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Can you collect on a judgment from another state in Florida?

On Behalf of | Nov 13, 2020 | collections

Some people will go to incredible lengths to avoid making payments on legitimate debts, especially if they have judgments against them or have had their wages garnished due to a court order. People will quit good-paying, stable jobs just because they want to end a garnishment of their wages. Some people will even leave the state that they live in to prevent a judgment from impacting their lives.

If someone with an outstanding debt has moved to Florida since you secured a judgment against them, you may wonder what options you have. The good news is that if you have already proven the debt in court, the process for enforcing your rights may be easier than you think. Florida allows for the domestication of judgments obtained in other states when it comes to the collection of debt.

You may have a right to ask for a new garnishment

When you have evidence validating the debt itself, proof that you brought a successful claim in court in another state and documentation that shows that the person in Florida is the same person who owes the money, you can ask the Florida civil courts to assist you.

A judge can review proof of the debt owed and the judgment issued in another state. Provided that they believe you have everything in order, they can give you the right to apply that judgment to collection activity in Florida. You may even be able to seek a garnishment of the person’s wages at their new job.

Domestication of debt is critical in cases with avoidant debtors

Interstate debt collection is sometimes straightforward. There are some people who will pay what they owe when creditors or third-party collection companies contact them directly. Sadly, for every responsible individual who makes good on their financial obligations, there is someone who will do just about anything to avoid paying what they owe to others.

Phone calls and letters will likely do little to compel someone actively avoiding their debt to take responsibility for it. Only by going to court and compelling them to pay can you potentially recover the outstanding debt they owe.