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Can't pay $ after trial,...what are my options?


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I lost the trial but I don't have money to pay.


I am umemployed for a few years, ie, salary garnishment is not something they can do;


and don't have $, ie, bank account levy is not something they can do;


and I don't have any real estate property/ or investment, no $ in bank account;  


I mean, I am broke.


Do I really need to file bankruptcy CH.7 to discharge the debt/ judgment or the claim-of-exemption can do the trick?  


What else do I need to know about claim-of-exemption?










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First off, if you do not have the funds to pay a judgement, where are you going to get the funds to pay for a Ch 7 BK. The cost is around $2000 and the law requires most attorneys to collect up front.

That said, it is doubtful that they can collect on the judgement anyways if you have no assets. Just make sure to attend every debtors exam that they request of you and just show them the real situation. Interest will collect on the judgement but I am not sure if CA allows for contract interest on judgements or statute interest. You have to attend the debtors exams because once they realize you are collection proof, they will try to conduct them in the minimally allowable period (often enough to not piss off the judge for wasting his time) to try to trip you up to get you arrested for contempt of court. Once you are arrested, most judges set the bail equal to the maximum by statute or the debt, whichever is lower, and the creditor can then attach the bail funds, even if someone else paid the bail.


If you receive any cash social service funds in a bank account (welfare, unemployment, Social Security, etc.), I would let the bank know that the funds are exempt because they will try to attach those funds anyway, even if the are not legally allowed to. As for the other exemptions, you bring those up at the debtors exam.

Depending on the field you are in, they might have just FUBAR'd your chances of getting employment real soon so I would let them sit and realize the position they are in. BK 7 is useless today and really does not solve your problem. Try to get an income first and then see where you stand.

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Guest usctrojanalum

rarely does a chapter 7 make sense for a single judgment creditor unless it is a huge and overly burdensome bill (say a medical bill or credit card over like 100k or something).


I disagree with WhoCares  that BK is totally useless, because not having assets that can be garnished today does not mean you will not have assets that can be garnished tomorrow.  So if you file a BK now, and get money in the future - that money is not at risk of being seized by current judgment creditors. 


But as I said, if you only really owe a single judgment creditor and do not have much other outstanding debt BK probably does not make sense. 

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I had a fee waiver while I was fighting for the case. That said, I think I could get the filing fee waived upon filing for BK, if it is what is needed.


I am not in a situation to pay attorney's fee, so I will need all the help as possible to do it myself.


Thanks for the tips on debtor's examination and the "arrest" part, i won't be able to come up with $ for the bonds, if get arrested.


I am from California, is it true that they can collect 10% interest on judgment until it is fully paid? This is another reason why I ask about 7, instead of chapter 13. My understanding is Ch.13 offers a re-payment plan, but my situation is that I may not be able to make installment due to unemployment.


My situation is a little complicated, in cross road here, I had a few debts, but they issued 1099C instead of taking legal action against me. This is the only one I got into lawsuit. Not a big amount, less than $10K, USCTrojanalum is right on, it is somewhat does'nt making any sense if the amount is not big and its a single small one. And I am also a little worry it makes a little more difficult to get a job if employer runs a credit check.  


But that said, if they add 10% a year as interest, it seems to me that I don't have other choice, is'nt it? BK with Chapter7, not 13,  can discharge the debt, right?


What it 's like to file chaper 7?


If I postpone the Chapter 7, do I need to renew the claim of exemption every year, say, hoping I can find a job later & get $ & see where I stand, as WhoCares1000 said.


How does the claim of exemption works?


Thank you,

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