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How to collect the judgement from a corporation?

Los Angeles, CA |

We got a judgement in small claims court against a corporation. They havent paid us and they are very well in business doing great. Just dont want to pay what they owe to us. Now How do we collect the judgement of 4K.? Thanks.

Attorney Answers 6


  1. If you know where they have a bank account you obtain a writ of execution and have it seved on the bank. Execution is not an easy procedure but many courts have programs to help you understand how to do it.

    The above is general legal and business analysis. It is not "legal advice" but analysis, and different lawyers may analyse this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. I am only licensed in California. See also avvo.com terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here.


  2. Counsel is correct, you need to obtain a write of execution and it served on the specific bank in question. Good luck!

    Hyde & Swigart is a law firm concentrating its efforts in the area of consumer law, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1692 et seq. (“FDCPA”), and California's Rosenthal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, California Civil Code §§ 1788-1788.32 ("Rosenthal Act"). Our lawyers are specially trained in the Federal FDCPA, Consumer Defense, and other consumer related matters. Our goal is to protect you against unfair, deceptive and abusive debt collection practices. Creditors, professional debt collectors, and attorneys who violate the law are subject to paying damages, statutory penalties, and the consumer's attorneys fees and costs. If you feel you have been abused, deceived or treated unfairly, you may need a lawyer. We can be reached at 619-233-7770, through one of the evaluation forms on this site or at eval@westcoastlitigation.com


  3. I agree with my colleagues. Obtaining a writ of execution and subsequently serving a notice of levy on the bank is your best option. If you cannot otherwise determine where the corporation banks, you may conduct a debtor examination, where you are able to ask the question.

    This response is not intended, nor should it be construed as legal advice. Any information provided is for educational purposes only. To schedule an appointment for an attorney-client privileged consultation, contact me at 530-231-4949. The exchange of communications through Avvo.com and similar social media does not establish an attorney-client relationship with me or my office. Thank you.


  4. Here's an article I wrote on collecting small claims judgments in California: http://www.chs-law.com/2005/02/using-small-claims-court-part-ii.html.

    First, the firm is a debt relief agency according to the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. We help people file for bankruptcy. We also do other stuff and we do it well, but Congress wants me to post this notice. Second, nothing on this site is legal advice. You are not my client unless you enter into a written agreement signed by you and me.


  5. Levy on a bank account.
    Put a keeper in the place of business.
    Levy upon personal property at the place of business.
    Levy on vehicles.

    Remember, a corporation is not entitled to the personal exemptions that would apply to a natural person.


  6. 1. Record an abstract of judgment if you think they may own buildings/land

    2. File with the secretary of state (the forms are on their web site)

    3. Check the secretary of state's web site to be sure they are still an active corporation. If there are issues there, order the records from the secretary of state. You may need to amend the judgment ot include the latest shell. This is a bit trickey but if they were doing business as the corporation after they corporation ceased to exist you may be able to do it.

    4. If you know where they bank, call your sherrif and ask what you need to do to levy the bank accounts. Procedures vary by sherrif's dept.

    5. Get them ordered to appear at an order of examination. THis is a little expensive. You have to get the documents personally served by a process server. Give yourself lots of time for this !!
    You will also need a court reporter. be sure to send a subpoena for financial documents along with the OEX paperwork. You need both. Get the judge to order turn over of assets at the OEX. Find out who their best customer is and do an OEX on that customer and a subpoena callign for their records of what they owe the company and get the judge to order that it be turned over. Good luck!

    This answer is not intended to provide legal advice and you should always consult a qualified lawyer in your state who has had the opportunity to discuss all aspects of your matter with you and review all applicable documents before making any decisions on your matter.