue that may arise in a New Jersey Special Civil Part collection lawsuit.  Each New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit has its own particular legal issues and therefore, its own challenges.   If you can afford a competent New Jersey Special Civil Part trial attorney, it is best to have the Special Civil Part attorney prepare your New Jersey Special Civil Part paperwork for you.  
 
WHAT IF I AM SUED IN NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART BUT SOMEONE OWES ME MONEY BECAUSE OF THE SITUATION THAT IS THE SUBJECT OF THE NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART COLLECTION LAWSUIT FILED AGAINST ME?
If you are a Special Civil Part defendant and Special Civil Part plaintiff in a New Jersey Special Civil Part collection lawsuit or someone that isn’t named in the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint owes you money or property based on the same set of facts as those in dispute in the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint or facts related to the dispute, in addition to filing a New Jersey Special Civil Part  answer, you may also be able to file a New Jersey Special Civil Part  counterclaim or third party collection complaint to recover the money or property (discussed below).  If there are valid facts and legal reasons to support it, a Special Civil Part defendant can file their own lawsuit against a Special Civil Part plaintiff, called a “Special Civil Part counterclaim If you are sued and someone who is not named in the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection lawsuit is partially or totally responsible for the Special Civil Part plaintiff’s damages or for damages you suffered and there are valid facts and legal reasons to support it, a Special Civil Part defendant can file their own collection complaint, called a “third party collection complaint”.  By doing so, the Special Civil Part defendant names parties not originally named to the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint as additional parties to the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit.  Special Civil Part counterclaims and Special Civil Part third party collection complaints must be prepared in writing and filed with the appropriate court where the original collection complaint is being heard normally require extra fees above the cost of filing a New Jersey Special Civil Part answer to the original Special Civil Part collection complaint.  In the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit of a Special Civil Part third party collection complaint, once properly filed, the Special Civil Part normally serves it on the Special Civil Part plaintiff.  Forms may be available at the appropriate office of the Special Civil Part and via the worldwide web.  However, neither Special Civil Part court forms, websites nor advice from Special Civil Part court personnel are good substitutes for a Special Civil Part attorney’s legal services.  Each Special Civil Part collection lawsuit has its own particular legal issues and therefore, its own challenges.  It is very common for people to file inadequate or incorrect New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaints or Special Civil Part counterclaims that result in the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaints or Special Civil Part answers to New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaints or Special Civil Part counterclaims being rejected by the Special Civil Part or being dismissed by the Special Civil Part after filing and before or after the Special Civil Part trial because of procedural deficiencies.  It is important to be truthful and not to make misstatements of facts when answering New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaints and filing Special Civil Part counterclaims and Special Civil Part third party collection complaints.   It is extremely important that you prepare your New Jersey Special Civil Part answer, Special Civil Part counterclaim or third party collection complaint carefully and make sure that you include in the documents a detailed list of all reasons why you may have a right to win your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit, since failure to do so could cause you to lose your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit.  Accordingly, when you are sued and when you want to file a New Jersey Special Civil Part counterclaim or third party collection complaint, you should seriously consider hiring a Special Civil Part trial attorney to prepare your response to the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint or Special Civil Part counterclaim, to prepare written Special Civil Part requests for information to the Special Civil Party that sued you (discussed further below) and if you can afford it, to have a Special Civil Part trial attorney represent you in Special Civil Part Court.  After your Special Civil Part counterclaim or third party collection complaint is prepared, you must file it by either visiting the New Jersey Superior Courthouse or appropriate Court Finance Office in the county where the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint was filed – all of which are located in the county seat of the appropriate county -- or by sending the necessary paperwork to the appropriate county office of the Superior Court of New Jersey.  You must pay a fee to file the document that is determined based on the amount of the original dispute and the type of Special Civil Part trial you want and it may also be based on whether you intend to add parties to the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection lawsuit.


WHAT HAPPENS IF A NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUIT INVOLVES A CORPORATION, PARTNERSHIP OR LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY?
The officers of corporations, partnerships, limited liability companies and the like cannot generally appear in Special Civil Part collection lawsuits involving disputes exceeding $3,000 or in Special Civil Part collection lawsuits heard in the Law Division, Civil Part, since the corporation, partnership or limited liability company must usually be represented by a Special Civil Part trial attorney.  There may be some exceptions to this rule, such as where the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit involves a summary action for possession of premises.   Also, if you sue a company and the company represents itself at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial and you thereafter win the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit and recover a Special Civil Part judgment, it is possible that the company shall get the Special Civil Part judgment overturned because they were not permitted to appear in Special Civil Part Court for themselves in the first place!


IF I AM A SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEFENDANT IN A NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUIT, WILL THE OTHER SIDE HAVE A SPECIAL CIVIL PART TRIAL ATTORNEY?
If you are not represented by a Special Civil Part trial attorney in a New Jersey Special Civil Part collection lawsuit, you are called a “pro se litigant”.  While people can and often do represent themselves in New Jersey Special Civil Part  court, their opponent may be represented by a Special Civil Part trial attorney, which often places the unrepresented party at a major disadvantage.  If possible, hire a Special Civil Part trial attorney to at least prepare any necessary court paperwork and if you can afford it, to also appear and represent you in Special Civil Part Court at any Special Civil Part motions or Special Civil Part trials.   The proper preparation of Special Civil Part legal papers and preparation of a Special Civil Part collection lawsuit for a Special Civil Part trial often requires knowledge of legal issues that only attorneys have.  Court rules and evidence rules are often complex and accordingly, are often difficult to follow.  Trials can be very complex and time consuming – sometimes they take all day or more than one day to complete.  People who are not attorneys licensed to practice law in New Jersey are not able to give you legal advice about Special Civil Part disputes that are heard by New Jersey courts, regardless of whether the people work for a Special Civil Part Court or work for a Special Civil Part trial attorney.  


IF THE OTHER SIDE HIRES A SPECIAL CIVIL PART TRIAL ATTORNEY IN MY NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUIT, SHOULD I DEAL WITH THE ATTORNEY OR THEIR CLIENTS?
If a party is represented by a Special Civil Part trial attorney in a New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit, you must generally avoid having oral or written contact regarding the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit with the represented party and instead, must make all communications involving the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit through the represented party’s attorney.


WHAT HAPPENS AFTER A SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTOR FILES A NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART COLLECTION COMPLAINT AGAINST ME?
After the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint is filed, Special Civil Part court staff shall serve the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint on the Special Civil Part defendants, usually by mailing it by certified and regular mail.  To defend a Special Civil Part collection lawsuit, the Special Civil Part defendant has 35 days following service of the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint to file a New Jersey Special Civil Part answer.  The Special Civil Part summons should state the date on which the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint was served.  In New Jersey Special Civil Part collection lawsuits, if a Special Civil Part defendant fails to file a written Special Civil Part answer to the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint, the Special Civil Part court clerk should automatically enter a Special Civil Part default on the Special Civil Part’s docket.  The Special Civil Part normally mails the Special Civil Part plaintiff a notice stating the date on which lawsuits are automatically defaulted (35 days after service of the answer).  In Law Division, Civil Part, parties entitled to a Special Civil Part default must file papers with the New Jersey Special Civil Part to enter default.  If a Special Civil Part defendant files a written answer and pays the necessary fee, the Special Civil Part normally sends a notice of that a New Jersey Special Civil Part answer was filed.  Once a collection complaint and answer are filed in the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit, whenever one party sends any kind of paperwork to the New Jersey Special Civil Part, they must generally send complete copies of the paperwork to all other Special Civil Parties involved in their Special Civil Part collection lawsuit (or if they are represented, to the Special Civil Parties’ attorneys).  If a party fails to follow this procedure, they may be punished by the New Jersey Special Civil Part for the failure and any relief they ask for and receive from the New Jersey Special Civil Part can often be reversed for the failure.  The Special Civil Parties may engage in discovery – a factfinding process during which each party tries to find out more about the other party’s position.  Discovery often involves parties serving each other with written Special Civil Part requests for information called interrogatories, notices to produce (sometimes also called requests for production of documents) and requests for admissions.  These requests are served by you and not the New Jersey Special Civil Part by mailing the documents via regular and certified mail, return receipt requested (if the other party is unrepresented) on the other Special Civil Parties or by regular mail only on the other Special Civil Parties’ attorney, if they are represented by a Special Civil Part trial attorney.  However, it is often best to send all documents to any opponent by regular main and also by certified mail, return receipt requested to make sure you have proof that the documents were received by your opponent.  If either party fails to answer these requests in writing or fails to answer the requests with sufficient thoroughness, the Special Civil Part may punish the delinquent party, such as by throwing their collection complaint out of court or suppressing their answer.  Many people trying to defend New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuits ignore discovery demands served on them and thereafter have their answer suppressed and a Special Civil Part money judgment entered against them.  At some point after the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint is filed and answered, the New Jersey Special Civil Part will schedule a Special Civil Part trial date.   Failure to carefully prepare and serve thorough written Special Civil Part requests for information could result in your losing your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit, since you may be in the dark about what the other Special Civil Party intends to do at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial.  If a Special Civil Part collection lawsuit is coming up for arbitration and/or trial and you never received responses to your written Special Civil Part requests for information, you may have a right to get more time from the New Jersey Special Civil Part to get the requests answered.  Special Civil Part discovery can be a very tricky and important part of the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit and to make sure that it is conducted right, you should seriously consider hiring a Special Civil Part trial attorney to prepare your written Special Civil Part requests for information to your Special Civil Part opponents or to other Special Civil Parties involved in the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit or even to witnesses and if you can afford it, to have a Special Civil Part trial attorney represent you in Special Civil Part Court.


WHAT HAPPENS IF I AM DEFAULTED IN A NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUIT?
If a Special Civil Part defendant is defaulted by the New Jersey Special Civil Part in a New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit, then no Special Civil Part trial will occur (unless the New Jersey Special Civil Part vacates the Special Civil Part default) and the Special Civil Part plaintiff has a certain amount of time from the date of the entry of default to file additional paperwork with the New Jersey Special Civil Part to seek a Special Civil Part default judgment against a Special Civil Part defendant.  In some Special Civil Part collection lawsuits, securing a Special Civil Part default judgment only requires the Special Civil Part plaintiff to submit paperwork, while in other lawsuits, the Special Civil Part plaintiff has to prepare and file a Special Civil Part motion and the Special Civil Part may require the Special Civil Part plaintiff and defendant to appear at a Special Civil Part Court hearing – a Special Civil Part “proof hearing”.


WHAT HAPPENS IF A NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEFAULT JUDGMENT IS ENTERED AGAINST YOU IN A NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUIT AND YOU IGNORE IT?
If you ignore a Special Civil Part judgment entered in a New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit, the following may happen to you:
you may be forced to answer detailed questions about the location and value of your savings, personal property and bank accounts
you may be forced to appear for a deposition (a question and answer session conducted under oath) during which a Special Civil Part trial attorney will ask you questions about the location and value of your savings, personal property and bank accounts
your bank account may be frozen and money in it turned over to the Special Civil Part judgment holder
some of your wages may be taken from you
your personal property may be seized by the New Jersey sheriff and sold to satisfy the Special Civil Part judgment
a New Jersey lien may be put against a house you own
If the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint is for money damages caused by a motor vehicle accident and the Special Civil Part judgment requires a Special Civil Part defendant to pay $500 or more, the Special Civil Part defendant must pay within 60 days and if they do not, the Special Civil Part plaintiff may file papers asking the Special Civil Part to direct the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission to stop the Special Civil Part defendant's driving and registration privileges until that Special Civil Part judgment is paid  


Often people wait until their bank account is frozen or until their wages are attached to take action – at that point it is difficult and sometimes too late to do anything to successfully stop those Special Civil Part debt collection efforts.  It is not uncommon for the New Jersey Special Civil Part to refuse to help such latecomers from taking issue with the Special Civil Part debt collection efforts unless they file papers with the New Jersey Special Civil Part for relief.  However, once a Special Civil Part judgment is entered against you in a New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit, you may ask the New Jersey Special Civil Part to remove or “vacate” the Special Civil Part judgment (discussed below).


DO I NEED AN EXPERT WITNESS TO DEFEND MY NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUIT?
Often, to defend a Special Civil Part collection lawsuit, it is necessary to hire an expert witness to prepare a proper expert report and to testify regarding another Special Civil Party’s misconduct and the damages sustained as a result of the misconduct.  If scientific, technical, or other specialized knowledge will assist the factfinder at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial to understand the evidence or to determine a fact in issue, a witness qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education may testify thereto in the form of an opinion or otherwise.  To be considered by the Special Civil Part, an expert’s opinion must meet three basic requirements:   (1) the intended testimony must concern a subject matter that is beyond the knowledge of the average juror; (2) the subject testified to must be at a state of the art such that an expert’s testimony could be sufficiently reliable; and (3) the witness must have sufficient expertise to offer the intended testimony.  To meet the element of whether expert testimony is sufficiently reliable, the Special Civil Party offering the expert testimony must demonstrate that the expert’s opinion or theory is generally accepted within the scientific community.   An expert's opinion must be supported by facts or data either in the record or of a type usually relied upon by experts in the field.  Bare conclusions of an expert that are not supported by factual evidence are inadmissible.  Likewise, expert conclusions based on discredited or improperly performed diagnostic tools are suspect.  An expert's trial testimony is confined to the opinion reflected in his or her report.  Many expert opinions are never admitted into evidence and experts are thereby prevented from testifying at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial because the Special Civil Part finds the reports unreliable and/or inadequate.  Therefore, simply hiring an expert does not assure that you shall get their testimony into evidence.  Professional experts usually charge a fee to inspect your property and write a report – sometimes they bill by the hour and sometimes via a flat fee arrangement linked to each service they are to perform.  The expert normally sends a copy of their report to the Special Civil Party who hired the expert.  If your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit requires expert testimony and the matter goes all the way to trial, it shall be necessary to have the expert appear at and testify at same.  The expert usually charges additional fees for the time during which they must appear at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial but you may get the expert to include such services as part of the fee to perform inspections and to write reports.  While there are some exceptions, normally, Special Civil Part courts do not allow people to show up at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial to introduce into evidence estimates, expert reports and other documents that they never prepared and witnesses are often necessary to prove one’s Special Civil Part collection lawsuit, especially when it comes to the Special Civil Party’s damages.   


WHAT HAPPENS AT THE NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION TRIAL OF MY NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUIT?
On the day that your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit goes to trial, to defend a Special Civil Part collection lawsuit you must appear at court.  Usually, many lawsuits are heard on the day that your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit is called for a Special Civil Part trial and it is not uncommon for many people to wait in a single courtroom for their Special Civil Part collection lawsuit to be called.  You must be on time to avoid losing your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit!  If a Special Civil Part plaintiff fails to appear when their Special Civil Part collection lawsuit is called, the Special Civil Part is likely to dismiss the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint.  If a Special Civil Part defendant fails to appear when the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit is called, the New Jersey Special Civil Part shall likely enter a Special Civil Part default.  If a Special Civil Part default is entered, you shall have to prepare and file Special Civil Part paperwork with the New Jersey Special Civil Part asking the New Jersey Special Civil Part to enter a Special Civil Part default judgment in your favor.  If no default is entered, you must be prepared to present your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit or defense.  It is not uncommon for judges to get very frustrated by an unrepresented party’s lack of preparation or ignorance of the facts or law of the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit.  A Special Civil Part Court has the power to punish unprepared parties, such as by throwing their Special Civil Part collection lawsuit out of court or limiting what they can present at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial.  You must bring all documents, photographs, videos and other items with you to the New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection trial that are necessary to prove your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit (preferably originals).  Even if you bring such documents and items to court, the New Jersey Special Civil Part may refuse to allow you to use them at your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection trial.  New Jersey has published lawsuits, laws, regulations, court rules and rules of evidence that are very tricky and that can be used to prevent you from doing much of what you want to do at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial.  Accordingly, before trial, you must consult all of these rules to determine how you intend to get your documents and items into evidence or how to properly use them at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial.  Hearsay rules of evidence are particularly troublesome and you should study them carefully before trial.  For example, it is very common for courts to refuse to allow a party to use or refer to documents or items that the person themselves never prepared.  Often Special Civil Parties stumble into court with a video, photograph, bill or affidavit or other form of written statement, thinking they are going to use it as proof that they lost money or that they are not responsible for someone else’s damages, only to have a judge tell the Special Civil Parties that it is not going to even consider such items or documents.  Without the proper preparation, items and documents may never be considered by the Special Civil Part.  Also, if there are any legal issues to be dealt with at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial, you must be prepared to argue them, which may require you to refer to court rules, evidence rules, laws, regulations or published lawsuits.  If you have any witnesses that you need to testify for you at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial, then in advance of the New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection trial and as required by court rules, laws and published lawsuits, you must prepare a written subpoena (or subpoenas if the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit is adjourned).   Such a Special Civil Part subpoena must normally be personally served by a process server rather than by mail.  If you want to force one of the Special Civil Parties to the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit to testify as part of your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit, since they might not show up at the New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection trial (it is possible that only their attorney will show up), you should serve them with a notice in lieu of subpoena.  If you think that you could have problems getting someone to show up to provide testimony at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial, you should have a process server serve them with a Special Civil Part subpoena or  if they are a party to the dispute, a notice in lieu of subpoena.  Without witnesses to testify at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial (especially experts, discussed above), you may lose your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit.  Trials can be very complex and time consuming – sometimes they take all day or more than one day to complete.  Also, it is very common for a Special Civil Part trials to get adjourned because someone is not ready to present their Special Civil Part collection lawsuit for a valid reason (but you can never expect that you shall automatically get a Special Civil Part adjournment and you must always be fully ready to try your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit on the date that the New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection trial is scheduled since Special Civil Part courts often refuse Special Civil Part adjournment requests and dismiss Special Civil Part collection lawsuits if Special Civil Parties are not prepared to proceed with their Special Civil Part collection lawsuit or defense on the New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection trial date).  It is best to have your questions for any witnesses prepared in advance.  At the end of Special Civil Part trial, the Special Civil Part normally enters a Special Civil Part judgment for or against you.  The Special Civil Part may also withhold or “reserve” judgment for a later date, which normally results in the Special Civil Part taking time to write up its reasons for its decision and mailing it to the Special Civil Parties’ last known addresses (or to their attorneys, if they are represented).  


WHAT IS COURT MEDIATION IN NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUITS?
In most lawsuits heard in the New Jersey Special Civil Part, before the New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection trial occurs the New Jersey Special Civil Part requires the Special Civil Parties to mediate their dispute.  New Jersey Special Civil Part mediation is an informal hearing normally held in a conference room.  You and the other party and any attorneys involved in the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit appear at the New Jersey Special Civil Part mediation.  The New Jersey Special Civil Part mediation is conducted by a neutral New Jersey Special Civil Part court appointed mediator.  The New Jersey Special Civil Part Court mediator is trained in resolving disputes through the process of New Jersey Special Civil Part mediation.  Accordingly, the New Jersey Special Civil Part Court mediator attempts to resolve the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit by suggesting a possible settlement to both parties.  During the New Jersey Special Civil Part mediation, none of the Special Civil Parties is required to settle the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit.  Indeed, one or all of the Special Civil Parties may not even make any offer to settle.   Note that New Jersey Special Civil Part collection lawsuits do not always undergo New Jersey Special Civil Part mediation.  If the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection lawsuit cannot be settled before the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial and your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit is called to be tried, you must be prepared to present your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit or defenses.


IS IT POSSIBLE TO SETTLE MY NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUIT?
Special Civil Parties may voluntarily agree to settle their New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit but preparing the proper settlement agreement requires great care.  Normally, at any New Jersey Special Civil Part trial proceeding, the New Jersey Special Civil Part has settlement forms for the Special Civil Parties to complete if they settle their New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit.  However, neither New Jersey Special Civil Part court forms, websites nor advice from New Jersey Special Civil Part court personnel are good substitutes for a Special Civil Part attorney’s legal services.  Each New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit has its own particular legal issues and therefore, its own challenges.   For example, what if you don’t include protections to yourself in the agreement?   A Special Civil Part Court may refuse to enforce a New Jersey Special Civil Part settlement agreement if it is unclear what the Special Civil Parties agreed to.  Also, if a party fails to honor a New Jersey Special Civil Part settlement, you may have to return to New Jersey Special Civil Part court if you want to enforce the New Jersey Special Civil Part settlement, which normally requires you to file a Special Civil Part motion.  If you can afford a Special Civil Part trial attorney, it is best to have the Special Civil Part attorney prepare the Special Civil Part settlement agreement so that they can try to make the other Special Civil Parties agree to the best settlement terms for you.  If you do settle your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit yourself, you should notify the New Jersey Special Civil Part as soon as possible – with a phone call and then followed up in writing.  If the New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit is settled before trial, you should make every effort to advise the New Jersey Special Civil Part of the Special Civil Part settlement before the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial occurs.


WHAT IF A SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEFAULT AND/OR SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEFAULT JUDGMENT IS ENTERED AGAINST YOU IN A NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEBT COLLECTION LAWSUIT AND YOU STILL WANT A SPECIAL CIVIL PART TRIAL?
If a Special Civil Part default and/or Special Civil Part default judgment was entered against you, you may seek to remove it, called “vacating the Special Civil Part default” or “vacating the Special Civil Part default judgment”.  To vacate either, you must normally prepare a written Special Civil Part motion and file the Special Civil Part motion with the Special Civil Part asking that the Special Civil Part default and/or Special Civil Part default judgment be vacated.   The New Jersey Special Civil Part normally has forms available at the New Jersey Special Civil Part courthouse and on the worldwide web.  However, neither court forms, websites nor advice from Special Civil Part court personnel are good substitutes for a Special Civil Part attorney’s legal services.  Each Special Civil Part collection lawsuit has its own particular legal issues and therefore, its own challenges.   If you can afford a Special Civil Part trial attorney, it is best to have the Special Civil Part attorney perform the steps necessary to prepare the proper Special Civil Part motion.  If you ignore the Special Civil Part default, it may lead to the entry of a Special Civil Part judgment against you.  If you ignore a Special Civil Part judgment, your bank account may be frozen and money in it turned over to the Special Civil Part judgment holder, some of your wages may be taken from you, your personal property may be seized by the New Jersey sheriff and sold to satisfy the Special Civil Part judgment and/or a lien may be put against a house you own.  If the New Jersey Special Civil Part collection complaint is for money damages caused by a motor vehicle accident and the Special Civil Part judgment requires a Special Civil Part defendant to pay $500 or more, the Special Civil Part defendant must pay within 60 days and if they do not, the Special Civil Part plaintiff may file papers asking the Special Civil Part to direct the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission to stop the Special Civil Part defendant's driving and registration privileges until that Special Civil Part judgment is paid.
 
WHAT IF I LOSE MY NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART TRIAL OR THE NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART REFUSES TO VACATE A NEW JERSEY SPECIAL CIVIL PART DEFAULT JUDGMENT AND YOU STILL WANT A SPECIAL CIVIL PART TRIAL?
 If you disagree with the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial court’s decision, such as if a Special Civil Part judgment is entered against you at the New Jersey Special Civil Part trial or your request to vacate a Special Civil Part default judgment is denied, you may ask the Special Civil Part to reconsider its decision.  To do so, you must file papers with the Special Civil Part, called a Special Civil Part motion for reconsideration.  In some Special Civil Part collection lawsuits, the Special Civil Part motion for reconsideration must be made in 20 days from the date of the Special Civil Part court’s order that caused you to lose your New Jersey Special Civil Part debt collection lawsuit and/or which entered judgment against you.  Special Civil Part motions for reconsideration must generally meet certain requirements.  If you intend to file such a Special Civil Part motion, you should seriously consider consulting a New Jersey Special Civil Part trial attorney who is experienced in preparing such Special Civil Part motions.  


If your Special Civil Part motion for reconsideration is unsuccessful or if you do not believe that a Special Civil Part motion for reconsideration shall be successful, as well as or instead of filing a Special Civil Part motion for reconsideration, you may appeal the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit to a higher court -- the Appellate Division of the Superior Court.  There are very strict deadlines for filing Special Civil Part appeals.   To appeal a final Special Civil Part judgment or final Special Civil Part order that resolves all issues in the Special Civil Part collection lawsuit, you may file a notice of appeal and other required documents with the Appellate Division within 45 days from the date of judgment and pay a fee to the Appellate Division – for example, Special Civil Part appeals are not heard by the Special Civil Part and you should not try to file appellate papers with the Special Civil Part!   As part of your Special Civil Part appeal, you usually must also prepare a written court transcript request and order a Special Civil Part Court transcript from the appropriate Special Civil Part court that decided the matter against you and pay a fee for it.  Special Civil Part appeals are some of the most complex proceedings in the New Jersey Special Civil Part system.  The New Jersey Courts normally has forms available on the worldwide web.  However, neither Special Civil Part court forms or New Jersey appellate court forms, websites nor advice from Special Civil Part court personnel or New Jersey appellate court personnel are good substitutes for a Special Civil Part attorney’s legal services.  Each Special Civil Part collection lawsuit has its own particular legal issues and therefore, its own challenges.   If you can afford a Special Civil Part trial attorney, it is best to have the Special Civil Part attorney perform the steps necessary to take an appeal.  Special Civil Part appeals from Special Civil Part orders or Special Civil Part judgments that are not final are called Special Civil Part “interlocutory appeals” and the procedure for such appeals is somewhat different than those for Special Civil Part appeals from final Special Civil Part judgments or final Special Civil Part orders.


NEED HELP WITH YOUR NEW JERSEY LAWSUIT?
Let the Law Office of Paul DePetris help you with your New Jersey lawsuit.  Not all New Jersey lawsuits require you to pay expensive legal fees to get legal help.  To receive a no cost phone consultation about what the Law Office of Paul DePetris might be able to do for you, call Mr. DePetris at 609-714-2020 or send an email to Mr. DePetris.  
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