Judgements, a Timely Matter
Running out of time is a problem when it comes to enforcing judgements. The courts allow an ample amount of time with the statute of limitations, but in the world of business, years can go by quicker than anticipated. It is understandable to forget about collecting on a debtor who constantly evades attempts at debt collection. However, it is in your best interest to handle your judgement in a timely manner. If you let your judgement lapse, you may be out of luck when you attempt to enforce said judgement. Always be aware of the statute of limitations in the state your judgement is rendered.
Does time matter when it comes to Judgements?
Absolutely. Judgements are not a warrant to get what you are owed whenever you like. A judgement comes with a strict time frame allowing a creditor the legal ability to enforce that judgement in order to recover debts owed by a debtor. If this time frame comes and goes without the creditor getting what they are owed, there is little to no recourse for the creditor other than extending the judgement. In every state, there is a legal process allowing judgement extensions when dealing with a deadbeat debtor. Here is a statute of limitations chart that lists the time frames for every state.
Why is time so important when it comes to Judgements?
Letting your judgement go past the statute of limitations is a recipe for disaster because it will completely nullify the judgement in most states. The entire hassle of going to court and getting a judgement made against a debtor will become null and void the moment you let your judgement go past the statute of limitations if you are not careful. There are pathways to avoid letting your judgement expire and it is in your best interest to investigate them far in advance of the judgements expire date. Being caught at the last minute trying to extend a lapse judgement could end with the judgement being nullified.
If my Judgement expires, can I still collect?
No(depending upon state). If your judgement expires past the statute of limitations, you will not be able to collect what is owed. There are mechanisms in place to avoid having your judgement go over the statute of limitations, but a creditor has to be proactive to avoid the time limit expiring. Debtors are notorious for avoiding responsibility and will do everything in their power to avoid paying what they owe. This leads to extended periods of time where a creditor will not have a clear indication whether the debtor will pay or not, and it is not in your best interest to allow them to continually avoid paying what they owe.
Why do Judgements have time limits?
Judgements have reasonable time limits to allow debtors to pay what they owe. Debtors will avoid paying even after a judgement has been rendered for a variety of reasons. The courts allow a creditor to go after a debtors debt only for a limited amount of time because a debtor has the right not to be harassed over a debt past a certain amount of time. This seems counterintuitive due to the nature of a judgement, but the time limits set forth by the statute of limitations is more than enough time for a creditor to enforce a judgement over any given debt.
Judgements are a timely matter and need to be treated as such. If you treat your judgement as a simple matter of paperwork and do not enforce it with all the tools available, your judgement may lapse and become unenforceable. Why go through all the trouble of getting a judgement if you let it lapse and become useless? You wouldn’t let your judgement lapse if you knew you could avoid it by obtaining an extension and using companies like WritReady to help enforce your judgement.