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RULE 3-306. JUDGMENT ON AFFIDAVIT

West's Annotated Code of MarylandMaryland Rules

West's Annotated Code of Maryland
Maryland Rules
Title 3. Civil Procedure--District Court
Chapter 300. Pleadings and Motions
MD Rules, Rule 3-306
RULE 3-306. JUDGMENT ON AFFIDAVIT
(a) Definitions. In this Rule the following definitions apply except as expressly otherwise provided or as necessary implication requires:
(1) Charge-Off. “Charge-off” means the act of a creditor that treats an account receivable or other debt as a loss or expense because payment is unlikely.
(2) Charge-Off Balance. “Charge-off balance” means the amount due on the account or debt at the time of charge-off.
(3) Consumer Debt. “Consumer debt” means a secured or unsecured debt that is for money owed or alleged to be owed and arises from a consumer transaction.
(4) Consumer Transaction. “Consumer transaction” means a transaction involving an individual seeking or acquiring real or personal property, services, future services, money, or credit for personal, family, or household purposes.
(5) Original Creditor. “Original creditor” means the lender, provider, or other person to whom a consumer originally was alleged to owe money pursuant to a consumer transaction. “Original creditor” includes the Central Collection Unit, a unit within the State Department of Budget and Management.
(6) Original Consumer Debt. “Original consumer debt” means the total of the consumer debt alleged to be owed to the original creditor, consisting of principal, interest, fees, and any other charges.
Committee note: If there has been a charge-off, the amount of the “original consumer debt” is the same as the “charge-off balance.”
(7) Principal. “Principal” means the unpaid balance of the funds borrowed, the credit utilized, the sales price of goods or services obtained, or the capital sum of any other debt or obligation arising from a consumer transaction, alleged to be owed to the original creditor. It does not include interest, fees, or charges added to the debt or obligation by the original creditor or any subsequent assignees of the consumer debt.
(8) Future Services. “Future services” means one or more services that will be delivered at a future time.
(9) Future Services Contract. “Future services contract” means an agreement that obligates a consumer to purchase a future service from a provider.
(10) Provider. “Provider” means any person who sells a service or future service to a consumer.
(b) Demand for Judgment by Affidavit. In an action for money damages a plaintiff may file a demand for judgment on affidavit at the time of filing the complaint commencing the action. The complaint shall be supported by an affidavit showing that the plaintiff is entitled to judgment as a matter of law in the amount claimed.
(c) Affidavit and Attachments--General Requirements. The affidavit shall:
(1) be made on personal knowledge;
(2) set forth such facts as would be admissible in evidence;
(3) show affirmatively that the affiant is competent to testify to the matters stated in the affidavit; and;
(4) include or be accompanied by:
(A) supporting documents or statements containing sufficient detail as to liability and damages, including the precise amount of the claim and any interest claimed;
(B) if interest is claimed, an interest worksheet substantially in the form prescribed by the Chief Judge of the District Court;
(C) if attorneys' fees are claimed, sufficient proof evidencing that the plaintiff is entitled to an award of attorneys' fees and that the fees are reasonable; and
(D) if the claim is founded upon a note, security agreement, or other instrument, the original or a photocopy of the executed instrument, or a sworn or certified copy, unless the absence thereof is explained in the affidavit.
(d) If Claim Arises From Assigned Consumer Debt. If the claim arises from consumer debt and the plaintiff is not the original creditor, the affidavit also shall include or be accompanied by (i) the items listed in this section, and (ii) an Assigned Consumer Debt Checklist, substantially in the form prescribed by the Chief Judge of the District Court, listing the items and information supplied in or with the affidavit in conformance with this Rule. Each document that accompanies the affidavit shall be clearly numbered as an exhibit and referenced by number in the Checklist.
(1) Proof of the Existence of the Debt or Account. Proof of the existence of the debt or account shall be made by a certified or otherwise properly authenticated photocopy or original of at least one of the following:
(A) a document signed by the defendant evidencing the debt or the opening of the account;
(B) a bill or other record reflecting purchases, payments, or other actual use of a credit card or account by the defendant; or
(C) an electronic printout or other documentation from the original creditor establishing the existence of the account and showing purchases, payments, or other actual use of a credit card or account by the defendant.
(2) Proof of Terms and Conditions.
(A) Except as provided in subsection (d)(2)(B) of this Rule, if there was a document evidencing the terms and conditions to which the consumer debt was subject, a certified or otherwise properly authenticated photocopy or original of the document actually applicable to the consumer debt at issue shall accompany the affidavit.
(B) Subsection (d)(2)(A) of this Rule does not apply if (i) the consumer debt is an unpaid balance due on a credit card; (ii) the original creditor is or was a financial institution subject to regulation by the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council or a constituent federal agency of that Council; and (iii) the claim does not include a demand or request for attorneys' fees or interest on the charge-off balance in excess of the Maryland Constitutional rate of six percent per annum.
Committee note: This Rule is procedural only, and subsection (d)(2)(B)(iii) is not intended to address the substantive issue of whether interest in any amount may be charged on a part of the charge-off balance that, under applicable and enforceable Maryland law, may be regarded as interest.
Cross reference: See Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council Uniform Retail Credit Classification and Account Management Policy, 65 Fed. Reg. 36903--36906 (June 12, 2000).
(3) Proof of Plaintiff's Ownership. The affidavit shall contain a statement that the plaintiff owns the consumer debt. It shall include or be accompanied by:
(A) a chronological listing of the names of all prior owners of the debt and the date of each transfer of ownership of the debt, beginning with the name of the original creditor; and
(B) a certified or other properly authenticated copy of the bill of sale or other document that transferred ownership of the debt to each successive owner, including the plaintiff.
Committee note: If a bill of sale or other document transferred debts in addition to the consumer debt upon which the action is based, the documentation required by subsection (d)(3)(B) of this Rule may be in the form of a redacted document that provides the general terms of the bill of sale or other document and the document's specific reference to the debt sued upon.
(4) Identification and Nature of Debt or Account. The affidavit shall include the following information:
(A) the name of the original creditor;
(B) the full name of the defendant as it appears on the original account;
(C) the last four digits of the social security number for the defendant appearing on the original account, if known;
(D) the last four digits of the original account number; and
(E) the nature of the consumer transaction, such as utility, credit card, consumer loan, retail installment sales agreement, service, or future services.
(5) Future Services Contract Information. If the claim is based on a future services contract, the affidavit shall contain facts evidencing that the plaintiff currently is entitled to an award of damages under that contract.
(6) Account Charge-Off Information. If there has been a charge-off of the account, the affidavit shall contain the following information:
(A) the date of the charge-off;
(B) the charge-off balance;
(C) an itemization of any fees or charges claimed by the plaintiff in addition to the charge-off balance;
(D) an itemization of all post-charge-off payments received and other credits to which the defendant is entitled; and
(E) the date of the last payment on the consumer debt or of the last transaction giving rise to the consumer debt.
(7) Information for Debts and Accounts Not Charged Off. If there has been no charge-off, the affidavit shall contain:
(A) an itemization of all money claimed by the plaintiff, (i) including principal, interest, finance charges, service charges, late fees, and any other fees or charges added to the principal by the original creditor and, if applicable, by subsequent assignees of the consumer debt and (ii) accounting for any reduction in the amount of the claim by virtue of any payment made or other credit to which the defendant is entitled;
(B) a statement of the amount and date of the consumer transaction giving rise to the consumer debt, or in instances of multiple transactions, the amount and date of the last transaction; and
(C) a statement of the amount and date of the last payment on the consumer debt.
(8) Licensing Information. The affidavit shall include a list of all Maryland collection agency licenses that the plaintiff currently holds and provide the following information as to each:
(A) license number,
(B) name appearing on the license, and
(C) date of issue.
Cross reference: See Code, Courts Article, § 5-1203 (b)(2), concerning the plaintiff's requirements if a judgment on affidavit under section (d) of this Rule is denied.
(e) Subsequent Proceedings.
(1) When Notice of Intention to Defend Filed. If the defendant files a timely notice of intention to defend pursuant to Rule 3-307, the plaintiff shall appear in court on the trial date prepared for a trial on the merits. If the defendant fails to appear in court on the trial date, the court may proceed as if the defendant failed to file a timely notice of intention to defend.
(2) When No Notice of Intention to Defend Filed.
(A) If the defendant fails to file a timely notice of intention to defend, the plaintiff need not appear in court on the trial date and the court may determine liability and damages on the basis of the complaint, affidavit, and supporting documents filed pursuant to this Rule. If the defendant fails to appear in court on the trial date and the court determines that the pleading and documentary evidence are sufficient to entitle the plaintiff to judgment, the court shall grant the demand for judgment on affidavit.
(B) If the court determines that the pleading and documentary evidence are insufficient to entitle the plaintiff to judgment on affidavit, the court may deny the demand for judgment on affidavit or may grant a continuance to permit the plaintiff to supplement the documentary evidence filed with the demand. If the defendant appears in court at the time set for trial and it is established to the court's satisfaction that the defendant may have a meritorious defense, the court shall deny the demand for judgment on affidavit. If the demand for judgment on affidavit is denied or the court grants a continuance pursuant to this section, the clerk shall set a new trial date and mail notice of the reassignment to the parties, unless the plaintiff is in court and requests the court to proceed with trial.
Cross reference: Rule 3-509.
(f) Reduction in Amount of Damages. Before entry of judgment, the plaintiff shall inform the court of any reduction in the amount of the claim by virtue of any payment or other credit.
(g) Notice of Judgment on Affidavit. When a demand for judgment on affidavit is granted, the clerk shall mail notice of the judgment promptly after its entry to each party at the latest address stated in the pleadings. The notice shall inform (1) the plaintiff of the right to obtain a lien on real property pursuant to Rule 3-621, and (2) the defendant of the right to file a motion to vacate the judgment within 30 days after its entry pursuant to Rule 3-535 (a). The clerk shall ensure that the docket or file reflects compliance with this section.
Source: This Rule is derived as follows:
Section (a) is new.
Section (b) is derived from former M.D.R. 610 a.
Section (c) is derived from former M.D.R. 610 a.
Section (d) is new.
Section (e) is derived from former M.D.R. 610 b, c and d.
Section (f) is derived from former M.D.R. 610 e.
Section (g) is derived from former M.D.R. 610 d.

Credits

[Adopted April 6, 1984, eff. July 1, 1984. Amended May 25, 1984, eff. July 1, 1984; Sept. 8, 2011, eff. Jan. 1, 2012; Dec. 13, 2016, eff. Apr. 1, 2017.]

Editors' Notes

HISTORICAL NOTES
2011 Orders
The September 8, 2011 order rewrote this rule, which read:
(a) Time for Demand--Affidavit and Supporting Documents. In an action for money damages a plaintiff may file a demand for judgment on affidavit at the time of filing the complaint commencing the action. The complaint shall be supported by an affidavit showing that the plaintiff is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. The affidavit shall be made on personal knowledge, shall set forth such facts as would be admissible in evidence, and shall show affirmatively that the affiant is competent to testify to the matters stated in the affidavit. The affidavit shall be accompanied (1) by supporting documents or statements containing sufficient detail as to liability and damages, including the precise amount of the claim and any interest claimed; and (2) if the claim is founded upon a note, security agreement, or other instrument, by the original or a photocopy of the executed instrument, or a sworn or certified copy, unless the absence thereof is explained in the affidavit. If interest is claimed, the plaintiff shall file with the complaint an interest worksheet.
(b) Subsequent Proceedings.
“(1) When Notice of Intention to Defend Filed. If the defendant files a timely notice of intention to defend pursuant to Rule 3-307, the plaintiff shall appear in court on the trial date prepared for a trial on the merits. If the defendant fails to appear in court on the trial date, the court may proceed as if the defendant failed to file a timely notice of intention to defend.
“(2) When No Notice of Intention to Defend Filed. If the defendant fails to file a timely notice of intention to defend, the plaintiff need not appear in court on the trial date and the court may determine liability and damages on the basis of the complaint, affidavit, and supporting documents filed pursuant to section (a) of this Rule. If the defendant fails to appear in court on the trial date and the court determines that the pleading and documentary evidence are sufficient to entitle the plaintiff to judgment, the court shall grant the demand for judgment on affidavit. If the court determines that the pleading and documentary evidence are insufficient to entitle the plaintiff to judgment on affidavit, the court may deny the demand for judgment on affidavit or may grant a continuance to permit the plaintiff to supplement the documentary evidence filed with the demand. If the defendant appears in court at the time set for trial and it is established to the court's satisfaction that the defendant may have a meritorious defense, the court shall deny the demand for judgment on affidavit. If the demand for judgment on affidavit is denied or the court grants a continuance pursuant to this section, the clerk shall set a new trial date and mail notice of the reassignment to the parties, unless the plaintiff is in court and requests the court to proceed with trial.
Cross reference: Rule 3-509.
(c) Reduction in Amount of Damages. Before entry of judgment, the plaintiff shall inform the court of any reduction in the amount of the claim by virtue of any payment.
(d) Notice of Judgment on Affidavit. When a demand for judgment on affidavit is granted, the clerk shall mail notice of the judgment promptly after its entry to each party at the address stated in the pleadings. The notice shall inform (1) the plaintiff of the right to obtain a lien on real property pursuant to Rule 3-621, and (2) the defendant of the right to file a motion to vacate the judgment within 30 days after its entry pursuant to Rule 3-535(a). The clerk shall ensure that the docket or file reflects compliance with this section.
Source: This Rule is derived as follows:
“Section (a) is derived from former M.D.R. 610 a.
“Section (b) is derived from former M.D.R. 610 b, c and d.
“Section (c) is derived from former M.D.R. 610 e.
“Section (d) is derived from former M.D.R. 610 d.”
2016 Orders
The December 13, 2016, order, added a cross reference following section (d).
MD Rules, Rule 3-306, MD R RCP DIST CT Rule 3-306
Current with amendments received through April 1, 2020.
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