How do you file an opposition to a motion for summary judgement ?

Asked over 4 years ago - Saint Augustine, FL

I understand that I have 21 days to file an opposition to the motion for summary judgment, how do I do that in Florida?

We received a motion for summary judgment before our deadline to answer the summons has even expired, and the court has recorded that motion already. We are filing our answer and our discovery request before the enlargement of time is over. Thank you.

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Theodore Lyons Araujo

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . The answer to your question about how to file an opposition to a motion for summary judgment is to file a plea that states your general defenses. The motion for summary judgment asks the Court to decide the facts and the law and if there are no questions to be resolved at trial the court will enter a judgment.

    The first thing you need to do if and when you get sued is to file an answer to the motion for summary judgment. File the answer right away. The summons will tell you that you must “appear” by way of an Answer in 10, 20 or 30 days, “depending on the method of service.”

    You need a lawyer, but if you cannot afford one right away, rather than do nothing and have a judgment entered against you, you need to “appear” by filing something!

    Many people think this means they have to go to Court and this is incorrect. 90% of all lawsuits end in Default Judgments because the defendant (person getting sued) did not file an answer.

    I recommend you go to the free form I have on my website. Print it out and fill it out as instructed. You must answer the numbered paragraphs on the Complaint by writing them into the appropriate lines in the Answer. The Answer will allow you to preserve your rights and will prohibit a default judgment (i.e. you did not show up) from being entered against you.

    Mimic the paperwork of the motion for summary judgment when you got when you got sued. Answer all the paragraphs of the Complaint by writing the numbers in lines 1, 2 or 3.

    Almost 100% of attorneys will deny what is owed because they did not do the calculations and do not know what the basis for the number is…

    When you file the Answer that is your “not guilty”. You have the right to make the person suing you (Plaintiff) prove their case, but you must also answer the complaint truthfully.

    Make sure you fill in the name and address of the attorney suing you before you bring this paperwork to the Court. Mail it to the attorney suing you right away!

    Check out the guide I have drafted on the Avvo profile. This will provide more detailed instructions. If it is helpful remember to indicate that and get the guide read!

    YOU MUST ALSO ANSWER THE MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT right away by submitting the facts and the law to the court that substantiates your defenses and side of the case. You may also want to talk to a bankruptcy lawyer right away.

    Good Luck!

  2. James Juo

    Contributor Level 16

    Answered . In regards to your question about how to file an opposition to a motion for summary judgment in Florida, you may want to consult with an attorney about asking the court to order a continuance of the summary judgment motion to allow you time to conduct discovery essential to your ability to oppose the motion.

    In federal practice, the applicable rule is FRCP 56(f). Other procedural rules may apply depending on your court (state or federal). Good luck.

  3. Alan James Brinkmeier

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . You might find help in my Legal Guide "What is a Summary Judgment?" Some that have read it have found it helpful. I hope you do as that is why I spent the time to write it.

    http://www.avvo.com/legal-guides/ugc/what-is-a-...

    The rules to respond to a summary judgment are already in place. It is like a mini-trial done on paperwork only. You must learn those rules if you are going it alone. You cannot expect the judge or other side to help you. Remember, if you are going to represent yourself the same standard as a professional attorney is applied to you. The Judge cannot give you assistance and maintain the required courtroom decorum of being fair and impartial to both sides. As pro se, you'll be held accountable for having the same information about the rules of court, rules of law, and rules of evidence as an attorney who has years of experience handling cases. The judge would be right not to give you any breaks. If you file a brief or motion to dismiss incorrectly without following either or both of the procedural or substantive rules it can and most likely will get thrown out of court.

    I urge to to retain a skilled lawyer quickly. If you lose a summary judgment is final.

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