Q:

How do you collect on judgments?

A:

Quick Answer

Findlaw advises creditors to take the most direct approach to collect on a judgment, which entails simply asking the individual or business owner to pay the money owed. Debtors who have a stable financial situation may pay the judgment to avoid collection activities and additional legal action.

Continue Reading

Full Answer

Most states allow creditors to perform a post-judgment discovery process, which includes interrogatories, depositions and requests for reproduction of documents. The information helps the creditor determine the source and location of the debtor’s assets and income. One can also garnish a percentage of the debtor’s wages and their bank account to collect the judgment, according to Findlaw.

Nolo recommends a collection strategy that starts with going after the low-hanging fruit. This includes the following assets: job wages, bank accounts and business assets. Another inexpensive tactic involves arranging for the local sheriff to confiscate the money stored in the cash register of a company that fails to pay a judgment, says Findlaw.

Creditors who intend to force a sale of assets, such as real estate, vehicles or other personal property, should understand that the process can cost a significant amount of money and time. Typically creditors have up to 10 years to collect on a judgment. After the period expires, creditors can renew the judgment for an additional 10 years. Since the debtor may appeal the judgment, Nolo suggests that creditors wait until the deadline for filing an appeal expires before proceeding with any collection activity.

Learn more about Credit & Lending

Related Questions

Explore