Creditors’ Rights 37
Q: A customer of mine has failed to pay. We have no other choice but to file a suit in court in hopes to get some of our money recovered. What are some of the outcomes that may occur from litigation?
A: Like settlements, preliminary and pre-trial procedures take us down many intriguing avenues for getting paid:
- Summary Judgment: If there are no facts in dispute, your attorney can file a motion for summary judgment. Some judges award partial summary judgment, where the litigation continues for the rest.
- Injunctions: Defendants can be stopped from taking certain actions prejudicial or damaging to the plaintiff through injunctions. The most common situation is when the debtor is about to sell or liquidate a business or assets critical to the case. Injunctions temporarily or permanently halt the sale.
- Post-Judgment: The final way a creditors’ rights attorney helps is in the post judgment phase of litigation, once the client has won and needs some muscle to collect on a judgment.
Here’s one of Bob’s favorite post-judgment success stories:
After obtaining a $7,000 judgment against a plumbing contractor, we sent the sheriff to the place of business to seize the debtor’s equipment. The business was located out of town inside a fenced yard. No one was there when the deputies arrived so they left without taking anything.
A few days later one our collectors came back from lunch and told me that the plumbing contractor’s truck and compressor were on Grant Street blowing out the sprinkler lines for flower beds in the middle of the street.
I immediately headed for the sheriff’s office which was at the same end of Grant Street as the contractor’s truck. I was able to get a deputy to find the papers, take a walk outside and seize the truck and the compressor from the workers on the job. The contractor paid a couple of days later in order to redeem his equipment.
*Learn more about credit policies and the Payment Gap with Bob Bernstein’s new book, Get P.A.I.D.TM A Guide to Getting Paid Faster (and What to Do if You Don’t!) at www.getpaidsystem.com