Friday, July 24, 2015

Default not entered within one year.

Practice point:  The Appellate Division affirmed the granting of the motion to dismiss pursuant to CPLR 3215(c). Plaintiff failed to take any proceedings for entry of judgment within one year after defendant defaulted, and plaintiff failed to demonstrate sufficient cause why the motion should be denied.

Student note:  CPLR 3215(c), which is titled "Default not entered within one year," states, in pertinent part, that "[i]f the plaintiff fails to take proceedings for the entry of judgment within one year after the default, the court shall not enter judgment but shall dismiss the complaint as abandoned, without costs, upon its own initiative or on motion, unless sufficient cause is shown why the complaint should not be dismissed."

The statute prevents parties who have asserted claims from unreasonably delaying the termination of actions, and to avoid inquests on stale claims.  Failure to take proceedings for entry of judgment may be excused, however, upon a showing of sufficient cause. To establish sufficient cause, the party opposing dismissal must demonstrate that it had a reasonable excuse for the delay in taking proceedings for entry of a default judgment and that it has a potentially meritorious action.

Case:  Aurora Loan Servs., LLC v. Hiyo, NY Slip Op 06100 (2d Dept. 2015)

Here is the decision.

Monday's issue:  Contract interpretation, on the motion and on appeal.