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Chapter 482

Effective - 28 Aug 1985 bottom

  482.355.  Appearance for trial — continuance, when granted — failure of defendant to appear, consequences — procedure — dismissal of action, when. — 1.  The defendant in a small claims action shall appear at the time and place specified in the summons and the case shall be tried on the day set for appearance unless continued by the court upon request of either party.  No party shall be entitled to a continuance, except on a showing of good cause and at the discretion of the small claims court judge.  If the defendant appears, he need not file an answer, and, when no answer is filed the allegations of the complaint shall be considered denied and any defense may be proved as if it were specifically pleaded.

  2.  If, upon the date set for the hearing of a small claims action, the defendant, having been duly served, fails to appear at the time and place specified in the summons or specified by the court in response to a request for a continuance, the court, after presentation of evidence by the plaintiff to establish a prima facie case, may enter judgment for the amount claimed.  If the plaintiff does not appear, or if neither the plaintiff nor defendant appears, the court may enter an order dismissing the action.  Any action so dismissed may not be brought in small claims court again, but may be brought in an appropriate division of the circuit court using regular proceedings.

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(L. 1976 H.B. 1317 & 1098 § 4 subsec. 11, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1985 S.B. 5, et al.)


---- end of effective   28 Aug 1985 ----

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