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Thursday, October 4,2012

Legal Insight

By Scott J. Topolski  

I recently obtained a judgment against a former customer who owed me a decent amount of money. Unfortunately, I do not believe this former customer currently has the ability to pay me. He has, however, been both up and down, economically, over the last several years, and I am optimistic that he will rebound and be able to pay me at some time down the road. How long is my judgment good for?




I am assuming that this is a Florida judgment. It would be valid and enforceable for 20 years. As such, even if this former customer has no money to satisfy this judgment at the present time, you can--as you suspected attempt to enforce the judgment at any time during the 20-year period that the judgment remains in effect. If, for example, you learned five years from now that he had come into money and you discovered where he was banking, you could seek a garnishment of his bank account at that time. Similarly, if you found out, in the future, where he was working, you could ask for a continuing writ of garnishment against his wages. It is not necessarily uncommon for a judgment creditor like yourself to have to wait to be able to enforce a judgment. Financial circumstances, fortunately, do change and because of the 20-year duration of your judgment, time is an ally of sorts.


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