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Can a small claims judgement be listed as a creditor when filing for bankruptcy?

Atlanta, GA |
Attorney answers 7


Not only can you list it, but you MUST list it.

Let me stress that you need a lawyer. A judgment presents an extra challenge as it is a lien on your assets, and you may need a motion to avoid lien on top of the case itself.

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Judgments can be discharged through your bankruptcy filing. However, there are some exceptions. For example, the judgment may not be dischargeable if it resulted from fraud, failure to pay family support obligations, such as alimony, spousal support, and child support, or failure to pay student loans.

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You must, not just should, list all debt obligations. Whether it is dischargeable in bankruptcy depends on what kind of debt it is.


Absolutely. You must list ALL debt. It is often up to the creditor to claim non dischargeability in you bankruptcy. Most small claim winners would not bring such a claim, and if they did, success is usually very limited.


Short answer: You must list all your debts. You may want to consult with a local bankruptcy lawyer to help with your case.


Unless there was a finding of fraud, these claims are simple to discharge by filing a motion to avoid the judicial lien in a bankruptcy case. However, if you do nothing or delay filing bankruptcy, the judgment can end up as a garnishment of your wages and bank account or a lien on your property. Filing bankruptcy or working out a payment plan with the creditor is the only way to avoid these consequences.

The above information is general in nature. In order to obtain more specific and legal advice upon which to base your important decisions, please contact our office directly for a free phone or in person consultation. Robert M. Gardner, Jr. Hicks, Massey & Gardner, LLP 53 W. Candler St. Or 718 Oak St. Winder, Ga. 30680 Gainesville, Georgia (770) 307-4899 (770) 538-0555 serving metro Atlanta and all of Northeast Georgia Bankruptcy, Divorce, Personal Injury, Worker’s Compensation, Medical Malpractice, Adoption, Civil and Criminal Litigation


Not only can you list the small claims case that you lost but you must list all debts when filing for bankruptcy. More than likely the judgement and debt that the person you lost to in small claims court will be discharged in your bankruptcy filing. There are a few exceptions to this rule.

Many bankruptcy lawyers offer free consultations. Take advantage of a free consultation with a bankruptcy attorney and make sure that your judgement is able to be discharged. An attorney can also weigh your financial situation and make sure that bankruptcy is the right choice for you and advise you as to what chapter of bankruptcy you may want to consider.

I hope that you found this information useful.

Parker Evan Bornmann
The Bornmann Law Group, PLLC

Contact me directly at 480-833-8000 for a free (1 Hour) consultation. I have law offices conveniently located in Mesa, Glendale, and Tucson, Arizona. You and I do not have an attorney-client relationship formed by our communications on this website. Advice given by me on this website is general advice based on partial information. You should not rely on any advice given without first hiring a lawyer in the area where the case is pending, and providing that lawyer with full information.