A judgment is the result of a lost civil case. A plaintiff suing for money damages can demand the defendant pay or the plaintiff will use other means to collect the debt. The plaintiff can use the judgment to seize bank accounts or garnish wages.
Can I Stop a Creditor From Taking My Money or Property?
Yes. An individual can claim the property as exempt. Every jurisdiction exempts certain property from being taken by creditors. This means that no matter how much money a person owes, the creditor can’t take the assets.
For example, if there’s a levy against property, a person can request a hearing. At the exemption hearing, the debtor can show financial hardship to keep debts. If the first hearing is decided against the debtor, a second hearing can be requested to show change of circumstances.
Can I Claim I Need the Money for Necessities?
No, not in most states. However, a debtor can request a hearing and may receive a favorable judgment if the judgment was for a basic necessity such as rent.
Can I File Bankruptcy?
Yes, bankruptcy is a legal process letting a debtor repay for debts over time. It could also potentially eliminate unsecured debts altogether.
Should I Negotiate With Creditors?
A creditor may be willing to work with a debtor as a way to avoid the time-consuming effort to seize accounts or levy property.
Can I Get Rid of the Judgment?
Yes. If the judgment is considered default, a debtor can try to vacate the default judgment.
Should I Speak With a Lawyer About Getting Rid of a Judgment?
A lawyer can help you stop a judgment by determining the best legal avenue to take. For example, bankruptcy has an automatic stay. This can stop creditors from enforcing the judgment.