What should I do if I cannot pay back a judgment against me? 16 Answers as of January 27, 2011

I was sued in March 2009. They took $4,000 dollars from my account. I have not heard anything until now. A guy called me today and said they do not want to involve more attorneys’ fees and said that we should start sending them monthly checks. I do not want to bankruptcy, but I do not have the $11,000 he says I own now. What are my options?

Ask a Local Attorney. 100% Anonymous. Free Answers.

Free Case Evaluation by a Local Lawyer: Click here
Bankruptcy Law Center
Bankruptcy Law Center | Bill Zurinskas
Consider filing a Claim of exemption to writ of garnishment on bank account.
Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 1/27/2011
Law Offices of Geoffrey Nwosu
Law Offices of Geoffrey Nwosu | Geoffrey Nwosu
The best option may be to negotiate the amount that you actually owe them since you do not want to file bankruptcy.They will accept a lesser amount if you will like to make one time payment to resolve the dispute. Good luck.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/26/2011
Mettias & Associates
Mettias & Associates | Jimmy Philip Mettias, Esq
Thank you for submitting your question to our firm, Mettias and Associates, in regard to the personal judgment taken against you in March 2009. Based on the facts you provided, it appears that they already attempted and successfully collected a portion (or all) of the Judgment against you. Your paperwork you were served with, specifically the Judgment, should identify the total amount that can be collected. Did it exceed $4,000? There are many frauds and schemes out there requesting that people send money to different places. Contact our office to schedule a free consultation to determine your legal options in regard to this matter.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/26/2011
Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney
Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney | Janet Lawson
If you don't want to file bankruptcy you will have to pay them, or they will garnish your paycheck or what ever else they can find. "Judgments" are the reason many people file for bankruptcy.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/26/2011
Law Office of David P. Farrell
Law Office of David P. Farrell | David Farrell
You should probably contact the judgment creditor and negotiate a monthly payment plan. This will stop the judgment creditor from taking further steps to enforce the judgment against you - i.e. levying your bank accounts, garnishing your wages, etc., and will avoid additional collection costs from being added to the judgment amount. The judgment, however, will continue to accrue interest at the legal rate (10% per annum in California) until paid in full. Alternatively, you may want to attempt to negotiate a settlement with the judgment creditor.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/25/2011
    Uriarte & Wood, Attorneys at Law
    Uriarte & Wood, Attorneys at Law | Robert G. Uriarte
    Most attorneys will give you a free consult. You should get a consult to see if bankruptcy is an option for you.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/25/2011
    Steven D. Keist, Attorney at Law
    Steven D. Keist, Attorney at Law | Steven D. Keist
    You can try to reach an agreement of a lump sum payment. Or agree on an amount for monthly payments.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 1/25/2011
    Ursula G. Barrios Law
    Ursula G. Barrios Law | Guillermo Machado
    Bankruptcy can save you from this judgment and any garnishments or levies.Establishing credit after bankruptcy is easier than you think. The worst thing you can do is simply continue to let time run on you with this hanging over your head. Save your money, too.States, like CA, can protect up to $23K while allowing you to get rid of your debts, such as this judgment. Thank you,
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/25/2011
    The Law Offices of Robert L. Driessen
    The Law Offices of Robert L. Driessen | Robert L. Driessen
    You can set up a payment plan that works with your funds. If that is not available they would have to file a judgement against you and try to garnish any wages or assets you have.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/24/2011
    Carballo Law Offices
    Carballo Law Offices | Tony E. Carballo
    If bankruptcy is not something you want to consider then you have no options. If there is already a judgment against you then the creditor will continue to try collecting on it until fully paid by taking money from your bank account, garnishing your wages, putting a lien on any real estate you own or acquire in the future, dragging you to court for an examination of debtor under oath, taking your car and other property with value to be sold at auction, etc. The judgment is good for 10 years initially and renewable essentially forever. Therefore, try to work out a payment plan or maybe get enough money together to make a lump sum offer for less than the total owed and hope the creditor agrees to take it as payment in full. If there is already a judgment then you do not have much leverage anymore, particularly if you have a good job or real estate with substantial equity. The lender wants to be paid and fast so a lump sum payment is usually acceptable if it covers at least the original owed, costs and attorneys' fees. They might be willing to reduce or eliminate interest. The judgment will continue to grow 10% per year for interest and the costs of enforcing it will also be added. Therefore, the sooner you resolve it the better.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/24/2011
    Javia & Moore
    Javia & Moore | Marisa-Andrea Moore
    Try negotiating for a regular monthly payment that you can afford instead of a lump sum.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/24/2011
    DiManna Law Office, LLC.
    DiManna Law Office, LLC. | Dawn DiManna
    You should consult an attorney and have all your paperwork reviewed to see what is best for your situation and to determine the validity of the alleged debt.
    Answer Applies to: New Hampshire
    Replied: 1/24/2011
    William C. Gosnell, Attorney at Law
    William C. Gosnell, Attorney at Law | William C. Gosnell
    You can file for bankruptcy.
    Answer Applies to: Tennessee
    Replied: 1/24/2011
    The Law Office of Brian Nomi
    The Law Office of Brian Nomi | Brian H. Nomi
    Here are three options:

    1. Work out a payment plan.
    2. Declare bankruptcy.
    3. Do nothing and wait for them to seize another bank account, or garnish your paycheck.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/24/2011
    The Law Office of Mark J. Markus
    The Law Office of Mark J. Markus | Mark Markus
    Your options are to
    1. Do nothing and let the creditor continue collection actions against you as allowed by state law;
    2. Settle with them;
    3. file bankruptcy.

    I suggest having a consultation with a bankruptcy attorney to evaluate your options.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/24/2011
Click to View More Answers:
12 3 Free Legal QuestionsConnect with a local attorney