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ladyblue
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎03-19-2009
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Need Advice on Vacating a Judgement or Negotiating PFD

Here's the background...

I received a summons to appear in court in 2008.  The atty representing the CA is also a CA (go figure).  I spoke with the atty/CA (Dominion Law Associates) representing Midland Funding LLC at court arbitration.  I told the atty that I didn't owe Midland a dime and that there should be a contract or payment or something on file verifying that I indeed at least did business with Midland.  I think a few years prior I owed a utility company in another state and believe they may have sold my account to Midland and Midland in turn hired a law office which also does collections as well, hence the law suit.  The court date was set for a month later, but I did not appear in court because in all honesty it slipped my mind (not an excuse, just the truth).  Fast forward to 2010 (going into 2011)...I have this judgement against me and of course it on my CR.  I've gone through several files and I'm pretty sure that this may be a utility bill although the amount is well over double what I should have owed the utility company.  Should I try vacating the judgement since A) I never owed the CA anything and the agreement would have been with the utility company, so the burden should lie there.  Or B) Try negotiating for exactly what I owe or close to it and try to get a PFD and have the CA vacate once I uphold my end of the deal.  Should I send a DV letter to Midland or Midland's legal representative?  I remember during arbitration that the atty didn't have much of a file, but she also wouldn't let me see anything either.  I think I also placed a security deposit, so I'm wondering if I can't vacate the judgement and my only other option is to actually pay the CA, if the security deposit can count toward the debt?  Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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chasmith
Posts: 1,062
Registered: ‎05-26-2010
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Re: Need Advice on Vacating a Judgement or Negotiating PFD

Roughly how much is the total (remember the judgement could be continuing to accrue interest)?  Can you pay it?

 

If you can pay it, the best you can do is negotiate to have the judgement vacated in return for payment.  By missing court and getting a default judgement entered against you, there's not really any way to reopen the issues you raise.

 

Do be aware that when you start asking about this you may reawaken them, and they may pursue enforcement of the judgement (probably by wage garnishment), so be sure you can pay the item in full plus interest.

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O6
Posts: 3,626
Registered: ‎10-13-2009
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Re: Need Advice on Vacating a Judgement or Negotiating PFD


ladyblue wrote:

Here's the background...

I received a summons to appear in court in 2008.  The atty representing the CA is also a CA (go figure).  I spoke with the atty/CA (Dominion Law Associates) representing Midland Funding LLC at court arbitration.  I told the atty that I didn't owe Midland a dime and that there should be a contract or payment or something on file verifying that I indeed at least did business with Midland.  I think a few years prior I owed a utility company in another state and believe they may have sold my account to Midland and Midland in turn hired a law office which also does collections as well, hence the law suit.  The court date was set for a month later, but I did not appear in court because in all honesty it slipped my mind (not an excuse, just the truth).  Fast forward to 2010 (going into 2011)...I have this judgement against me and of course it on my CR.  I've gone through several files and I'm pretty sure that this may be a utility bill although the amount is well over double what I should have owed the utility company.  Should I try vacating the judgement since A) I never owed the CA anything and the agreement would have been with the utility company, so the burden should lie there.  Or B) Try negotiating for exactly what I owe or close to it and try to get a PFD and have the CA vacate once I uphold my end of the deal.  Should I send a DV letter to Midland or Midland's legal representative?  I remember during arbitration that the atty didn't have much of a file, but she also wouldn't let me see anything either.  I think I also placed a security deposit, so I'm wondering if I can't vacate the judgement and my only other option is to actually pay the CA, if the security deposit can count toward the debt?  Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


I see absolutely no standing to have the judgment vacated.  By your own admission, you were properly served and made well aware of the court date.  By your own negligence you failed to appear and a default judgment was entered against you.  By failing to appear you waived any rights you had to contest the debt and force the creditor to provide evidence of said debt.  At this point you pretty much have only two options.

 

1.  Do nothing and hope that the judgment creditor does not some day try to enforce the judgment against you and / or the judgment appearing on your credit report does not hinder your credit relationship(s); or

 

2.  Try and negotiate a settlement.  Perhaps they will accept less than the judgment amount plus statutory interest and fees awarded by the court.  If they do not, you are back at option #1 or paying off the full amount.

 

Sending a DV is not an option because you can't DV a judgment creditor.  Even if you could, they only need to send you a copy of the judgment and upon doing so then have your address.  It may also awaken them result in their enforcing the judgment against you. 

 

In most jurisdictions, there is no such thing as a PFD when dealing with a judgment.  You can try to get the judgment creditor to file a motion in court, but the chances are probably slim since payment (i.e. satisfaction) of a judgment is itself seldom grounds for a court to vacate a judgment.

 

If a security deposit was made when obtaining utility service, they would have used that to offset against the overdue balance a long time ago.  For a three-year-old debt, you can probably figure interest at a total of around 30%, a couple of hundred dollars in court costs and about a thousand dollars in attorney fees.  Add all that to the initial debt and subtract whatever security deposit there was and that's probably what you are looking at now.  Some utility companies, though, escheat any security deposits to the state.  You'll have to ask the judgment creditor. 

IAALBNYL

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