How to Apply for Relief if Your Landlord Gets a Judgment Against You (aka Default Judgment)

Authored By: Montana Legal Services Association

Before You Start

If there's a judgment of eviction against you in Justice Court, you only have 30 days from the date the judgment was signed by the judge to seek relief from judgment. You can file a Motion with the Court to ask the Court to undo the judgment because of mistake, inadvertence (lack of attention), surprise, or excusable neglect.


For example, you can file a Motion for Relief from Judgment if there's a default judgment against you and you have a good reason for:

  • not filing your written answer with the Court after you got served; or
  • not showing up at trial.


IMPORTANT: You may need to file your Motion well before the 30-day deadline. If the Judge in the judgment orders you out of the rental by a certain date and you want to ask for more time, then it's best to file your Motion before the date you're ordered out, and not wait the full 30 days.



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Last Review and Update: Apr 06, 2023
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