Legal Question in Appeals and Writs in New York

What is involved in the appeals process when a court decision has been made agai

I rented my home for the summer and had a signed contract. The couple stayed one night and said they didn't like the house and sued me for the $15,000 they had paid. They stated the ''house wasn't clean''. Although the home WAS clean, I offered to hire a cleaning service to come the next day and clean whatever they were unhappy about. They refused to let my wife and myself come to the house to see what they were unhappy with. They sued us in New York City (the home was in Long Island,NY) and the judge issued a judgement against us for the entire 15,000 plus interest since 2001. What can I do? We feel the man rented the house without the wife ever seeing it, and when she saw it (the day the took occupancy) she didn't like it and that was the real reason.

Any advice? I am now retired and living in Virginia.

Thank you.

--name removed--Maday

Asked on 2/27/03, 9:55 pm

3 Answers from Attorneys

Rod Kovel Rod Kovel, Attorney at Law

Re: What is involved in the appeals process when a court decision has been made

Dear Reader:

In examining this response, please note that we are not entering into an attorney/client relationship, that this is to be taken as informative, and not as legal advice, that it is always best to speak to a lawyer in your area and/or in the area where the transaction and/or events occurred, and that my answer is necessarily limited by the fact that I have not seen the documentation or had an opportunity to go over the matters with you in detail.

You may be jumping ahead. If the judgment was by default, then you start there by trying to remove the default. Improperly taken default judgments are unconstitutional, but surprisingly common. If there was no default and the judgment was on the merits, then there is an appeals process that has very specific deadlines, procedures and written submissions that must be followed. You will be better off with a lawyer in either case.

As I mentioned before, this is something that you will want to take up with a lawyer of your own selection, either in your state or area or in a place where some of the pertinent events occurred.

Rod Kovel

Attorney at Law


Read more
Answered on 2/28/03, 7:59 am
Daniel Hawes Hawes & Associates

Re: What is involved in the appeals process when a court decision has been made

I agree with the comments of Rod Kovel.

I'd be interested to know how and when you first learned about the suit. That's the single most important thing to think about when you consider whether or not the judgment is valid.

Secondly, if the plaintiffs simply took advantage of the fact that you weren't around in NY to defend yourself, and the suit was basically bogus, you can sue them in Virginia (if you were served in Virginia) for malicious prosecution and/or abuse of process.

Finally, having a judgment in a NY court doesn't translate into money; they've still got to collect, and there's some things you can do to prevent them from doing so effectively.

Read more
Answered on 3/01/03, 1:37 pm
Bunji Fromartz Fromartz Law Offices


You must file a notice of appeal within thirty days if it was not a default judgment. Be sure to contact an attorney ASAP!

Bunji Fromartz

718 855 7675

Read more
Answered on 3/03/03, 10:20 pm

Related Questions & Answers

More Appeals and Writs questions and answers in New York