How Do I File a Judgment Against Someone?

Specific rules regarding filing a judgment vary slightly from state to state. Generally, to begin the process of filing a judgment, a person must submit the appropriate forms to the local county clerk’s office.

According to the website for the Judicial Branch of the State of Connecticut, two forms are required for opening a judgment in the state of Connecticut. The first form, an “appearance” form, tells the court that a person is acting as his own lawyer and lists the address to which all documents regarding the case must be sent. The second, a “motion to open judgment” form, tells the clerk that the person wants a judge to open the case. This form provides the court with the reason why the case should be opened, and it needs to be signed by the filer in front of the county clerk. There is a fee involved in filing a judgment, but if financial hardship exists, submit a third form requesting that the fee be waived.

Once the judgment is filed, a court hearing is scheduled. Either the filer is contacted about a future court date and given instructions on what to do, or the filer can ask the clerk to set a court date immediately. In the second case, it is necessary to have the judgment motion served to the other party by a state marshal.

Exact filing rules are state-specific. Check with the county clerk’s office in the state where the judgment is being filed in order to get the state’s complete list of filing instructions.