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Property Seizure after the Default Judgment—What Should I Expect?

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Falling into debt is a process that usually happens gradually, and although you may have numerous household debts to manage, credit card debt is a perfect example of how one thing leads to another—and before too long you may find yourself not only surprised with a collections lawsuit, but even the dreaded default judgment.

Unfortunately, a court or default judgment is usually the result of not responding to a lawsuit. And many, many consumers do not. Most often, they are intimidated by the creditor and the lawsuit, the court process, and may also feel so ashamed and embarrassed that they do nothing. On the other hand, you may not even be aware of the lawsuit against you (usually due to improper service of process) until you find out a default judgment has been granted—and this is where the process becomes most painful with garnished wages, levied bank accounts, and loss of property.

While up to 25 percent of your income can be taken from paychecks, and your bank can be ordered to freeze you bank account until the debt is satisfied, the potential for seizure of property can lead to enormous anxiety—not to mention the stress of having the Sheriff come to your house and take your assets so they can be sold at auction. And while that is one method of property seizure after a judgment, the creditor may also put liens on assets, meaning that you would not be able to sell or liquidate until the creditor was paid. For many, there is comfort in knowing that they have very little left, with most of their property being listed as exempt by state law.

The creditor may also come after you for legal violations of the judgment if you have sold property for much less than it is worth, or simply given it away (often to a family member) to avoid seizure. While a skilled judgment attorney will be able to explain more about the complexities of the repercussions of judgments, they may also be able to have it set aside with a motion to vacate and a strong defense of the initial lawsuit. There is usually the chance to settle the debt at a discounted rate even at the very end, if you can produce a lump sum payment.

If you are finding it difficult to pay your bills and need an experienced debtor rights attorney, contact us at Fitzgerald & Campbell, APLC. We can review your current situation and discuss your options with you, whether that means bankruptcy, a negotiated settlement, or exploring other options.

Speak with an attorney from Fitzgerald & Campbell, APLC as soon as possible to examine your options. Our attorneys have decades of experience in serving clients as they navigate through challenging financial situations, to include student loan issues, bankruptcy, and other debt management processes. We are here to help! Click here to schedule a free 30-minute consultation, call us at (844) 431-3851, or email us at

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