In a recently published opinion, the Missouri Court of Appeals cited Baker Sterchi attorney, Martha Charepoo, as authority for its decision to affirm a circuit court's denial of a motion to set aside default judgment. In response to the appellant's challenge to the sufficiency of the evidence presented to the circuit court to support the default judgment, the appeals court quoted excerpts from Charepoo's discussion regarding the rationale for the rule in Missouri Practice, Civil Rules Practice, Vol. 16, authored by Charepoo. Relying on Charepoo's discussion, the appeals court rejected the argument that Rule 74.05(b) permits a defaulting party to attack the sufficiency of the evidence to support a liability determination in a default judgment. Rather, by failing to plead, the defaulting party loses the right to contest liability, but is entitled to be heard on damages only. The appeals court also referenced Charepoo's explanation of the forms of relief available upon default, which includes monetary and other relief, such as injunctive relief when requested.
Located in Baker Sterchi’s St. Louis office, Charepoo focuses her practice on complex commercial litigation in areas such as breach of contract, fraud and unfair trade practices, insurance coverage, subrogation, insurance bad faith litigation, product liability defense, consumer class actions, real estate disputes, and general liability.
She is the Chair of the firm’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee and a Fellow of the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity. She is a 2019 recipient of the Missouri Lawyers Media Diversity and Inclusion Award and 2020 Litigation Practitioner Women’s Justice Award. She is licensed to practice in Missouri, Illinois and Colorado.
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