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Following a default judgment of uncontested divorce - property and asset division. What to do when other party can't be found?

San Francisco, CA |

The other party is hiding and sending threatening and harassing messages via email to family and friends. Domestic violence restraining order granted but unable to be personally serve. How to proceed with judgment collection?

Attorney Answers 4

Posted

How were they served? If they were properly served, then file a Request for Default and then ask the court to set a trial date. Send your documents to the last known address if they were indeed properly served, It is their responsibility to make the court aware of any address changes.

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7 comments

Asker

Posted

Thanks for your answer. I already filed the Request to Enter Default, obtained the Default Judgment and was awarded a share of Community Property. My question is about how to proceed with Judgment Collection if the other party can't be found?

Gregory Paul Benton

Gregory Paul Benton

Posted

It depends on the property being recovered. What are you specifically needing to recover?

Asker

Posted

One-half of the community interest in the following: real estate property, farmland, artwork, car, boat, bank accounts, stocks, bonds, commodities (gold & silver)

Gregory Paul Benton

Gregory Paul Benton

Posted

Get a writ to transfer the real estate and all other items where there is a title. Take the orders to the banks and stock companies to change ownership of those accounts.

Asker

Posted

According to the judgment I am entitled to one-half. How do I determine one half?

Gregory Paul Benton

Gregory Paul Benton

Posted

Go see an attorney. If there are this many assets available, then you can afford to hire an attorney to get the job done. Small investment will yield a larger reward.

Asker

Posted

I live in San Francisco now, but the divorce and judgment are from Indio court in Riverside county. Where do you think it is better to go see an attorney?

Posted

Your first step is to ensure that you have a valid judgment in the family court. Was service done properly and was a proof of service filed? Once you determine if your judgment is valid and will withstand any motions to set aside you can begin the collections process. You should contact an attorney to discuss your collections alternatives.

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2 comments

Asker

Posted

Thanks for your answer. I live in San Francisco now, but the divorce and judgment are from Indio court in Riverside county. Where do you think it is better to go see an attorney?

Samuel R Walker

Samuel R Walker

Posted

I would suggest that you speak with an attorney who is from the county where your case will be heard. If you would like a free phone consultation I would be happy to speak with you.

Posted

It is unclear if you are asking for a default in a divorce or a DVRO. If you have been able to serve the divorce papers then you should be able to collect a default judgment. Once the judgment is entered in your favor you can use it to collect the assets you are entitled to. If your former spouse lives in another state you will need to register your California judgment in that state in order to collect his/her assets there

The Law Offices of Durham and Ng represent clients in family law matters throughout the state of California and offers free consultations. However, the above answer is NOT LEGAL ADVICE and DOES NOT CREATE AN ATTORNEY CLIENT RELATIONSHIP. The facts of each individuals case are unique and no legal advice can be offered without a thorough review of your specific facts and court filings.

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2 comments

Asker

Posted

Thanks for your answer. I have already obtained a default divorce and according to the judgment I am entitled to one-half of community property. One-half of the community interest in the following: real estate property, farmland, artwork, car, boat, bank accounts, stocks, bonds, commodities (gold & silver). My ex-husband is hiding and sending threatening messages to my family, friends, employer and myself. I can't locate him in order to serve him the DVRO (personally) and proceed with judgment collection.

Jonathan A Durham

Jonathan A Durham

Posted

it might be worth hiring a private investigator to locate him. You may also wish to speak with a collections attorney and explain your case to him along with assets you believe eligible for collection.

Posted

With the advent of the internet, locating someone has become easier. Do an online search and get an inexpensive background or address search. Attempts have been made to go "off the grid" by very smart people, unsuccessfully. Good process servers can lend assistance. Be sure to file the Abstract of Judgment as to money owed you with the county recorder. Personal service will be required, but can be done by publication, if properly requested of the court. Collection can be difficult, perhaps consulting an attorney that specifically handles it would be best.

The comments made here are meant to direct you to receive local consultation from an attorney in your area and ask proper, detailed questions to get the best legal advice upon which you can take appropriate action.

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