Default Legal Meaning and Definition

Here is a simplified definition of the legal term Default.

Default (noun or verb)

  1. (noun) The failure to fulfill a legal obligation, especially to respond to a summons and complaint served upon a person, or to make a scheduled payment.

Example: John failed to respond to the summons served to him, which led to a default judgement against him.

  1. (verb) The act of failing to address a summons, complaint, or a due debt, often leading to legal consequences.

Example: If you default on your loan, the bank might begin foreclosure proceedings.