A judgment is a money award given to the plaintiff because of a successful lawsuit. The judgment generally remains valid for five to seven years. In states like New York, the judgment is valid for up to 20 years. But after 20 years, the judgment becomes dormant.
A dormant judgment is a civil judgment that lapses or becomes invalid.
The plaintiff cannot collect on the debt by:
Instead, the plaintiff must ask the defendant to voluntarily pay the debt.
Yes, most states allow the plaintiff to revive the debt. The plaintiff usually has 10 years from the date the judgment lapses to file a motion to revive the dormant judgment.
A defendant can file an answer to the motion. The answer must include a legal reason the defendant should win the motion. In a motion to revive a dormant judgment answer, the defendant has generally three legal challenges:
The defendant can also file a separate motion to vacate the judgment.
The motion asks the court to withdraw the original judgment order because of a legal reason such as:
Yes, a defendant can file bankruptcy. Personal bankruptcy is a way to either eliminate debts or pay debts over time. For example, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy will expunge the judgment so the defendant won’t have to pay it.
Yes. Consult a bankruptcy lawyer about your options to fight the judgment request or file bankruptcy.
Last Modified: 04-18-2018 10:06 PM PDTLaw Library Disclaimer
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