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Cross-Motions for Summary Judgment

If you think the debt collector hasn't shown you any real evidence in the discovery phase - and you've filed your motion to compel to eliminate any doubts about what it's got - then maybe you should file a motion for summary judgment. But what if the debt collector files one first? Then you want to file a "Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment." 

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A Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment is just the same as a (regular) Motion, except that it's a little more complicated: you both have to prove - in one part - that there are "genuine issues of material fact" about the things they say, and that there is no real dispute about the things you say.

Cross-motions can be on the same issues. For example, you might both be claiming that the undisputed facts show something about the debt, and you might be surprised how often that comes up. Since proof of the debt so often hinges on the ability of the debt collector to use business records it didn't create, they could argue that the records prove there's a debt, while you argue that, since they cannot use the records, the proof is that they cannot show you owe the money.

It is also possible for cross motions to be directed at different things: they argue that the proof shows you owe the money, whereas you argue it doesn't and that they violated the FDCPA.

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Check out our Guide to Legal Research and Analysis for a guide to researching and laws and cases in the most effective way. But legal research is more about what you do with what you find, and so this is a primer on legal thinking and analysis as well.

2 Comments
Added by Tony
November 13, 2014

Me and my son used your packet to do a Cross Motion for Summary after plaintiff's lawyer did a Motion for Summary Judgement. The plaintiff has now responded back with the following; a "Reply in Support of Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgement and Response to Defendent's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgement", "Response To Defendant's Motion To Strike Affidavit of Bradley Klein and Unauthenticated Documents" and "Reply to Response To Plaintiff's Request for Attorney's Fees". I'm not sure if I need to reply, ask for Motion to Dismiss or wait until our hearing on Dec. 18th. Please advise or comment. Thanks.
Added by Ken
November 18, 2014

Whether you respond always depends on whether you need to do so - whether the other side has made arguments that are strong enough to need a response - and assuming you have something to add. I will take this opportunity to let you know about a new product that might be helpful - the Three Weaknesses report.
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