||What Happens on the Appearance Date?|
The Appearance Date stated on the summons is your first chance to tell your story to the Judge.
Obviously, you must be present in court at the proper time or your case may be dismissed. If the Defendant
shows up and agrees with you that he owes you the money, the Judge will enter a Judgment
in your favor.
A Judgment is a court order that states what the Judge has decided. A Judgment
for the Plaintiff
means that the Judge has decided that you are right and the Defendant does owe you the money you are
If the Defendant shows up and states that he does not owe you the money, the Judge may set another date
for the trial. In some counties, however, the Judge will hold the trial on the Appearance Date. You
should be prepared to go ahead with the trial on this date. If the Defendant does not show up, the Judge
will probably enter a judgment in your favor after hearing your side of the story and deciding that you
should be allowed to recover.