I read on your blog at Dismissal without prejudice of a credit card lawsuit that a dismissal with prejudice is better than without prejudice, because the claims cannot be filed again. How can I get the court to dismiss a credit card lawsuit with prejudice, if the court has already dismissed it when the Plaintiff’s lawyer failed to show up for a second hearing?
To obtain a dismissal with prejudice, the court must have enough information presented to it to decide the case on its merits. That does not necessarily require both parties to appear and present evidence, but it would require that there be an active case. To make a decision on the merits of a case would require both sides to each have an opportunity to present their side. Whether one or both sides take that opportunity is a separate issue.
Once a case has been dismissed (such as for the plaintiff’s debt collection lawyer failing to appear multiple times), the court loses jurisdiction (power) to decide the case on its merits, because there is no longer an active civil case. Unless the Plaintiff’s lawyer gets the dismissal reversed, such as by filing a motion to explain the failure to appear multiple times, and you prove to the court that you are entitled to a judgment of dismissal in the action, there is no way for the judge to decide the case, if it was already dismissed.
One other way to have a similar result as a dismissal with prejudice would be to enter into a settlement agreement with the Plaintiff, such that once you have paid the agreed settlement amount, the debtor is released from the lawsuit and underling debt. The debtor should have something from the Plaintiff or their lawyer approving the settlement or confirming the specific terms, in case there is a dispute later, but a settlement and release would have almost the same result as making the Plaintiff or any subsequent assignee unable to file another case for the same debt.