Default Judgment from Person

by Sue
(Flagstaff, AZ)

My husband was sued by a person and at the time, we lived in another state and so he didn't appear in court and the person won by default judgment. So the original amount is nearing but the person has included interest etc. We want to be done with this. do we have to continue paying? The interest seems unreasonable. This person won't settle because they took on more debt and are depending on our payment to pay their debt. I don't want to pay this person any more.

Comments for Default Judgment from Person

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Dec 01, 2011
Default Judgment from Person

If there is a judgment against your husband and he fails to pay it voluntarily, the person who sued him is entitled to take steps to enforce the judgment. To do that the person could ask the court for permission to have your husband's wages garnished; to have money seized from his bank accounts; to take assets he may own or to put a lien on one of more of his assets, which would mean that he would not be able to sell the asset/s, transfer them, or borrow against them without first paying the amount of the lien/s.

Furthermore, as you may know, Arizona is a community property state. That means that the law views all income you or your spouse may have earned during your marriage and any assets you may have acquired during your marriage, individually or separately, as belonging to both of you in equal amounts. So the person with the judgment can go after any and all of the following: your joint bank accounts, your separate bank accounts assuming those accounts contain money earned during your marriage, your joint assets, and any assets either you or your husband may have purchased individually during your marriage.

As for the interest the person is charging on the amount of the unpaid judgment, charging interest is legal to do and it was probably set out in the judgment. Whether or not the person is charging more than is legal in the state where the judgment was ordered is not something I can tell you because I don't know have sufficient information to do so.

If you are not able to pay the judgment in full, perhaps you can work out a payment plan with the person to whom your husband owes the money. However, interest will continue to accrue on the unpaid balance and the person may require that as a condition of the payment plan, he or she put on a lien on one of your assets. Another option if your financial situation is dire, is to file for bankruptcy. Bankruptcy will stop all collection actions and give you time to figure out how to deal with the judgment. However, whether or not you are good candidates for bankruptcy is something you should discuss with a bankruptcy attorney. Go here for a free consultation with a bankruptcy attorney.

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