Civil/Commercial Litigation (Lawsuits)/Civil suit


Mr. Smith, I live in South Dakota and repossessed a vehicle. The buyer filed civil suit stating it was a bad repo, which it was not. I replied to the complaint by the due date. Now I get a court order to release the vehicle and he said he included the remaining balance in the letter, which he did not. What recourse would I have to get the balance due and the repossession fees paid by him?  How is it that this happens without having a court hearing?  Thank you for any help at all Sir.

Greetings Mary,

Before I respond further to your question, I must make clear that I do not represent you, and cannot give you individual particularized legal advice. No attorney client relationship is created by this email. For legal advice, you should hire your own attorney, and follow their advice. My role with AllExperts is limited to providing general information and suggestions for educational or general knowledge purposes. Before you take any action, consult with your own attorney.

I do not practice in your State, and have no knowledge of your local laws.  It sounds to me like you missed a step.  Something happened after you Answered the Complaint and the Order issued, perhaps a hearing that you missed.  To observe your Constitutional right to Due Process, you are supposed to have notice of any court action and an opportunity to be heard.  It is unusual for an Order to simply coalesce.

My primary suggestion is to contact the courthouse and determine the origin of that Order.  If you missed a hearing, I am hopeful that your State is like mine and has a procedure to vacate a default judgment.  If not, there may be similar post-hearing relief, like a motion to reconsider.  Next, I urge you to find a practitioner in your State to assist you with the appropriate relief to address not only the Order but the absence of the balance that concerns you.  One way or another, it seems to me you will need to file some kind of motion to get appropriate relief.

I hope this helps, good luck to you and your friend.

Morgan Smith
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Conciliation Court * Civil Litigation * Forfeitures * Construction * Family Law

Civil/Commercial Litigation (Lawsuits)

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Morgan Smith


Civil litigation (contract claims, landlord-tenant actions, forfeiture suits, residential construction defect matters), Family law (divorce, custody modifications, child support modifications, and pre-nuptial agreement), new business start-ups, civil forfeiture, asset forfeiture. Please do not submit your question as Private. It is my policy not to answer Private questions from members of the public here on AllExperts; I reserve that function to my private clients. Although AllExperts permits me to change your questions from Private to Public, it is my policy not to do that. I encourage you to resubmit your question as a public question. Your public question has the potential to help others with similar concerns. I suggest that you use a pretend name and otherwise alter sensitive facts that make you inclined to treat your question as Private, and submit your question to me Publicly.


I've been practicing law in the State of Minnesota since 1995. I've worked in skyscraper firms, and now my own small firm in Minneapolis. Past answers from my earlier participation on AllExperts is posted at:

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J.D. William Mitchell College of Law, St Paul, MN

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