What happens if I, the respondant, fail to show up to my court hearing?

My sister-in-law (whom I haven't had contact with for 15 yrs!) had me served with a restraining order in Aug. I went to court and she never showed up. The judge dismissed the case. The next day, she went and filed again. Now I'm due in court in Sept. I know she won't show up because she's doing this to her own sister and brother, too. She files, has us served, we show up and she doesn't. She's just playing games. So what happens if I don't show up? This has been so stressful and I'm tired of it - We all are!

Saint Peters, MO -

Attorney Answers (1)

Dax B. Grantham

Dax B. Grantham

Litigation Lawyer - Beverly, MA

First let me state that I am not licensed in MO and you should consult with a local attorney.

That said, if you don't show up and your sister-inn-law does, then you will be defaulted. If neither of you show up, then the case will be dismissed again. However, filing frivolous lawsuits is unlawful in most districts and your sister-in-law could be fined by the court. I would recommend that you show up and bring it up to the judges attention. I would also recommend that you speak with a lawyer about this if it happens again.

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