Fixing up credit - Can I have judgment reviewed, negotiated,etc?

Asked almost 2 years ago - White Plains, NY

I am located in Westchester County, NY
My former landlord was granted a judgement for $3500 against me due to non-payment back in Jul 2010. It is now showing on my credit report. I take full responsbility because of my past mistakes. But I now trying to rebuild my credit reputation and the judgement is making a big blemish on my credit report.
Also, after I vacated the apartment, the landlord kept my security deposit, and never notified me what was deducted from it.
Would it be possible to have the security deposit to be applied to the current judgement and possibly pay the remaining balance, which is about $2000.
What legal avenues should I follow ? Should I contact my former landlord or his attorney ?
Thank you very much for taking the time to respond to my question.

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Dorothy G Bunce


    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . It never hurts to try to negotiate a settlement of a court judgment, but be prepared to bring cash to the table. You won't get the best deal unless you have a lump sum to put up as full settlement. I would start the conversation with the attorney's office (you actually may want to communicate in writing) and see whether the attorney wants to work with you or to send the case back to the landlord. Hope this perspective helps!

  2. Michael J Corbin

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . Here's the issue - presumably, the landlord applied the deposit to your account before the judgment was obtained against you. Whether he did or didn't, however, is now irrelevant. It sounds as if you didn't defend the lawsuit, so you have no real basis now to appeal it or ask for it to be vacated, esp. since you agree you owe the money. So, that deposit money is already gone, and you owe the whole judgment plus interest. You certainly can contact the landlord or their attorney and try to negotiate a resolution, but any deal will probably require payment-in-full immediately. And, it won't remove the judgment from your credit report - it will merely report that it was satisfied.

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