How to Collect a Judgment in California
If you have recently won a money judgment in a California court case, sometimes the debtor cannot or will-not pay. Judgment enforcement is a state-specific and the laws governing a California collection are California laws. For example in small claims court, you must wait 30 days until the appeal time expires before being able to enforce. If an appeal was conducted and you won, the standard waiting period to collect is around 10 days following the appeal decision. Although the court does not collect the money for you, it issues orders indicating that you must collect from the debtor.
A judgment collection essentially deals with collecting a lump sum or series of payments from the debtor to pay back what the plaintiff is owed. If an individual or company has an agreement it was not fulfilled resulting in financial loss, the court can legally address the situation. Most cases are handled in small claims court due to the small amount owed. States have different payment ceilings with the average amount ranging from $5,000 to $10,000. To collect this money, you must take the debtor to court for a judgment. Once issued, you will receive legal documentation from the court indicating what you are entitled to receive.
There are many reasons to collect a judgment. The primary reason is so the plaintiff is paid the money they rightfully deserve based on the court’s decision. This could be child support payments, completing a loan, resolving a dispute between businesses or even be a landlord-tenant situation. While there are many different reasons, they all lead back to the rightful party being paid.
There are several options for collecting a judgment in California including, levy a bank account, garnish wages, perform a till tap levy or action a keeper levy.