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How do they collect?

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There are several ways.

The most common is by garnishing your wages or bank accounts.

They usually go after bank accounts first to get the largest lump sum. They do this by sending a letter of garnishment to your bank along with a copy of the judgment. The bank freezes your acocunt and gives them the money.

If that isn't sufficient to cover the judgment they then go after your wages. They send a letter of garnishment to your employer with a copy of the judgment and your employer then takes out the maximum allowed by law from each paycheck until the debt is paid. usually this is capped at 25% or less of your net pay.

The last method they can use is by filing a lien against your property. Some states allow this for cars (like Pensylvania), but all states allow it against your home. Failure to pay off the lien can result in repossession of the car or foreclosure on the home. A few states do not allow foreclosure for these kinds of liens, but you won't be able to sell the house until the lien is paid off.

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It can be years and years before they even bother trying to collect.

I researched the statistics awhile ago, and, astoundingly, up to 80% of judgments are never collected.

If you have no job, no bank account, and no property, they are screwed. They will wait.

Some people design a life for themselves that makes them judgement proof. It's kinda funny that some of the wealthiest people on the planet are essentially judgement proof.

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