Have a judgment against an Operating Business in New York?
Warner & Scheuerman has many clients who come to us after they’ve been awarded a judgment against a business that is still operating. Having a judgment against an active business is a good spot to be in but how do you actually recover your money?
Remember, despite your court-ordered judgment, this judgment debtor business is under no obligation to turn over anything to you once the judgment has been entered. As unfair as it seems, the burden is still on you, post-judgment, to pursue them. While you can’t walk into the business and grab the money you are owed right out of the register, there are strategies available to you.
Warner & Scheuerman is highly experienced in the ones that result in recovery. We have helped our clients pursue judgments against a wide range of active businesses including Macy’s/Federated, American Express, restaurants, laundromats, clothing retailers, and salons just to name a few.
Tools you Can Use to Collect from a Debtor Open for Business in New York:
If you know where your judgment debtor banks, you can use the Marshal or the Sheriff to “execute” on a bank account and seize it. The Marshal delivers the execution to the bank and collects the judgment plus interest and an additional 5%, which does not come out of your judgment but is in addition to the amount. We work with the NYC Marshal’s office on a daily basis.
The Marshal can also seize physical assets in the Judgment Debtor’s store, shop, restaurant, etc. after a notice period. Many times the mere prospect of such seizure will precipitate either payment or an acceptable settlement overture. Think of a restaurant without the tables..it would be the owner’s nightmare. Warner & Scheuerman has negotiated countless forbearance agreements (essentially an agreement to pull back on the collection procedures to allow the Judgment Debtor some time to satisfy the debt using periodic payments).
A restraining notice is a document that your attorney serves on someone who you believe is in possession of property owned by or owed to your Judgment Debtor. Many times this is a bank or a credit card company such as American Express. The restraining notice freezes twice the amount of the judgment and interest, which in and of itself may bring the judgment debtor to the table.