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Settling on a Judgment


looksbothways
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I have a default judgment entered against me in January 2004. The judgment was <an amount> plus court costs ($62 unless further court action is taken). The amount is to gain 10% interest annually. It is my understanding at this point that judgments gain simple interest, not compound. Please let me know if that's not the case.

There has been no attempt to garnish or collect on this judgment at any time.

I'm wondering if I have any shot of offering a lower lump sum as settlement in full for the judgment, or if I should just save up the entire amount and pay it all at once. I don't want to offer a lower amount, have them say no, then have them going after my paycheck because they suddenly remembered that 4 year old judgment. I know it's common to get a lower settlement amount on old debts, but I haven't read anything about settling judgments for a lower amount. My thinking is that you can't because it's a court ordered amount, but I've been wrong before!

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Judgments can be settled for less than full, but be weary. If you poke a sleeping bear it might bite you. I would say get all of the funds ready just in case. The last thing you want to do is offer settlement and they flip around and wage garnish or levy a bank account when you attract their attention.

Depending on who is holding the account, you should expect about 60% to settle. I would ask what they'll take, tell them you can't quite do that and shoot low, about 60% of their offer (less if they're offer is over 75% of the balance) if they stand firm, tell them you need payments, and stay well below what they are offering. They'll crack, but just in case be prepared to pay balance in full to avoid any further legal action.

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  • 4 weeks later...

From my personal experience, I wish i would have offered a settlement or a payment plan, Just found out last week they placed a garnishment on my bank account and $2300 of my money was gone in the blink of an eye, was completely wiped out, I would either seek legal help, change your bank , preferrably to an online bank, and try to negotiate a settlement. I asked the firm to try to settle for the remaining $1500 I owe , they stated they will settle but they need to get statemetn from bank to show how much i had in there at the time of the freeze, so it may be possible , im just waiting on them at this time.

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