Internal Update

The Very Law team recently convinced a judge to open a confessed judgment

In Pennsylvania, confessed judgment clauses cannot be included in consumer transactions, but they can be used in commercial transactions.

Recently, Very Law managed to convince a judge to open a confessed judgment that was imposed on our client, who is the plaintiff in this case.

The case involved a borrower-lender relationship and a commercial loan, whereby our client was the borrower. Our client (the plaintiff) entered into a loan agreement with the defendant (who is a bank). The Defendant had not explained the terms and conditions of the loan agreement.

Our client brought forward a claim against the bank for monetary damages concerning the circumstances of how the original loan was entered into. In retaliation, the defendant filed a complaint in a confession of judgment against our client.

A confession of judgment is a pleading which will give immediate judgment without having to go through the traditional legal process of filing a complaint. Clauses containing confessions of judgment must be brought to the attention of the parties upon entering into the contract. 

In Pennsylvania, confessed judgment clauses cannot be included in consumer transactions, but they can be used in commercial transactions. 

Very Law’s Vincent J. Krawiec and Niki L. Erdner got to work to file a petition to have the confession of judgment opened, which is one of the only ways our client can contest this clause.

For a confession of judgment to be opened, the petitioners must act quickly, allege a meritorious defense, and produce sufficient evidence to require submission of the case to a jury. 

Our meritorious defense, in this case, falls under the doctrine of ‘lis pendens’. This is because we filed suit last year regarding the same subject matter, and involving the same parties, before the confessions of judgment were filed. 

The biggest challenge we had with the case is that the facts between the first-filled action and the later confession of judgment were not a 1:1 comparison. Thanks to Niki’s excellent research and analysis and Vincent’s strong argument, however, we were able to work together to draw out nuances in the case law which allowed the Judge to easily render a decision in our favor. 

We also have a defense of an unconstitutional waiver of the plaintiff’s right to due process. It is our argument that numerous misstatements and false information were provided to our client which they relied on to their detriment and that ties in with our meritorious defense of the unconstitutional waiver of rights. 

The case is still ongoing, but opening the confession of judgment was a major step forward in getting the best possible outcome for our client. If you need support for a case, Very Law’s team of talented attorneys is here to stand with you to the Very end!

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