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Please someone HELP with a Judgment


marcoff
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Thanks to everybody for your help,a few weeks ago I post my wife case and here is the problem:

My wife have a judgment for a Hospital bill in 1990 (originall bill 400 or 500 dollars),the case is in Monterey peninsula California the Collection Agency or Credit Bureau file a judgment in june 10 1992 and now they file a renew in March 2002 but the bill now is 1700 dollars and also we now that in California interest runs on an unpaid judgment(that I don't have)I tried to settle with the Bureau for 500 dollars and they said NO they want the 1700 dollars,I went to Monterey and I got the summons paper and she was served the summons in April 1992 at a bussines location but I can't find her signature,the service was done by a company because I can see a service fee of 15 dollars,also she didn't know about this judgment until a while ago when we run a credit aplication,please what can I do??I don't have the money I willing to pay for some but no 1700 dollars,HELP US,Thanks

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Thanks for your reply,just a few more questions,Why was a improper service of summons???If I want to File a motion to vacate default judgment can I do it or she need to do it???I asked that because she is pregnent right now and I dont think is a good idea for her to travel 400 miles.

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You will be able to do it if she signs a limited power of attorney for you to act on her behalf.

It was an improper service because they did not serve the papers to her. Instead they dropped them at some business location you can't identify and didn't even get a signature for the service. In essence she was denied the ability to respond to the summons because the service company made it so she would never see the summons.

This will not necessarily negate the alleged debt if you get the default judgment vacated. It only means they won't have a court's authority. Since this is so old, the negating of the judgment may make the debt uncollectable due to running past the statute of limitations, but I would not hold my breath on that. They could argue for tolling the SoL based on the service error.

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I'd go for the $1700 dollars on this one. Suddenly discovering after over ten years a judgment may not have been properly served because it was left with a responsible party and not the individual may be a risky maneauver and cost more than $1700 in legal fees to rectify. Service of process typically doesn't require a signature and in most states the summons can be left with anyone who answers the door and gives his/her first name for the process servers records. Many people claim to have never been served because they were not asked to sign for anything and the courts are to wise to the situation. Rarely do plaintiffs win judgements then disappear with no collection efforts. If rescinded, the SOL would probably be reset to effect a refiling so this may not be a good tactic to use to deal with the judgment. Bankruptcy would render it vacatable if this is an option.

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I'm sorry, but there is no way that he/she is going to get a Motion to Vacate thru TWELVE YEARS after the judgment was entered ! In CA you have MAX 6 months to challenge a judgment, after that you can just about forget it. It is WAY too late to challenge service. Besides, challenging service is not all that easy to do even if it happened yesterday. Proper service is not always just an issue of persoanl service, there ARE other alternatives they can use and its all very legal.

Marcoff, see my answer to your duplicate post in the Lawyer in the House forum.

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