If you received a notice of default judgment

If you received a notice of default judgment you should contact the court that issued the judgment and ask them how you can file a motion to vacate the judgment. If you don’t want to hire a lawyer ask them how this is done pro se. Again look on nolo’s website for legal advice on a lot of situations. They also have a book on representing yourself in court which you could try to get at the local library.

You can negotiate a payment plan back or less of a balance because your money situation is tough, but if you have no money there isn’t much leverage for you. If they know your willing to work with them, and they get paid something most of the time they will accept a reasonable offer.

I went to one of those rip-off places in California. I wanted to check them out so I emailed the attorney general. I was advised to avoid this type of solution. The challenge I have is that I gave a few of my account nos. to the agency. Within a few months I had 2 accounts instead of one. Now I have judgements for bogus accounts.

I did not have the $150. per account for the fees to fight them. Still trying to get out of the mess. I tried to negotiate with the card companies and the current “collectors” not one will talk to me. Any ideas?

It depends on the state that you live in, and what assets you have.

In some states they can garnishee your wages. In almost all states they can placed a lien on your real property(house, car or truck). In some states they can “attach” your bank accounts. They may able to obtain the title for any vehicles for which there isn’t already a (registered) lien holder.

It takes time (often months) to put the paperwork through the system, and you won’t get any further warnings or notifications.

If they garnish wages, it will show up as a deduction on your paycheck. As in “Why did I only get $160 this week, instead of the $500 I normally get?”.

An attached bank account normally shows up as a string of bounced checks and/or an empty savings account. Or a arrest warrant for check fraud.

You need to speak to someone locally, and find out exactly what is going on, or may happen. It’s time to speak to a lawyer, and to whoever got the judgment against you. Now. Before the shit hits the fan. Look for the local Debtors Anonymous, they often have local referrals, and free information.

Fire the debt settlement company before their incompetence lands YOU in jail.

Thanks for the advice on default judgement. Very clear and concise advice, and I appreciate it and the quick response to my question.

I still have a question, which you may not be able to answer, so I can go to Nolo for that or to Legal Aid, but I was wondering, how do you have grounds to vacate a judgement? I didn’t respond to letters, and do owe the money, and was hoping that since I am with a Debt Settlement company (which has power of attorney) that perhaps it could be settled before it went to a lawsuit- but the debt isn’t in dispute.

Here is a flaw in Debt Settlement, I think – the company told me to send the court papers to them, which I did, but then I heard nothing – I should have been more proactive (and, of course, I still can be)- may be a character flaw in me, pretending the debt is going to go away! Or wanting the Debt Settlement company to take careof everything for me! I also don’t have enough money to pay for their services and I’m considering applying for no credit check payday loan.

I also heard heard that some people are judgement proof, and that they often don’t bother to go forward after the judgement – I have no assets at all.

Thanks again, everyone, for the timely and helpful responses.

I have only gotten a judgment served


I have only gotten a judgement served, not a summons. (From what I understand, though, the judgement is the first step and that allows the company to then sue you)

Summons would scare me also, and I would probably find a way to consult a lawyer if I got one. I wouldn’t want to go into court without representation, but that is my fear, and may not be the best option.

I am one of those people who don’t have the money to settle. I live from paycheck to paycheck and have no savings. I just pay $200 a month to the settlement company, which is all I can afford –

I think that I would do bankruptcy if things get dicey, although I don’t want to.

I got the judgement in October, and nothing has happened since…. but the possibility is definitely out there….I just tell myself I am doing the best I can.

judgmentYes but of course they tried pretty hard to talk me out of it. But I told them that I was not happy with their services and wanted all the money (of ours) that had collected over the months to pay the creditors. I also told them that if they didn’t, I’d report them to the BBB.

We paid a fee upfront (about $3400) that we didn’t get back, but lesson learned.

They charge you that upfront fee, plus they were taking a $20 monthly fee from the payment we sent each month, plus they took 15% of the money they would save us when a creditor was paid off. Whew! I was getting dizzy watching them take our money.

There was only one creditor paid off in the year+ we were with them and I did all the negotiating myself. So what did I need them for??? Just to take money from us we could put towards other creditors.

Hope this helps!

Also, how do you negotiate with them yourself? Who do you need to contact? Do you take the same approach as the debt settlement companies and not pay your card for months and then attemp negociation? Or will they talk before everything goes bad?

I paid a small fee up front and then a portion of the monthly payment, for the first 14 months, is their fee. If I “fired” them I’m sure I would have to pay the remainder of the fee first.

How do you negotiate with creditors if you don’t have any money?

I appreciate your advice.

I have a question, I received a judgement, but I never remember receiving a summons, and I have never had to go to court. Could the summons have been a letter? A letter that I forwarded to the debt settlement company?

So what does the judgment mean? Because nothing has happened since I got it …….

Can anyone explain what I can expect from this?

On another note, I say “Maxed Out” last night, the documentary about credit card companies. I recommend that everyone in this forum see it, it is really eye opeining, and Dave Ramsay has a role in it – it helps me see how manipulative the collection companies are and how to deal with them.

Thanks, and please, if anyone can explain the judgement situation I am in I would appreciate it.

We had to pay the entire fee up front and I knew we were probably going to lose that. I would still fire them and get back anything that did not go towards their fee.

If you think about it, you probably don’t have enough in your account with them to negotiate with any credit cards right now anyway. So if you fire them, and get all the $$$ back that was going into the account to negotiate, you’ll get a lot more in there faster by doing it yourself.

When you do have enough to start negotiating, that’s when you will start. Same as with the debt settlement company except you’ll also have all the money you were giving them too.

Don’t take NO for an answer. It’s nonnegotiable or you’ll report them.