Enforcing an out-of-state judgment when someone moves to GA

Jun 12, 2020 | Commercial Litigation

Collecting unpaid balances from individuals who don’t want to pay is not an easy task. Some people will quit their jobs, move to a new house or change phone numbers just to avoid collection efforts by creditors. Businesses ranging from hospitals to lenders who provided a car loan can find themselves desperately trying to locate people who haven’t paid on their debts and then trying to compel them to pay what they owe.

When someone makes it clear that repaying a debt isn’t their priority, sometimes the only option for the company waiting on payment is to go to court. The civil courts can and often do rule in favor of those owed money by entering judgments against the party refusing to pay.

A judgment could include garnishment of that individual’s wages as a means of compelling them to pay. If someone moves to Georgia from another state, like Florida, in order to avoid repaying your company, do you have any rights?

The Georgia courts do recognize judgments from other states

If you have already gone through the process of securing a judgment in the state where the debtor used to live, the thought of going back to court and securing another judgment may seem frustrating or even pointless, as that person could potentially leave Georgia as well to avoid repaying your business.

Thankfully, if you have a pre-existing judgment in another state, you can present certain documentation to the courts and petition them to domesticate an out-of-state judgment.

Out-of-state collection doesn’t have to be hard

With the right knowledge of Georgia laws and the right help with paperwork and court proceedings, your business could easily transfer a judgment previously secured in another state to allow it to engage in more aggressive collection activity in the state of Georgia.

Having in-state legal representation can help your company pursue collections in Georgia, even if the business doesn’t have any official presence in the state. From greater access to in-state resources, like skip-tracing professionals, to an understanding of state laws regarding debt collection and judgments, help from someone in Georgia can make all the difference when your company must pursue debt originally incurred elsewhere and a judgment secured in another state.