Pittsburgh Legal Back Talk

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What is the Difference Between the Default Judgment against Pepsico and the One that is about to Happen to You? Plus or Minus 1.2 Billion Dollars. Otherwise, They are About the Same.

Posted By Cliff Tuttle | November 7, 2009

Posted by Cliff Tuttle (c) 2009

SUMMARY: If somebody takes default judgment against you, move quickly to open it, if you can.

Pepsico had a billion-plus dollar judgment entered against it in Wisconsin last month.

The way it happened sounds familiar enough. As a North Carolina Corporation, it has a registered agent there whose job it is to accept service of the complaint and forward it to the corporate legal department. This it did, although only after a considerable delay. Then the complaint ended up on the desk of the secretary of one of the top in-house lawyers who was very busy getting ready for a board meeting. Of course, the registered agent was responsible for the complaint arriving on the eve of default judgment, but you know who caught the blame.

This is the kind of thing that has happened in one way or another to everybody who has been around for a while. Often, with prompt action, the default judgment can be opened. As a matter of fact, the Wisconsin court recently opened the Pepsico default judgment. You can probably have yours opened, too, provided you look sharp and do a few things right.

I posted on the subject of how to open a default judgment earlier this year. If you’d like to read the post, send me a comment and I’ll tell you how to find it. But don’t wait too long. You only have 10 days to open judgment.



CLIFF TUTTLE has been a Pennsylvania lawyer for over 45 years and (inter alia) is a real estate litigator and legal writer. The posts in this blog are intended to provide general information about legal topics of interest to lawyers and consumers with a Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania focus. However, this information does not constitute legal advice and there is no lawyer-client relationship created when you read this blog. You are encouraged to leave comments but be aware that posted comments can be read by others. If you wish to contact me in privacy, please use the Contact Form located immediately below this message. I will reply promptly and in strict confidence.

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