by Valerie McGilvrey
The Daily Skip
In the true spirit of my favorite Cosmo Quizzes, let’s lend some intelligent thought to how attractive a judgment really is to you and if it’s going to burn out quickly or be a long, hot and financially rewarding courtship.
Get your pen and scratch paper out +1 means to add a point and -1 means to subtract a point when required and so on…
How many judgment debtors are there?
+1 for each debtor.
Does the current judgment creditor know where the debtor is?
Is the judgment in the first three years of life?
+1 if yes.
-1 if no.
Is the judgment debtor living in a state that won’t allow wage garnishment? (Texas, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and South Carolina)
+1 if yes
-1 if no.
A non-wage garnishment state judgment debtor that’s moved to a garnishment state?
+5 (Just because like me, you love a sneak attack!)
Business owner? (I think business owners are more difficult to collect.)
Debtor have other judgments?
-5 for each one
Does the debtor have elder parents who are property owners?
+1 if yes.
-1 for each sibling. (Reduces the chances of your debtor inheriting real estate.)
Have a homestead and other real estate?
+1 for each
On adult probation?
+1 (Really? Yes!)
-1 for repeat offenders who have felonies.
Does the judgment debtor own vehicles?
+ 1 for each vehicle with a clear title.
-1 for financed auto’s
On the job for more than one year?
-100 (A person on disability is judgement proof. Don’t buy it unless there’s another factor in that person’s future with big money such as an inheritance.)
Previously filed BK?
-1 (if they filed once and dismissed, filing again would be easier than paying a judgment. Personally, I wouldn’t buy this paper.).
Active in social media?
+1 if yes
Because you know how to find the debtor, and the creditor has to pay thousands of dollars to skip trace and find the money. This makes the deal easier for the current creditor to it let go dirt cheap making a little cash as opposed to nothing at all.
Business property of the past, present and future are subject to satisfying a judgment. If a debtor has a home based business and the address is used for any business purpose then it’s possible a homestead exemption may not be allowed. This means you get to take the property.
The sale of property and vehicles can be reversed by a court to satisfy a judgment if discovered after the judgment was entered. It’s a court order to pay, not permission to transfer all their trucks and tractor equipment into grown kid’s names.
Other judgments owed to the debtor can really blur the big picture. If I was stuck with a judgment debtor who owed multiple judgments I’d try to make deals to buy all of them. I read in Florida that a creditor must register with the state and that the collection of garnished wages is done in succession.
I don’t want to wait in line behind other judgment creditors, it’s not always the one who files a garnishment first that get’s the gold. You may have to sit on information while you stand in line.
Judgments that don’t get excluded from payment in bankruptcy are a good buy. Those would include child support debt, judgments awarded to a crime victim and those that have a long life without the requirement of renewal.
Government liens are going to be first in line, even if you do all the work of locating the assets and initiate taking them. Uncle Sam get’s paid first and then you get what’s left (if there’s anything). If tax liens are in the thousands and your judgment debtor works at McDonald’s then the time spent looking at the paperwork isn’t even worth it.
Repayment of civil judgments are a condition of probation and could make probation revocable. If for no other reason, a condition of probation is that a convict is working and that gives you the possibility of finding a good garnishable job.
If repeat offender is the debtor and skips out on probation it could be years before there’s an arrest. The debtor may have to serve out the remainder of their sentence which is not good for an investment of even ten dollars. Pass it and move on.
Financed cars aren’t worth seizing if it’s upside down, the only positive I can think of with discovering a note is that the debtor is most likely working and has a bank account to make that note.
Tip: Need to know the payoff on a vehicle? Call the lien holder and ask for a payoff faxed to you. You’re not required to tell that lien holder why you’re asking although they’re going to assume that the auto is being traded in and you’re a finance company or auto dealer in the middle of a sweet deal.
Even though your debtor may not inherit, find out if there are other siblings or a reverse mortgage on the property. You’ll want to check with the clerk’s office for deed’s that reflect liens filed on real estate.
A social media presence makes cyber tracking the debtor a less expensive task. If you choose to offer more than the basic ten cents per dollar for skipped out judgment debtors at least it’s going to be because you have mapped out everywhere this debtor likes to go online.
Social media breeds narcissism and over sharing. You could hit pay dirt in just one day! Many people who I’ve been looking for have public social media profiles. Follow the debtors Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to get updates as they’re posted.
A long time skip tracer once told me that she’s been buying and collecting judgments and that without even trying she’s making about $50k extra per year on her judgments. I was astounded.
Her next words to me were why is it that when you know so much about how to find people, what they own and where the money is, that you wouldn’t be working to put that in your own favor instead of doing it for someone else one paycheck at a time. I couldn’t agree more.