I remember when I was a kid, my uncle seemed like the coolest guy. Whenever he visited he would make a quarter magically appear from behind my ear (yes he was that cliché and I was that
gullible). Being young I was absolutely amazed by this display of magic.
Of course, when I got older I learned that money will not magically appear from behind my ear, or from anywhere else.
However, most people think that attorneys can magically make money appear. They expect when I win their case, that money will be magically deposited into their account the next
Life and the law does not work this way. What usually happens is that I win the case and get a money judgment. Then, I demand payment from the losing side. After the losing side fails to pay on
the judgment, I demand they tell me where their bank accounts are, where they work and what assets they have.
After they ignore that demand, I make a motion for contempt. Then, I begin a 6-12-month process of getting their information and/or having them arrested until they give me their
Then, if they don’t have any money, there is not much else I can do until they make some money.
Of course, this is not what happens all the time but, there is a reason that judgments can last up to 20 years and even longer.
This also highlights why settlement can be good. Even if a case is settled for less money than is owed, a Plaintiff can receive money much faster than going through the entire process of
collecting on a judgment.
This goes back to my many emails about strategy. A good attorney takes into account who the Plaintiff is suing, the Plaintiff’s ability to collect on a judgment, and also the opposing counsel’s
willingness to settle when advising a Plaintiff on a recommended course of action.
So remember collecting takes time and your attorney is not a magician.
Watch the video above to learn more.
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